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FITNESS | Egoscue method Perfecting your posture CYCLING CAN FORCE your body into a very unnatural position, which could leave you in considerable pain. Make time for this sequence of positions, based on the Egoscue method, and you could save yourself future problems O UR feature earlier this year on postural alignment therapy aroused plenty of interest in the exercises featured from our readers. Fitness guinea pig, CW’s chief reporter Keith Bingham, benefited from the assessment and exercise programme set by therapist Pamela Jones and saw considerable improvements in the back, hip and knee conditions he had been suffering. The detailed programme was, however, specifically tailored to the patient’s individual needs. Jones has now designed a generic set of 10 exercises based on the Egoscue method that just about anyone can do at home. Self-assessment Front view Standing in front of a full-length mirror, your feet should be hip width apart and pointing straight ahead, and so should your knees. Your shoulders and hips should be level (horizontal) with each other. If they are not, you may have either a torso offset or shoulder or hip elevation, or all of these things. You should be able to draw a plumbline down through the centre of your body — everything should look symmetrical either side of the plumbline. If you can see one shoulder or one hip coming forward, this is an indication of a rotation in the body. WRONG RIGHT In the side view (sagittal plane), you should be able to draw a plumbline up from just in front of your ankle bone up through the centre of the knee, the hip, the shoulder and then the ear — get a willing helper for this. Another indication of sagittal plane alignment is to stand flat against a wall — try to use one without skirting boards so that the heels are flat against the surface. Your heels, hips, shoulders and head should be able to sit back against the wall. Standing straight with your feet hip-width apart and pointing straight ahead, close your eyes and focus on the sole of your left foot. Try to feel where the weight distribution is, and then do the same for the right foot. Then focus on both feet and feel for unbalanced distribution. SEPTEMBER 11, 2008 This set of exercises must be done in the order listed — they progress through specific areas of the body — and you should return to the ‘neutral’ position between every exercise. The whole set should take 30-40 minutes, so if you are pressed for time, reduce the repetitions, rather than missing out exercises. Side view Weight distribution 38 The exercises WRONG RIGHT

Egoscue Posture for Cycling Enthusiasts

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