Spinefulness Foundations Course is now open online
Well, I finally did it.
I completed my online Spinefulness Foundations course – not that I won’t be making improvements – and it’s up and available to buy. The video above is two-minutes of encouragement to check it out.
Like almost everything in COVID times, creating this course seemed to take forever. On the upside, I did have lots of time to work on it: no in-person intro sessions to teach, no in-person classes, no travel time and no social life.
On the downside, no intro classes. No chance to spread the word that posture can be healthy and comfortable at the same time. Not being able to get the word out was hard to take.
I’m painfully aware of the harm that faulty posture causes.
Fully 80 per cent of people with back pain suffer because of mechanical issues – abnormal stress and strain on muscles of the spinal column. Those strains come from unhealthy posture, which includes unsafe bending and lifting.
In other words, their posture caused their pain. (And that doesn’t even begin to account for all the shoulder, neck, knee and foot pain we could easily avoid, not to mention the way unhealthy posture accelerates the aging process.)
Drill sergeants and most yoga teachers, posture gurus and personal trainers, will tell us to strengthen our abs, roll our shoulders back and lift our chests. The idea is that to avoid pain, you have to become your own internal tyrant, constantly holding your body upright until being gripped in tension feels normal.
I’m not suggesting that slumping is good for you. Clearly, it’s not.
But there is another, kinder alternative. You can put your bones in line with gravity so they can bear your weight, and then relax.
Although the idea may be relatively new, the posture itself is as old as humanity. It still lives in pre-industrial societies around the world. And it’s reborn daily in every healthy toddler.
You used to know how it felt, because this posture made it possible for you to learn to walk while balancing a head that was too big for your body. And you can get this posture back – happily minus the outsized head and lack of fine motor skills.
The change is simple: put your weight in your bones and relax. But like any habit change, it’s not easy. And postural habits are not only largely unconscious, they have been with us ever since we started imitating the big people in our lives.
Still, it’s hugely worth the time and effort to make this change.
Here is what balanced posture has done for me, beginning with the minor gifts, and moving to the major:
- It cured a Morton’s neuroma in my right foot that was giving me pain while walking. Standard treatment is to stay off high heels, buy bigger shoes and hope for the best. Surgery is a last resort and may increase the pain.
- It also cured the plantar fasciitis pain in my left foot. No more orthotics, no more pain.
- It removed the right S.I. joint pain that used to regularly take me to physiotherapy, as well as the related right groin pain when I went on long walks.
- It stopped the upper back pain I used to feel in sitting meditation and on long walks.
- It dramatically reduced the curve in my upper back – a curve I was told was genetic, and could be managed, but not reversed.
- It brought more relaxation into my life than I’ve ever felt before. I didn’t need to spend long periods of time in restorative yoga poses to make this dramatic change. It’s the result of dozens of daily moments of recognizing tension as it arises, then adjusting my posture until the tension goes away.
- Best of all, because I am more relaxed, I am happier and more at ease in my world.
These aren’t just my results. In 10 years at the Balance Center in Palo Alto, CA, Jean Couch and Jenn Sherer had participants fill out body maps at the beginning and end of every course. More than 90 per cent of people who took a Spinefulness Foundations course reported less pain at the end of the course.
Jean is my teacher, the person who introduced me to this work. At 77, she demonstrates every day the power that Spinefulness has to help us maintain an upright, strong and graceful posture as we age. Scroll down in this blog post to see her photo.
How could I not want to spread this knowledge?
I’ve seen the relief that comes just from not lifting the front of the ribcage. I know first-hand how much that simple change contributes to everything from relaxation to improved digestion.
I want everyone to know that between tight, gripped “good” posture, and joyless slumping, there’s a third alternative: relaxed, upright, easy carriage.
That’s why the cost for the course is intentionally modest – $47 US for four classes, plus five brief practices to help you incorporate what you learned in the class. (I’ll go into more detail in another email.)
You have access to the class for the rest of your life, or until the internet breaks, whichever comes first.
So, if you’ve ever wanted to take a Spinefulness Foundations Course, but it was never the right time, or if you don’t live near enough for in-person classes, here’s your chance to change your posture for the better.
Click here for more information. https://courses.spinefulness.ca/courses/spinefulness-foundations-f2020
And please share this link on whatever social media you use. Let’s make healthy, happy posture available to everyone.