I love the feeling that each of my toes is independently awake. The shoes make my toe pads want to investigate the ground.Read More
To roll forward onto an upright pelvis often requires a manual adjustment men would rather not make in public. He told me about friction between the fabric of jeans, an undergarment, and the skin of the scrotum. Especially when the weather is warm . . .Read More
When you’re feeling self-confident and assertive, there’s an automatic uplift to your chest, spine and neck—your posture automatically organizes itself for the better. But no one feels terrific all the time, right? By teaching yourself the physical sensations that correspond to a good mood, you can use your body-mind connectivity to good advantage. Body awareness helps you cultivate positive outlooks in humdrum situations…Read More
If our hunter-gatherer forebears wore simple hide foot coverings or, depending on the weather, went barefoot, wouldn’t shoes that are barely there be good for us too?
Well, not necessarily, because “we’ve paved paradise and put in a parking lot.” We walk on flat, smooth, unyielding surfaces, whereas our forebears walked on grass, dirt, sand and gravel…
Finding the sensation of healthy support from his feet made a lovely difference in Eric’s life. In the accompanying video this musician/songwriter shows how his musical expression changes depending on how he lives in his feet.
Your body can move around in the world without your being fully present in it. You may have good body awareness in general but lack presence in specific parts or areas of your body. In the video, Eric speaks about “finding his cuboid.” He’s referring to finding awareness in a specific region of the foot that activates better organization of the entire lower extremity. For more about foot organization, see Know Your Feet, my online workshop.Read More
Vince Vaughn hasn’t signed up for online coaching with me, but if he does, I’ll be ready! This actor is frequently cast as an unconscious oaf who goes through a humanizing rite of passage. He’s good at it, and his fine serious talent shines through all the silliness. The other day I rented “Delivery Man.” Because Vaughn is in nearly every scene of this movie, it became impossible for me to ignore the way he moves. One could assume his lumbering gait is due to his 6’5” height, or is part of his characterization. But I think his gait is an artifact of a spine that, lacking normal curvatures, doesn’t properly rotate…Read More
For some time I’ve wanted to share an alternate version of an exercise in Lesson 7 of Heal Your Posture, my DVD workshop. The exercise on the DVD is similar to the yoga “cat stretch” but with added special imagery. The image is that each vertebra has its own vector, its own potential direction of movement. For the flexion part of the exercise (the cat), the spinal vectors aim each vertebra into the space behind the body. Envisioning each vertebra to have its own trajectory and attempting to move them one by one helps decompress the spine…Read More
A year ago I posted a piece about the relationship between joint pain and digestive abuse–an after-effect of holiday cheer. You’d think I’d learn, but guess what? This year I’m fessing up again, with a different twist. Beginning in December I experienced pain in my right hip, with radiating pain down my right leg and into my knee and low back stiffness. This was demoralizing because I’d been low back pain-free for three years, ever since becoming sincere about tending to my deep core strength. The pain was weirdly intermittent. A good Pilates class seemed to chase it away, but in a few days, back it came…Read More
The attached video is a holiday gift to my subscribers—a de-stressor practice. But it actually has a further purpose. When we walk, our spines are designed to move in two counter-rotating helical patterns. This movement is the basis of our contralateral walking gait; it’s why our arms and legs swing oppositely when we walk…Read More
Begin in a seated position as you did in Part 1 of this exploration. Imagine that each of your vertebral bodies contains a light source. When you inhale, the lights brighten; when you exhale, they dim. Imagine that the 24 vertebrae and sacrum can each project a distinct beam onto a wall a few feet in front of you. Each time you breathe in, your spine subtly extends, and that makes the light beams on the wall spread slightly apart from each other—visualize that happening. Breathe slowly and steadily. After every exhalation take a second to sense the weight of your body on the chair and your feet on the floor…Read More
When you think about your spine, it’s likely your awareness goes to your back. Perhaps you visualize the bumpy projections of the vertebrae you feel if you lie down on a hard surface. But your spine has a front surface too. It’s composed of the bodies of your vertebrae. These are round and thick, each one cushioned above and below by discs. Your spine has depth–the front surfaces of the vertebral bodies project 1/4 to 1/3 of the way forward into your trunk (2/3 of the way inside your body from the front surface). Located just behind your vital organs, the front of your spine can be an emotionally vulnerable area…Read More
If we can really let our bodies accept support from the ground and simultaneously widen our perspective to include our surroundings, then that balanced perceptual field automatically optimizes posture—as well as doing a lot of nice things for our mental outlook…Read More
Recently, coming home from a walk, I was confronted with eight heavy boxes stacked up at the base of the steps to my house. They were not my boxes, not my responsibility, and without going into all the details, carrying them up the steps was not my idea of fun. I had walked a long time and was ready to rest. It was beginning to rain, and these boxes that were not mine would become a far worse inconvenience were they to become drenched. So I schlepped them up the stairs, one by one…
(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…Read More