April 27th, 2005



So Ive got into the habit of getting off the bus at Brandon St and walking to work from there, which takes about 15 minutes. It's nice having a walk before work. Anyway, this morning I'm walking along, and I notice that everyone's carrying something - bags, briefcases, coffees, etc. Nothing strange about this. Except - they are all walking with one arm swinging and the other frozen still. So I looked down, and I was doing the same thing, only I have a backpack. Both my arms were free.

This habit is understandable - all my life I've been required to carry things - buckets, horse's reins, bags.. these things all need you to walk with one arm held still. In my case it's my right arm, me being right-handed and all. But when I tried to swing both my arms, the left one went fine, and the right one flopped about like a dead snake and couldn't keep time. My right arm has Uncoordinated Walking Syndrome. We should move like a horse in the trot - diagonal opposites moving at the same time. 10 minutes of practicing as I walked, and the best I could manage was about 30 seconds of well-timed swinging. And I bet I'm not alone. Try it one day and see. Has our Stuff-based society caused one of your arms to lose its sense of timing and cadence? And could this lopsided walking be a reason why lots of people suffer from back problems and general imbalance in their lives? Or am I just thinking too much?

Anyway, I'm going to practice swinging both arms on my morning walk, and see if it improves my aikido.