Last week we talked about becoming more aware of your walk and how your walk reflects the kind of tension you hold, whether through the front, back, or sides of your body. This week let’s talk about why you might feel a sense of instability or imbalance when standing, walking, or running.

It can never be said too often that your brain organizes you as a system. If you feel off-balance or unstable, look first to the center and then outward to the periphery (feet, knees, arms). If you’ve ever had a one-sided accident or injury (a fall, a labral hip tear, sprained ankle, etc), your brain will have tightened one side of your body more than the other – from shoulders all the way to the feet.

Humans are two-sided; we twist around our center, we have two shoulders, two hips, legs, and feet. When ONE side of the body is tighter than the other, those two halves of you no longer work in coordination. Imbalance is the end result. And a sense of imbalance can snowball into a fear of falling which turns into intentionally limiting one’s movement to avoid falling.

Conversely, if you’ve ever had an injury to your foot, ankle, or knee, you may know well the sensation of limping. Our feet no longer feel strong and stable enough to hold us up, and yet they are our first connection to the ground. We need to re-educate not only tension in our feet that may be due to an accident or injury (or even tight shoes that don’t allow for foot movement), but also tension in the center that can affect the way in which we sense our feet.

Play with this video and see how renewed awareness of your feet can change the way you walk. What has let go after pandiculating and reeducating your feet?