Shapes of Life: Surrendering to the Rhythm of the Bones

By On July 11, 2017 · Leave a Comment

It started with the thought: I Golden danceram open to the possibility of something being different. Three years ago I was going through the end of what appeared to be life as I knew it, aka my marriage of many years. I gently closed my bleary eyes and whispered, “I am open to something wonderful that I cannot imagine right now.” I got dressed and went to a class I had never been to before, in a studio I had never seen. Walking through the hot sunshine before class I brushed against a bird of paradise. Class began, and I moved. I sweat. I pushed myself. A woman made her body into a shape just like a bird of paradise, and instead of competitiveness, I felt curiosity. “Could my body do that?” I wondered. She looked so at ease.

The teacher began a long meditation. I imagined mFreedom of Movementy current life as a physical place. Before, it had appeared to me as a desert island appears to one lost at sea. But suddenly, in my mind’s eye, it was akin to a picnic blanket spread out among a meadow of wildflowers. Surrounding this blanket were green fields rolling out in all directions, as far as the eye could see, and beyond. In my vision, I stood up and put one foot down on the surprisingly soft ground. I was surrounded, not by the hostile seas I had imagined, but an endless green playground.

Life has cycles, seasons, and rhythms that will carry us along if we surrender to them. Bird of paradiseWhen we partner with our bodies for health and vitality, the surrendering becomes easier, a daily practice of recommitting to our higher purpose. Much like the bones of the pelvis, which move along vertical and horizontal planes simultaneously, creating the shape of a figure eight as we walk, life is unfolding in more than one direction at once. If we keep dancing to its rhythm, we may trust that our lives and our bodies are taking shape just as nature intended.



Bone Rhythm: Sensing the Sits Bones in Action

Try this Franklin Method emFranklin Methodbodiment for your pelvis, and click here to watch how it’s done:

1. Stand with your legs hip distance apart.

2. With both hands reach back and touch your sits bones.

3. Bend your knees and flex at your hip joint (where your femur plugs into the pelvis).

4. Notice what happens to your sits bones while you are bending and straightening your legs. The sits bones ideally should widen when you bend and narrow when you straighten!

When you embody this function you will have greater ease in your hip joints and more balanced tone in the muscles of your pelvic floor, adductors, and core after walking and dancing. Enjoy getting to know the power of your pelvis and experience better posture!



Contributed by Jamie Skinner

Jamie Michelle SkinnerJamie Michelle Skinner is an extroverted introvert, occasional hermit, writer, dancer, and somatic educator. After losing over 100 pounds through her passion for dance, her mission is to inspire dancers from all walks of life to find freedom, joy, and health through “writing” their own story on the dance floor, using a vocabulary of mellifluous movement creativity that is both universal and unique, and grounded in the body’s own natural intelligence.
Jamie is a graduate of the University of Maryland’s prestigious Philip Merrill College of Journalism, where she studied news reporting and literary journalism under greats like Judith Hillman Paterson, author of Sweet Mystery: A Book of Remembering. Jamie also studied art history and literature at the University of Ireland’s Dublin campus.
Recently, Jamie has become an avid practitioner of Nia, a movement form encompassing dance arts, martial arts, and healing arts, that is adaptable to many levels and abilities. Since completing her white belt in October 2014, she has undergone three specialized Nia trainings, and is now certified to teach Moving to Heal Nia, Nia FreeDance, and Nia 5 Stages, a developmental movement practice for self-healing. In addition, she is a Pilates Sports Center teacher-in-training. Jamie lives in Santa Barbara, California.

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