Movement Specialist, Author, and Creator of Fit Sit®
Free your spine. Free your life.
Online and in person classes, courses and workshops with Stewart Hamblin
How our spine moves matters. A strong and flexible spine can make all the difference between a full and independent life into our silver years or decades of increasing misery.
Gravity can be our friend or our enemy.
'Its not just about having bigger muscles'
Being able to move well isn't just about having bigger muscles. If it did mean that, bodybuilders would move like ballet dancers. Most don't, and one of the biggest and, in my opinion, tragic mistakes that many people make is that they are sold the idea of thinking that doing a lot of repetitive but well-intentioned exercises in itself is going to help them improve their ability to walk well, get up and down off the floor easily, play with their grandkids, avoid a hip/knee replacement or any number of things that make our lives meaningful and not just bearable.
'The ability to move well enables us to age well'
Movement isn't just medicine, the kind that enables us to stay healthy and independent as we age but can also be a source of pleasure and joy. Think of the pleasure that comes from playing sports, walking, dancing and playing with the grandkids.
So many people with the best of intentions sign up for an expensive gym membership and end up giving up after a few weeks or months because it hasn't produced the results they wanted or even worse those exercises have left them with injury, pain, and in some cases have actually made their movement worse leaving them even more vulnerable to wear and tear and falls.
'We can all improve our movement provided we know how.'
The good news is that we all have the ability to change and improve our movement provided we know how. The 'secret' is not just to move but to think about how you are able to organize your movement so that you move from your centre (the axis of your spine) in such a way that every movement you make is aligned with gravity so that your skeleton not just your muscles support you.
Think about driving a car. You not only have to pay attention to what is happening on the road outside the car but you also have to pay some attention to what you are doing in the car with the gears and brakes in order to be able to arrive safely at your destination.
'COVID has meant that during the lockdown people have spent hours chained to their computers or screens'.
Sadly, and as crazy as it sounds, many, many people have 'forgotten' what good movement looks like and more importantly feels like. It might be that COVID has meant that during the lockdown they have spent hours chained to their computers or screens or unable to access their normal activities or therapies. Their spines have become stiff and their posture has deteriorated. As the poor habits take over, these become the new norm and they lack the awareness of how they are currently moving and how they might change it for the better. Take for example a person who has had a recent hip or knee replacement. For years they have been living with pain. They then get a new joint and even though the surgery is counted as a success they are still walking around with a waddle almost as if they have not had the surgery in the first place and are therefore all too often still in debilitating pain because of the compensatory gait that they developed has not been addressed and they have not integrated the new joint into their movement. They don't know how and haven't been taught how. They have simply been given exercises.
'It was only when I discovered the Feldenkrais Method® that my own movement actually began to look more human, younger again'.
I personally have experience of this. An injury that I sustained in my 30s left me walking around at times like a 90 year-old-man with a stick. I spent years after a 'successful' operation exercising, etc trying to restore my movement but it was only when I discovered the Feldenkrais Method® that my own movement actually began to look more human, younger again. Because the Feldenkrais Method asks you to think about your movement habits and offers you new choices and once something feels easier there is a much higher probability that your brain, that you, will change your movement for the better. It is neuro-plasticity in action.
'All too often people put down their problems to simply getting old and think they have to put up with it'.
I used to be a lawyer but gave that up to train for 4 years to become a Feldenkrais teacher and then undertook further study to work with children with special needs. It was really from working with children with needs and understanding what 'good' movement looks like in neuro-typical children that I gained a deep understanding of what is needed to help older adults with their movement. All too often when I first meet some of my older students, they put down their problems to simply getting old and think they have to put up with it, but in my experience, their problems have very little to do with age but the way that they think or don't think about their movement and if you can show them how to think differently then you have enormous potential to change their lives for the better. The results can be life-changing and life-saving.
Classes and workshops
I now teach classes and workshops, online and in-person, to students all over the world. I specifically developed the chair-based Fit Sit® program originally for my clients who had trouble getting down on the floor to do the mat work normally associated with the Feldenkrais Method or who were recovering from or preparing for replacement surgery but following the success of my book ('The Fit Sit Revolution') I have gone on to develop lessons for office workers, stroke-affected clients and anyone who is would like to improve the way that they move. You really don't need lots of expensive equipment or clothing to change the way that you move. What most people need is knowledge. That's what I am here to share.
If you take part in a Feldenkrais lesson or Fit Sit program you can expect to learn how to change your movement for the better. I like to think of my own movement practice as money that I am putting in the bank, an investment in my future wellbeing and independence. A little often reaps rewards later on down the line. The more you learn about your movement, the more you are able to keep it and improve it, then the more you will be able to do the things you love and want to do in your senior years.
Don't just take my word for it. Read on below to discover how its impacted some of my students' lives around the world.
Better still, join me in class, book a one to one lesson for adults and children, sign up for one of the Turn Back the Clock upcoming in-person workshops, or study at home at your own pace with one of my online programs.
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Who can benefit?
To be honest just about anyone but especially:
· Those who sit a lot at home or in the office
· Stroke affected clients
· Someone looking to improve their walking and lose their waddle before and/or after hip or knee replacement surgery
· Those over 50 looking to improve their balance and walking
What are the benefits?
Based upon the Feldenkrais Method® of movement education, the lessons are easily done but transformational.
They have the potential to change your life because they will change the way that you think about your movement. Movement really is medicine.
As you feel physically empowered, so too will you feel mentally enriched.
When gravity becomes your friend and your posture and movement improve you will feel mentally more positive as you experience a sense of connection to your centre, more grounded and less stressed.
You will be able to do what you want more effortlessly and with greater ease and lead the life you want to.
See what others have been saying:
I am not the only person to say so. Here’s what just a few fans have been saying on social media from all around the world:
“Wonderful. Especially when I stand up and start walking. Thanks for sharing your teachings.”
- Ntathu on the Fit Sit Lesson: Easier Turning.
“Thanks again Stewart! My back feels much freer and looser. I'm going to dedicate some time to going through the whole Fit Sit series!”
- Dewi Hughes
“Double thumbs up. What a fantastic lesson. Many thanks Stewart!”
“Thank you! The change was unbelievable!”
“Thank you, Stewart, for another wonderful session. I felt big change in my ability to turn left and right. thanks a lot”.
- Nouran Gergues
"This battered and bruised desk jockey sends you her deepest gratitude for sharing your immense wisdom!!"