| |

Loneliness of a long distance kickbiker (albeit with arthritis) seeking his Dantian

The kickbike is  a very simple machine that can only be propelled forward through personal effort. Newton's Laws of Motion are not tweaked as they are so much with a bicycle. Between you and the road there is a noticeable absence of a gearing ratio.

I used the kickbike  to get around  with the side effect that it was a handy exercise utility. But this year I adopted a focused approach and consciously trained on the kickbike.

I discovered that on rising each morning I had a physiological window of opportunity which enabled me, despite whatever pain and stiffness may descend during the rest of the day, to push the physical envelope for a little while. So each morning, after breakfast, I do a few circuits of the neighborhood. I currently kick for 7 kilometres that way each day.

Yesterday, when I added another ten to the distance logged -- so that I did 17 kilometres for the day -- it warrants pausing for a moment to meditate on what may be happening.

So what is happening, at least, inside me?

Because I suffer from Fibromyalgia -- for a  crippling 25 years --  and was overweight,  no doubt partly  because of  the handicap -- I decided that running wasn't on my agenda. I used to ride a bicycle
...in fact I used to ride a bicycle with a carry cart and so loaded ride to local schools to give mask and puppet making workshops...
 but on those days when I was especially stiff and sore mounting the bike and pushing down on the peddles wasn't an easy call, in fact it was often impossible. Thinking through my options , I began a career as a scooter-er --and the klickbike is the third scooter I've owned.

This year as I began to up my mileage/kilometre-age my body began to change especially in the core.

Kickbikes are promoted as a sure fire way to generate a cute ass  and in the pelvic department they do deliver as promised. But the real physiological change is closer to what the Chinese call  the Dantian 
.. the term dantian is often used interchangeably with the Japanese word hara ( Chinese: fù) which means simply "belly". In Chinese and Japanese tradition, it is considered the physical center of gravity of the human body and is the seat of one's internal energy (qi). A master of calligraphy, swordsmanship, tea ceremony, martial arts, etc. is held in the Japanese tradition to be "acting from the hara". (Note that the dantian is not fixed anatomical location in the body but the center of gravity and the location where the body's chi or vital energy distributed throughout the organism.)
Since I also have a Tai Chi Chuan background I know what the quest for the Dantian is about, and it is essentially a quest for body balance and pelvic control.: first move your ass and the rest of the body follows.

What the kickbike does, as an automatic product of relentless, serious kickbike training, is give you access to the Dantian. In terms of practice it is easy to see why that may happen as the constant reaching forth and throwing back of each leg in succession has, I guess, it's own rewards.

"relentless, serious kickbike training"

But it took me some time to engineer this "relentless, serious kickbike training".

The first break-through I  had was to establish a local neighborhood circuit.. With the assistance of Google Earth it was easy to plot a route and mark off its distance.

View Larger Map

The Abacus bracelet

But it has always been difficult marking off the number of circuits I  complete. 

.I've been fiddling with a numbering of options located on the bike: tags and wires I could pull across each time I notched up a kilometre.

But now I think I have a solution for the mathematics involved: the abacus bracelet.

This is a $3.00 magnetic bracelet on which I have stuck consecutive numbers and each time I complete a circuit, I move a magnetised piece to one side.

The magnetic property is immaterial to its function, but the weight makes the exercise  easier to negotiate while the bike is still moving.

So each morning I 
  1. change into my shorts and singlet
  2. put on my Dunlop Volleys with their snazzy ties 
  3. roll on my Abacus Bracelet
  4. place my mp3 player around my neck with its one ear piece -- leaving the other ear for traffic monitoring
  5. switch the mp3 player to my preferred podcasted radio shows....
and start kicking.


Post a Comment