This exercise gives control over the muscles of the leg and balancing powers, and increases the ability to adjust the muscles so as to maintain the equilibrium.
Stride Position (Ready-Stride!)
This position calls for the separation of the feet sideways about a foot and a half apart (Fig. 10). Now assume the “Arms Cross” attitude, and then, turning the body at the hips, bring first the right hand down to touch the floor, at the same time bending the right knee and keeping the left knee straight. Come back to the regular position again.
[Illustration: Fig. 10.—Stride, first position]
Now bend the left knee, put down the left hand and touch the ground, turning the body at the hips. (See Fig. 11.)
[Illustration: Fig. 11.—Stride, final position]
In both of these movements keep the other arm extended backward. This produces a graceful exercise which is excellent work for the muscles of the body and shoulders. In the “Daily Dozen” this is called “The Weave.”
Assuming the “Stride Position,” advance the right foot about a foot; then, with the arms in “Cross” position once more, bend the forward knee and touch the ground with the hand, at the same time keeping the other arm extended backward.
This movement is also excellent for the muscles of the body and back.
Wall Balance (Ready-Bend!)
Stand sideways to the wall about two feet and a half away; now extend both arms in the “Cross” position, and then lift the foot that is farthest away from the wall and lean over until the extended fingers of the other hand touch the wall; push back into original position. Move out a little farther from the wall and repeat. Do this until the distance is as far as can comfortably be recovered by pushing the hand against the wall.
Reverse this exercise, so as to do it with the other arm.
This is an excellent workout for the shoulder muscles as well as for the forearms, and gives some exercise to the body.
Standing erect at “Attention,” step to the right with the right foot about six inches, merely touching the toe to the ground, and bring the foot back to the “Attention” position.
The object of this movement is to give control of the muscles of the leg in addition to the balancing of the body. Care should be taken to keep the body absolutely motionless while the exercise is in progress. The toe is only touched to the ground and the foot is brought immediately back into position.
This movement has a quieting effect after more violent exercising. It can be done either sideways, forward, or back.