Alignment there, alignment here, I talk a lot about body alignment. And for good reason.
I was looking at my 8 year old nieces when I took them ice skating. It was their first time on the ice and they were simply naturals. They kept their balance so well, and naturally knew how to move their feet. I don’t know why I was there. Adults, on the other hand, had problems keeping their feet under their bodies. They learn but it takes longer, and their are very unbalanced.
Looking at them I see the correct body alignment. Natural for the kids, un-natural for the adults. We are born with all sorts of abilities, however, when we start sitting more than moving, and stop moving muscles, joints, body awareness goes into “hibernation”. Through Natural Human Movement we wake up those muscles and help the body remember it’s natural abilities, moving the body the way it was designed to move.
Why is correct body alignment important
Firstly, many of the pains, even chronic pains, are a result of habitual movements over a longer period of time, as well as other factors. Now, we don’t talk about health conditions or fractures, for example. Rather lower back pain, knee pain, ankle pain, shoulder pain.
Constant tension and body misuse, over a period of time, can lead to chronic pain
Second, running, walking, or moving in any way with an incorrect alignment can increase risks of injuries, and perpetuate older injuries.
Third, incorrect body alignment can strain certain muscles, and weaken others.
Fourth, strained muscles will affect your posture and your skeletal system, it can literally deform your skeleton; it may not be visible but it happens, think scoliosis, one of the most obvious situations of incorrect body alignment.
How to align your body correctly
In an article I can only give you the basics of correct body alignment. However, if you apply these elements to everything you do it will make a huge different in time.
Whether you are running, squatting, standing or walking remember the following points:
- Feet – roughly hip width apart, toes facing forward
- The Tripod – each of your feet form a tripod with the big toe + little toe + heel; focus on keeping this tripod on the ground at all times
- Soft knees – not necessarily bent, but soft; it’s very subtle
- Bucket of water – imagine your hips like a bucket of water; align your hips so you don’t spill water forwards or backwards
- Core – if your hip, the bucket of water, is aligned then your core (you will feel it in the abdominal muscles) will be slightly contracted
- Shoulders and years are aligned
- Straight line from your ears to your shoulders to your hips to (approximately) the front of the ankles
These are the basics in a standing position. If you have any questions on body alignment or want to try one of The Merisoiu Technique sessions contact me.