Say it: “quack”
Stand with your feet slightly apart, no wider than hip width. With your heels planted firmly on the ground, lift the toes and ball of one foot up and down, alternately lifting and lowering.
Focus first on lowering your foot and slapping the ground, as if splashing water in a puddle. Next, focus on lifting your foot, as if pulling sticky gum off the ground.
Play with both of these energy dynamics.
When practicing Duck Walk, focus on engaging the ankle joints and feet to avoid pushing the pelvis and knees forward or backward. Sense the muscles stretching on the back of your shinbones, lengthening along bones, and strengthening on the front of the shinbones, hugging and squeezing the bones.
Play with foot directions (toes in-out-parallel) to improve hip joint mobility. Use your core and upper extremities to support a relaxed, upright spine.
Move with the intent to lift and lower with the same speed and strength!
Increases flexibility in the feet and legs
Builds strength in the foot and leg muscles
Enhances mobility, strength and stability in the ankle joint
Dance Through Life – Action Item
Flex your ankle to bring the ball of the foot off the floor and then release it back, one foot at a time. This is duck walk. Take this simple movement and play with it through this week.
Tap your foot to music, one foot and then the other, lift your toes to examine your nails, express impatience by foot tapping, splash a puddle. Play with the up and play with the down of the tap, sense the difference in the muscles of your foot and ankle and along your shins when emphasizing each direction.
Allow the rest of the body to join the dance.
Chris Freedman | Studio 206 Charlottesville, VA