How do you move your hips?

Belly Dance Shirt:
To answer your question, I will use the illustration of a hip hinge. If your body is straight, and you’re leaning with your pelvis, it’s not a hip hinge — it’s not as if you’re trying to keep yourself in a straight line. You are straight. It’s just that you’re not leaning as far forward. When I call this hip hinge, I mean a kind of “hunch that your hips are going to turn to face away from the horizontal and go straight up toward a closed hip.”

What happens when the body shifts into the hip hinge (for the sake of this lecture, “hip hinge” is used because it has some visual coherence)? Let’s say you’re sitting at a desk. You want to get some work done, and you see that there isn’t much you can do. So you decide that you’re going to try to jump over the monitor. The first thing you do is lower your butt to the ground.

At the same time, you shift your hips and you get the hip hinge and then you start trying to stay balanced above your desk. You have some strength, and you are in a good position. So I said it isn’t a hip hinge. But in fact, on this kind of body, I called it a hip hinge.

But what happens if you try to straighten your pelvis? Now, if you’re leaning, that means you’re leaning toward your side, towards the side you wouldn’t want to lean toward. You may try to come back to the vertical. So let me get back to what you asked. Here’s the image. Now you’re sitting on the desk, and you don’t want to stay in the hip hinge, so you turn inwards and you lower your head. So your pelvis has moved from the straight position to the hip hinge, and now it’s really going into the hip hinge position, or the hip hinge position for this example, at the level of the vertical.

Now when I call this position a hip hinge, I’m not saying that this hip hinge is inherently a hip hinge. It would be if your thighs were touching the floor. I am saying that it’s a hip hinge, and it’s a very important place for a hip hinge to be. I’m saying that if your knees are touching the floor and your legs are over your head, or any of the other kinds of positions in which your torso is tilted toward the ground, is a hip hinge