Kinesthetics refers to the awareness you have of your surroundings through sensory experience. For example, if you are a kinesthetic learner, you acquire knowledge best through tactile, hands-on activities rather than visual or listening methods, explains Terry Farwell on the Family Education website. Kinesthetics also extends to the physical realm, where it refers to your awareness of your body and its movements.
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There are three main types of learning: visual, auditory and kinesthetic, which is also known as sensory learning. If you are a visual learner, you respond well to demonstrations, charts and images or videos, says Farwell. An auditory learner favors the traditional lecture-style method and a kinesthetic learner prefers to acquire knowledge through performing activities, such as lab tests and role playing. The benefit of identifying your particular learning style is that you choose classes that cater to it and take information on board more efficiently.
Kinesthetic Physical Awareness
Kinesthetic physical awareness refers to the knowledge of your surroundings that you receive via the sensory receptors in your joints, muscles and skin, reports the North Coastal Consortium for Special Education. That is, the information you receive from sources other than your eyes. Your kinesthetic awareness develops as you age -- for example, an adult is more skilled than a toddler at running without bumping into things. In some people, however, kinesthetic ability doesn’t develop as it should and exercises can help to improve skills in this area.
Kinesthetic Exercise for Hands
Ask someone to stand or sit in front of you and perform a range of different hand and arm movements, such as pointing a finger, raising one arm above their head or stretching it out to the side. Your challenge is to copy your partner's movements without looking at what your own hands and arms are doing. Instead, keep your eyes focused on your helper. As your kinesthetic awareness improves, ask your helper to increase the pace of their movements.
Kinesthetic Balance Exercise
A good way to test your kinesthetic awareness is to stand up tall and close your eyes, writes Linda Cusmano on the ShapeFit website. If you wobble doing this exercise -- which is not uncommon -- repeat it until your ability improves. Once you can stand on two feet without losing your balance, progress to standing on one leg and closing your eyes. Your goal is to be able to maintain this more advanced position for 30 to 60 seconds. It’s worth practicing these exercises in a space free of obstacles in case you fall.
Kinesthetic Bicep Curls
Once you have mastered the one-leg balance exercise, you can start doing regular exercises, such as biceps curls, with your eyes closed. Take hold of the weights before you close your eyes. Once they are closed, turn your attention to your posture: straighten your back, bend your knees slightly and make sure your hips and shoulders are even. Perform alternating curls as you would normally. The benefits of this type of exercise, writes Cusmano, is that it forces you to focus on your form and balance, which ultimately makes you perform the exercises more correctly.