Tutorial #4064

Leg Alignment

15 min - Tutorial
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You will learn how you can help your clients who have issues with leg alignment in this quick tutorial by Lesley Powell. She looks at it from a bone rhythm perspective as well as a structural perspective so you can learn where there is tightness in the legs. She also shows how testing a single-leg balance will teach you about your client's strategies, weaknesses, and strengths.
What You'll Need: Cadillac

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May 15, 2020
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In this tutorial, we're going to talk about leg alignment. Um, and there's, uh, different, uh, kinds of leg alignment that are not ideal. And some of it we're going to look at, uh, w w w from a bone rhythm place. And then we're gonna look at what structures are tight, what structures are weak, and what can you start to help your, that specific client with those issues. So if we look at Val valgus, so come to standing and she's gonna go knock kneed, that's, she's doing a great job. And so in what happens if we think about it, those, those knees are going in.

It has a little bit a similarity to what we're also going to talk about. Hyperextension and then this is going out and then her foot is, uh, pronating in. So remember when we did the, um, uh, bone rhythms, so she's going to put her hands on her greater trow cantors and for the, the valgus, we're going to have to work a lot more on rotation and the outer hip because the tightness of the adductors are pulling her this way. And the weakness is on here. Sometimes getting them aware of where their bones are is a great place. So when she please play, she's gonna feel the femur head rotate outward for her structure.

She's going to straighten her legs and keep some of that rotation. That's it. There you go. She's gonna play and she's gonna keep that rotation and she's going to keep that rotation. And that was great. That was great. We also talked about, so in the foot she, she tends to have the weight on the outside inside. So one getting to the rotation of up here helped her feet.

We also might think a point, the tibia, tibialis posterior trying to lift those arches up. There we go. There you go. So you can see those structures can start bringing in different awareness. Now I want Noel to line her back. Head that away. I'm sorry. Lie in your belly. Sorry.

And one thing I always kind of look at is what is happening in the hip. So this is a great test. She's has great internal rotation and it's not as, uh, it's a little diminished. And I have a client, she's very knocked need. She has a little bit of scoliosis and I can barely move bone. I mean it's there. She's doing a lot of gripping. So that's going to tell me, Hm, I need to work and help her train on that side.

Same thing here she has so you can see how much internal rotation she has. Her external rotation is, is the little diminish. Her range is pretty good. Um, like with my client, this is about all I can move her. So, um, so I want a Noel to lie on horror back and I'm going to do a different kind of, you know, usually if I'm a spring loaded, same leg, same foot, it's going to be more hamstring adductor feeling. So if I go to the opposite, it's going to get a little bit of waking up of that lateral hamstring. So press out and then with her, I'm going to ask her to rotate.

Now my particular client, she does, every time she moves she wants to go internal rotation. So sometimes I might go internally rotate externally rotate, come up hold. So internal rotation, internal rotation, external rotation, and keep the external rotation as you go down. Now she wants to push from that front hip again and I'm going to get her to go right through here. So here's the image. I'm, I'm uh, I live in New York. I don't have a car, but I always talk about cars. So when you go down, you're accelerating, you're going 40 miles an hour, you don't want to break, but you want to decelerate, you take the foot a little off the gas pedal. So we want to teach our clients to stay effortful, which this would be concentric contraction. And then she goes up.

It's Essentra. What happens with a lot of clients and she's doing it, is they let go and we want to teach. She and she wants to also push from her knee. So I'm really trying to get her way up in that hip. There we go. And then she's gonna come back and throw them. We're going to have her go out and she's going to go out.

She has a range. She can go pretty low, but I'm making her stay in that lateral component of her leg. And then she's going to bring the whole thing back and there we go. And she's going to go outward. There we go. Great. And then she's going to bring the whole thing back and through and there we go. So the IB will looking a lot about that to start training that foundation to help the person. I'm always kind of looking, uh, stand up a second, Noel.

So pretend you're not clean. She has a little bit, it's not. So I want you to stand on a leg. Yes. Just stand on the leg. And so she's a good mover. I'm going to imitate my client that has a lot her tendencies to let that whole hip go. She goes more into internal rotation. So I'm constantly going to work on that ability to keep the rotation and then learning some grounding through the foot.

So you're gonna look at what pops out at your client when they sent on leg. And that's kind of what I'm always thinking, Oh, I watch him stand on their leg. Then my lesson plan comes from there to try to develop the strength and the flexibility for that. And that, for instance, with that client, you know, no, Noel didn't have that problem. She had a pretty good range of motion. My client is really, uh, has a lot of problems with mobility, uh, in that hip socket. Now I will be doing in the reformer class some PNF patterns, which are also really great for rotation. I had one client, if I stretched her piriformis, she would get in trouble.

