Vertical What Now? - Week 3, Term 3, 2016

You've just wrapped your head around the idea of a vertical leg, might be getting better acquainted with the idea of a neutral pelvis - and now she wants to add a vertical sternum!

It's ok, take a deep breath and go easy on yourself - nobdody absorbs all of this information in one go, but the more you work with the different aspects of alignment (along with their supporting exercises)  the more it all makes sense. Especially when you start to feel so much better and stronger.

Please be patient. Tissue takes time to respond and consistency is the key to success, not force.

We've considered our alignment in some detail from feet to hips. Now we go onwards and upwards - with the key player here being the ribcage. Many of us have very tight legs and shoulders and, as a result, an exaggerated Kyphotic curve in the upper back. We unconsciously disguise this by 'thrusting' our ribcage forward - creating a muscle sheer that weakens our core, stresses our spine and throws off our alignment. A huge number of modern diseases and chronic pain conditions can find at least some relationship to this movement habit. Your spinal chord is definitely stressed by this movement and that means your nervous system is also involved (even things as common as headaches and foggy brain can be resolved by discontinuing your subscription to rib-thrusting!).

 Oliver Braveheart loves his Mum's new minimal shoes. They are Vivobarefoots and came from  Sole Mechanics . Oliver's Mum is in the running to win a pair of Alignment Socks. Looking Good Oliver! See week 1 Blogpost for details.

Oliver Braveheart loves his Mum's new minimal shoes. They are Vivobarefoots and came from Sole Mechanics. Oliver's Mum is in the running to win a pair of Alignment Socks. Looking Good Oliver! See week 1 Blogpost for details.

THE EXERCISES ARE BOTH THE CORRECTIVE AND THE ASSESSMENT TOOL AT THE SAME TIME.

One of the keys to correcting this situation is to recognise it - but it's also important to lengthen the tight muscles in the back of the legs and the chest, while strengthening the lateral hip muscles - this means we have access to the tissue length and the strength to stand tall without pushing the ribs out in front.

Read this great blog post (with pictures) from Biomechanist Katy Bowman.  Additionally this article  explains why pelvic listing is so helpful in correcting this common problem in modern movers.

 TWO ENTRIES THIS WEEK! I told you that you can be anonymous. Just crop! This is a brilliant way to strap stretch without having to hold your leg up. Still use the strap though, so that you can work the ball of the foot back and extend through the back of the leg. Keep the back of the supporting leg down. If hamstrings come up, your other leg is TOO high.

TWO ENTRIES THIS WEEK! I told you that you can be anonymous. Just crop! This is a brilliant way to strap stretch without having to hold your leg up. Still use the strap though, so that you can work the ball of the foot back and extend through the back of the leg. Keep the back of the supporting leg down. If hamstrings come up, your other leg is TOO high.