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Feet not happy

Anonymous (not verified)
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Feet not happy
Dear Esther,

I've been using your fantastic method for about nine weeks now.  My body feels great, I love hip-hinging, glide walking, sitting and lying in the new way... but my feet aren't happy.  I've had this similar pain prior to starting your method, then it went away, now it's back.  The ball of my foot (where I have a bunion) will ache at times, and often the soles of the feet ache as if I have stood all day, but I have not.

Shoes are usually New Balance (the kind with stability control) with custom orthotics, or Naot sandals for short periods of time, or the Chaco zx/2 sandals for short periods of time, or Haflinger clogs.  I rarely go barefoot.

I have struggled with Tall Standing.  I externally rotate my legs, kidney bean feet, make feet level, about 60-70% weight on heels, inner corset, shoulder rolls, head up... and I feel unsteady and not comfortable.

I wondered if you had any ideas or tips?

Thank you so much for reading and answering the questions that your readers post.

Lemontree
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09/10/2008 - 8:36pm
Try more weight on your heels - more like 80%. Especially if you have bunions, but even otherwise, 30-40% on the forefoot is too much. Of the steps in the book, tallstanding is often the one that feels the most awkward. When I position people standing, they often feel very strange (though they don't look strange, even to themselves when they look in the mirror). You may want to upload a video clip of yourself going to the steps - I would be happy to comment on your technique.

Another possibility that comes to mind is that you may be going for ideal too quickly. Be sure you aren't cramping up your feet trying to make an ideal shape happen. Most of the measures in the book involve some small effort getting to a better position, but then you let go. Don't hold on to any tension. Settle for less than ideal for the present and continue to work towards the ideal slowly. All the measures reinforce each other, so you will spiral in the right direction over time.

Also, since you are starting out with some problems in your feet (bunions), it may be a good idea to get some complementary work done on your feet - acupuncture, massage and chiropractic can be helpful.
Anonymous (not verified)
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Dear Esther,

Thanks for your ideas.  Yes, I have noticed that things in my body are getting better over time.  I never would have believed some of the changes (strong inner corset, using different muscles to walk, etc.)  so I think I must be patient with my body. 

Once the legs are externally rotated, should that be held?  If I don't hold it, my legs go back to normal.
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In this approach almost nothing is held in a sustained way, including the external rotation of the legs. If they go back to your habitual arrangement, work on strengthening the muscles that will old the legs well. But don't just tense the muscles. The notable exception to this rule is that it is worthwhile engaging the "rib anchor" muscles (mainly the internal oblique abs) to prevent swaying the low back.
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