Use any wall to check body alignment. The only requirement is that the wall be open enough to press the back, shoulders, and head against it. This simple check done ten to twenty minutes a day is used in Chinese martial arts to improve the body mechanics of our alignment.
The best alignment will require forming three locks which in this brief explanation are given in a general way.
Form the lower lock by letting the hips rock upward until the lower back is in a straight line. Notice that by laying on the ground that the body naturally forms a curve with the lower back. One can literally pass a hand through the lower back area. By rocking the lower back upward that curve becomes a straight back.
A common relief of lower back pain uses this idea. The person can place themselves on the ground and place their feet on a chair or sofa that forms a 90 degree bend. This naturally lets the back straighten. Staying in this position for a length of time will let the back relax. That length of time depends on the back and its degree of stress.
This is formed by pressing downward from about the solar plexus area, locking in the upper boundary of the lower back.
Form the upper lock by tucking in the chin to help the neck vertebrae straighten. It may seem counter intuitive but it works. Imagine there is a thread pulling from the crown of the head from which the body pulls into suspended alignment.
Simply place one heel in parallel with the wall. That gives the exact placement for one foot. Place the other heel about shoulder with from the first heel with the back facing the wall.
Gently, it does not require any extreme effort.
This naturally helps the shoulders relax and move backward. It opens up an egg size space underneath the arm pits. It sets the body up for an alignment session.
Remove the curve from the lower back, tuck in the chin, and suspend from the crown of the head. Relax as you press into the wall as best as possible. Do not worry if it is not possible to touch. Over time the body will improve.
Move away from the wall and hold the position for a short time. Then check the alignment by pressing back into the wall. Correct it if possible but keep relaxed and do not force it.
Strive to repeat this exercise 3 to 5 times a day until you can touch head, shoulders, and back to the wall. A few minutes daily will suffice to make progress. Strive to keep the body relaxed and comfortable.
Alignment of the body is taught in most of the Asian arts. These exercises are based upon traditional longevity exercises as taught in traditional Chinese martial arts.
© 2009 David Scott -- All rights Reserved