Want to know a little something about yourself?
You. have. 208 bones!
Well... maybe. It's a possibility. It's even a probability. But without some full body x-rays, I can't say for sure.
Because even though we human beings are pretty similar person to person, we're never exactly the same.
And this is true to the bone. Or bones. 208-ish of them.
Our bony variance is not just in the number of bones, but also in the size, shape, density, and arrangement. (Skeletons are soooo darn cool!)
You and I are alike enough that patient people can write textbooks with statements like "there are 208 bones in the human skeleton."
We're also different enough that no textbook can tell you everything.
That's where self observation comes in. (Or, sometimes, observation by movement + anatomy nerds like me.)
You can look at your specifics and, with some help, figure out how you're "textbook" and how you're more, well, you.
It's a pretty useful thing to figure out, because while your unique skeleton may not determine what you do, honoring it can determine how you go about doing it.
Take me, for example. I am a dancer. But my skeleton is set up just so, that no matter how I train, I'd never make much of a ballet dancer --I just don't have the hip structure for it.
Now, I don't want to be a ballet dancer. But knowing a thing or two about my skeleton can help me honor what my skeleton can do when I pop into ballet class. (Just because I'm not "built for ballet," doesn't mean I can't practice it.)
I want you to get to know your skeleton this week.
Start with simple palpation. Anatomy word alert! "Palpate" means touch or feel. That's right, you're going to observe through touch. Don't worry, I've got a worksheet to help guide you. Helpful tips throughout. Click here to view a pdf that you can download.
Have fun! And if you make it through the whole skeleton, I definitely want to hear about it. Send in your comments using the form below!
Observing with you,
PS: I don't know why each of us is unique, but I do know that our variances make us human... make us... us. And I love it.
Photo by University of Liverpool Faculty of Health & Life Sciences used under CC license