Keep your springiness as you do your spring cleaning, or “Alexander Technique and the Art of Vacuuming”!

Vacuuming can be a strenuous activity, or it can be an opportunity to lengthen and move easily (and get a little bit of exercise!).

This week I want to show you two options for vacuuming, or for pushing anything, really. As always, I want to give you an idea of what I’m thinking about in each picture, because the way I think shows up in the way I use my whole self. And that can make life harder, or easier!

Here’s the link to the video:

Option 1
In this picture, I’m mostly concerned about the dirt on the floor and getting it off, so much so that I’m directing my self (my attention and my energy) downward. I’m collapsing my chest downward and hunching my back as a result. So in order to look up to go forward, I am bending at my neck, compressing my cervical vertebra. My back and my neck aren’t designed to be used that way, so I’m feeling uncomfortable and working extra hard.

Option 2
In this picture, I’m thinking about the space around me instead of just focusing on the ground. I’m pointing my spine upwards and thinking of letting my neck be free. I’m taking advantage of vacuuming for an opportunity to enjoy allowing lengthening and releasing my knees forward. This helps me to move and breath more easily for an easier, more enjoyable experience. It also gives me more freedom in my ankles, giving those joints some nice action, too. And I get a more helpful exercise and stretching benefit out of it at the same time!

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