BALANCE - the center of it all
The core of the Delsartean practice is the purity of balance. The laws of physics are very clear on this subject. Balance sustains itself. Imbalance collapses. In a living organism, balance creates ease and relaxation, while imbalance brings tension and reduced range of motion. The mathematical equation for balance is simple: equal weight on all sides of the center. Equi-Librium = Equal Weights.
The long lost Delsartean warm up exercises are a series of gentle, and pure balances that can be done standing, sitting, in motion and at rest. Many yoga and physical therapy exercises deal with "perfect" circumstances, however, life does not wait for us to be barefoot on a flat surface before she slips a banana peel under our feet. Life does not challenge your balance when you are standing perfectly still and upright. Life challenges you mid stride, when you walk down the street, or step into a bus, climb stairs or reach for something. The person who has learned to balance on one foot standing perfectly straight is likely to develop reflexes to pull themselves into that vertical shape the moment the balance is challenged. If you are unsure of what the laws of gravity do to strong, straight, vertical objects that lose balance, ask a lumberjack.
The Delsarte exercises require that we balance in curving angles like skiers and skaters. We learn to utilize fluid balance as we move through life, and especially should we be threatened with falling. No skiing instructor would ever instruct a client to stand vertically, the way many therapy exercises teach balance. It is a choice between falling or skiing.
Ruth St Denis, the master Delsartean, dancer, and teacher of Martha Graham, used the Delsarte balance exercises to dance beautifully, even if less athletically, into her 80's. She was a model of perfect balance and safe harmony in motion.