Five Symmetries – An Insight to Wellness

Health practitioners say that stress is the root cause of disease and that relaxation is the path to health. No argument here. But these are hollow statements without comparative metrics. If you’ve carried stress all your life, you probably don’t realize it. After years of practice, high stress became “normal”.

So, how can determine your level of stress and wellness? One way is with questionnaires, such as the RAND SF-36. A second way is your yearly checkup. A third way is to view yourself physically with a mirror (or two), camera, or camcorder. A viewing partner is helpful. This third approach is often overlooked, yet it’s direct and extremely valuable. Look for symmetry. The reason this works is that physical imbalance causes stress. Simply standing up can be a struggle.

The body has five symmetries, and they provide a physical index to your health. Harmonize all 5, and you’ll move effortlessly. Your body will feel weightless. Body mass will be better distributed around the central gravity line (shown in most physiology texts).

The five symmetries of the body are: (1) front-back, (2) right-left, (3) top-bottom, (4) core-extremity, and (5) inside-outside. Nobody is perfectly symmetrical. So, look for easily visible differences.

Here’s what you might see.

For front-back differences, view from a side. Look for equal body weight on either side of the central gravity line. See how it’s distributed. If the upper back is mostly behind the line and the lower back is mostly in front of the line, you are working too hard. Energy is drained, and back pain is probable. If the head is forward, it’s equivalent to carrying a bowling ball in front.

For right-left differences, view from the front or back. Look for differences in height, and differences in body weight. Is one shoulder higher than the other? Is the right hip higher than the left? Does the spine curve to the right or left?

A top-bottom split can often be pronounced. Compare the upper body to the hips and legs. A huge upper body might be accompanied by thin weak legs, or vice versa. The thicker part usually corresponds to where “you live in your body”.

The core-extremity split compares the arms and legs to the torso. It can split either way. The extremities might be large while the torso looks thin and frail. Or the opposite may present itself.

An inside-outside split is perhaps the hardest to see. In one case, surface muscles are hard like armor, while the deeper muscles are soft. Rape victims often have this pattern. In an alternate case, the surface muscles are soft, and deep muscles are rigid. Either scenario suggests an attitudinal counterpart.

Using stretches and exercise, shoot for better symmetry. It’s worth the effort, and it’s something you can see. Wellness will improve as the symmetries improve.


Jack Menear