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A riveting exploration of the remarkable power of walking.

Since our first ancestor rose up to place one foot in front of another, our desire to walk has produced fundamental changes in our bodies and minds.

In Perfect Motion, Jono Lineen investigates that transformation, and why walking has made us more creative, helped us to learn, constructed our perception of time, strengthened our resilience and provided a way of making sense of our life – and death.

After the tragic loss of his younger brother, Lineen experienced walking’s regenerative power firsthand. Grief-stricken and adrift, he set off on a 2700-kilometre solo trek across the Himalayas. He walked for months until his legs ached and feet blistered, and by the end of the expedition something had changed in him. He was stronger – not just physically, but psychologically and emotionally.

What had happened? What had given him this feeling of peace; joy even? Determined to find out, he began researching the science and history of walking and running, and discovered that there were fascinating reasons for his metamorphosis. Now, weaving together his own remarkable personal stories with evolutionary research, psychology, neuroscience, anatomy and philosophy, Lineen reveals for the first time the powerful effect that even the shortest strolls can have on us. And why walking is what we’re made to do; it is our perfect motion.

Formats & editions

  • Trade Paperback

    9780143789529

    July 16, 2019

    Ebury Australia

    288 pages

    RRP $34.99

    Online retailers

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    Find your local bookstore at booksellers.org.au

  • EBook

    9780143789536

    July 16, 2019

    Random House Australia

    288 pages

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    • Amazon Kindle AU
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  • Audio Download

    9781760891381

    July 16, 2019

    Penguin Random House Australia Audio

    RRP $24.99

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    • Audible AU
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Extract

Introduction

I walk, therefore I am

I rise. I rise and take my place between the earth and sky. Standing tall on two legs, chest high and chin up, I breathe and let the world in. I am a pillar, a receptacle and a witness to the world.

My lungs relax and release, mountain air whistling over chapped lips. As my balance shifts, I fall forward towards a stony track, and for the blink of an eye my foot swings and I’m caught between two hemispheres of motion, left and right, floating in equilibrium. Here is where the constancy lies, always present, but hidden – the still point between kinesis and stasis. Then the nudge of evolution transfers my gravity and I roll into another stride. My footsteps quicken as I head towards the snow-covered pass, but I have no fear of falling because infinite repetition has instilled in me the confidence of ages, and I move easily into the flow of a steady walk.

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