Sign up for our mailing list

* = required field

powered by MailChimp!

Subscribe to Alexander Technique Philadelphia Blog via Email

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

thought for the week

Forward/Back: using our hip joints to move us forward in space

Usually where we get stuck with activities like bike riding is that we move disproportionately forward from our neck — literally “getting ahead” of ourselves and putting lots of strain and stress in our upper back, neck and shoulders and making it virtually impossible to turn our heads. Painful and dangerous both!Here’s an experiment to try — try this sitting in a chair first and then once you get the hang of it try it on your bike or coming forward at your computer or to the keys of a piano or to sip your soup or… you get the idea!Sit upright in your chair with your feet flat on the floor and let the weight of your torso fall easily through your sit-bones into the chair you are sitting on. Now think about the length and volume of your neck from the base of your collarbones and shoulder blades up into your skull — decide to let all those muscles wrapping up, down and around to soften. Now let your cheek bones softly fall towards your lap so that you are allowing a tiny smudge of forward rotation to happen at the same time you let your whole head drift effortlessly back in space so that you are undoing any forward displacement of your cervical spine so it can link up nicely with the rest of your spine. Now you are ready to add in rolling on your sit bones so that you are coming forward from way down at your hip joints (not at your mythical waist!) as you continue to gently allow your head to rotate forward and free your back back in space. The trick here is that the forward movement comes from your hips – NOT your neck.Bodymapping hint: When you can, take a look at a picture or model of the spine and hip joints. Hip joints are where your legs meet your pelvis. The joint is quite large — chunky even — and well suited to bearing lots of weight (like when you come forward to reach bicycle handle bars). The joint is also a ball and socket — well suited for lots of movement in one place. Now look at the joints of the spine — there are discs in-between each two spine bones (vertebrae) and there is a little bit of movement in all directions at each joint. The spine allows for lots of motion cumulatively — it is NOT designed for lots of movement in one spot.Please let us know how you do with this experiment!

Leave a Reply

  

  

  

You can use these HTML tags

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>