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Mindful Quote of the Day (Sept/14/17)



“Keep your hands open, all the sand of the desert pass into your hands.

Close your hands, do not get that a few grains of sand.”

> Eihei Dogen <




Continue reading Mindful Quote of the Day (Sept/14/17)

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an introduction to: Biofeedback

BIOFEEDBACK is using our own mind to control our physical body. 

It is being able to monitor physiological signs of the body and “think” them into different states.

For Example; the ability to slow a racing heart rate or relax excessive muscle tone (tension).

Understanding how to use Biofeedback will have huge implications to overall health – whether it’s to reduce pain or increase physical performance. 


There are various types of biofeedback therapy: 

  1. brainwave
    – this method uses an EEG to monitor brain wave activity.
  2. Respiratory
    – sensors around your rib cage and abdomen to assess rate of breathing.
  3. Heart rate
    – this type uses finger or earlobe sensors connected to an ECG on your chest, lower torso or wrists and monitors heart rate variability 
  4. Muscle
    – this method uses EMG sensors on skeletal muscle to assess muscle tone and force of contraction.
  5. Sweat glands
    – this method used and electronic Dermagram to assess perspiration on the skin alerting to anxiety.
  6. Temperature
    – a sensor at your hands or feet (extremities) measures a drop in temperature which is usually indicative of stress levels rising. 


Biofeedback, sometimes called biofeedback training, is used to help manage many physical and mental health issues, including:

  • Anxiety or stress
  • Asthma
  • Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)
  • Chemotherapy side effects
  • Chronic pain
  • Constipation
  • Fecal incontinence
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Headache
  • High blood pressure
  • Irritable bowel syndrome
  • Motion sickness
  • Raynaud’s disease
  • Ringing in the ears (tinnitus)
  • Stroke
  • Temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJ)
  • Urinary incontinence

Biofeedback appeals to people for a variety of reasons:

  • It’s noninvasive.
  • It might reduce or eliminate the need for medications.
  • It might be a treatment alternative for those who can’t tolerate medications
  • It might be an option when medications haven’t worked well.
  • It might be an alternative to medications for some conditions during pregnancy.
  • It helps people take charge of their health.


During a biofeedback session, there are electrical sensors attached to different parts of your body. These sensors monitor your body’s physiological state, such as brain waves, skin temperature, muscle tension, heart rate and breathing. This information is fed back to you via cues, such as a sound, vibration or flashing light.

Biofeedback teaches you to change or control your body’s physiological reactions by changing your thoughts, emotions and or behavior.

For instance, biofeedback can pinpoint tense muscles that are causing headaches. You then learn how to invoke positive physical changes in your body, such as relaxing those specific muscles – in order to reduce pain. 

The cool thing is that even without sensors, many of the bodies physiological states can be monitored by your own awareness!

If we take a second to just stop and feel our bodies we can usually discern if we have tense muscles, a fast heart rate, feel cold or hot, are breathing improperly or are sweating.

The Brain is where everything discussed above originates. Neural / Brain wave activity is just as receptive to biofeedback as muscle tone, respiration and all the rest form the list above.

Techniques such as mindfulness and meditation can alter our default brain wave patterns and allow us to become more restful and alert. This allows you to tap into our parasympathetic branch of our nervous system, reducing stress (cortisol) and increasing enjoyment (testosterone, flow).

Hope you enjoyed this intro to Biofeedback!

Let me know if you want to learn more about this subject – and as always – Stay Strong Folks <




Co-Owner / Instructor / Author @

Contact us Now for a Free Consultation*


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The Phenomenology of Flow (HAPPINESS and FLOW series #3)

NOTE – this one is a bit long….


The Phenomenology of Enjoyment, or FLOW

This is what we went over last time….

The Phenomenology of Enjoyment, or FLOW:


  • Must we have a chance of being completed (appropriate skill level).


  • Must be able to concentrate.


  • Task must have clear goals


  • Must provide immediate feedback.


  • “One acts with a deep but effortless involvement that removes from awareness the worries and frustrations of everyday life. “


  • There is an increased sense of control over one’s life.


