Chapter 9 :: The Masculine Scroll Down >>>
The purpose of the ninth section is to release rotations in the upper half of the body - the arms, shoulders, chest, back, head and neck - and balance the deep and superficial muscles of this area.
The theme of this section is "The Masculine." The arms, shoulder girdle and chest embody the masculine principle: doing, accomplishing, achieving. The masculine principle is the path of initiation, penetrating force, insight, and action. The masculine represents activity with purpose and movement with direction. Western culture emphasizes the masculine style, perhaps to the point of imbalance. Many people strain to work hard: "no pain - no gain." Even people with jobs that are not physically strenuous have tension throughout their bodies as a result of this attitude of intense effort. In truth, achievement and action needn't produce this stress. How do you manifest masculine energy? Are you able to achieve and still remain relaxed? Getting the job done while staying free and loose in your body requires that your action come from your core.
Anatomy and Structure
Anatomically, the focus of this section is the upper half of the body, including the arms, shoulders, rib cage, and neck. Our purpose is to free the shoulder girdle and balance it on top of the chest. Some of the muscles that connect the arms, shoulder girdle, and chest can be viewed above.
Structurally, the purpose of the ninth section is to release the rotations of the upper half of the body. Rotations in the shoulder girdle can be understood by looking at the water carrier in the illustration on the upper left. The shoulder girdle sits on top of the chest much as the pole and buckets sit on a man's shoulders. In this drawing, the pole is rotated forward and down on the right side and backward and up on the left. This represents one common pattern of rotation in the shoulders, and demonstrates the three-dimensional nature of a rotation. A shoulder girdle that is rotated in the same pattern is shown in the lower drawing to the left.
In movement, our goal is for you to integrate what you have already learned with more complex movements of the upper body. We want you to integrate the movement of the core and the sleeve, and to become aware of how your lower body supports the movement of your upper body.
Movement Lesson :: Upper Body Core Movement
Using just your arms, throw a pillow. Notice how you must tense up the rest of your body just to keep it from moving. Can you feel that using only your arms primarily engages the sleeve muscles?
Now throw the pillow using your whole body. Feel the movement coming from your core. Notice the stability of your stance and the effect of this stability on the power of your arm movement. Alternate these two methods of throwing the pillow; and notice the difference.
With your Practitioner, take these principles of core movement, base stability, and whole body movement into activities that primarily use the upper body, such as tennis, carpentry, or office work. Practice this between sessions.
Notice an area of your life that needs clear and penetrating action. Perform the necessary action with continued awareness and relaxation of your core. Notice how your body feels as you carry out this action. Remember to breathe and relax.