The weight of the body can be carried by either both legs or one leg. Whenever the weight shifts from one leg to the other, the whole body reacts to that change; the system of hips, spine, and shoulders responds. The weight that was carried evenly by both legs but is now carried by only one causes the whole upper body to shift and move to counterbalance the change in the weight distribution. This countereffect of hips and shoulders caused by the shift of the body weight is referred to as contrapposto, an Italian term meaning “counterpose.”