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Where is your right foot?

No doubt you will take your attention to the bottom of your right leg to the part of you with toes, a heel and a sole.

If I asked a group of 100 people where their right feet were, I would be surprised not to get a little variation in their answers.

Many would agree that the foot stops at the ankle but many would have slightly different thoughts on exactly where their ankles are.

This minor difference in anatomical lingo rapidly blows up in proportions when we start to look at bodies in action.

Let's say I ask you to kick with your right foot. How would you do that?

Can you kick only with your right foot?

Surely the ankle has some involvement? And the lower leg? And the upper leg?

Your full body will play a part in kicking with your right foot. Even if you try to inhibit certain parts, they will still play a part.

In action, you can't just have a right foot. It's all of you.

When you kick with your right foot, your left foot is just as involved but in a different way. It supports lots of your bodyweight in a very specific manner. A minor change in your use of it would produce some change in the quality of your kick.

You kick with everything.

You punch with everything.

Your run with everything.

You move with everything.

For simplicity's sake, we speak about one part at a time because it's trickier to speak about things simultaneously when words only come out one by one.

The way we speak has dramatically influenced our thinking with regards to injury and performance.

When we talk about improving body parts to be more comfortable or to improve performance, we're often not doing ourselves to many favours.

What I'm about to propose sounds too basic to be true but hear me out.

If you're in pain or if you want to make something better you can improve yourself, at least a little, by beginning to recognise yourself as a full person rather than little parts.

If turning to look behind you is painful in your neck, how do you use all of you to do it?

If your punching is weak, how are you using all of you - not just your arm and shoulder - to do it? Are you contributing with the opposite arm and same side leg?

You're so much more than a bunch of separate limbs. Think like it. Act like it.

Arton "More than a leg to stand on" Baleci