Light Feet

Grounded, down to earth, dug in, rooted. For me this heavy time has certainly been a contrast to the mobile, changeable existence I experience as a dancer. A welcome change in many ways, time to settle in, but I won’t lie and say I haven’t occasionally had itchy feet.

So often “grounded” expresses itself as spatially static, shedding relaxed weight downwards, wide base and flexed legs. There are certainly times for this expression, times to stand or sit your ground, plant yourself, draw the line.

I also enjoy a sense of mobile groundedness, of deep connection and surface play. To root from wherever I find or send myself, to find ground swiftly and fully, to be aware that last seconds’ solidity can be this instants’ rigidity. To have feet-on-clay not feet-of-clay.  

So, it might be a moment to play with multidimensional feet and/or other bodily surfaces. To travel down through the earth as easily as you travel away from it, or across it.

One way of approaching surface touch is through physics: there are four ways for surfaces to interact; placing, rolling, sliding and spinning. Placing is a down and up motion, no change other than off and on, rolling maintains contact while changing the surfaces that touch (walking is an example), sliding translates a surface across another surface, spinning rotates an area of contact. Thankfully the real word is much messier and these four can be mixed and matched at will.

So take those feet, or hands, or head, or back, or belly and get tapping, brushing, slipping, roll and rocking. You might isolate each of the four touches, combine them, or forget them. This might be a time for the rest of yourself to practise supporting; to go instantly wherever your feet take you, no need to add or question, ready for the next step, never wrongfooted.

The softness in your joints developed through more durational grounding practices will still be needed, and by finding the sensation of swift grounding you also have the choice to allow the elasticity of your tissues to propel you upwards and outwards. Speed plays an important role in this, and it will be very individual. There are a lot of possibilities for rhythmic play.

I often catch myself looking down at my feet, and I wonder: can I be with them through senses other than vision?

So, take a weight off those feet, put them up, be fleet of foot, meet and re-meet the ground, let your toes twinkle.