A MOVEMENT MOMENT #12: The Five Points of Alignment or SUSA*

| August 19, 2010 | 3 Comments

*SUSA = Stand, Up, Straight, Already!

**Hey! When I was doing research for this article, my last article popped up on my search engine. On the first page. You know, with the important stuff! There will be no living with me now  **

Hey everyone! And how is band camp treating you all?

[is now perhaps NOT the time to mention I no longer teach field full time? Bah-hahaha… yup, no more parking lots and spray paint for this girl]

A-hem. No, really, my thoughts are with you all.  However, in the interest of full disclosure, whilst y’all were dotting and 8 to 5-ing, I was [gulp] CAMPING.  In the woods. In a tent. Sleeping on the ground [okay, fine there was an air mattress] Not a Hilton in sight, boys and girls.  It’s not all glamour and heels and bon-bons here in the Movement Chicks’s world. Just sayin’.

Pardon? Oh, you’d prefer I talk about marching? Oh, alright.

Now. Where were we?  Ahh, yes, the Five Points of Alignment.  For this inspiration, I must thank Frank Troyka, from whom I first learned of this concept.  And, yes, then I had to mess with it and make it my own. You should see me with Play Doh Recipes. Nothing is sacred.

And again, I digress.

So, here is the thing.

When discussing proper postural technique [yes, we were, several days paragraphs ago, hush] it is important to be a nag consistent.  We do not live in a world where posture is continually drilled into us, as it was “back in the day.” Try this – go into “attention” position.  Are you there? Good. Now how long can you hold it before your lower back and abdominals start to get irritable with you? True, if you are diligent with your Pilates, crunches, etc. you will have some core strength, but let’s face it, we are a society of slouches.  My point is, your students will need to be CONSTANTLY reminded. Trust me on this. When I was hollering at encouraging my girls from the bleachers, my daughter, who, God bless her, had been at every rehearsal from in utero to in pack-n-play to in junior staff; was saying , “Pull Up, Pull Up, Shoulders Back, Chins Up..”

[This was, by the way, immediately after she said, “Mama, stop hollering ‘]  My girls LOVE her.

Sigh. Can you tell school starts soon? Goodness I am a rambling mess of verbiage today. Pressing on ~ The Five Blasted points of Alignments, already, Movement Chick!

OK. Here goes.

The ankle; hinge of the knee; the hip, the shoulder and the bone behind the ear must be vertically aligned.

I suppose now you want to know why, don’t you all? Pesky, Lovely, Wonderful readers.  Stand up, try it.  See what happens to your collarbone? Magic, isn’t it? [yes, I’m getting looks too, settle down]

I think all performers “get “the ankle, knee and hip – that is somewhat logical.  Add in the shoulder, and yes, we are still making sense. It‘s the bone behind the ear which makes it sing.   Move your chin up – keep the bone behind the ear in line with the shoulder.  Do you LOVE how your neck is open and gloriously swan like?

I know!  

Now, try chin down with that bone still aligned.  Can’t do it, can ya?  [nods approvingly]  Bingo, the problem of hunching the shoulders and scuttling around the field has a solution.

Yup. This whole article for that one gem.  You’re welcome. [modest grin]

Now, go and find your spray paint!  ~ Kisses, TMC

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Category: Instruction, Movement

About the Author (Author Profile)

Cheryl Myers (aka “The (self-proclaimed) Movement Chick”) is a movement instructor, adjudicator and would-be rockette, living in the Fingerlakes area of New York State. Primary affiliations include the New York Federation of Contest Judges, and the Atlantic Indoor Association. She has most recently worked with Trumansburg High School, and is continually blessed by the opportunity to consult and adjudicate for circuits around the country. In addition to her pageantry career, Ms. Myers works in the accounting and insurance fields, and yes, is great fun at parties, thankyouverymuch. Her primary job, and that which she is most proud of, is raising her two beautiful children, a future dancer and drummer.

Comments (3)

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  1. I love your writing style, Cheryl! And the content ain’t bad either!

  2. Aww, thanks John!! You kinda made my morning just now xoxox

    Hugs, TMC

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