Mind in Motion – The Future of Feldenkrais

A revolutionary approach to optimizing human ability when faced with pain, neurological disability, or the challenges of every day life.

Enhance your respiratory repertoire

Precarity

Reading the newspaper the other day, I stumbled on an unfamiliar word: precarity. That, of course, made me curious. And happy about the prospect of learning something new.

I looked up what it means — a state of existence, precariousness about jobs, income, and physical wellbeing that affects your state of mind — and how it’s pronounced (pre’kerədē).

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Finding Center

The Bodywise Project started at the beginning of this year. I chose the theme for the first trimester of this yearlong Awareness Through Movement® course, which was It’s a Matter of Life and Breath. Voting on a list of topics I provided, the participants selected Finding Balance for the second trimester. For the upcoming third and final trimester, they first suggested the possible subjects and, from that list, chose Moving from Your Center.

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The house of breath

One of Feldenkrais’ classic Awareness Through Movement® lessons is most often referred to by its nickname: SEE-SAW BREATHING. In the collection of classes he assembled for the book Awareness Through Movement, it is called Differentiating the Parts and Functions of Breathing.

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Lost in the library

Trying to find a specific Awareness Through Movement® lesson can be daunting.

Here’s an email I received the other day:

I was trying to find the BOOK ON THE FOOT lesson and had no idea if it was Moshe’s lesson or someone else’s. I have checked Feldy notebook along with Lesson Locator to no avail. I also Googled it on the off chance I might find it that way. No luck. 

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What is it?

Making it possible for students who couldn’t physically attend my almost annual Feldenkrais® summer camp got me to start teaching Awareness Through Movement® online many years ago. Little did I know that figuring out how to make distance learning work would turn out to be the perfect preparation for the pandemic. By figuring out how to make it work, just so you know, I mean making plenty of mistakes with the technology and the teaching challenges, especially the ones I hadn’t even recognized at first.

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Mind in Motion Blog - Edna Caila Rossenas Couldn’t have done it without you

For the past twenty-four hours, I’ve been thinking of Edna Caila Rossenas, who was known back in the day to her classmates as Edna Stott.

Keith called shortly after seven this morning to let me know that Edna passed just a couple of hours before. I am forever thankful and oh so sad.

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Constraints reveal

Among the classic Awareness Through Movement® lessons that Moshe Feldenkrais created, there’s one often referred to as ROLLING FISTS and another that’s known as ERROL FLYNN. Both of these well-known classes, which are part of many teacher’s repertoires, are done with your straight arms outstretched, side to side, and your hands gently closed in fists while lying on your back, sitting, and on one knee.

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It’s not over

The sign outside the neighborhood hardware store changed again. A couple of weeks ago, it announced that it was necessary to wear a mask to enter. Then they replaced it with one that only recommends masks.

That was before the rapid spread of the delta variant. At the end of last month, a show at a Music Hall one town away turned into a super spreader event. A couple of days ago, a vaccinated neighbor emerged from quarantine after recovering from a breakthrough infection. The County Health Department just reported that the number of new cases has increased by 43% since yesterday. The sign requiring masks may well be back any day now.

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Indirect touch

“I’m seeing a new student tomorrow who doesn’t like being touched. What should I do?”

That’s how our exchange began. By the time we finished talking, my colleague was looking forward to the appointment.

Here’s an overview of how the rest of the conversation went: We talked about how, just because the person who made the referral said this person doesn’t like to be touched, it is important not to assume that this would be the case with you in this situation. For that reason, it’s best to start the same way you usually begin: by stating what you have to offer and then asking the person why they came for the lesson and how you can help them. 

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Breathing Space

Halfway through listening to an ATM® lesson I’d taught and recorded, I was so rattled that I had to stop. 

I couldn’t help but think I should have known better.

When I was a teenager, I’d run home from school to watch Lilias, Yoga, and You on public television. Lilia introduced me to breath as a measure of motion and, more importantly, a means of listening to and improving myself. That was before I studied massage, acting, singing, Gestalt Therapy, Bioenergetics, and Ericksonian Hypnosis; before I became a contact improvisation dancer, a NeuroLinguistic Programming trainer, and, eventually, a Feldenkrais® teacher.

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