Dr. Marily Oppezzo, an Instructor of Medicine and an educational psychologist at the Stanford Prevention Research Center, studies how the movement of the body can affect the movement of the mind.
“She eloquently elucidated what we have always personally experienced and inherently thought was true – at least for an open water swimmer.,” observed Steven Munatones about her talk [see above] at a TEDxStanford event last year.
But I found tapping into your imagination and inherent curiosity or creativity cannot be achieved while swimming hard or doing interval training. All-out speed and focused intensity are not conducive to free-flowing creative thinking. Rather cruising in the water and swimming at a relaxed, comfortable pace is the ideal environment in a pool or in the ocean – for a swimmer to maximize his or her imagination, identify solutions or attack problems from alternative perspectives. In her research, Dr. Oppezzo confirmed these experiences.”
Oppezzo advises her students and audience to go for a walk in order to stimulate their creativity. Swimmers can do the same, creating a similarly imaginative environment while going for a relaxed swim in the pool or creating a wake in a lake, sea or ocean.
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