Physiotherapy Edmonton - What is relaxation really? - Human Integrated Performance

Relaxation isn’t always what you think!

When working with clients the concept of #stress invariably comes up. Where that stress comes from is often dependent on the type of client I am working with. That stress might be caused by #overtraining, the pressure of #competition, #burnout, overworking, family pressures, coaching pressures, school, the list goes on and on. And although time management, stress management, and boundary setting are key tools to managing these stressors, what I find most people have troubles with is the concept of #relaxation.


Often times people think of relaxation as having to take a bath or a nap, but relaxation is much more nuanced than that. In fact, depending on the person, the situation, and countless other factors, it may surprise you that any activity (even skydiving) can be a relaxation activity!


More important than the activity itself is the intension and goal of the activity. You see, relaxation is broken in to three different components and it’s the balance of these three components that determines the effectiveness of the chosen relaxation activity. Relaxation is composed of what I call #REST, #RECOVERY, and #REJUVENATION.


Rest is what most of us commonly think of relaxation. This is the physical component required of relaxation and generally involves sleep or quiet activities. This is like your favourite beach holiday, laying in the sun and enjoying a good book. No stress, no commitments, and no worries. This type of relaxation allows our bodies to heal from the effects of stress and be prepared for the next challenge.

Recoverycan be best compared to that soothing walk through the woods or comforting spa day. Here relaxation is healing our minds. It’s more spiritual, allowing us to connect with nature and ourselves. I often describe it as those “Ahhhh” moments that just feel good! Most of us can think of a time we went for a walk and just felt better, that’s Recovery hard at work.


Rejuvenationthen becomes the motivator of the trio. We all need excitement in our lives and that perfect adventure is just the ticket to make us feel excited to take on the world. If you’ve ever come back from a holiday feeling like you need a vacation, you probably had too much rejuvenation and not enough rest! But if you come back from your holiday excited to work and achieve your goals, your Rejuvenationis right on par.


Usually I find clients have an imbalance in their relaxation that impacts their performance day to day. They may be getting enough rest but aren’t motivated to achieve their goals or they even feel disconnected from what’s really important to them. Other times, they are excited about what they do, but just don’t have enough rest to be successful.


Ultimately, when we can find a #balance of these three components to relaxation, clients have more energy, are happier, more productive, and more motivated. If you struggle to find the right balance of relaxation in your life, then I invite you to contact us at Human Integrated Performance so we can help teach you the skills to be better equipped to handle stress and enjoy your life to the fullest. Be sure to subscribe to all our social media channels or visit us at for more information on how to Recover and optimize your own human performance.