• Ever wanted to be a bear?

    Silver birch trees next to a frozen lake in Finland
    Prime swinging trees in Finland

    Last month, I met a woman in Finland who teaches what she terms “evolution training”. Since I love moving outdoors – and particularly love swinging from trees – I immediately wanted to know more. She told me. 

    Her name is Pauliina Toivanen. She is not only a natural movement trainer, but also a serious snowboarder, surfer and wild food forager.

    How to start moving like an animal

    “You start from the human and go down through the animals. You start using more of your body,” Pauliina explains. Step 1: move like normal. Just walk. Step 2: move like you would if you were riding a horse. 

    That’s where being human ends. “Next, move like a bear, then a pig, rabbit, lizard and worm,” says Pauliina. “That’s what children do. They have to build their body from worming movements.” 

    Now here’s the neat part:

    “Finally, go back to walking like a human and realize that you usually don’t use many muscles.” The resulting awareness is what Pauliina terms – in true somatic language – “a good natural scan of your body”

    So, to recap…

    • Step 1: Walk like normal
    • Step 2: Move like you would if you were riding a horse
    • Step 3: Move like a bear
    • Step 4: Move like a pig
    • Step 5: Move like a rabbit
    • Step 6: Move like a lizard
    • Step 7: Move like a worm
    • Step 8: Walk like normal again

    Try it. Go on, no one’s watching…

    Want more ideas like this? Check out my post: You are how you sit

    Want more Baltic natural madness? Check this out: The Baltic cure for fear

    Want to learn more about somatic natural movement? Click here