Conscious Proprioception -Awareness of the Body’s Position, Motion, Alignment & Balance.

After an in­tro­duc­tion to the anatomy of al­ign­ment and bal­ance and the 5 main mus­cles of move­ment, con­sider what you ex­pe­rience when ex­plor­ing po­si­tion and mo­tion of your body.

How much of your sense of pro­pri­o­cep­tion are you aware of?

Pro­pri­o­cep­tion:

“The abil­ity to sense stim­uli aris­ing within the body re­gard­ing po­si­tion, mo­tion, and equil­ibrium.”

The ba­sic idea:

Var­i­ous ‘sen­sors’ lo­cated through­out the body gen­er­ate in­for­ma­tion that is sent to the brain for ‘in­ter­pre­ta­tion’. Sen­sory feed­back con­cern­ing po­si­tion, mo­tion and bal­ance is pro­cessed for the sense of pro­pri­o­cep­tion. The brain uses this in­for­ma­tion to main­tain a ‘func­tional pos­ture’ - a pro­gram run­ning in the back­ground. How aware we are of the pro­pri­o­cep­tive in­for­ma­tion our body and brain have for us is an­other ques­tion.

Con­scious pro­pri­o­cep­tion.

When we can con­sciously sense/​feel/​are aware of:

  • The rel­a­tive po­si­tion of the parts of our body.

  • The mo­tion of our body.

  • Our equil­ibrium—whether we are bal­anced or not.

Know­ing the phys­iol­ogy of pro­pri­o­cep­tion is not nec­es­sary to in­crease aware­ness of this sense, so I will not go into fur­ther de­tails here al­though I feel it fair to say that the differ­ent mechanisms and var­i­ous pro­pri­o­cep­tors (‘sen­sors’) in­volved are not fully un­der­stood. In­creased aware­ness of the body’s po­si­tion­ing an bal­ance comes with fo­cus­ing on the right anatomy and work­ing from the body’s Base-Line.

Ac­cord­ing to:

Base-Line Hy­poth­e­sis of Hu­man Health and Move­ment. (part 2)

(BLH part 1)

Po­si­tion, Mo­tion, Equil­ibrium.

  • To de­scribe the po­si­tion of some­thing you need a refer­ence. → The po­si­tion of the rest of your body is rel­a­tive to your Base-Line.

  • To de­scribe a mo­tion (a change in po­si­tion) a refer­ence is also needed. → All move­ment should origi­nate from your Base-Line mus­cles.



The Body Map in Our Mind.

I be­lieve we have the in­nate knowl­edge of where our full range of nat­u­ral move­ment should take us—of what the body can do at op­ti­mal func­tion­ing.

Imag­ine a 3-D rep­re­sen­ta­tion of the body demon­strat­ing fluid move­ment through in­nu­mer­able po­si­tions within the largest pos­si­ble body bub­ble.

A mov­ing map in the mind of our full spa­tial po­ten­tial.

Pro­pri­o­cep­tive in­for­ma­tion re­ceived by the brain is ap­plied to this ‘body map in the mind’.

  • Sen­sory feed­back from the pelvic floor mus­cles should al­ign with the Base point of the map.

  • Sen­sory feed­back from the rec­tus ab­do­mi­nis mus­cles should al­ign with the Line that ori­en­tates the map.

  • All pro­pri­o­cep­tive feed­back can be ac­cu­rately placed onto the map when the body has a full range of nat­u­ral move­ment. Abil­ity al­igns with po­ten­tial.


Base-Line.

From where the rest of the body ex­tends.

Sen­sory feed­back does not al­ign with the ideal map when phys­i­cal re­stric­tions are pre­sent. The body is crum­pled. The map dis­torted. A dis­torted map sends mo­tor com­mands to the ‘wrong’ mus­cles, adding to im­bal­ance and mis­al­ign­ment.

- - --

Ac­tive en­gage­ment of the Base-Line mus­cles cre­ates a pos­i­tive feed­back loop, in­creas­ing aware­ness of the:

  • Vol­un­tary ac­ti­va­tion of mus­cles - build­ing the brain—body con­nec­tion.

  • Body map in the mind—sens­ing our po­ten­tial.

