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Spinal groove - puzzled by an observation I have just made

Michael Crump
Michael Crump's picture
Last seen:
5 years 10 months ago
08/08/2018 - 1:28am
Spinal groove - puzzled by an observation I have just made

I became interested in the Gokhale method only recently, but have just completed the Foundation Course over a weekend.  I found it very interesting and hope it will help me sort out certain long-standing problems.

Earlier today, I was standing with my thumb at the base of the spinal groove (I was reminding myself where L5/S1 is).  I then took a few steps forward, with hand somewhat further up the spine and noticed something that really suprised me. When walking, there is a great deal more movement on the left-hand side of this groove than on the right, the movement being backwards towards my hand and slightly inwards towards the groove itself.

I'm intrigued by this imbalance and wonder if it is at all connected with the problems that made me buy the book and attend the course.  Although I often wake up with lower back pain, it soon passes and is tolerable.  My main problem concerns my left foot, which is nearly always has a tingling, sometimes a burning, sensation.  At night this progresses to cramps of the big toe, which cause me to have utterly sleepless nights several times each week.

I have not described this very well, I  know - it is surprisingly hard to do.  Nonetheless, I wonder whether anyone else has experienced or treated similar problems.  Currently, I am avoiding techniques like glide-walking as I make my way lesson by lesson through the book.

Any thoughts on the subject would be welcome.


Alejandro Macias
Alejandro Macias's picture
Last seen:
4 years 8 months ago
08/19/2015 - 5:15pm

Dear Michael,

Thank you for your post, I'll try to answer it to the best of my ability. Over my years of teaching the Gokhale Method and working with hundreds of people, I have seen many asymmetric spinal movements due to many reasons; scoliosis, muscle knots, sciatica, injuries, etc.

A way you can equalize asymmetries in your body, especially around the lower back, is to do Inner Corset work, as well as rib anchor engagement. Both bring your lower back to neutral and iron muscle tightness, and imbalances.

Now, in relation to your tingling and lower back pain in bed, they are likely related. Are you stretch-chlying on your back or side? That would be the first thing to do. You may have a pinched nerve in the lower back that causes the tingling.

I would recommend a routine of inner corset strengthening coupled with stretch-siting, and streth-lying.

Ultimately, a qualified teacher can quickly asses your issues on a in-person session, or even via Skype.

Feel free to reach out to me directly at [email protected]

Wishing you the best,


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