The 3 Stages of Physical Development (From External to Internal)

December 6, 2020 by VAHVA Fitness

How your physical journey passes through 3 different stages of development... from external to internal, from unconscious to conscious. 

We’re all on a physical journey but some are more conscious of it than others. Even if you didn’t train and do exercising, your body is in a constant process – internally and externally.

Every action trains your body whether it’s sitting or standing or going to the gym. We all move, we all age, our bodies go through life adjusting as we go.

We don’t need to try to control this flow of life with an iron grip but there are lots of things we can have an effect on.

The greatest benefit of becoming conscious of the process is having the ability to influence it.

Once you see yourself on this path you may want to progress even deeper and be aware as much as possible.

The following stages are not written in stone and depending on the individual, there may be a lot of overlap between the stages. However, these can give a very useful description and roadmap to those who're looking to gradually get deeper into their training.

From superficial to internal, from unconscious to conscious.

1. The Diversity Stage (MOVEMENT 20XX)

Diversity of Styles and Movements

In the beginning, you don't need to worry about knowing everything and it makes no sense trying to be very deep about training.

You have to build reference experience to the reality of your body so that deeper and more analyzed thinking can be grounded on experience.

What to do? Simply move and do your exercises the best you can as they are laid out. This stage is about moving the body as much as possible in many different ways.

You're carving the broad lines of your body through the basics of strength, mobility and flexibility training. You're gradually increasing your movement vocabulary and exercise library and gaining an understanding of all the different possibilities your body is capable of doing.

You can try many different styles that vary greatly from each other. Just move and explore different activities and sports that you like. Learn what your body does naturally or even automatically if you just give it a chance.

There's a ton to realize about your body by going through movements and feeling your body respond to the stimulus. The impact on the body will be profound and if you aim to go forward and learn more, then you will naturally progress deeper into your training.

To build this initial mind-body connection or consciousness you don't need profound thinking. Conscious body movement rises from the unconscious.

2. The Refinement Stage (ATHLETE 20XX)

Depth and Detail of Movement

Although your body connection and understanding of training can gradually improve by itself to a certain level, now is the time to make this your primary focus. We go from diversity to depth.

It's required that you start mindfully paying attention to the internal feeling different movements and exercises give to your body. Each exercise gives a distinct and specific stimulus to your body and it's your job to observe this to use it to your advantage.

You can still do a variety of exercises but you probably need to narrow your focus in terms of training styles to go deeper into this area.

Even a single exercise can offer tons of material for a physical self-study when you are in-tune with your body and appreciate the sophistications of movement.

Try to see what your movements consist of. Where do they initiate? What are the moving parts and what are the still parts? You must be well aware of your intentions during this stage.

Ultimately, you're cultivating a mind-muscle connection. You must be able to distinguish between different target muscles to make sure all parts of the body get trained.

Each individual body part should be trained separately in all of its articulations. This is a long process but eventually, there will be no uncharted corners or territories in your body.

This is all about conscious control over your muscles and the quality of your training.

3. The Internal stage (QIGONG)

The Internal Rhythm of Movement

This is a stage where you reach your consciousness even further into the internal processes of your body. To do this you must be ready to accept even greater power over the development of your mind and physicality.

You cannot go further if you don't first become aware of your breathing and learn to take charge of it by engaging your full breathing apparatus. You will come to understand how tension and softness of your body and even sexual activity are linked to your energy and its flow.

These are also the keys to controlling your mindset. You can induce different mental stages from relaxation to a controlled rage and channel your energy into whatever suits your purpose.

We focus on building a connection to the muscles that are not visible to the eye, diaphragm, the internal muscles of the pelvic floor and more. It's about finding the triggers and ways of conducting yourself that impact your hormonal levels, heart rate, mindset and organs.

In this stage, you truly shed light to the background processes that affect and sustain your everyday life.

It's Your Journey

After you've gone through these stages, your body works on a different mode by default. As a result, you will process training and what happens inside your body in a new way automatically. 

No matter what training you do, from now on, it will bring forth different results compared to before.

There is no endpoint to this journey. It goes forward in ever-deepening cycles. The unconscious processes are raised to the surface to be developed and refined until they are part of your new norm.

After this you can leave them alone again and just let them do their magic. We call you to join this conscious physical journey.


samuli jyrkinen

About the author 

Samuli Jyrkinen

Samuli is the ninja behind the scenes (photography, videography, websites, program platforms and more). He has been training religiously for over a decade and has a firm grasp of physical and mental fitness. You will find our story here.

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