How can the practice of Feldenkrais improve my movements?
Have you ever thought about how you make a very simple everyday movement, such as getting up from a chair? Could you describe it to someone in detail? Could you say, for example, which part of your body initiates the movement of standing up? Which parts of your body are involved in the movement? Probably not. We very rarely think about these things unless we are in pain. We do them instinctively. This is wonderful and correct, but only valid as long as the body executes these movements smoothly and painlessly. Over time, as a result of different events such as accidents or injuries we may lose the fluidity of these movements. What often happens after an injury or accident is that the body adapts to the event. In the case of even a small ankle injury, it may compensate by putting more weight on the leg that wasn’t injured and less weight on the injured leg. Quickly this adaptation develops into a new movement pattern which helps our body “get over” the injury in question. As we heal however, we usually no longer need this new habit but often keep it as part of our movement repertoire unconsciously. This can hurt us. Feldenkrais helps us rebalance, rebuild and regain our movement ability and scope.
How? By increasing our awareness of how we are doing our movements. In this way we can notice that part of the movement execution is no longer free, no longer fluid. That our muscles, or our breathing is contracted when it doesn’t need to be. Once we become aware of these tensions we can release them and then work on improving the movement gently and softly without pressure to achieve or to accomplish. Simply by feeling, playing with the moves, enjoying them.