Softainability: A desired state of relaxed, flexible balance, allowing for and creating perpetual freedom and comfort; identified by minimal pressure, minimal friction and minimal stress while empowering with the capacity to handle maximum pressure, maximum friction and maximum stress. (For the miniscule amount of time we should tolerate it!)
“Relax, find stacked posture, soft and centered.” -A typical sentence I repeat often. I say it to clients and students, but I say it far more frequently to myself. I don’t say it to myself word for word anymore, the words have become infused with experience. They’ve become a feeling, the feeling of knowing how to rest supported in my own comfortable center. It feels like home, secure and familiar. The security of freedom. Secure not because I am hard and armored, secure because I am soft and sensitive, ready to feel energies at their subtlest and utilize, redirect or release them. Softainable. I take a breath and settle in.
Training with Bruce Lee’s art was the experience that taught me the feelings of my Softainable center. I did not know how sloppy and imbalanced my center was until I asked my body to move with some of his principles: “Non-telegraphic economy of motion.”
Waste no motion, and move without telegraphing (conveying) your intent.
When you’re tense and imbalanced, moving will yank things around and requires increased high-energy, low efficiency, contractions of muscles to get where you’re going. These contractions are visible to others and convey the intent of the movement. Moving from a Softainable center helps minimize these contractions as you can move directly from where you are, to where you are going, no energy wasted altering the inertia of imbalances or “winding-up” to build momentum.
I was stoked to find Bruce’s “lost” interview in the public domain and include his image in this video greatly inspired by him. Please watch all 24 minutes of the interview: http://www.archive.org/details/BruceLeeTheLostInterview You get to hear the thinker and philosopher.
Add Softainability to your vocabulary and remember each time you think it, you’ll relax something, and be that much more softly sustainable. The alternative is hardly sustainable!