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Posture is Important, but the Principle of Shifting Weight is Integral to Health & Balance

One of the important principles of physical movement in Sotai is the principle of shifting weight. This is all about how you move your body to counterbalance for a shift in the position of your center of gravity.

This YouTube Short video will demonstrate and explain this principle in one minute, and you can read this post to get some slightly more elaborate information on the subject. Click on the image below to see the video:

If you don't counterbalance by leaning your body, your body has to brace to resist falling or stepping. If you want to start walking, this is a good thing! If you want to keep standing in place, not so much. It's all about context. This video is about moving your body when standing in place, as when forward bending, side bending, and rotating to reach for something.

These patterns permeate everything you do in daily life. So your habits when you move in these patterns are reflected in everything you do while stationary, sitting or standing.

Using your whole body for these movements makes use of your natural structure and preserves energy to make movements less strenuous on the body. When you don't use this principle, you brace your body and hold yourself up while you bend. It's easy to lose balance here or injure yourself if you're deconditioned.

When side-bending, one important aspect is shifting your hips in the opposite direction that you are bending. If you do this, your weight stays evenly distributed between your feet, you are more stable, and shouldn't feel strain in one particular muscle.

When forward bending, the same principle applies, shift the hips back when you bend forward to keep the weight distributed evenly between your heels and balls of your feet. If you don’t shift your hips back when you forward bend, you’ll feel your weight shift to your toes before you lose balance.