As a postural therapist I look at people’s posture for a living. This means that I probably look at people in a different way, even though sometimes it might be subconscious. Whenever I find myself in a mall, for example, I observe people coming and going. I don’t look at their clothes or hair style though, but being a posture nerd, I look at how they move.
Society doesn’t agree
What I consider a functional posture and a functional way of moving often goes against what society appreciates. Take for instance hip wiggling. This is deemed sexy by a part of society. Hips swinging back and forth or left to right. When I see this, I see faulty posture and faulty movement. I see dysfunctional hips and I look further, to find out what other postural imbalances this person has.
When your hips are fully functional, and your pelvis is stable, it doesn’t move much when you walk. It certainly doesn’t move side to side, or in a rotating fashion. Or, at least not very visibly so. All this extra movement, as a result of instable and dysfunctional hips and pelvis, takes its toll on the joints and vertebrae of the spine. They get too much wear and tear. They might even get asymmetrical wear and tear, if one hip wiggles more than the other.
Being cool might hurt you
Another common gait pattern I observe is what I call the ‘cool shuffle’ – it is mainly done by ‘cool guys’. Again this is a gait where the pelvis moves, rotates, side to side. Again this is a dysfunctional gait pattern and far from cool!
The downside of posture therapy
So, being a posture therapist is not always fun. It is hard to ‘switch off’ the observing and analyzing and trying to put the puzzle together. Of course occasionally I succeed when I’m at a birthday party, as I’m caught up in conversation. Thank goodness! My wife is always visibly relieved when that happens and I stop ‘analyzing’.
Next time you’re in a mall or other public place, take a look of how people walk or better yet, take notice of how you walk. Do your hips move? If so, from side to side? Feel free to contact me to discuss your findings!