We begin on Thursday! Bring a comfy mat and a towel you can roll
I have heard it said that many people die from the legs up although I think it's just as true for the arms.
Of course it’s our minds that are driving us but a long term injury to our limbs after a certain age can have a dampening effect on the vitality of our mind.
As we get older the ability to maintain that feeling of being invincible requires quite a bit of attention. It’s so easy, as we build a life that suits us, to move and do less. Therein lies a problem.
We do less and in the process lose range of movement, adaptability and stamina. The challenge is that we don’t realise we're losing our vitality until we do something out of the ordinary.
It's these events that are the coalface of longevity and avoiding those messages can age us.
Maintaining ease of function in our pelvis and legs in this regard is rather important. So this term we’ll be working with legs and arms. We’ll be sensing their connection through the head, neck and torso.
Have a look at this little fellow and consider the way he will land.
He's rather co-ordinated isn't he? Can you see how he will land? How the paws are extensions of his whole head, neck and torso and how they will take his whole weight? Look at the evenness of muscular tone throughout his body and the clarity of his focus.
As we adapt to doing less as adult humans our body image also adapts. We limit ourselves to the things we know. The body image we develop is often different to our actual body. Just as our image of the world is at odds with what is actually there. Look at this owl. The freedom of his head and neck with wings at full extension! Perhaps his story of the world is more accurate than ours?
and this one ..
Note the tone of his muscles throughout his body. It’s the absence of unnecessary tension that enables him to have a free neck. It’s just what we need! If you can organise your self in this way you too will feel like dancing.
Finally, have a look at the freedom of movement in this Hawks' wings and tail-feathers. The length of his body and the freedom and strength of his legs as he surveys the world below.
So we’ll be exploring the length and width of our five cardinal lines – our limbs and head, neck and torso. We’ll be looking for freedom in our spines and freedom of our heads and necks.
The main thing is that to achieve more freedom and therefore vitality, we need to move at our own pace. This is the challenge when we’re at the coalface. We can’t hurry! We must listen to where we are and find a way forward. It’s through moving slowly that we find a way to feel invincible again. Our body image is in many ways a story we tell ourselves. It relates to our capacities. Feeling invincible at 60 may have a different story to the feeling of invincibility at 20 but it is no less important for our sense of youthfulness and vitality.
So bring a nice comfortable mat this term as we’ll spend some of that time on our hands and knees. If you think your wrists might be sore you could also bring a towel to roll up. That may make you feel more comfortable.
This will be a nice series of lessons. I look forward to sharing them with you.