Continuing the theme of turning in the hip, and now refining and relating the carriage of the head. It would be interesting to repeat the previous lesson (Turning heels out) some days after doing this one.
This lesson–entirely in standing–is about finding your axis for turning, with the head and the pelvis coordinated in a smooth arc, and the volume on the extensors of the back “turned down.” It’s the first of our “turning on a dime.”
I’m particularly intrigued by this lesson in relation to a passage in The Potent Self that I’ve always found intriguing. In the chapter, “The means at our disposal,” he talks about needing to shut down the habitual work of the extensors in the low back and neck before anything new can be learned. This makes sense and doesn’t in light of his usual progression of introductory lessons–a “flexor” lesson is often first. And of course lessons are usually done in lying for this reason. But none of these intro lessons are as extreme as what is described in that chapter of The Potent Self. This lesson, paradoxically in standing, actually carries through this thought: maintaining the rounding of the spine while shifting weight and “coming up on each leg” is remarkably potent as a means of reeducation of the generally over-working and poorly-organized extensors.