Baby it’s cold outside!

It’s funny how something like ambient air temperature can ignite a movement pattern that may not be so useful.  In the cold it’s natural to tuck your chin down into the collar of your coat, breathe a little more shallowly to avoid taking in a big gulp of cold air, tighten your body in certain places to keep the draft from blowing up under your winter parka, or holding your arms into your sides a little more tightly to keep the warmth of your arm pits protected from escaping.  We all do our own thing to preserve those things we want to protect, in this case body temperature.  Sometimes those habits get put into motion through very well established pathways in the brain at times when they are not so helpful.  Say you are outside walking the dog in the cold wintery air.  You slip a little on the ice.  Your arms reflexively reach out from your sides in at attempt to preserve your balance,  But, unfortunately you have the “arms held slightly close to the body,” habit in action because it’s blasted cold outside.  Unfortunately, those two actions don’t work so well together.  It’s possible that your arm reaches out but your shoulder blades are still held in tightly and it results in a rather painful rotator cuff (shoulder joint tendon group) impingement situation.  Contradictory actions do that sort of thing………….produce pain, tightness, stiffness.  These are natural processes in conflict that we are unaware of.  By increasing sensory awareness of this type of thing we can prevent the conflict and allow the shoulder blade and the arm to act efficiently together, both reaching out together in a coordinated manner.    The Feldenkrais Method helps us unravel our sensory potential to allow us greater freedom to act in the world more efficiently, and often with less pain, discomfort, and injury!  Woo Hoo! We can all use a little less of that!!