What does a freed body feel like?


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What Does a “Freed” Body Feel Like?

We’ve talked a lot so far about the techniques of Bodywork.

Now, we need to have a look at what the dif­fer­ent areas of the body “tell us” about the per­son we’re look­ing at. Then, we’ll look at a cou­ple of exer­cis­es that you can use to get clos­er to a “freed” body.


There are several paths or approaches we can take here:

  1. Body­work — as Reich not­ed, unex­pressed emo­tions lead to mus­cu­lar tight­ness, which in turn leads to block­ages in “life ener­gy” (Reich called this ener­gy “orgone” energy.)
  2. Chi­nese Med­i­cinechi, or ener­gy, flows through merid­i­ans, or path­ways. There are “merid­i­an points” through­out the body; if the point is clear, the ener­gy flows freely. If the merid­i­an is stag­nant or blocked, the chi does not flow freely; places “down­stream” from the block­age become deficient.
  3. Chakra The­o­ry — the body is divid­ed into 7 zones, from the tip of the tail­bone to the top of the head. Excess or defi­cient ener­gy in any chakra caus­es the atten­dant zone to not func­tion optimally.
  4. Maslow — Hier­ar­chy of Needs — Maslow’s list shows devel­op­men­tal stages that par­al­lel the oth­er lists. 

We know that the chi is blocked at a particular point if moderate pressure causes pain. There is definitely a block if there is pain with no pressure.

So, if I am in pain, even if I know, for exam­ple (this actu­al­ly hap­pens to me) that my back twinges when I move a couch, why did my back twinge there? Oth­er peo­ple would have moved the couch with no prob­lem. Why am I “weak” in that area?

Here are a couple of examples:

The woman on the left is a dancer; note the pro­nounced curve.
Mid­dle image is of a neu­tral to tight small of the back.
Right, a “civil­ian, non-dancer” with a pro­nounced curve.

I worked with a bal­le­ri­na who was incred­i­bly flex­i­ble and sup­ple. She could do tricks with her body I only dream of. Yet, her per­son­al life was out of con­trol — she was not con­tent with her­self and with her relationship.

The place this showed was in the small of her back, which is (accord­ing to our the­o­ry) the inter­face between self-esteem and relationships.

The pos­ture she took (a high­ly curved small of the back) is also a result of 20 years of ballet. 


Danc­ing is all about flex­i­bil­i­ty and strength. One would think, then, if all were well, that mod­er­ate pres­sure to the top of the pelvis and to the mus­cles of the small of the back would bring a sigh of con­tent­ment, not “Ouch! Jeez, that hurts!” 

The fact that she was plagued with blad­der infec­tions and a bloat­ed tum­my was also indica­tive of self-esteem and rela­tion­ship issues (see below, the Bel­ly Zone.) Thus, we see that where we hurt can often be indica­tive of what’s up in the broad­er scope of our lives.

In my own case, if I go off into my head too often, my feet and legs will ache. If I am uncom­fort­able in a rela­tion­ship, the small of my back acts up. If I am unwill­ing to drop some­thing, if I need to “chew” on it, I’ll feel that in my throat, neck and shoul­ders, and occa­sion­al­ly in my jaw (I talk eas­i­ly and let out noise a lot, so my jaw mus­cles don’t hold much.)

As I said in the Intro­duc­tion, as soon as we go into self-doubt, self-crit­i­cism or start hav­ing rela­tion­ship dif­fi­cul­ties… as soon as we block our­selves from liv­ing our voca­tion… there will be an imme­di­ate reac­tion in the mus­cles of the body. If we do not deal with the issue, we will begin to man­i­fest oth­er symp­toms: colds, infec­tions, diges­tive issues. 

From there, we move to actu­al­ly dam­ag­ing inter­nal organs.

I can usu­al­ly look at some­one and see the blocks. With the bal­le­ri­na, I looked and saw what I described, above. I asked her to walk to a door and back up to it (see the door exer­cise) and straight­en her back so that the small of her back almost touched.

She was inca­pable of mov­ing the small of her back to neu­tral. When I com­ment­ed on what I saw, she got quite indig­nant, and grabbed her left foot and tucked it behind her left ear, then went “en point.” “What are you talk­ing about? See? I’m fine!”

Until I start­ed doing Body­work, and pressed her pelvic points, the small of her back and her abdomen. She was, in a flash, in tears, cry­ing about how “fat” she was, and how “bad” her rela­tion­ship with her boyfriend — their deep­en­ing inti­ma­cy — scared her.

All of these are pelvis / small of the back issues.

Three months lat­er, with a lot of work on those regions of her body PLUS rela­tion­ship coun­selling and self-esteem work, her body pain was vir­tu­al­ly gone. She could touch the wall with the small of her back when she chose to. Her process had begun to turn.

Mon­i­tor your body. If there is pain or inter­nal dis­tress, some­thing is up, even if you can bend like a pret­zel. If the same areas keep “break­ing down,” lis­ten to the voice of your body. It is, after all, the only one you have!


Now, let’s look at the Zones

We’ll discuss what each zone can tell us, using the above perspectives

Zone 1 — Root Chakra

The first zone includes the legs, the low­er butt, the sci­at­ic dim­ples and the root chakra itself, locat­ed at the tip of the tailbone.

