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Learning The Steps Of Walking Correctly

11:19 AM, Jun 30, 2010   |    comments
Back Cove, Portland
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  • Occupational Therapist Craig Williamson says when we're babies, we walk the right way. But he says we get lazy as we get older, and pick up some really bad habits. But Williamson says you can break those habits, by making some little changes to your walking technique. Step one, according to Williamson, is to stop walking duck-toed. "If someone tends to walk with their feet turned out, they're going to be putting a lot of extra weight on the arch of their foot. Okay? So, if you turn your feet so they are parallel to each other, it might feel like you're walking more on the outside of your foot than usual, but that's actually the way it's set up to be," said Williamson. Williamson says step two is to relax your ankles. He says that way you won't drive your heels down into the pavement. He also says this should take pressure off your back, by naturally pushing your weight more forward. Step three, according to Williamson, is to relax your hips. He says by allowing them to sway a little, you can more properly transfer your weight from leg to leg. Step four is allowing your chest to rotate. "If you observe most people walking, there's no movement of the chest. It's just the arms that are moving," said Williamson. "What I'm suggesting is that if you use your abdominal muscles that go diagonally from your ribs to the opposite side of your pelvis, and they actually rotate the body a little bit." The fifth and final step is to keep your head up. While Williamson admits it's hard to retrain the way you're used to moving, he says with a little practice, it can become second nature. Williamson says he developed his techniques for walking after observing and helping many patients over the years. If you're interested in learning more about his theories, he's written a book called "Muscular Retraining for Pain-Free Living." It will be on store shelves in August. To visit Williamson's publisher's website, click on the related link.

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