"Coming to standing with ease requires building a strong foundation - get your weight over your feet first, then stand up." -SH

Lifting Boxes: As you bend down to pick up or lift, let your buttocks stick out behind. Don’t tuck your tail. If necessary, to learn this grab your buttocks and pull them back and out as you bend your knees. Maintain your lumbar arch as you bend down. We were all taught by parents and teachers to never do this. Long, flowing, draped clothing – as in ancient Rome, Greece, India or China – would make this not an issue. One client came to me with back pain after moving and lifting dozens of boxes. I taught her this. Some time later, she told me  – No more back pain! I moved again, and used your way of lifting, and it was all so easy. It’s your choice – minimize back pain by letting your buttock stick out behind when lifting, creating a helpful lumbar curve, or be socially correct and keep your pelvis tucked under (I consider this the most useful, important tip in this book). Most people know enough to use their knees to lift not their backs but don’t realize they’ve been tucking their tail under, most of their life, and that won’t work with heavy lifting.


Getting In and Out of a Car Seat: Swivel the hips first, then swing the both legs. Move both legs together while letting the pelvis help you, in other words.


Turning While You Stand or Walk: Falls often happen when we are distracted during turning. Practice many ways of turning. Shuffle. Cross one foot over. Stay like that and turn your and get comfortable like that. Hold on to something if needed.

On your toes, on your heels, on outside edges, on inside edges, toes pointed in, toes pointed out. Combinations of these – one foot on the heel, the other foot on the toe, etc. Practice each of these until you can be comfortable and look around.

Handling Distractions in Standing and Walking: 

Feel your feet on the ground. Program that as your first response.

Feel your feet stable on the ground while you twist and turn your head and shoulders and look in all possible directions. Practice this now, don’t assume you will have it when you really need it. Be like a marine aboard ship – drill, drill, drill.

Little Tricks to Keep Polishing Your Balance Skills:

Hold onto a surface, ankle rotation

Hold onto a surface and bend standing knee.

Hold onto a surface and close your eyes and sway the body. Feel your feet.

Walk with variations of feet position.

Close your eyes remember the room.

Pick up pencil with your toes on floor,

Foot massage, foot rubs – anytime, anywhere, the more the better.

When you wake up write your name with your big toes. Or write a poem, a prayer, but move your bit toes from your ankles. 


Getting Up Off the Floor Stepwise:  If you’re elderly and have trouble getting up off the floor, do this:

·      Lying on your back, bend your knees.

·      Roll knees to one side and turn on your side.

·      Push with hands and elbows to somehow come to sitting.

Stand on your knees, bringing one foot to standing. Hold on to furniture to come fully erect.


Getting Up Out of A Chair: There is an easy way to do this – and older folks who don’t know this will struggle needlessly getting up out of a chair. To go straight up out of a chair is inefficient and takes great muscular strength. It’s best to learn this when we are younger, and build the habit. It’s simply common sense:

  • Slide to the front of the chair.
  • Slide your torso forward (Figure 12-2) while turning a little to one side, until you come off the edge of the chair - sink down slightly as you glide your body weight over your feet.
  • Now stand up.

A more difficult version, not recommended unless you’re a little athletic, involves bending at the hip joints:

  • Look down as you rock your torso forward and down (Figure 12-3)
  • Use the accumulated momentum of doing that to go up. A little twist or spiral as you come up helps.


You would not dream of building a building without a foundation first; likewise coming to standing with ease requires building a strong foundation - get your weight over your feet first, then stand up.  If you remember only that, you be able to figure out what to do.

© Copyright 2015 Steve Hamlin