  • Pro­pri­o­cep­tive feed­back that is com­pared to the map—see­ing the sparkles.

Some­thing to be ex­pe­rienced to be truly un­der­stood. (see be­low for tech­nique tips)

My Ex­pe­riences.

I’m not the first to try and de­scribe the sen­sa­tion of pro­pri­o­cep­tion but words aren’t so easy. To sense, to feel, to vi­su­al­ise, to awaken, to see, to be aware of, to in­stinc­tively know.…

The anatomy & ex­pe­riences of chakras and qi.

Con­nect­ing with My Base-Line.

The key to un­lock­ing my sense of pro­pri­o­cep­tion was fo­cus­ing on my Base-Line mus­cles along with a good breath­ing tech­nique.

  • Ac­ti­vat­ing my pelvic floor mus­cles—a solid Base at the root of all move­ment.

  • Then sec­tion by sec­tion, my rec­tus ab­do­mi­nis mus­cles en­gag­ing and elon­gat­ing, the cen­tral Line sup­port­ing the rest of the body.

The roll-down ac­tion be­came my fun­da­men­tal move, ac­ti­vat­ing my Base-Line mus­cles—stronger and longer—with ev­ery breathe in

Feel­ing my ‘core pillar of strength’ form­ing the longest pos­si­ble arc, work­ing to­wards max­i­mal ex­ten­sion of my midline and al­ign­ment.


As my Base-Line mus­cles be­came more ac­tive and sup­port­ive I found I could roll down a lit­tle fur­ther. I be­gan to in­stinc­tively move my body, feel­ing re­leases and gain­ing a lit­tle more move­ment each time. It felt good.

Swing­ing my arms, stretch­ing and wig­gling my fingers.  Bend­ing my knees, flex­ing an­kles and toes.   Shift­ing my weight from heel to toe, side to side.   Mov­ing my mouth and jaw, rol­ling my eyes (as if I don’t get enough prac­tice!), pul­ling faces, stick­ing my tongue out.   What­ever feels nat­u­ral. The pos­si­bil­ities are end­less on the way to a full range of nat­u­ral move­ment.

At some point I be­came aware of:

A Sense of Vi­su­als.

Sparkles—splodges—lights—colours—bursts—streams.

Loci, shapes and pat­terns.

Flow­ing, flash­ing, puls­ing. Always on the move.

Slightly out of reach, un­able to be pinned down. A vi­sual ex­pe­rience.

Ac­tivity in the vi­sual cen­tre of my brain, some­thing played out on my reti­nas, or what? I don’t know what the pro­cess is, but I as­sume I’m not the only one who sees them.

The sparkles

A rep­re­sen­ta­tion of pro­pri­o­cep­tive feed­back from my body.

A men­tal image of the cur­rent po­si­tion and mo­tion of my body in colour and light.

Con­stantly mov­ing, bright and vivid in places where the pro­pri­o­cep­tive feed­back is clear and my body free to move.

It feels like there’s no feed­back from ar­eas of my body where my range of move­ment is re­stricted—blank spaces/​miss­ing in­for­ma­tion in the streaks and waves.

image text

Fo­cus­ing on my main mus­cles of move­ment in­creases the sparkles.

I have a men­tal image, a rep­re­sen­ta­tion of my anatomy—es­pe­cially the con­nec­tive tis­sue struc­tures that run through, sur­round and con­nect these mus­cles.


A Sense of Pres­ence and Po­ten­tial.

I now have a con­scious aware­ness of my body’s pres­ence in space that I pre­vi­ously lacked. I was clumsy and ac­ci­dent prone but had no idea what I was lack­ing.

I can see my ‘body map in the mind’. (see above). A periph­eral out­line of where a full range of nat­u­ral move­ment should be able to take me. A 3-D shadow of my po­ten­tial.

I can feel what my body should be ca­pa­ble of. The po­ten­tial for dy­namic al­ign­ment where all move­ment is smooth, con­trol­led and pain-free.

I used to think the hu­man ‘ma­chine’ was a poor de­sign.  But I was wrong, it was years of poor us­age that had made life so painful.

