The body itself is made up of over 200 bones as it's structure for the over 700 muscles and numerous joints, tendons, ligaments and organs. It's a complex system that allows us to be upright beings, bending and flexing, growing, feeling and expressing our way through life. We are dynamic beings that feel life through our proprioception, are effected by our surroundings and organize it in our brains. We then re-create life around us in a way that we are patterned too, whether that pattern is healthy or not. We seek patterns to organize and make sense of the world around us. We lean into familar ways even if they hurt us, unless we stay awake, aware and curious.
To seek out new ways to move, you must change the flow of a negative cycle. That means, you have to KNOW how you do what you do, and CHANGE what you are doing.... and that takes embracing tension. Tension itself is necessary for the body to be in balance and to stand upright, with the heaviest part at the very top of the spine. Our bodies take on the shape of the tensions we offer it. For instance if we spend a large amount of time looking at a computer screen, the spinal muscles that are opening and stretching along the back take on that shape. Other muscles in front of the hips, and in neck and jaw shorten. Over time and with gravity weighing in on the alignment of head and our body, this familiar yet disfunctional posture becomes how we stand ( however subtle at first,....over time without noticing it can become a big problem). It's never too late to reintroduce new ways of moving to the old and the body will respond any age.
Tension in itself isn't bad, it's a signal that you are reversing or in the middle of change. Stress tension is a tension that is telling the body that we need to do something different to release, to rest, or to create. It is felt in the body as aches and pain and often goes to parts of the body that are most vulnerable from a structural stand point. Stress can be a lack of emotional expression, being not tuned in to the body and sensing the daily movement that is needed for little releases throughout the day, and over working. Stress tensions can also become patterned ways living life. It's that familiar pain that we are so used to feeling that when it goes we quickly invite it right back in - consciously or not.......because we are used to it.
Our bodies are always changing as our surroundings change and not just our immediate surroundings with jobs, kids, partners, siblings and the complexities of our daily life... Our bodies are subject to the cycles of the seasons around us. Our changing inner chemistry fluctuates as a result of the foods we eat, our age, what we are exposed too. Another influence is the moon. The earth itself is 70% water, just like our bodies. The moon pulls on the waters of our bodies just like it does in the oceans shifting the tides. To be able to "flow" with all the elements around us we need to be open to possibilities of movement we may never have experienced before. This creativity is stimulated when we embrace tension and use it as a creative force to notice more deeply where our patterns are and then to create new ones. Full moons are "peak times" when tensions run high. All hospitals, police and teachers know to expect behavior changes during these times...one of the best ways to channel the hightened energy is to move creatively.
To embody change, start by moving into all the possible shapes, rhythms and postures, especially those that feel edgy or awkward. Start right where you are. Notice all the sensations that come forth as you move. If you feel pain, find the many ways you can move that alleviate vs. increase the pain. Let the tension ( not the pain) have a dance and witness how this opens the body/mind up to new ideas, deeper breath, and more space for pleasure. Every move has a purpose in this dance.