One of the more common things that any person will tell me they want more of in their life is comfort and flexibility.
Ease and freedom…
The ability to pursue what they want to, when and how they want to, with the least amount of resistance.
Now, while we are not always going to have the world set up in our favor at each waking moment, it is reasonable to desire and seek bodily comfort, ease, flexibility and freedom. After all, most would agree that a good life does involve being able to scratch most of our own itches and move our body as fully and rigorously as we may desire.
Again… ease and freedom.
Well, when it comes to bodily tone and flexibility, there are two very simple things that will dictate how freely and easily the rest of the body is able to move.
The first is how freely you can move your jaw.
The second is how freely you can move your eyes.
Now before I go into what you may want to make sure you are able to do at these two places, it is best for me to briefly share the why.
So… why does what you do at your jaw effect your body wide tension?
Well, your jaw is actually a very perceptive part of your body. Both it, and your teeth within it, are loaded with nerve endings that are able to sense not only a hair in your soup, or a grain of sand in a glass of water…but also where your body is under your head.
Your jaw helps you feel yourself.
Your teeth being able to both touch and shift how they touch, is your ability to sense your weight shifting from front to back and side to side throughout your body.
If your teeth, especially your molars, cannot touch then you cannot easily feel where your body is below your head.
You will probably have some dull, delayed or low bodily tone.
Visuals of slack-jawed space out individuals abound…
On the other side, if your teeth, especially your molars, cannot stop touching or clenching… then you will absolutely be able to feel where your body is below your head.
You will just be stuck jacked up and rigid.
This is because your jaw acts in many ways as a “governor” of body wide tension. The harder you clench your teeth together, the harder you are able to contract the muscles of your body.
Professional Strongmen and Women know this and often use specialized mouth guards to avoid damaging their teeth as they take on their feats.
However, because a clench will also make you pretty rigid it is best only use it as necessary. Unless you like not being able to scratch your own back…
Otherwise your jaw needs to be free to shift side to side, and back and forth.
Again, this is because your teeth are loaded with nerve endings built to sense where your body is shifting underneath your head.
So, if you want a body to be free, and muscular tension relaxed, then you will need your jaw equally free and relaxed to begin with. How you actually go about that I will touch on below.
Before that though…
How exactly does what you do with your eyes effect your body wide tension?
Well, your eyes are literally an outgrowth of your brain.
Quite literally, they are your brain.
Because of that, where you shift your gaze is in line with where your attention is shifted. With that shift comes a change in postural tone, causing your body as a whole to shift in the same direction as your gaze.
An example of this is that when you look up with your eyes the muscles on the back of your body engage more. When you look down from your eyes the muscles on front of your body engage more.
The same goes for moving your eyes side to side.
And this is where I want to share the two simple things that you can begin to both look at, as well as improve, in order to aide in your general bodily comfort and flexibility.
The first thing is to see how easily you can shift your jaw forward and side to side.
The second thing is to see how easily and effectively you can look with your eyes in any given direction. Especially laterally, also known as looking side to side.
This is because many people that are very “tight” have a hard time looking laterally with their eyes.
This is mainly because they do not.
While not always the case, these folks are often also the same people that tend to clench or grind their teeth. These are also the folks that have a hard time moving their jaw forward.
With that, many people that perhaps are not overly tight, but perhaps feel chronically crappy in some part of their body often have a hard time looking to the left, and moving their jaw to the left.
Again, this is oftentimes more than in part because they do not.
The good news is that both groups will feel a little, or even a lot better by starting to do those things a simple things a little more often.
Now, if you would like a visual of how to go about assessing and addressing your jaw in the above manner, then view the video below…
If you would like to skip to how to go about assessing and addressing how freely you are able to move your eyes, CLICK HERE.
If you have any questions about the above, please do not hesitate to reach out. Regardless, I hope you are well.