Mel Collie | Posture – stretch it out?

Mel Collie | Posture – stretch it out?

Theres many different types of posture, you are unique, so its pretty much guaranteed that your posture is different to the next person, and just being told to stretch your hip flexors or your back or your neck or hamstrings to correct posture might just not work for you…so is there another way? A way that looks at not stretching hamstrings which are we believe that they are tight for a reason, so if you stretch them, and they don’t let go, its because they don’t think its safe to do so, theres something not happening in the structure of your body, and mind, which wont allow those tight muscles to let go.

So…what is going on?

Deep in your CNS (Central nervous system), you are deeply inscribed reflexes since you were born. What happens to you during your life affects your health and wellbeing, which in turn shows in your posture, which means your responses to events in your life are shown in your muscular responses.

Theres 2 major reflexes triggered by stress, which account for a large portion of the physiological problems as we age.

These are known as the RED light reflex and the Green light reflex.

Posture and Back Pain Reduction in Cornwall with Mel Collie

Posture and Back Pain Reduction in Cornwall with Mel Collie

Essential for our survival, these two reflexes protect us from danger and move us forward toward opportunities and change.

Now these 2 reflexes oppose each other, pulling in opposite directions , engaging all muscles and the CNS when faced with a withdrawal from lifes stresses and worries or when faced with a more positive outlook.

In a bit more detail, heres those two reflexes:

Red Light: When we feel fear, the body tends to tense up, the jaw clenches, the head moves forward, the abdominals tighten up, the diaphragm tightens, the breath is held, the legs turn inwards, the feet look pigeon toed, the hamstrings contract to bend the knees, the fists clench, the elbows flex. A stooped over posture, with shoulders being rolled forwards, breathing is affected, creating a smaller frame to protect us from fear, as we used to do when being chased by a predator, wishing to be smaller so we arent seen. Red light posture can increase blood pressure, painful necks, disrupted inhalation, pressure on the bladder.

Green Light: When we call our neuromuscular system to action, an action of assertiveness. The neck is pulled backwards, the shoulders pulled down, the chest lifted, contraction of the glutes, legs rotate outwards, knees straighten, gthe thighs are extended, the feet pronate (rotate inwards) . The Green light reflex used when we have to about our daily duties at home and work, stimulating action, using the muscles we need to move ahead. During times of stress, this reflex is called upon the most.

So, as we age, we see saw between these two, but as we age further they interfere with each other.

The contraction of back muscles in the green light reflex pulls the lower back and neck into a curve , back pain can be the result of our CNS, and using simple movement and simple techniques to test and “reset” our system, we can easily reduce the pain, understand it and live a better pain free life, from the inside out.

Our muscles will then react better and be stronger quicker and for longer without as much fatigue as we have been experiencing from constantly tight muscles.

Workshop coming up October 12th at 10am for 3 hours in Redruths Natural Therapy Centre. Book here:

or text/call to reserve your place: 07800797300

See you soon!


Pilates Level 3

Kinetic Chain Assessor Level 4


Mel Collie | Bouldering in Cornwall

Mel Collie | Bouldering in Cornwall

…living in a beautiful place means lots of great sunsets, walks, tourists, and when you have a bloke who loves climbing, it introduces you to bouldering, and looking at places you’ve seen and been too for many years, in a different way.

Recently, we’ve been to a beach the far west of Cornwall, with a beach full of huge rounded granite rocks, a place I’ve loved for many years, but now seeing it through a different perspective.

This is just one of the granite boulders on the beach…

Bouldering Monk in Cot Valley,Cornwall

Bouldering Monk in Cot Valley,Cornwall

The Bouldering Monk has many boulder routes in this area of Cornwall, we are setting up a separate blog with details of the routes in Cornwall.

Its not about the climbing, its about the beautiful places, respect for the environment, the shapes and the passion.

Its a great way to stay fit, training outdoors, seeing the places you live in, being outside all day, sleeping wild under the stars, meeting new people, being a part of the world you live in, a world you respect whilst you are here for a short time on the planet.

Mind, body, earth.





Mel Collie | Fear

Mel Collie | Fear

A couple of weeks ago,I listened to my fear.. I attempted an abseil down a 18 foot wall, which isnt easy when you are a few months away from being 50, never abseiled before, and when you are standing on the edge of that wall, you can add your height to that figure of 18 foot, as you are standing on the edge…you feel the fear…

Ready to abseil...

Ready to abseil…

I didnt do it first time, it too 3 days to get me over that edge…3 days of listening to gentle persuasion, confidence building words , and a lot of patience.

On the morning of the 3rd day, I backed out twice in the space of an hour…

….me, managing to be in the harness, roped up, standing on the edge of the wall, leaning back into the harness and unable to move my feet, unable to place the feet flat on the descent because I just couldnt lean back into it enough to allow to rope to be fed out…

You are in charge

You are in charge of not allowing the system to go slack, the rops remains taught between you and the belayer…that means sitting back into the harness, theres nothing behind you, just air, you are suspended in mid air, and its flaming well scary.

But, so they tell me, thats where the buzz is…

I think the words that helped my just do it, were that you are in control of you, its easy to fall into the trap of listening to your mind telling you this isnt safe, of course its telling you that, its your fight or flight response kicking in, and its strong, its just looking out for you and wants you to live. I was listening.

Once I could step back from that and understand that it was the fight flight response and the hardest bit was to lean back and move the feet.

But  when I did, the descent was so easy, I loved it..

However, a few days later I tried it again, a bit higher, on a rock on the beach, this was still scary, but I did it first time, and a second time too straight afterwards, but when I did it the second time, I climbed up to the top, and felt so scared again I cursed saying I wanted to do it again..but I did it, just didnt enjoy the feeling of the space around me.

So today, we went to as rock weve been to before, where Ive just done a little bit of scrambling about on the rocks. The abseil we were planning was less height, but was open, and a long way up, the height was in half of the whole abseil descent as theres a ledge to land on, so it didnt seem to bad. However….I could do it. I felt too …exposed..

Roche Rock Abseiling

I managed to get the harness on and even stand on the ledge, but couldnt lean back, I just could do it, we were up there for about 40 minutes, I tried again after a break, but still couldnt lean back and descent, it was so open, the wind was blowing and I was listening to my fear, and it won…this time.

Yes I was cross with myself and had a little tear as well, disappointed with the outcome, but looking back now, I was glad I attempted it. I tried. It hasn’t put me off, and I will try again, it will be tough,it isnt easy, it will only challenge you every time.

Heres to the next one then…maybe I need a drink..