FORM AND FUNCTION OF THE LOCOMOTIVE CORE OF OUR BODIES
Human Beings embody unique physiology enabling our use of our front legs for something other than walking around. Stabilizing our body mass over our hind legs liberated our forelimbs for tool manipulation, ultimately resulting in the built world surrounding us. Using this perspective, we can separate human physiology into two primary structural elements, the Locomotive Core and the Manipulation Core. We are unique among animals in being able to make a distinction about our musculoskeletal system that is independent of locomotion. The manipulation Core has distinct structural and functional roles, discussed in another section.
The Locomotive Core has excellent inherent lateral stability and minimal stability in the front/back-line, facilitating forward movement. If our feet do not efficiently support our core functions of standing and moving, our core will be both less stable and responsive. As our function echos our form, having a suboptimal core inclines us to myriad dysfunctional expressions – which range from physical to emotional to cognitive. Our capacity to adapt to challenges is constrained by the extent to which our core expresses both stability and responsiveness.
The purpose of this section on the Locomotive Core is to provide an adequate overview to cultivate our capacity for standing and moving with our locomotive core dynamics fully enabled. This selection of papers is organized by what this writer has found to be significant functional and structural attributes:
The structure and functions of our Locomotive Core can be separated into two primary sections, Stance, and Movement. Stance is discussed here:
Movement is the art of the Locomotive Core. The story of the evolution of movement is the story of the diverse lineages of Animals. Comments on the transitions Animals embraced on this evolutionary journey, which tightly correlates to the progression of the Evolutionary Paradigms, is discussed here in the context of human locomotion:
N.B.: There is a range of definitions of our Core, originating from a variety of ideas of what core function is. The Pilates’s description of our Core elements differs from this definition of the Locomotive Core by its inclusion of components of the Manipulative Core and orientation to muscles as opposed to loading vectors. In Physical Training, Core Muscles are considered the large muscles of locomotion, as opposed to the connective tissue network, described here. Here the Locomotive Core is defined by analysis of human structure and function from the perspective of Evolutionary Physiology, as well as this writer’s understanding of mechanics enabled by the study of Tensegrity Principles and the application of these principles to load-bearing and movement in Gravity. The benefit of articulating the Locomotive Core with these parameters is that it describes kinematic chains connecting the big toe to the back of the eyes, integrating all attributes of our vertebrate and mammalian structural physiology with our neurological functionality.
EVOLUTIONARY LAYERS AND THE CORE
The functionality of the Locomotive Core is distinct to each evolutionary layer:
With All Living Things, the Core we share is the Metabolic Core. The Locomotive Core is not an element of this evolutionary layer.
With Animals and Vertebrates, we share the Locomotive Core’s capacity to move.
With Mammals, we share this Core’s integration of Tensegrity.
With Primates, we share this Core as Stabilization for the Manipulation Core.
ARCHETYPES AND THE LOCOMOTIVE CORE
There is apparently an underlying archetypal structure to the environment within which living things evolved. This structure is discussed in the section on ARCHETYPES. The specific archetype that relates to the Locomotive Core is the “Doing Archetype”, in which animals explored the efficacy of action, resulting in the Cambrian Explosion:
A discussion on our core structural attributes:
THE FOUR CORES
A discussion on the models for our species presented on this website