Are You an Owl?


When you turn to look over your shoulder,

when someone calls your name

to back your car out of a driveway or parking place

in your movement practice

do you feel like you just don’t have enough neck to do the job?

If you are not an owl, keep reading.

Imagine a tornado or twister in your mind.

The twister doesn’t just twist at the top. If it did, it would do far less damage. It turns all along its length. It’s pretty efficient. It twists, it sucks up stuff and moves on.

Our power to turn easily and efficiently doesn’t come from the top of us, or our necks. That’s only the beginning. Our necks are just not designed for that kind of range of motion. Remember: owl, not us.

Our neck is only a few inches worth of ability to turn.

Below that is the remaining length of our spine, the stability of our pelvis and mobility of our feet and ankles.

Try this and see how you might make turning more useful:

Find something to sit on that is firm-to-hard, and allows you to place both of your feet solidly flat on the floor. Sit comfortably at the edge.

Without holding yourself rigidly upright, s l o w l y roll forward and backward, just a very little bit to find your sitting bones.Might feel a little like sitting on walnuts. Then slowly roll right and left, that very little bit, noticing when one sitting bone wants to lighten or lift from your seat, then the other.

Come back to the middle. Feel how you sit in the middle.

Repeat the above, but this time, as your weight shifts in your sitting bones, notice how your weight shifts in your feet.

Does your weight come a little more into your feet as you roll your pelvis (and belly button) forward?

What about when you roll your pelvis back (and your belly button pulls s o f t l y toward your spine)? Does your weight lighten? Or move toward the back of your feet?

And when you roll right and left? When you roll to the right does the weight in your feet shift toward the outer edge of your right foot and to the inner edge of your left foot?

Does the opposite happen when you roll your pelvis to the left?

Practice these sequences a few times today, then tomorrow and maybe the day after, each time noticing what you notice.

Resist the urge to speed up your movements or to make them bigger. Keep it slow and in a range that’s easy to feel not only what happens in your pelvis, but what happens in your feet as well.

Is it easier to roll forward or backward? Right or left?

What happens to your breathing as you move through these sequences? Does your normal breathing change? Do you hold your breath? See if you can allow yourself to just breathe naturally as you move through the sequences.

See you Thursday or Friday for more.

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