SLUMPING or TRYING to sit up straight. – Are these the only options?
What does this statement mean? Well my default position was slumped but I wouldn’t say it was comfortable. In fact from a very young age I suffered back, neck and shoulder pain. I honestly did TRY and sit up straight but I couldn’t maintain it and in some ways it felt worse on my back.Me c1978 aged 12 years
So we are left with this problem. We know slumping is bad for us but find trying to sit up straight in a “good” posture is too much effort.
Pupils are often quite amazed that even in a first session we can gently come out of the slump without trying to sit up straight. When they look in the mirror, Wow, yes they are sitting pretty upright but it is is surprisingly comfortable too!
How does this happen I hear you ask? Well partly it is learning body mechanics i.e.: where certain joints are. I usually start with the top of the spine up by the ears and the hip joints which are much lower than people think. We then discuss the weight of the head and in the course of the day how we tend to PUT our head places i.e.: poke it forward to the computer, push it back on the spine when stressed or when bending. If you look at a small child under 3 years old, most of the time their head is nicely poised on top of their spine. You don’t have to hold it there because naturally that is where it is, on top of you. For one reason or another we put it places. We may start to see that our skeleton is like “Internal Scaffolding” giving us our shape and there is an efficient way to use it.
We then might learn to ungrip especially in the neck, one of the key elements to any Alexander session. I then may challenge them to try and slump without their head coming away from the ceiling. They usually laugh and say “Oh, yes……I can’t”
We shouldn’t be scared of allowing our spine to go in a C curve occasionally, after all our spine is quite flexible, it works that way too, so I still might have a little slump on the couch. Usually I find it not that comfortable for too long so I might use some cushions behind my back to get back to an S shaped spine.
Want to learn to sit and stand and move in comfort? Why not book a session online or come along to my next workshop in Brighton at the Brighton Natural Health Centre.
Note – Go to www.alexandertechniquebrighton.com to book online.
Note: All images are my own or I have paid for from stock images.