Walking correctly is a full body experience. If we move well the front and the back of the body are equally broad and open, the legs are rooted to the ground as the head is lifting up to the sky, lengthening the skeleton and creating space in the joints. The side of the body is involved as well because the arms are free to move in all planes. The opposite arm and leg are always moving at the same time which creates a gentle rotation through the spine which moves energy endless up and down the body in a spiral. When we do this everything starts to flow much more easily.
To begin walking correctly Imagine that your bones stacked even on top of one another —your ears, shoulders, hips and ankles would all follow a straight line down the body. Instead for most of us our calves fall backward, our thighs sink forward, our lower back overarches, our upper back rounds back and our head juts forward. What the FitzGordon Method does is align us with gravity, making it our ally instead of our nemesis. When we can find the whole body working together these imbalances begin to disappear.
There are many different techniques to employ when walking correctly. Let’s look at a three-point plan you can use to begin to make your way into gravity’s flow:
- Imagine a string is pulling you up from the back of the neck. All lengthening movements should begin from the back of the body. The image of the string pulling up should lengthen that back of the body and the neck and release the front of the throat and lower the chin. Lengthening up should allow you to feel space between the bones.
- Think of another string pulling you back from the middle of the spine. Breathing into your back ribs as you walk; breath should engage the back of the body as much as the front. Imagine that you are walking backwards as much as forwards, balancing all sides of the body.
- Your pelvis should be on top of the legs and stay that way. When your leg steps forward the other one should be an equal distance behind it. The spine should always be straight up and down with the legs falling equally part beneath it.
Walking correctly is intimately connected with ageing gracefully and it is hard to have one without the other.