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Archive for Back Care

Sep
06

Back Rotation

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Back rotation doesn’t have to be an arduous, straining event. We oughta be able to simply reach into the backseat of our car and grab those cookies when we want them.

The practice of somatics is most often s-l-o-w so the nervous system can foster the necessary changes allowing the brain to rewire itself for higher function and easier ambulation.

Back Rotation and Somatics

Somatics can be revved up a bit and done at a more exploratory level which mimics the practice of feldenkrais which is the predecessor to Hanna Somatic Education and the somatics exercises.

The difference lies mostly in the intent, yet both practices can produce wonderful outcomes such as:

• an easy sense of back rotation
• better hip mobility
• a freer neck
• and improved coordination between the shoulders and hips

Thus walking becomes smoother, more efficient and effortless.

Central to this is the function our spine.

When we tend to specialize with our muscles in a specific exercise, we forget that we are one piece, one “somewhat” integrated system of movement. We are generally doing exercise specific to a body part rather than paying more attention to our overall movement which is vital and maybe more fundamental to our well-being.

I say “somewhat”, because many of us live with compensation and substitution patterns which we may not be conscious of. Consequently, we are not as fully functional as we could be.

Easy, effortless back rotation and a fluid neck

By reminding our muscular system of its capacity to move as a whole, we can have the ability to have easy, effortless back rotation for instance.

The kind you need while driving a car so you can easily look back and not just rely on the mirrors.

Many times a pain in the neck happens because something else in the system of movement is compromised, so try as we may to move our aching neck further… it doesn’t or is strained by our efforts.

By freeing up our system of movement, easier back rotation, leads to a more fluid use of our neck.

Subsequently, coordinating the movements at the shoulder with the hips to create better cohesion with easier back rotation, again allows us to more fully appreciate how well we can freely move.

Back RotationImproving back rotation with somatics exercises has delighted many people. One particular movement, generally called the dishrag or 4 way twist is often many people’s favorite movement and the one they do everyday.

Freeing our neck and improving our back rotation can be fostered when we not only pay attention to the upper back yet also taking the lower back into consideration and awareness of the movement of the entire spine.

While there are static stretches which purport to increase our range of motion.

The movement system is key, not a static system.

When will I ever need to stay twisted for any length of time. The ability to twist, rotate and bend in any number of degrees is far more satisfying.

Just watch how animals gracefully crane their necks by moving their backs and trunk around. You won’t see them hold a pose in order to gain range of motion, yet they can comfortably live with back rotation that is easy. They gain range of motion by using the movement system consciously.

For us, our back rotation problems, hip immobility, tight necks and stiff shoulders, can be solved when we include a finer sense of our mobility possibilities through gentle movement so our brain can relax the muscles by creating enough muscular output to tune down the tension so that the necessary chemicals of relaxation can bathe our muscles and remind them to let go.

Back Rotation Class

In this week’s class, I’ll be offering yet another form of somatics differentiation, where we’ll do the necessary s-l-o-w movements and also a quicker combination of integrated movement patterns so we can literally feel our way to self-improvement and greater efficiency.

As we age, we can continue a positive development by differing the way we even do our somatics exercises. While somatics are great ways to tune-up the body and ready it for the day, we can explore the possibilities of combinig the s-l-o-w way with a different speed while paying attention to the quality of the movement.

Moving quickly doesn’t mean that the range of motion has to be large either.

We just have to set our mind to noticing what we can at slightly a quicker tempo when we move well and notice in the following days how our upright movements change in response as the integration develops.

Pleas join me as I give a new class where your:

• hips will be freer
• your neck will receive a lot of attention
• your back rotation will increase with easy mobility
• and you’ll be able to coordinate the actions of the spine, trunk, hips and shoulders by doing most everyone’s favorite movement pattern in a way I haven’t taught before.

Join me live or get the recording of this back rotation class.


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Exercise for back painExercise for back pain is a natural way to help what ails our backs.

Somatics exercise is an exercise approach where you learn how to release tight, stiff, sore muscles which may have taken us off track.

Jonathan Hunt who played soccer professionally in England is a bud of mine. He left football, that’s soccer to us…


on account of back pain and eventually found his way to Somatics which helped him get out of his back pain where many other approaches failed him.

Get this, he actually discovered it moments before he was leaving from vacation. He was visiting Thailand for some r & r… He knew the plane ride would be a killer on his back.

How many people hurt just sitting in car or being on a plane?

He eventually became a fellow Hanna Somatic Educator himself and now can enjoy the games of his youth as he continues to play today.

If you’re in London, you can always check him out for a hands-on session. You’ll be in good hands.

Mail Online in the UK just posted an article in their health notes sections on Jonathan. See getting your back on track.

The very exercise for back pain which is described in the article is one in which many somatics educators teach people to have a healthy, flexible spine.

If you’d like an audio version, you can listen to several exercises for back pain and find out for yourself what somatics is all about.


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Categories : Back Care, Exercise
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