Fall Healthy Reminder 2010
In elementary & high school health classes I learned our bodies move using a system of LEVERS(bones), CABLES(muscles & tendons) and PULLEYS(joints); isolated forces in a direct line of action that produce a specific movement. I’ve found this model, while useful for understanding vectors of force and locating SYMPTOMS, is inadequate for resolving the CAUSES of most soft tissue pain.
I’ve tremendous success resolving chronic and acute pain by focusing on an effective new vision of what governs our posture and movement. This is the vision of Fascial Tensegrity. Tensegrity is an architectural term describing structural support created by springy/stretchy/tensioned things pulling on hard things into the desired, supported alignment. Fascia* is the connective tissue surrounding/permeating everything in your body. Our bones are our hard structures tensioned into supported alignment by our fascial and muscle tension as directed by our nervous system.
If we do this well and efficiently, we experience comfort and ease. If we do this inefficiently or poorly, we experience discomfort and burden.
Think for a moment about our foundation: Our feet. They contain 3 arches capable of supporting our entire weight and then some. Architectural arches gain strength by having their footings fixed to the ground. But our feet and the arches within them aren’t bolted to the ground at all! What fixes the foundations of our arches? Soft Tissue! The fleshy container holding our stack of bones- A 3D spider web of strong, elastic, springy, connective tissue that your nervous system can allow to shorten or lengthen, running entirely throughout you! (The head bone’s connected to the toe bone! & every other bone via this web.) I like to think of my fascia as my Internal Hammock that everything in me can “rest” into.
Sometimes we find it’s more of a “straight jacket” keeping us stuck and incapable of moving or resting certain parts of ourselves, due to these restrictions. (We want this occasionally: when we are healing traumas that need to be held still- the kicker is that these compensations can stay stuck even after the trauma has healed.)
Our nervous system maintains dynamic tension & strength in our muscles adding it to the 3D boundaries defined by our hammock of fascia to maintain distances and bone relationships within our body.
Integrative Myofascial Therapies (such as the work I do) bring about comfort and ease through direct experience of change within the fascial web, offering new feelings of a more comfortable and efficient relationship with gravity and free movement.
My Fall Healthy Reminder tip is to:
Rethink yourself and the images you hold of the way your body works. If we can change our picture from a fixed system of levers, cables and pulleys to the image of a dynamic web of interconnection and interdependence, we can discover a whole new way of flexibly relating to ourselves and our world.
Mother of the movement: Ida Rolf, She’s speaking English:
Gil Hedley showing fascia adhering where it shouldn’t:
Tom Myers on Fascial Tensegrity:
Me making up words:
Intro to Tom Myers Anatomy Trains:
Tensegrity Feldenkrais style: