Ever watched a lizard locomote? Or better yet, a salamander?
Notice that the legs aren’t really driving the motion? Where is the movement generated?
If you said spine, you’re right!
While we’ve come a long way from the lowly salamander, humans also are designed with an innate spinally driven locomotor pattern. One in which the walking motion is initiated by muscles that attach to the spine (or our core).
In this paradigm our legs are just extensions that carry us further and faster. It’s not that they’re not important, it’s just that they shouldn’t be getting the party started.
For a lot of us though, we lose touch with this pattern over the years through postural habits, pain, injury, lack of mobility, etc.
When this happens, we don’t move as effectively and sometimes we even end up with symptoms. Hip pain, knee pain, back pain. You know the drill!
There are a few key elements necessary to tap into our spinal engine:
Stay tuned for the next blog post to learn more about these 3 areas specifically with respect to walking…
I’ll get into what posture really means and why it’s important (it’s not just about standing up tall), where you need mobility and how much, and what areas most people need to strengthen!
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