what is it?
The Feldenkrais Method® teaches—through sensing our own movement—how we can improve our capabilities to function in our daily lives, whether it’s lifting up a child, working at a computer, or training for the marathon. It helps us move more freely, carry less stress in our bodies, and stop doing things that cause us pain.
The Feldenkrais Method is based on principles of physics, martial arts, biomechanics, and an understanding of learning and human development. Its effectiveness lies in its ability to access the nervous system's innate ability to learn.
Learning is the most powerful aspect of being human. The integrative power of the nervous system enables us to control the impact of environmental influences, to discard the responses we do not want, and select the ones we want. We can learn, over and over again, to choose vivid freedom, creativity and spontaneity instead of react in conditioned ways.
Feldenkrais practitioners are trained to create learning scenarios instead of acquiring a fixed, repetitive technique. Feldenkrais will never be a series of pre-set movements, but rather a response to your needs, depending on your experience at the time.
how long will it take?
It can take time to unwind years-old patterns and adopt new ones. The time frame is different for each person, just as each person's nervous system, personal history, and learning style is different. Like many things in life, such as getting into physical shape, undergoing psychotherapy, or mastering a martial art, the time and attention you bring to it is linked to your results.
As your brain figures out that there are easier, more efficient ways to move, you start to feel your self in ways you never knew existed. Rather than telling you how to perform, Feldenkrais returns you to a deep internal knowing. If you decide to work with Feldenkrais whether in a class, at home, or with a practitioner, you will start to see many changes in your life.
Dr. moshe feldenkrais
The method was developed by physicist and Judo teacher Dr. Moshe Feldenkrais (1904-1984). He received his PhD from the Sorbonne and worked in the Joliot-Curie laboratory in Paris. He also spent many decades studying Judo, training with its founder, Kanō Jigorō.
He discovered how to reeducate his own movement when he was incapacitated by a sports-related injury and given little chance of ever walking without pain. Then he worked tirelessly to develop how to teach an intelligent relationship to gravity using principles of human learning, physics, and martial arts.
He ingeniously focused on directed attention and novel movement patterns to restore faulty muscular learning. Dr. Feldenkrais devised thousands of Awareness Through Movement lessons to foster human development and learning.
He applied his knowledge of anatomy, physiology, physics, and engineering, as well as his mastery of martial arts, to restore his own functioning and, later, the functioning of many others, including luminaries like David Ben-Gurion, Yehudi Menuhin, Peter Brooks, Gregory Bateson, Jonas Salk, and more.
The method's success stems from his ability to offer extensive variations and creativity in human movement. These variations access our innate ability to make new neurological connections, just as we did when we first tested new movement patterns as babies and children.
Dr. Feldenkrais's books include: