top of page

Muscle Memory

Daily I think about muscle memory because I work with muscles and speech. To make sounds requires muscle memory. We take speaking for granted but it is a very complex process that requires the jaw, lips, and tongue to move independently of each other. To produce sounds requires practice and coordination. The M, B, P, and W sounds require lip mobility. The T, N, D, and L sounds need the tongue to elevate onto the roof of the mouth. The K and G sounds require posterior tongue elevation. The S, Z, CH, SH, and J sounds need lateral tongue spread and tongue retraction. The R sound requires the tongue to move independent of itself and the posterior tongue has to spread and elevate. Speaking is a skill that requires lots of muscle involvement. It is learned through repetition. Children babble to help them learn how to make sounds. It is this repetitive practice that teaches them the skills they need to produce words.

Gymnasts need muscle memory to learn how to do the skills they do. To learn a back handspring takes over and over repetition of the skill until their muscles remember how to do that skill without the mind thinking about it. Piano is the same. A pianist learns by repetition. They practice things over and over again until it becomes automatic. This is what muscle memory is all about.

Our daily quiet time with God also requires muscle memory. This means that when we get ourselves into a groove that works for us we do it over and over again until it becomes a part of us, something that we don't think about. We pray more consistently when we begin a daily habit of praying. Thanking God daily for the things He's done, or for the things we have helps us become more positive. Before I pray I always write down things I'm thankful for. This sets the stage for my day. It uplifts my spirits and helps me focus on positive things. When I make a habit of this it becomes something that's automatic to me. I begin to find other things to be thankful for in my day and it helps me stay more positive.

We all have a choice to retrain ourselves and to begin different muscle memories. My hope is that each of us will begin muscle memories that involve a daily quiet time with God and gratitude and thankfulness for what He is doing. What muscle memories do you need to develop?

bottom of page