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A Measured Response

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Since my walking companion injured her leg and can no longer traverse the hills of our neighborhood, I have been forced to find a new exercise buddy.  From the beginning, I was pretty skeptical about the Wii Fit. During the first few weeks of my new routine I would regularly talk back to the virtual personal trainer, by which I mean I would “back talk” in a tone of voice that I would not tolerate from my own students.

I found the daily body tests to be tedious, mostly because they are conducted by a personified sensor.  The small, green figure possesses an alien-like voice that is both weirdly appropriate and incredibly annoying.  Here is what happens on screen after the “step on/stay still” commands are issued:

Wii Fit Body Test

This test pattern quickly wormed its way into my brain–I found myself hearing it while I was waiting for a traffic light to change or a web page to load.  Occasionally, I would fight an impulse to say it aloud. Until one morning last week when I was sifting through my Inbox and came across an email that required a delicate response.  Staring at the screen, fingers poised on the keyboard…my eyebrows involuntarily furrowed as the green figure’s voice tickled my frontal lobe.

“Measuring…measuring…all done!”

“Exactly!” Suddenly my fingers began to fly.  I realized that I had needed a few moments to gauge my feelings, modulate my tone.  Isn’t it funny how the brain makes connections between seemingly disparate things?  Somehow it knew that I needed to hear the Wii Fit’s instructions.

Technology rushes us to think at a hurtling pace. But with each development our thought processes are stunted.  The brain needs time to measure a response.

I thought that I had been working to change my habits of the body; I discovered that I was changing my habits of the mind.

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Comments (2)

the mind-body connection is incredible, isn’t it? 🙂

Yes, Lisa! I grow to appreciate the connection more and more as I age. I am LOVING your new blog, and hope to tweet the link and share it on FB in the coming weeks.

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