As you are reading this message, spring has already arrived and I hope you are enjoying the milder weather. This is a great chance to further engage in outdoor activities.
One of the main characteristics of a person involved in the field of horology is the posture many of us have to maintain, and that is of being seated and hunched over a desk/workbench. While there are several schools of thought of which may be the best position, which workbench height is the best or which chair is the most ideal, one thing is for sure, the human body is being asked to be in a certain position for a prolonged number of hours, e.g. eight hours a day. It appears, however, that the human body was designed to be physically active, judging from the number of joints we have.
While many of us pride ourselves on attaining that best balance wheel amplitude, best delta rate, best finish on a wheel pivot or a case and bracelet, yet how many of us think about the physical condition in which we are in? Since it is a generally accepted principle that, in order to produce good quality work, certain workshop conditions must be met, such as properly functioning tools and equipment, good lighting, clean environment, etc. How about the most important element in the equation? You!
Just like you properly maintain the rest of the tools and equipment for best performance, the human body requires regular maintenance and adjustment for continued best performance, so a well-balanced lifestyle is crucial.
There are many types of physical activities that you can embrace if you are just starting out. Start slow and steadily increase over time (it can be months) without overly exerting yourself. Stronger muscles are needed for proper function just as you need your sharp eyes and steady hands. Depending on your age and current physical fitness, you may want to begin with simple walking, hiking or swimming, among others. There are also the “eastern arts” such yoga, Tai Chi and similar forms of gentle exercises which focus on overall health of body and mind. These types of activities will not only help with your physical fitness, but also with your mental alertness and focus. You can even incorporate some of these gentle exercises every day when you take a 15-minute break during work; you don’t have to wait to go home or to the gym for a full-blown intense workout. Once you feel comfortable with one form of exercise then keep moving one level up.
In addition to being physically active, keep in mind that if you maintain a proper and healthy diet, it will help keep you fit for the life career you have chosen. Be sure to stay hydrated while at work by drinking enough water. The right quality and combination of fuel will only help enhance your performance in the journey of life.
In the end, exercise and physical activity are a great way to feel better, gain health and have fun. Just like you take good care of the customer’s watches and clocks, so must you take the necessary time to take good care of yourselves.
And as always, keep your skills honed, your standards very high, your attitude professional, your tools and equipment in great condition and your workshops clean and organized; you never know who may come by to pay you a visit.