  • Myss: Sta­bil­i­ty, ground­ing, phys­i­cal health, pros­per­i­ty, trust. » Self-preservation

    Maslow: Bio­log­i­cal, phys­i­o­log­i­cal, and Safe­ty needs. » Basic Life Needs

    Allen: See my arti­cle: Chakra 1


Zone 2 — Bel­ly Chakra

The sec­ond zone includes, the low­er bel­ly, gen­i­tals, and upper butt, up to the top of the pelvis (draw a line around the body at the navel lev­el.) The 2nd chakra is locat­ed 2 inch­es below the navel, and 2 inch­es in.)

  • Myss: Flu­id­i­ty, plea­sure, healthy sex­u­al­i­ty, feel­ing. » Self-gratification

    Maslow: fam­i­ly, affec­tion and sex­u­al­i­ty. Rela­tion­ships, work group, etc. » Belong­ing — Love Needs

    Reich: Block­ages in the pelvis involve the whole region. “In most cas­es, the armor of the pelvis com­pris­es almost all the mus­cles of the pelvis. The whole pelvis is retract­ed. The abdom­i­nal mus­cle above the sym­ph­ysis is painful. The same holds true for the adduc­tors of the thigh, those on the sur­face as well as those which lie deep­er… The pelvis is “dead” and expressionless.”

    Allen: See my arti­cle: Chakra 2


Zone 3 — Solar Plexus Chakra

The third zone includes the bel­ly from the navel up, up to the ribs… and the small of the back up to the ribs. The 3rd chakra is locat­ed at the solar plexus, just below the zyphoid.

  • Myss: Vital­i­ty, spon­tane­ity, strength of will, pur­pose, self-esteem. » Self-definition

    Maslow: Achieve­ment, sta­tus respon­si­bil­i­ty, rep­u­ta­tion. » Rep­u­ta­tion needs

    Reich: The diaphrag­mat­ic zone is seen as the last defense for the upward move­ment of ener­gy. The tight­ened mus­cles force the ener­gy back down.

    Allen: See my arti­cle: Chakra 3


Zone 4 — Heart Chakra

The fourth zone includes the area from the bot­tom ribs to the bot­tom of the col­lar bone (clav­i­cle.) On the back, bot­tom ribs through the top of the shoul­der blade. The 4th chakra is at the heart, in the cen­tre of the chest.

  • Myss: Bal­ance, com­pas­sion, accep­tance, whole rela­tion­ships. » Self-acceptance

    Maslow: self-knowl­edge, mean­ing, self-aware­ness. » Pur­pose needs

    Reich: “All the inter­costal mus­cles, the large chest mus­cles (pec­toral), the shoul­der mus­cles (del­toid), and the mus­cle group on and between the shoul­der blades are involved in the armor­ing of the chest. The atti­tude of being “self-con­tained” or “self-con­trolled,” of “stick­ing to one­self,” “being reserved,” are the major man­i­fes­ta­tions of the chest armor. Shoul­ders which are pulled back express pre­cise­ly what they mean — “hold­ing back.”

    Allen: See my arti­cle: Chakra 4


Zone 5 — Throat Chakra

The fifth zone con­sists of the throat, jaw, and shoul­der mus­cles, as well as the occip­i­tal indents, and the “voice point” in the indent just above the clavicle.

  • Myss: Clear com­mu­ni­ca­tion, cre­ativ­i­ty, res­o­nance. » Self-expression

    Maslow: beau­ty, bal­ance, form. Expres­sion of true self. »>Aes­thet­ic needs

    Reich: “The armor of the third seg­ment com­pris­es essen­tial­ly the deep mus­cu­la­ture of the neck, the platys­ma, and the ster­n­oclei­do­mas­toid mus­cles. Let one but imi­tate the move­ment expres­sive of the atti­tude of anger or cry­ing and one will have no dif­fi­cul­ty in com­pre­hend­ing the emo­tion­al func­tion of the neck armor… From the move­ments of the Adam’s apple, it is pos­si­ble to tell when a patien­t’s anger affect or impulse to cry is uncon­scious­ly and lit­er­al­ly “swal­lowed.”

    Allen: See my arti­cle: Chakra 5


Zone 6 — 3rd Eye Chakra

The sixth zone con­sists of the nose, eyes, and brow, as well as the back of the head.

  • Myss: Psy­chic per­cep­tion, accu­rate inter­pre­ta­tion, imag­i­na­tion, clear see­ing. » Self-reflection

    Maslow: per­son­al growth, self ful­fil­ment. » Self-actualization

    Reich: “In the sphere of the ocu­lar armor seg­ment, we find a con­trac­tion and immo­bi­liza­tion of all or almost all the mus­cles of the eye­balls, the eye­lids, the fore­head, the lachry­mal gland, etc. Rigid fore­head and eye­lids, expres­sion­less eyes or bulging eye­balls, mask-like expres­sion, and immo­bil­i­ty on both sides of the nose are the essen­tial char­ac­ter­is­tics of this armor ring.” 

    Allen: See my arti­cle: Chakra 6


Zone 7 — Crown Chakra

The sev­enth zone con­sists of the top of the head. 

  • Myss: Wis­dom, knowl­edge, con­scious­ness. »>Self-knowl­edge

    Maslow: Help­ing oth­ers to self-actu­al­ize »>Tran­scen­dence

    Allen: See my arti­cle: Chakra 7


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