Posture is About Relationships

view of feet from above

If you want to work on your Posture you need to find ways to pay attention to yourself that are simple and easy.

As simple and easy as it is to remember that peanut butter goes with jelly.

Let me explain…

Look at the list below. Can you fill in the missing words?

  • Bread and…
  • Cream and…
  • Wine and…
  • Lock and…
  • Peanut butter and…

If you’re a native English speaker it’ll be easy to fill in the missing words. These are word pairs common in English. The two words in the pair simply go together.

  • Bread and butter
  • Cream and sugar
  • Wine and cheese
  • Lock and key
  • Peanut butter and jelly

(Did I ever mention that I used to teach ESL years ago before I became an Alexander teacher?)

When you consider Posture from an Alexander Technique perspective, you want to pay attention to relationships.

Not positions.

For example, the relationship between the

  • head and the spine
  • right and left shoulder
  • legs and the pelvis
  • arms and the back

The above are all relationships that you work with in the Alexander Technique.

Positions tend to be static and held.

Relationships are changeable—and can adapt as you move.

And you’re constantly moving.

If you doubt me, stop for a moment to notice your breathing. Can you feel how your torso gently moves as you breathe?

If you’re breathing, you’re moving.

Now stand up with your feet hip-width apart and close your eyes. Notice that while standing still, you’re not completely 100% still.

You have a little sway in you.

That’s OK. And normal.

It’s your body balancing.

One of the first relationships I ask new students to consider is the relationship between the bottom of their feet and the top of their head.

If you’re sitting down, stand up again. Notice that you can feel the bottoms of your feet against the floor. You don’t have to look at them to know that they’re there.

Your sense of touch and pressure tell you they’re on the ground.

Noticing the contact of your feet on the ground more often is one simple way to help you be present—which is step one in working on your posture.

Once you notice your feet on the ground, don’t stop there.

Be aware of your feet in relation to the top of your head.

And be aware of the space between.

You can think of space gently opening up between the bottoms of your feet and the top of your head.

So, do start with noticing your feet.

But don’t notice your feet in isolation.

Get in the habit of always considering your feet in relation to your head.

Just like peanut butter goes with jelly.

And be aware of the space between.

Image by StockSnap from Pixabay

2 comments… add one

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  • Amy Ward Brimmer November 19, 2019, 1:34 pm

    Very good, highly experiential, easy to use and explore. Stop setting the bar so high for rest of us, ok? jk 🙂
    Really, this is a terrific way to differentiate between posture and “use” or relationship. So mindful. Thanks!

    • Lauren Hill November 20, 2019, 10:58 am

      Glad you found the ideas in this post easy to use. That’s my aim.


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