Feldenkrais®

FELDENKRAIS METHOD® OF SOMATIC EDUCATION

Mindful Movement Training for Pain and So Much More!

Remembering what “Feeling Better Feels Like” by

Re-educating the Nervous System to Move the Body More Efficiently

The Feldenkrais Method improves the body & mind (cognitive & emotional function) by finding easier and more pleasurable ways to move. It is a somatic (body) educational system designed by Moshé Feldenkrais (1904–1984).

Dr. Moshe Feldenkrais, D.Sc. (1904-1984), a Russian-born physicist, judo expert, mechanical engineer and educator is the originator of The Feldenkrais Method. After suffering from a crippling knee injury, he developed a program of therapeutic movement and began teaching it to others. The Feldenkrais Method, based on the principles of physics and biomechanics, was developed from his experience and understanding of human physiology and the connection between mind and body.

With this discipline, commands are carried from the brain to the muscles, tendons, joints, and skin, and then reports on their condition are sent back to the brain. The purpose is to improve movement patterns rather than treating specific injuries or illnesses. However, habitual and repetitive movement patterns can contribute towards and in some cases cause injury, pain, and physical dysfunction. The “Method” is experiential, providing tools for self-observation through movement enquiry.

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The Feldenkrais Method claims to be successful in training the nervous system to find new pathways around areas of damage.

It is a gentle and effective approach that helps with:

  • Reduced pain – back and neck aches, headaches
  • Increased awareness
  • Breathing, relaxation, digestion, sleep, mental alertness, and energy
  • Coordination, range of motion, more flexible in body and mind
  • Anxiety, depression, stress, and hypertension
  • Improved coordination, increased ease and range of motion
  • Orthopedic problems in bones and joints (poor posture or habits of movement that may cause pain)
  • Re-educating the brain and nervous system to develop new ways of moving and perceiving the body
  • Rehabilitation of stroke victims and others suffering from neurological injuries (brain tumors, head trauma, multiple sclerosis, cerebral palsy, neuropathy, etc.) that cause disordered movement or a lack of coordination
  • Painful conditions from degenerative arthritis to fibromyalgia
  • Recovery from surgery
  • Distorted body images that contribute to eating disorders, a person feeling more comfortable within his/her body
  • – Dr. Weil feels this allows Feldenkrais to be an excellent adjunct to psychotherapy and the treatment of mood disorders
  • Various segments of our society: athletes, children, the elderly, martial artists, artists, musicians, movement teachers and health care providers

“Awareness Through Movement” − Group Sessions

Group sessions involve verbal instructions of a series of movements with clients sitting, lying on the floor, or standing. A lesson generally consists of comfortable, easy movements that gradually evolve into body positions with a greater range and complexity. The emphasis is on learning which movements work better functionally and noticing the quality of positive changes in the body. Many of these movements are based on ordinary functional activities that occur during normal human development (reaching, standing, lying to sitting, looking behind yourself, etc.), whereas some are based on more abstract explorations of joint, muscle, and postural dynamics. There are hundreds of ATM lessons, varying in difficulty and complexity, available for all levels of ability.

“Functional Integration” – Individualized Sessions

A trained practitioner uses his/ her hands to guide the gentle movements of a student. This “hands-on” technique helps the student experience the functional connections between various parts of the body. Through the teacher’s precision of touch and movement, the student may learn how to eliminate excess effort and to move more freely and easily. These sessions are performed with the student fully clothed, usually lying on a table or in a seated or standing position. At times, various props (pillows, rollers, blankets) may used to support posture or facilitate movements in patients who have limitations. Through gentle touch and a series of guided movements, a practitioner will develop lessons that are tailored to a patient’s unique structural needs with the goal of expanding flexibility and coordination.

Carol Siddiqi, Certified Feldenkrais Practitioner

Call 610.618.0467 for an appointment or information