Trager Mentastics: Movement as a Way to Agelessness

Milton Trager, Author, Turnley Walker, Foreword by, Cathy Guardagno, With Station Hill Press $19.95 (174p) ISBN 978-0-88268-048-4
The legendary teacher and healer in the human-potential movement was a boxer, dancer and acrobat before he became a physician. The earlier vocations were the generative force behind ""Tragering,'' which involves therapeutic massage and gentle exercises called ``mentastics''from the words ``mental gymnastics''that are as much a mental regimen as a physical one. The antithesis of conventional exercise, mentastics involve simple movements that take place in a meditative state called ``hook-up.'' Frequent practice of these slow movementswhich don't require special equipmentinduces deep relaxation, renewed energy and what Trager calls ``agelessness''free, graceful movement for people of all ages. The first half of this volume discusses the genesis of mentastics and Trager's concept of hook-up; the latter section describes specific exercises. To improve the quality of the movements is a question not of technique but of mental state. According to Guadagno, a psychologist and Tragering instructor, the book's free-verse style is intended to ``simulate how Dr. Trager's teachings are presented in his workshops.'' Although the instructions are sound and lucid, the laid-back approach, as well as photos of octogenarian Trager who demonstrates the techniques clad in bikini bathing trunks may put off some readers. (December)
Reviewed on: 11/02/1987
Release date: 11/01/1987
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