I am aware of rel­a­tive al­ign­ment of my midline anatomy and can sense the ‘tar­get line’ of the me­dian plane. Feel­ing how to move to work to­wards bal­anc­ing my body and re­gain­ing my full range of nat­u­ral move­ment.

Things I’ve Come to Believe.

Sen­sory feed­back from “con­nec­tive tis­sue” is a ma­jor con­trib­u­tor to our sense of con­scious pro­pri­o­cep­tion.

A lot of cur­rently un­ex­plained pain in the world is due to the ten­sions of phys­i­cal re­stric­tions in con­nec­tive tis­sue and the myal­gia of im­bal­ance that comes when the main mus­cles of move­ment are not ad­e­quately util­ised..

Con­nect­ing with the body’s Base-Line is the key to bet­ter health for so many these days. (bet­ter health to be ex­panded on in later posts).

I was a wreck when I started. I’m now into year three of work­ing to­wards a full range of move­ment and dy­namic al­ign­ment. Every day feel­ing and mov­ing bet­ter than ever be­fore.


BLH—Defi­ni­tion of Con­scious Pro­pri­o­cep­tion:

“The abil­ity to sense the po­si­tion of your body in space and to feel where your nat­u­ral range of move­ment should take you.”


Think about ac­ti­vat­ing your main mus­cles of move­ment and be­com­ing aware of the sen­sory in­for­ma­tion they provide. A pos­i­tive feed­back loop to de­velop your sense of ‘con­scious pro­pri­o­cep­tion’, the in­nate con­nec­tion be­tween body and mind.

Tech­nique Tips.

1. In­ward Fo­cus.

What­ever helps you re­lax and lose a lit­tle of the out­side world. Close your eyes and think of your Base-Line mus­cles at the core of all move­ment, the cen­tral pillar from where the rest of the body ex­tends.


Tech­nique: Breath­ing with your Base-Line


2. Use Your Main Mus­cles of Move­ment.

Think about us­ing your main mus­cles move­ment what­ever you are do­ing, what­ever po­si­tion you are in.


Pelvic floor, rec­tus ab­do­mi­nis, glu­teus max­i­mus, rec­tus fe­moris, trapez­ius.

Con­sider the rel­a­tive po­si­tion and con­di­tion of each of these mus­cles. Tap into the sen­sory feed­back from your body.

Move around, feel­ing for bal­ance be­tween the left and right of each of the main mus­cles of move­ment. Ex­plore your range of move­ment sup­ported by your Base-Line.

Ad­just your body as feels nat­u­ral, think­ing about your midline anatomy as your guide for al­ign­ment, be­gin­ning with your linea alba.


3. Feel the Sun­light.

Dawn and dusk seem to be recom­mended as good times for many tra­di­tional ex­er­cises, but what­ever works for you.

.image text

Clos­ing my eyes and feel­ing the sun’s rays on my face. The light through my eye­lids helping me to see the sparkles and de­velop the con­scious con­nec­tion to my body.

Be­ing out­doors, breath­ing clean air, walk­ing on un­even ground, all good things in my opinion.


4. Ap­pre­ci­ate Your Anatomy.

Our sys­tem for move­ment con­sists of hun­dreds of mus­cles and bones sur­rounded by a body-wide web of con­nec­tive tis­sues.

We are in­ter­con­nected from head to fingers to toes.image text

Other than the 5 main mus­cles of move­ment, know­ing the anatom­i­cal de­tails is unim­por­tant, but it’s good to ap­pre­ci­ate the com­plex­ity of the body.

Biodigi­tal.com—A great re­source to play with the anatomy. Thank you.


5. If You Ex­pe­rience a Pain.

⇨ Ex­am­ine the feed­back your brain is get­ting.

How would you de­scribe a pain?

Is that an ac­cu­rate de­scrip­tion or a ha­bit­ual re­sponse?

Fo­cus on ac­ti­vat­ing your Base-Line and ex­plore deeper to find the ori­gin.

What is your body try­ing to tell you? Learn to read your body’s sig­nals bet­ter.


Con­scious pro­pri­o­cep­tion—the con­nec­tion be­tween body and mind.

Find your Base-Line, work with your main mus­cles and see what hap­pens.