Subversive Postures

Subversive Postures

My bare feet go flap-flap-flap on the kitchen floor before breakfast.  The sound of it rests along the back wall of my attention as I flick my mind over the tasks ahead for this day. And muse about how much nicer it would be to laze on the couch with a book instead. It’s been triple digit weather in Los Angeles for way too long, and such heat wears a body down!

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Psoas Power

Psoas Power

In my DVD, I speak several times about the importance of propelling the body forward with the back leg and foot, allowing toe-off to be complete. It’s common, in places where space is at a premium (e.g. crowded sidewalks, corridors between work cubicles, small kitchens) for us to pull ourselves forward with the leg that swings forward, rather than propelling our bodies forward from the back leg. When the body is drawn forward from the forward heel, the hamstring muscles don’t complete their potential for movement which is to extend the hip enough to take the leg behind the body.  When the hip doesn’t fully extend, the hamstrings are robbed of the opportunity to let go during the swing phase of the walk.  This is the scenario of perpetually tight hamstrings…
 

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Posture Tips for the New Year

Posture Tips for the New Year

(Posture Tips for 2013) Magazine writers often ask me about quick fixes for poor posture. While this isn’t my real mission (see mission statement at the bottom of this page), I try to translate my teaching into tips. I like how a recent interview turned out, so I’m sharing the whole thing below.  Looking forward with eyes and heart:  1. Can you offer a few tips for improving your walking stance and posture?  When walking, look forward to your destination with both your eyes and your heart.  It’s fine to glance down to be sure of your footing, but avoid fixing your gaze on the ground…

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Your Hamstrings and Your Posture

Your Hamstrings and Your Posture

If you look for  “hamstring stretches”  in Google Images, you’ll get a page full of illustrations most of which demonstrate what  I’m  trying to show you not to do in the accompanying video. This young man, for example, is mostly stretching his lower back and giving himself a crick in his neck.  How you position your pelvis and spine makes a huge difference in the effectiveness of your stretching.  I also hope to convince you that your hamstrings don’t exist in isolation in your body and that to lengthen them effectively involves changing how you use them in daily life…

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Help for Bunions

Help for Bunions

When your toes don’t interact with the ground in a balanced way, the rest of your body compensates, compromising the elegance of your posture and the grace of your movement.  Toes are not just decorative.

Bunions are a build-up of bony and soft tissue at the base of the big toe that is the body’s attempt to stabilize imbalance at the joint between the first metatarsal bone and the toe…

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Living in 3D

Living in 3D

It is in the 70’s here this morning.  It’s the best time of year in Los Angeles because the sun makes a southerly arc that creates contrast and shadow and a sense of dimension to the world.  In summer, when the sun’s arc is overhead, places and things—buildings, trees, cars, even people–appear flatter.  But today, walking my familiar streets, I had a strong hit of the substance and texture of tree trunks, of the space between the lemons on a tree, and of my own physical presence passing through the leafy corridor of my favorite street.  It was easy to stay present in my body, in my movement, easy to be friendly to strangers…

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Your Feet Begin Below Your Knees

Your Feet Begin Below Your Knees

For all the attention being given to footwear of late – Vibram 5 Fingers, Sketchers, etc. – our feet themselves get precious little attention.  Although our ancestors’ bare feet negotiated uneven terrain littered with rocks, grit and twigs all day long without complaint, our feet pad the flat concrete in search of new foot coverings to stop them from hurting…

 

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On Walking…

On Walking…

The waiting one does at airports is a good opportunity for blog writing. This time I’m people-watching at Bob Hope Airport (Burbank, CA). There is such a variety of ways to put one leg in front of another–the pregnant airport security guard, the woman with exaggerated movement in her hip joints, the men with none at all. I want to train other movement professionals to observe and intervene in clients’ walking patterns. How do I teach them to communicate effectively to someone who says, “You mean I have to learn how to walk all over again?”

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