Those of you familiar with British town centres during winter will be familiar with the gangs of under-dressed young people who roam them at the weekends. The sad thing is that often the poor boys and girls look very uncomfortable with the goose-flesh, red noses and frozen hunched shoulders. What a relief not be young and beautiful (and subject to its attendant pressures) anymore!
Does tightening and hunching effect blood flow and warmth? I haven’t done the research to be able to say yes or no with authority. Once, however, during a workshop in a rather cold venue a participant asked for the window to be opened as it was “so terribly warm”. The other participants looked alarmed. The person making the request was bundled up in several thick layers – a bit like the Michelin man ( for those of you who remember him!)
“You could take a layer off.” I tentatively suggested.
“Ah!” she said. I swear you could see the light-bulb going on inside her head. Cooler and more flexible. Mentally and physically.
One could easily visualise an equal and opposite temperature and clothing scenario.
Try questioning your automatic responses to temperature. How warm or cool is it really? Hunching certainly seems to make you colder. How about applying your Alexander Technique directions – does that warm you up a bit? Certain Tibetan monks are, after all, reputed to be able to thaw icy blankets thrown over their naked body during meditation.
I know it’s possible the other way around. Sometimes when I get stressed I get overheated and my skin flushes. The Alexander Technique has been a great tool to cool down mentally, emotionally and physically.
And remember to wear plenty of layers. Or as Billy Connolly might put it “There’s no such thing as bad weather – just the wrong clothes!”
PS have a look at Noel Kingsley’s (another Alexander Technique teacher) blog for more about Hunching against the cold
PPS I haven’t forgotten about the Alexander Technique photo album – I’ll put it up soon.