The importance of accurate body mapping

February 1, 2013 by Nicholas Brandon

Body mapping is one’s self-representation in one’s own brain, of  where there body parts are, this is often not accurate.

The importance of having an accurate understanding of how the various parts of our body fit together lies in one of the basic tenets of Alexander Technique work. I like to state it as “If you change what you think, you can change how you move. And if you change how you move, you will change what you feel.” Body mapping works directly on the “thinking” end of this equation – By changing our conceptions of how our parts fit together, we can change how we move them. The accompanying feeling can be one of enormous relief – and fascination with the wisdom underlying our creation.

Begin to notice what joints your using when bending,
Moving in the monkey position means simply deploying hip, knee and ankle joints together to lower the torso in space, while keeping the extensor relationship of the head, and back lengthened.

This way of moving is seen in little children, but gets often replaced by less efficient strategies, which involve undue bending of the spine, causing compression of the muscles and delicate joints of the spine. You can observe this in most people when the go from standing to sitting.

How to get into the monkey.
Stand upright with your feet under your hip joints, the feet slightly pointing out. Without holding more than necessary tension in hip and ankle joints, move the knees over your feet. While maintaining availability in knees and ankles, hinge forward from the hip joints. Alternatively, hinge forward from the hip joint at the same time as you send the knees forward. Nick x

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