About Ortho Balance

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Philosophy

Over time modern exercise and movement regimes have evolved to selectively isolate and increase the amount of stress placed on specific joints and muscles in limited planes of motion, to create strength and size. This however is not in keeping with the way the body was originally designed to move, and places more stress on selective joints than was ever naturally intended. This modern day trend of fragmented mechanical exercises doesn’t produce flow or integration in our movements, and results in poor movement habits and postural stress being placed on the joints, leading to wear and tear, and many of the painful joint conditions usually termed as arthritis.

As babies we move very naturally and develop reflexes that help facilitate our movements. In ancient times, our environment and activities maintained and developed these reflexes and movement potentials into old age, through the activities of climbing, crawling, jumping, hunting, using our highly tuned senses and exploring our environment over many different terrains. In our modern world of postural and physical stress, sitting for long hours, one sided activities, postural bias’ and regimented strength based movement and exercise programmes, these reflexes, and how to move naturally in our environment seems to be something that has been long forgotten. And something that we need to rediscover.


A Fresh view of Human Movement

Anatomists have reduced muscles and human movement to a series of mechanical levers, working in isolation to bring about motion of a joint. They have failed to provide the full picture of the integration of the whole body and its important role in movement.

As more and more research emerges we are learning more of how limited this view of human movement actually is, and the traditional concepts of movement and exercise that are based on these views.

The study of Biotensegrity shows that the body works as one integrated unit, and that we must simply view the body as a whole. This new way of viewing human anatomy and motion is reconstructing our old beliefs of traditional anatomy, and so we must develop the ways in which we, move, exercise and treat the body.


Natural Movement Principles

Animals don’t exercise. Their movements are integrated into whole body actions that maintain their health, strength and power. This is something we need to reclaim.

Ortho Balance teaches you the principles and reflexes of natural movement efficiency, to develop spinal integration and power, and how to integrate all parts of the body to produce whole body integration through movement, so that no one part ever receives an imbalanced load, or compromises the body’s balance

A more natural way of 'stretching' through the use of the principles of 'Pandiculation' which is considered to be an 'organic way of maintaining musculoskeletal health'. Animals 'Pandiculate' to reset their postural muscles after periods of inactivity and asymmetrical conditions. This natural ability is something we seem to have lost, and has been replaced by set routines of isolated stretching exercises. We need to learn how to return to this innate and natural way of stretching, individual to everyones postural needs and tensions.

Learning the universal principles of natural and efficient movement, and how to apply them into your everyday life, offers a wide spectrum of benefits. These benefits range from the universal qualities of joint maintenance and gentle age related and sensible approaches to movement for the aged, to developing multidirectional movement efficiency and neuromuscular co-ordination, the elusive qualities and control of high level performance for athletes.

Unwinding postural torsions caused through one sided dominant activities, sports, and poor posture.

Movement efficiency for physical therapists and masseurs, to make manual tasks such as lifting patients, massage and manipulation, efficient, reducing stress on the hands and body.

As well as increasing neurological, nerve development and brain activity, essential for academic and sporting performance, concentration, and the management of movement and developmental problems such as dyslexia.

“Humans are the only creatures that need to be taught to move naturally”

Dr Masaaki Hatsumi PhD

Ortho Balance is the ongoing development of the system first presented by Dennis Bartram in 1989 in the publication ‘Active Balance’. This demonstrated the principles of Breathing, Ki (Chi) or body energy development and mind development skills.

Dennis, now 65, who after 40 years of training and research in corrective body alignment (Chiropractic and Osteopathic research), Movement Therapy, Bu-do (Japanese martial arts) and one to one tuition from his mentor Dr.Masaaki Hatsumi (PhD), has continued to develop this system over the last 25 years, and believes that natural movement principles are the key to the health and well being of our body’s, joints and spine.

“It is only now, at the age of 65, that I appreciate fully a 40 year investment in ‘movement’, and not ‘exercise’”.

Dennis Bartram