  • Concern for the self disappears, yet paradoxically the sense of self emerges stronger.


  • Sense of time is altered.


This Image Represents How To Maintain A ‘Flow’ State Of Mind:


Let’s clarify each of the 8 points of the phenomenology of Flow, with help from our visual!


ONE – “Appropriate Skill Level”

  • The action you chose must have a spectrum of skill level opportunities
  • You must begin at a level specific to your own skill set.

TWO – “Concentration”

  • Learning disabilities and attention disorders inhibit the chances of Flow.
  • External distractors should be minimized (at first).
  • Internal distractors must be dealt with beforehand, or will melt away with the onset of Flow

THREE – “Purpose”

  • Goals must be set, clear goals are better but some is better than none.
  • Arbitrary goals are legitimate when enjoying leisure – wok and personal goals should be well thought out.

FOUR – “(Bio)feedback”

  • The action you chose needs a medium for feedback,
  • Immediate feedback is best, the longer it takes for feedback the lower the chances of Flow.


This is when it gets a bit harder to track…


FIVE – “Lose Yourself”

  • points One – Four: open up the possibility to loose oneself in the moment
  • And also allows one to cultivate a growing sense of ….

SIX – “Mastery”

  • Growing your sense of control over potentially dangerous sources improves your quality of life by reducing stress.

SEVEN – “Losing yourself, Improves yourself”

  • This process concerns (Five) losing oneself in the moment so intensely that it seems like you ‘are the ball’ so to speak – you become one with the action you’ve chosen –
  • This process also improves our skill level, as well as our ability to concentrate and appreciate life; making you an ever more Extraordinary person!

EIGHT – “Time Fly’s When Having Fun”

  • As a side effect, TIME itself is altered in one way or another – from your ‘Flow’ point of view.



Explanation of the Visual

If ‘A’ is bored and wishes to be in flow again, all ‘A’ has to do is to increase the challenge:

Set a new, more difficult goal that match your / ‘A’s skill level – and ‘A’ is back in flow.


If A is anxious, flow can be achieved again by practicing hard to increase your / ‘A’s skills.

Technically you can reduce the challenge to return to flow – but such backward action would not contribute to becoming a more extraordinary person!


Thoughts on the ‘Flow’ state of mind


The Flow experience describes a task at hand as seemingly effortless, whose justifications is itself.

Flow itself is not bound by any morals – it is just a state of being, a mental state – but the activity you chose may very well be looked down upon (so choose wisely!).

“Water can be both good and bad, useful and dangerous. To the danger, however, a remedy has been found: learning to swim.”

– Democritus


The goal, then should be to enjoy daily life as much as possible, without diminishing the enjoyment of others (as much as possible).


Activities that produce flow often occur in situations in which the ‘safety nets’ of society and culture have been removed. – like courting disaster and surviving.

  • With this comes a growing sense of control over dangerous and chaotic forces. i.e. a sense of Mastery.

Flow activities fully take over consciousness, distorting our sense of time and completely distracting us from daily life – no irrelevant thoughts.

  • This sense of control over entropy can be addictive, and only becomes a problem if these activities are no longer done with conscious choice and interfere with the enjoyment of other activities.

To speed up your path on becoming an extraordinary person and becoming good at a chosen activity is to actually chose an activity that will provide you with lots of opportunities to practice your skill.


Flow is an Autotelic Experiences:

Autotelic translated literally from Greek means ‘SelfGoal’.

It refers to a self-contained activity that is done for its own sake.

When focusing on consequences of actions instead of focusing on them for their own sake, it is called an Exotelic Activity

  • Shifts form autotelic to exotelic experiences occur due to shift in perception and external influences
    • For Example; some children when forced into a sport or activity, may find themselves hating that activity later in life.

Autotelic experiences reinforce our sense of self and our sense of control.

Exotelic experiences dissolve our sense of self in the service of external goals.

The most common Autotelic activities are games….(learn how to get the most out of games, next week – stay tuned – )

Stay informed, stay strong and stay tuned!


Martin Colangelo : “The Better Movement Specialist”

– Blog Author

Owner / Instructor @

*contact me for a free consultation