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Stand Up Straight!
What if I told
you that how we move, how we learn and how we think are interconnected? Would
you believe me?
What if I told you they are all tied in to your posture? How surprising might that be to you?
You might not think of it this way, but standing upright demands the body to work and expend energy. It’s fair to say some seem to have an easier time with standing upright than others. Could that mean they experience, for example, less fatigue than others? A study in 1976 showed that standing upright increases both heart rate and blood pressure.
While most of us as kids and maybe as adults have been told to stand up straight, what we have not been told is that it’s mostly how our feet contact the ground and how our eyes move that dictate our body’s position in space; our posture.
This is where Posturology comes in. I’ve been practicing Posturology for 10 years. I learned it from its founder, Dr. Bricot, who is a medical doctor, specialized in orthopedic surgery. In 1985, his aim was to address the root cause of postural imbalances, as they can be thought to have an impact on muscle and joint pain.
What I have learned
I was classically trained as a massage therapist (2007) and then as an osteopath (2009). I was taught to release tight muscles and mobilize various areas of the body to create “balance”. Clients typically consult because they have issues with movement. I have to admit that my classical training never truly answered the question: why?
Why is it that some breakdown? Why is it that others are resilient? We understand that pain is multifactorial. That being said, what has been less studied is the importance of having learned how to stand and move efficiently.
In my experience, most individuals that consult for physical limitations present with asymmetries in their alignment and a lack of motor pattern integration.
Simply put, their shoulders may be misaligned and it’s quite possible that they haven’t crawled or walked on all fours enough to develop good tonus for daily activities that you would expect an adult to perform adequately.
You might ask: but if that’s so, isn’t it too late by adult age to reprogram these motor patterns? Thankfully, it’s been shown in research that the brain learns continuously throughout our lives. It’s common to see adults improve their capacity to perform activities of daily living and be more efficient in sports.
If you have any questions on this topic or for links to any of the studies referenced in this article, feel free to contact me.
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