Tag Archives: balance

Children, Bare Feet & Movement

Barefoot Is Better for Developing Motor Skills

Close-up of a barefoot baby girl's foot.

A baby’s foot.

A recent study showed that children who tend to go barefoot have better motor skills than those who habitually wear shoes. The barefoot kids had better balance, among other advantages. When you consider how many shoes restrict the foot‘s ability to move, the results make sense.

Also, I wonder, do barefoot children just tend to move more in general?

Read the entire article here on Neuroscience News.

What’s the Best Kind of Shoe?

Barefoot toddler on tiptoe with magnets in front of refrigerator.

A toddler’s feet.

Clients often ask me, “What kind of shoe should I wear?” My answer, “The one with as little support as is comfortable for you.”If you’re currently using arch support or orthotics, don’t suddenly stop using them.

Could you practice walking at home, five minutes at a time, barefoot? Or in flat shoes with no built-in arch? Or can you practice walking with your orthotics, without collapsing your feet into them, but using them as a point of reference to organize your feet around?

And yes, we can practice using our feet and entire skeletons so that your arches awaken. I was diagnosed with flat feet as a child. I can now distinguish support in my two longitudinal arches and the one transverse arch; of course, that’s clearer with one foot than the other.

Standing Lesson

One simple movement to play with: stand with your feet slightly further apart than usual, barefoot if possible. Shift yourself a little left and right. Imagine that your whole skeleton is like a pendulum above your feet, so you lead with the crown of your head.

Feel how you’re using your feet. Do they collapse as you shift weight? That is, does the contact of the standing surfaces of your feet with the ground change as you shift from side to side?

Imagine now that, as you shift your skeleton left, it’s your right foot that sends you. As if you’re distancing the crown of your head from your right foot. Let your left foot send you right.

Do this a few times. Stop and observe yourself. How did your awareness of your feet change?

Tai Chi with Bobby Garcia

Join Us for this 6-Week Series Near Downtown

Is Tai Chi on your bucket list? Join us this summer to try it out! Bobby Garcia’s an excellent teacher, skillful and funny.

A group practices Tai Chi in Bobby Garcia's May workshop.

Practicing Tai Chi with Bobby Garcia

Often described as “meditation in motion,” Tai Chi is a low-impact, slow-motion practice. You go without pausing through a series of motions. As you move, you breathe deeply and naturally, focusing your attention on your bodily sensations. It’s a beautiful complement to Awareness Through Movement®.

GoodWork is the perfect location, a beautiful coworking space in The Cedars, close to downtown, with a unique focus on sustainability and wellness.

Limit: 15. Room for 10 more as of 7/5.

WHEN: Fridays, July 13-Aug. 17, 11:30 am-12:30 pm.
COST: $105 after; GoodWork members save $10 (use code GoodWork).

Register on the Dallas Feldenkrais website.

YOUR INSTRUCTOR

Bobby Garcia began his martial arts education 29 years ago and has been teaching for 11 years. A serious motorcycle accident left Bobby with limited mobility. Through Tai Chi, he found dramatic improvements in his strength and mobility. Bobby has studied several styles of Tai Chi with multiple masters, including Chen Bing, a Tai Chi Master from China who is a direct descendant of Tai Chi founder Chen Wangting.

Testimonials for Bobby Garcia

“What I took away was, the power of Tai Chi to restore confidence, balance, and calm.”

“I felt the connection between the physical efforts and the emotional. If we are grounded and centered, we are hard to topple both physically, mentally and emotionally.”

Focus on Feet in Oak Lawn

Would you like to:

  • Walk on feet which feel like pillows?
  • Clarify what good balance feels like?
  • Experience ease in standing?
  • Discover what some of the 26 bones in your feet are good for?
Illustration of a human foot with connective tissue

Diagram of a human foot with connective tissue

If you answered “Yes” to any of these questions, join us for this series!

Our over-arching theme for winter and spring 2018: Discover Yourself from the Ground Up.

In this six-week series, we’ll begin by building the foundation: investigating the structure and function of your feet. Though the focus will be your feet, each lesson will include all of you.

[Fun fact: you have no ankles! Those knobs above your feet are the ends of your tibia and fibula bones!]

You learn most movement practices from the outside in, by imitation. In Awareness Through Movement®, you’re invited to learn from the inside out. Take your discoveries into another movement practice or your everyday life.

6 Tuesdays, Jan. 9-Feb. 3, 6:30-7:45 pm. $105.
Limit: 5 participants. Room for 1 more as of 1/4.

Focus on Feet in N. Dallas

Would you like to:

  • Walk on feet which feel like pillows?
  • Clarify what good balance feels like?
  • Experience ease in standing?
  • Discover what some of the 26 bones in your feet are good for?
Illustration of a human foot with connective tissue

Diagram of a human foot with connective tissue

If you answered “Yes” to any of these questions, join us for this series!

Our over-arching theme for winter and spring 2018: Discover Yourself from the Ground Up.

In this 6-week series, we’ll begin by building the foundation: investigating the structure and function of your feet. Though the focus will be your feet, each lesson will include all of you.

[Fun fact: you have no ankles! Those knobs above your feet are the ends of your tibia and fibula bones!]

You learn most movement practices from the outside in, by imitation. In Awareness Through Movement®, you’re invited to learn from the inside out. Take your discoveries into another movement practice or your everyday life.

6 Mondays, Jan. 8-Feb. 2, 6:25-7:30 pm. $105.
Limit: 15 participants. Room for 1 more as of 1/4.
Register on the MoveStudio website.

Making the Floor Your Friend

When was the last time you lay on the floor? Do you remember how delicious it felt to be completely supported and feel effort gradually drop away?

Stacy Barrows, Doctor of Physical Therapy and Feldenkrais Practitioner, wrote an excellent blog about the value of using the floor for more than getting from one place to another.

Stacy Barrows, PT, GCFP

Stacy Barrows, PT, GCFP

Stacy says:

“When I practice getting up and down off the floor, I’m building resilience in my musculoskeletal system. Being able to get up and down off the floor is an essential movement skill. It is not only one of the first things we learn as infants; it is one of the last things we want to lose as we age. In fact, the ability to get up and down from the floor is associated with greater longevity. People who do this regularly are counteracting the long-term effects of gravity and maintaining their proprioceptive abilities that are part of maintaining upright balance and navigating the world with less risk of falling.

Proprioception is how we sense where we are in space, and the speed and intensity with which we’re moving.

Read the rest of Stacy’s blog here, including tips for enticing your family to the floor.

And speaking of making friends with the floor, I can’t resist sharing this video of Baby Liv again. Babies don’t have to make friends with the floor. They love it!