Friday, July 15, 2011

Curious about Stretch and/or Stretching: Many Different Takes on This Important Quality

Definition of Stretch : To reach out; to extend; to put forth. To draw or pull out to greater length; to strain; as, to stretch a tendon or muscle. To exaggerate; to extend too far; as, to stretch the truth; to stretch one's credit. To extend or spread one's self, or one's limbs; as, the lazy man yawns and stretches. To strain the truth; to exaggerate; as, a man apt to stretch in his report of facts. Act of stretching, or state of being stretched; reach; effort; struggle; strain; as, a stretch of the limbs; a stretch of the imagination.

A good goal is like a strenuous exercise - it makes you stretch.” - Mary Kay Ash, American business woman

I chose “stretch” for this week’s blog, because of all of the benefits it offers. Stretching the body, the mind, the imagination are all so important in our lives. As a fitness instructor, I have always stressed the importance of stretching. Of course it helps to develop and keep us flexible. Most people don’t realize that we automatically lose 10% of our flexibility every ten years.

Over the past three years, I have been involved with Yoga and teaching Yoga. I even teach a Senior Yoga class called YogaStretch. And, yes, you guessed it, it involves a great deal of stretching. I know from how great my students and I feel, how beneficial the poses and stretches are for us. I was also delighted with the stretching quotations I found. Let me know what you think about them.

Here goes:

  • What we think determines what happens to us, so if we want to change our lives, we need to stretch our minds.” - Wayne Dyer, American psychologist

  • It's a slight stretch of the imagination but most people are alike in most ways so I've never had any trouble identifying with the character that I'm playing.” - Jack Nicholson, American actor

  • I think it's important to stretch as you get older, but I try to do basically all the things I did when I played, except I can't do them as well and as much.” - Mike Ditka, American coach

  • If you put yourself in a position where you have to stretch outside your comfort zone, then you are forced to expand your consciousness.” - Les Brown, American businessman

  • By asking a novel question that you don't know the answer to, you discover whether you can formulate a way of finding the answer, and you stretch your own mind, and very often you learn something new.” - Walter Gilbert, American scientist

  • It is undeniable that a woman's ability to stretch and pursue her total competence outside the home and get paid what she's worth for it makes for happier and more fulfilled women.” - Kyle D. Pruett, American child psychiatrist and expert on parenting

  • I am conscious of trying to stretch the boundaries of non-fiction writing. It's always surprised me how little attention many non-fiction writers pay to the formal aspects of their work.” - Alain de Botton, English writer

And more:

  • Jazz tickles your muscles, symphonies stretch your soul.” - Paul Whiteman, American celebrity

  • Reading is a means of thinking with another person's mind; it forces you to stretch your own.” – Charles Scribner, Jr., American publisher

  • Schools must stop being holding pens to keep energetic young people off the job market and off the streets. We stretch puberty out a long, long time.” -Toni Morrison, American novelist

  • There are amazingly wonderful people in all walks of life; some familiar to us and others not. Stretch yourself and really get to know people. People are in many ways one of our greatest treasures.” - Bryant H. McGill, American poet

  • In all realms of life it takes courage to stretch your limits, express your power, and fulfill your potential... it's no different in the financial realm.” - Suze Orman, American author

  • I love to read. I love to stretch. In the morning, I get up, and if I'm not in a hurry, I will lie on the floor on a rug, look through some books and magazines, and maybe listen to music and try to do stretching exercises to tune up.” - Jackson Browne, American musician

  • I still think of myself as a stage actor. When I do film and television I try to implement what I was taught to do in theatre, to try to stretch into characters that are far from myself.” - Tony Shalhoub, American actor

So, in what ways do you stretch yourself? The more you do it, the more you will love it. And the more you will experience the benefits.