But if I did it through a Pilates exercise with spring load and which works on flexibility and range and strength at the same time, it was really terrific. Now we're going to look at a valgum legs. And that's when, um, it's kind of, you always think when you're riding a horse and the guys are walking like that. So she's going to have, I mean, this is not her natural component, but so go to the outside of your feet. So you're gonna have your knee, you're gonna have bow legged. Oh, she doesn't, I'm much better at bow legging. So if we look at those structures where you just kind of think about when she was knocked need, she had the ag doctors coming in. So we would think, Oh, she's going to need more lateral component and rotation with valgum, they're probably going to need more adductor work, more quad work.

I also would look at the foot again because their strategy, they might be living there with their foot and their whole knee and hip is designing around that. Okay. So, um, I would look at similar things of, uh, again, I would go look at how much their rotation is. Um, also, uh, I have one guy who's very valgum. Again, he's a Tucker. So again, it's his structure is to go this way. We still need the post tibial lateral leg, but we're probably gonna need a little sense of inside of the leg. Okay. Now I want 'em to have you lie on your back. Uh, no lie on your side. Us facing the thing. And we're gonna do side Springs now.

I really love side Springs and we're gonna do a not, not the traditional side Springs. Okay. I'll talk you through it. So push out. So in the traditional side Springs you have your hips and flection. Okay. And I like to train my clients in trying to bring this work up to standing. So we're gonna, she's gonna bend the bottom leg, she's not gonna worry about it and I'm going to bring her leg back and that's going to be really important for her to find again, sometimes this uh, valgum, we talked about that tucking that they're working a lot through that hip joint.

So she thinks I'm pulling her back and I'm not, I'm putting my hand at her gluteal fault. So she has to do ad duction and press back at the same time. And then the same idea that I talked about is when she lets the leg go up, she decelerates the ad doctors in the hamstrings. And what's happening here is she's going into the front in the traditional plot is, and it just depends on where you put your client. You usually spring loaded from the back.

I spring load it to the front and have them back so it becomes more hamstring work and adductor work. Where if you spring load it from the back, it comes can become more so as, there's nothing wrong with that. It's just what do you want to work on? So she's going to press down on me and she's going to keep back towards me. I, you get to brush my belly with your thigh, your shin, and you're going to go back. There we go. And you're going to go forward. There we go. And then you're going to go back down. There you go. And then you're going to go up.

Then one of my favorite exercises is sidekicks, you know, and can she stay in that back of the leg? She's working her add doctors and then bring it back and through. Okay. So come back up to standing and then, you know, um, in, uh, the tutorial, we talked about the lateral leg and the posterior leg and we put a block between the thigh bones. We might do that. You could do that with your foot work. You could do it with your legs, Springs if you're doing double legs to get that whole inner lane working differently. Um, I also would look at the foot. The other issue is, uh, come to city place. A lot of times your client will be more at this place where their foot is.

So they're learning to flex their ankle and pull. So even here, she's pulling better on this side and I want her to pull. Yes, there we go. So that could also help the structure of that and getting that talus to, to uh, inhale to glide backwards. Then you have a condition called tibia torsion, and that's usually a hereditary thing and that the bone is literally going out.

So the thing that I would be looking at is, again, a lot of lateral leg, a lot of lateral calf because a lot of times with that whole tibia torsion, you see them stand in that whole thing, swings that way. What I do sometimes is I'm looking more at the, the alignment of the hip socket to the knee and I will let them maybe go to, um, a little bit of a turnout. I'm not gonna push that because that could be dangerous. Um, but you still can go through the same structures of building up foot strength, ankle strength because with the, with the, their tibial torsion, um, they have their, have some strategies to try to get around that tibia torsion, um, and working on that and you're just gonna have to look at how each client, so when we did with Noel about like flexing the, the ankle, you know, for some of them, you know, learning to flex the inside lane is going to be more important than the outside lane. So your user's going to have to look at that and not push the same alignment that I would have. Like she can be in parallel. Her, she has a very healthy, uh, well not healthy. She's born with a better leg alignment compared to tibia torsion.

So, um, so when I just want you to think within your practice how the bone rhythms can help leg, what is your client's preferences and watch him stand on one leg that's going to teach you a lot about their strategies, their weaknesses and their strengths. And then I'm building, I really kind of thinking more about building better calf strength. We don't really talk that much about that. We talk a lot about feet, which is great, but much more cast strength. And then getting that posterior lateral leg, which also is, as we've been talking about the whole time, is how it's different when you get all the, the, the bone rhythms and the muscle coordination working. We'll bring the pelvis over the legs, pelvic shift forward compared to tucking the tail under, which will create an imbalance in the muscular strength.

So I hope you will watch, um, the other tutorials to give you some cues about what you might need to build in your practice or your clients. And then we're also going to have a reformer class to show you a little bit of trying to thread it through.

Embodied Anatomy - Playlist 2: Lower Body

Comments

Lesley Powell, this was awesome. I always enjoy your tutorials. Thanks, quite helpful for me?
Quite helpful for me!!!

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