SKIP this exercise if painful or uncomfortable
Follow the onscreen breathing instructions Inhale Exhale
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Blue (lower body) Journey
The 3 Stars Sequence
Exercise 2 1a
Learn and follow the exercise instructions below.
Practice this exercise daily as part of your sequence.
Perform this exercise only in pain free and comfortable ranges.
If necessary, seek professional advise to use as part of a rehabilitation program.
Learn the Exercise
1a is an important functional exercise for natural pain-free walking. Even though this exercise might not look physically challenging, due to habitual reasons it requires articulate cognitive learning and practicing even by professional movers.
It is therefore recommended to place a rolled small towel between knees when learning 1a (as described below). Once mastered, 1a becomes an easy exercise and a quick and effective warm up for the next exercises of the 6 Stars sequence.
During gait, the forward movement of the body in space is generated by the powerful activation of the weight-bearing ankle joint (calf muscles) together with a slight (same side) knee flexion while stabilizing the pelvis and the spine.
1a is also a very important exercise for rehabilitation, as it represents the fundamental mechanism of correct walking. It is therefore recommended to learn and master this technical exercise while still healthy. This provides a great advantage for preventing movement-related injuries and makes future rehabilitations easier and faster for the therapist and client alike.
Move - stretch - return - relax -... alternate
Inhale - Starting position.
Exhale - Movement, stretch and return phases.
Inhale - Relax phase.
For the Starting position, stand about 1 step away from bar, facing the bar.
Assume the upright position, looking towards the horizon.
Try to be as tall as possible, draw shoulders wide and down and relax the arms and hands by the sides of the body.
To initiate the movement, exhale and slightly tilt the body forwards from the both ankles.
When both heels start to rise passively from the floor, push the pelvis and trunk forward in space by flexing the back ankle and knee at the same time.
During the movement, stabilize the upper body with the exhalation) and deep stability muscles.
This mechanism 'carrys' the front leg forward in the air.
During the movement, gradually flex the back ankle to its end range and lift the heel high from the floor while the front of foot is pushing down on the floor.
When the front leg is in the air and the vertical body-line is moving forward, it is the back leg that balances the body and bears its weight.
1a has a double staged landing:
Land softly on the front heel, while the body-mass is still held on the back leg.
Only then, flatten the front foot on the floor while the back ankle reaches its full flexion.
When the upright body approaches the front wall, place the hands softly on the bar to balance the body.
Try to stay as tall as possible until the end of the movement phase.
During the Stretch phase, the upright body is close to the bar.
Both knees are at the same line.
The back knee is slightly flexed, and the back ankle is fully flexed.
Hands are placed softly on the bar.
Continue the exhalation and keep the body upright and as tall as possible.
Pause for about 1 second.
For the return phase push sightly on the bar, continue the exhalation and initiate the return movement back to the starting position.
On the way back, the bulk of the body weight is placed on the back leg.
Return harmoniously to the starting position while staying tall and without losing balance.
Time both feet and both arms to finish their movements together.
When back at the starting position, assume the upright standing posture and inhale for up to a second.
Gear the body for the next repetition with the other leg.