I came out of my third appointment with Fran Bell today with a new walk. I mean, she gave my way of walking a complete makeover! She gave me a taste of it during my first visit, but it didn’t fully stick.
The new way feels so good, I didn’t want to stop walking. And most of it is going to stick. I can just tell.
Before she did anything, she had me walk as she observed and “got” my pattern into her nervous system.
Then she put on my movement pattern as if it were a dress and walked like me, so I could see myself!
Talk about a revelation! Wow! I could see an intention for grace, good posture, and efficiency of movement in my walk, and I could see that my right side was ahead of the left and that I walked with some stiffness in my body.
Fran, who can discern so much more than I am presently able to, showed me how I led with my feet instead of my whole body working as a unit. She showed me how immobile my shoulders were. My arms didn’t swing nearly as much as hers. She told me where to look to discern these things.
She put me on the table and we did some work together, and she taught me the homework I’ll be practicing this week. Ankles, hips, breath. Leg lifts every other day. Foam roller as needed.
Then I walked. My knees felt slightly rubbery, like sea legs. My right and left sides were the same. My arms swung freely from my shoulders. My hips swung from side to side. My whole spine moved. Even my head bobbled!
I don’t remember ever having so much swinging, swaying motion while walking from Point A to Point B before! I have a hunch I’ll be doing a lot more walking, because it’s just plain fun now.
What’s interesting is that when I observe a lot of people walking and running, such as on the Lady Bird Lake trail, I readily notice when someone’s body is locked up in some way. Maybe they barely lift their knees, or run on the insides of their soles, or lead with their head or chest. I feel for them.
I just never could see myself.
And now I have, and not only that, I gained a new way of walking that — and this may sound weird — appears to recharge my batteries and give me energy instead of draining energy.