Recently, in my Power class, I gave everyone an assignment – find a nice grassy or soft patch outside and do at least 5 cartwheels (better yet, 5 on each side).
We do a lot of inversions and arm balances in Power and cartwheels are just the thing to get your primed and ready.
- Cartwheels help you learn to bear your body weight on your hands.
- They give you the short sensation of a full inversion.
- Cartwheels require you to engage your whole body, full of reaching energy.
- They’re fun. It’s really hard to scowl or frown when you are cartwheeling. Fun is a great counter to fear.
Ready to cartwheel, or at least give it a try? Stand with your body in a big “X”. Imagine that your shoulders and hips are parallel to an imaginary wall. Point your front foot in the direction you are going. With long side bodies, reach hands to the ground, your fingers will point away from the imaginary wall. Hands will be spread open and strong. Simultaneously, bend into your standing leg and reach your back leg, then standing leg long, and hurl them over head. Eventually, you will land with your feet on the same plane as your hands, with your shoulders and hips still parallel to the imaginary wall. As you begin to move, think “hand, hand, foot, foot” or “right, left, right, left”.
The perfect cartwheel isn’t really important. The joyful therapy of the movement is what’s important. Bear your weight for a fraction of time, feel your hands and feet rooted strongly to the earth, smile and find the joy!
Enjoy the Journey!
May your mind whirl joyful cartwheels of creativity.
May your heart sing sweet lullabies of timelessness.
May your essence be the nectar of the open blossom of your joy.
May your spirit soar throughout the vast cathedral of your being.
– Jonathan Lockwood Huie