One might understand and assess movement from the degree it exudes a sense of vitality, a sense of being fully alive. Hence one might attend to the energy experienced between the person, the motion (Shusterman, 2008; Sheets-Johnstone, 1999), others, and the world at large (Merleau-Ponty, 1968).

The energetic register of flow consciousness is the realization of interactivity as the fundamentally human condition. Vitality, bodily vigor and movement liveliness are primarily indices of ‘fitting with’ others. Becoming physically educated with the Function2Flow approach is a process of kinetically, kinesthetically, aesthetically and ultimately energetically finding resonances and synergies with others. We look to the emerging fields of “energy psychology” (Mayer, 2009) and “energy medicine” (Dale, 2009) for the “quantum affects” (Schwartz, 2007) of this energetic register of flow consciousness; however, the broad practices of fitness (including those of nutrition) that bring us to the energetic register of flow consciousness are readily evident in a progression of kinetic, aesthetic, kinaesthetic, and energetic flow motions. “Einstein tells us that the Special or Restricted Theory of Relativity came from a feeling in his muscles” (Leonard, 1974, p. 169). Similarly, much recent “quantum” thinking about “waves” and “particles” is finding, through appeals to “morphic fields” (Sheldrake, 1995) and “biocentrism” (Lanza & Berman, 2009), its way back to flesh and blood bodies and their interactivity with other similarly constituted beings. We need not delve too deeply into these fields of energy research (McTaggart, 2008) to acknowledge the vitality-enhancing register of flow consciousness and the importance of engaging in flow motions that energize us (Smith & Lloyd, 2006, Lloyd & Smith, 2012). 


When you experience a mainstream or alternative activity, you may consider the following prompts to better connect to the emergence of flow:

  • Did your movement have a consistent rhythm?
  • Did the perception of time in performing the activity shift from ‘clock time’ to experiential time (i.e., did time speed up or slow down?)?
  • Did it feel effortless?
  • Did you feel a sense of connection to your environment?
  • Is there an animal that comes to mind that would perform this activity in an effortless way? What might you do to move more like this animal?
  • Did you feel a sense of connection to your peers or to the object (manipulative/ equipment) used in this activity?
  • How did your desired plan for performing this activity compare to your actual experience?
  • Did you have to ‘stop to think’ on occasion as you performed this activity, or were you able to think in the motions of your activity?
  • How did you experience your partner’s participation in this activity? Describe your degree of interconnection/ synergy.
  • How would you design an exercise/program that prepares you for experiencing rhythmical, effortless movement in this particular activity, and in other activities?