It’s All Connected!

I’m sure you’ve heard a sports trainer, yoga teacher or therapist say that before. Indeed, many areas of our body are connected in many ways. In this post I explore two of these connections, and how you can use them to feel better in your body.

Eyes and neck

More precisely, the muscles around the eyes and those at the top of the neck, who fine-tune the movements of the skull (we call this the nape of the neck). These are linked by very strong and fast neural pathways, so that your field of vision is stable even when you walk, run or jump. A consequence of this is that when one of these groups of muscles tenses up, the other tends to follow suit. Thankfully, the same is also true about their relaxation.

connected eyes and nape

When one or both of these groups is tense, we tend to get headaches (I’m sure you’re familiar with the “headache behind the eyes”). So we can use this connection to release both at the same time for a really powerful effect! To relax the eyes, imagine that you’re looking at really far objects (the moon, the horizon…). To relax the nape of the neck, either do the “glide the back of the neck” exercise from my ultimate neck self-massage guide, or lie down, and firmly massage just under the skull on the back of your head. The advantage of the latter is that you can relax your eyes at the same time with the distant object image.

Jaws and hips

This one is a bit more vague, but the jaws are obviously connected with the gut (they’re part of the same system), and tension in the jaws also seems related to tensions in the hip area, especially the pelvic floor. This can translate into lack of flexibility and stability in the hips, as many muscles there might be tricked into contracting unnecessarily, putting the complex hip system out of balance. Additionally, pelvic floor tensions are also linked with bad posture and lack of balance and stepping up and jumping power.

So if you feel like your hips are not as stable, strong and flexible as they should be, given how you train them, check your jaws for tensions and maybe your hips will have a jump in performance! To learn how to relax your jaws, head to this previous post.

Continue reading: The Ultimate Neck Self-Massage, Why You Should Have A Jaw Massage, The Ultimate Office Self-Care Guide.

Want more like this?

Check out the following blogs from massage therapists I know from around London: You might also like these more commercial and global sites:
  • MovNat on natural movement and finding health through re-learning the basics.
  • GMB presents a lot of interesting insight on movement and exercise, from a more gymnastic-y and physio-y approach.
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