The Root of All Evil
How can my body be stiff? After all, I am actually very flexible and always have been!
That is a response I get over and over again when I ascertain what is the main cause of a given pain. Those asking do not understand and do not know how to recognize the degree to which their body (especially the upper back), has become more and more rigid over the years.
Sad. But in the context of pain, stiffness is the root of all evil. Some would say that it is true of all our relationships: with our children, parents, spouses … Stiffness at one side produces a rigid reaction on the opposite side that, in turn, produces additional rigidity in the former side. Indeed, that is a recipe for instigating wars. It is certainly not the recipe for a peaceful, relaxed life, charged with positive communication among all parties.
The rigidity in our most important relationship – with our body – is also the most problematic. It produces unnecessary wear and tear that in time turns into pain.
That is the essence of the whole story. Most of us recognize the sensation of a stiffening body. It becomes less soft, less flexible, less mobile. It occurs in concert with the tasks we assign to it, in accord with the way we live our lives: We minimize our creative movement while maximizing short range and linear (direct) movements
While in some parts of the world even 60-year-olds climb coconut trees, most elsewhere in the world, as people get older, they move less and less. In fact, they move in a kind of an imaginary (yet very real) movement corridor, which becomes narrower as the years go by.
As a result, and as time goes by, the joints lose their ability to move as they ones did. As we once could, when we were young. The result, at present, is a stiffened and rigid body.
The Good News Is That It’s Reversible
Using the Softness Method, we re-acquire softness, abilities; we become acquainted with the most subtle, most delicate movements that disentangle one knot after the other, our stiffened muscles. That process offers our body, gently and lovingly, to move and to realize its motor potential.
With practice, the body gradually relaxes, it lets go. Most importantly, it is possible to do things differently. When the movements are correctly performed, they actually bring us genuine pleasure.
Each and every one of us stands to benefit from such liberating movements. There are those who find it very difficult and challenging to move in this manner (i.e., according to the teaching of the Softness Method). Consequently, such individuals might be put off by the exercises the Softness Method has to offer. The delicate, slow motions, combined with body attentiveness, make those individuals rather reluctant. They relate that they are used to working hard with the body and anything so delicate is of no consequence to them, it is boring and it puts them to sleep. Paradoxically, it is precisely these individuals who need the gentle movements and relaxation the Softness Method stand to produce in one’s body, better than anything else.
We are all rigid to one degree or another. Every ounce of release, among others, keeps us away from the stiffness, certainly from the attendant pain.
The Undying Phrase, “It Is Not Age, It Is the Drill” Is Both the Cause and the Result
Stiffness grows with age, unless one deliberately acts to counter it, and to soften one’s body. It is easy. It’s possible and it’s pleasant. And that’s exactly what we’re doing here.
If, effortlessly, without tension or pain, we can soften our body, what are we waiting for? For a glimpse of the Softness, the Strength of Physiotherapy and Feldenkrais Combined program, designed for those who want to gently nurture their body, click here.