This is the beginning of a series of short exercises and routines addressing the need and necessity of always bringing everything back to the body as the point to start with ourselves, with others and with the world. Listening to wisdom at some point really serves life rather than listening to knowledge. Wisdom is more of the body and the heart and knowledge the ‘superior intelligent mind’! As psychotherapists, therapists; counsellors and supervisors bringing everything back to our bodies and in turn passing this on to our clients is essential as it not only keeps us grounded and authentic but it is where we can really listen and respond to what is the deeper wisdom within us.
But how can we connect with our bodies?
- Movement Pathways of connection
This month’s blog is a simple sharing of a set of movement patterns that when moved connect all sort of pathways into your own creativity.
The Bartenieff fundamentals are something that was covered in my training; they are a set of movement principles developed by a lady called Irmgard Bartenieff and are based on the concept of the body moving and extending into all types of movement possibilities which she called ‘Total body connectivity’. I will often use these in different ways with different situations and have a lot of fun with them!
The Movement patterns are: breath, navel radiation, mouthing, head-tail, upper-lower, body-half, and body-diagonal.
- Notice your breath and follow your breathing rhythm in and through and out of your body. Ground yourself through breathing from where you are in the moment and integrate this through the whole body, eventually into a whole body breathing movement.
- Notice and place your attention on your breath in your centre; in your core and from here connect the inner core to all 6 limbs. Your 2 hands, 2 feet; head and tail. Breathing out into the world from the core and back again. Notice what this feels like for you!
- Pay attention to your mouth and the top of your spine, perhaps move your mouth and at the same time your neck. Opening the mouth is the beginning of the development of the spine. With plasticity the head and the coccyx move towards each other and then away from each other like a snake. Explore the world with the spine as if exploring new options.
- Moving your upper body and then move your lower body and then put your attention on where they connect. Move your core and then move all three together. Be grounded in your lower body and reach up. Heaven and earth, I like this one!
- Now moving your right side and then your left and then the point where they meet, your core. Isolate and move right side and then isolate and move your left side.
- Moving on your diagonal line from your left toes to your right hand and then the opposite side. Integrating and connecting through movements such as twisting, curving; spiralling. A very creative movement. Up and across, up and down and round and curvy!
Playing with these movement patterns is fun as they open up pathways of connection throughout your body. Work with these on different levels and listen to the gentle voice inside. Use these patterns as a good warm-up before movement sessions and also, use them as a way to become more aware of sensations, internal rhythms; thoughts and perhaps deeper realisations.