The Feldenkrais Method®
The Feldenkrais Method® is a mindful movement approach that leads to improvement in physical and emotional well-being. It is based on learning how you move and then discovering more efficient and easier ways to move.
Our brain has the capacity to modify the way we respond and organise ourselves through experience and learning. This is the concept of neuroplasticity. It means that we can re-learn ways we may have moved when we were younger or learn new ways to move through exploration in the same way that we did as babies.
With the Feldenkrais Method we may discover we have become stuck in a habit or relatively fixed way of being. We use our senses for feedback (sound, vision, touch, body position and movement) to learn a new skill or to refine and improve an existing skill. This is how we learn to move more efficiently or perform better.
We become aware of the effects of what we are doing, try new ways and then we integrate those ways that work better.
The Feldenkrais Method improves our ability to make finer sensory distinctions. You can use this improved sensitivity to sensory feedback to improve all kinds of performance. The method has a few guiding principles: that movements are performed only within a comfortable range, that you pay attention to the movement or begin to sense aspects of the movement, that the movement is reversible, and that you can breathe easily during the movement. During the movement exploration you are looking for quality, ease and efficiency. The teacher guides you to compare sensations, for example, does this way feel easier than that?
Everyone can benefit from Feldenkrais including:
- Anyone wanting to prevent or recover well from injury
- Athletes and sports people ranging from elite level to weekend hobbyists
- Pregnant women experiencing discomfort related to their changing body shape
- Older adults wishing to age well
- Older adults with balance problems, reduced flexibility, or mobility
- Performers such as musicians, dancers, and actors
- Babies and children with disability or developmental problems
- People with neurological problems such as Parkinson’s disease, Stroke, Multiple Sclerosis
- Individuals with chronic pain
- Anyone interested in improving health, self-awareness and emotional well-being.
There are two aspects to the Feldenkrais Method, the group classes are called Awareness Through Movement® lessons and the individual lessons are called Functional Integration®.