“I’m Thinking Up & Walking Forwards”

“I’m thinking up and walking forwards”

Next time you go upstairs or walk up an incline, or a hill…. try lightly thinking this phrase.

Information and knowledge are useful.  Putting these into action is even more useful.  Committing to doing this action one, three, or ten times a day – then you’ll really start to notice the benefits.

As many of you know, one of Alexander’s major discoveries about us mammals is that the relationship between the head and spine govern the coordination of the rest of us.  Yes – all of us!  Physical, mental, emotional, spiritual – we don’t separate – its all one thing – our Self.


    a steep ginnel in Ranmoor, S11     

“I’m thinking up and walking forwards”

Every time I leave my house, I meet a hill.  I live on a hill, so either I need to walk up it, or down it to travel.  When I go on my daily walk – I meet many slopes, inclines and hills of varying degrees.

For me, this is fun and quite easy. 

When I go for a walk with my son in the local park, we cross the stream, the path and the cycle track and head straight up the hill opposite the duck pond.  It is quite steep, although the hill is getting used to us, as it’s our favourite track and is easier with repetition.  When we get to the top, we play throw and catch with a tennis ball.  And of course, sometimes it doesn’t get thrown straight or caught at all.  I’m finding this a fun way to stay moving in many different directions, up / down, here / there, under / over, and down / up.

With nearly 2 decades of experience of working with people and their daily movement challenges and habits, I recognise that walking up hills can be tricky for some people.  I also know people can find it unnerving going downhill or stepping off a curb.  And others find stairs a big challenge.  

Some people even slip whilst travelling on the stairs – mostly going down, whilst carrying stuff and not really being present and paying attention to the art of using the stair they are on.  One week I had three clients who all slipped on stairs, whilst carrying things.  Each received a bruise or two, none were seriously hurt.

Pay extra attention to your whole self when you are on the stairs.  Look where you are going, have a hand on the handrail for reassurance and in cases of emergency, you have something to help catch and slow your fall.

Out in the parks and on our beloved hills though, when you meet an uphill – please carry on as normal.  You don’t need to change your gait or start pushing with your legs.  Just think up and walk forwards.  The hill can look after itself.  Please try this and let me know how you get on?

“I’m thinking up and walking forwards”

When you are going downhill – keep looking ahead and glance down, stay tall and let your feet take the shape of the hill, and walk forwards. 

If it is super steep, then it can be useful to go slalom style and zig-zag your way down.  This is a great way to confuse the hill, it doesn’t think it is so steep if you do this.

When using the stairs, let yourself use the handrail very lightly.  Most people have no need to pull themselves up with their arms or lean on it on the way down.  If the treads feel narrow as you go down – face the handrail and go sideways.

Once after running a 10 km race, my legs were somewhat stiff the next day, and after any big exercursion or injury – walking down the stairs backwards is the easiest (or only) way.

When I used to walk in the hills and mountains regularly, the first hill of the day would often seem the hardest, until my muscles had warmed up.  No need to lean into the hill, or push with our legs – walking is a whole-body movement that we do ‘on’ our legs, rather than ‘with’ them.


I’d love to hear your reaction to these ideas and your experiences.  Please write to me or give me a call.

Please call Lucy on  07949 522 655

If you’d like some feedback and have any particular questions on this topic, why not book a session and we can work together in real-time.

Written by Lucy Ascham, Body & Soul Energy Expert

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