Corgi Puppy vs. Sumo Wrestler: the Kinetic Contrast

by Marianne Salza

We should have the ability to move in any way imagined and then choose which movements seem naturally suitable and desirable for ourselves. The only way these abilities can be understood is through personal discovery.

Rudolf Laban on free use of kinetic and dynamic possibilities in Coping with the Environment:

We should be acquainted with the general movement capabilities of a healthy body and mind with the specific restrictions and capacities resulting from the individual structure of our own bodies and minds.

Laban Movement Analysis is divided into four categories: body, shape, effort and time. To better recognize how the major themes (function/expression, inner/outer, exertion and mobility/stability) relate, I compare a puppy to a sumo wrestler.

Bandit, the Corgi, has indirect space and sudden time efforts. He frolics around the yard turning, running, jumping, pouncing and pausing at everything that catches his attention – sounds, smells, bugs and grass. His weight effort is light as he buoyantly bounces along. Bandit has excellent dynamic alignment and posture. When he moves, a wave of energy radiates from his head, through his spine, and out his tail. The puppy also has free flow effort, initiating from his head and leading with his snout.

The sumo wrestlers are the opposite of the exuberant Bandit. Their weight effort is strong and grounded. They slam, slap and toss their opponent. The wrestlers have direct space effort; their movements are precise and intentional. Their flow effort is mostly bound, like when shoving, and free when breaking loose from each other’s grips.

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