The Feldenkrais method is a type of somatic education that teaches you how to move with less effort in order to achieve better function. It gets its name from its originator Dr. Moshe Feldenkrais, a Russian-born physicist and judo expert. Dr. Feldenkrais studied Jujitsu and Judo, earning his black belt in 1936. While working on submarine decks, he suffered some knee injuries. He began working to correct these, experimenting with his own ideas and teaching them to others. He later wrote several books and presented his work in Europe and the United States.
Today the Feldenkrais method is helping everyone – young, old, athlete or housewife – become aware of their habitual movements and learn new and more efficient patterns of movement. The method is divided into two areas:
- Awareness through movement – This area deals mainly with groups and begins with simple, comfortable movements which gradually become more complex. The teacher verbally guides you through a series of steps which are performed in lying, sitting or standing. One major goal is to help the student eliminate unnecessary expenditure of energy.
- Functional integration is tailored to the unique needs of the individual and teaches the student to reorganise his body and behaveour in more efficient ways. The student may lie on a table, sit or stand, while the teacher guides his/her movements by touch.
What are the benefits of Feldenkrais?
- Get rid of chronic or acute back, neck, shoulder, hip, leg or knee pain.
- Help healthy individuals improve function and self-image.
- Help deal with neurological conditions such as multiple sclerosis, cerebral palsy and stroke.
- Maintain and/or regain ease of movement in the elderly.
- Help athletes, musicians, dancers, actors and artists improve performance and enhance creativity.
- Increase vitality and relaxation.
- Improve learning in children with learning disabilities
- Improve hand strength and performance in people with hand problems.
- Ease back pain in pregnant women.
- Enhance performance in computer workers.
Feldenkrais is a valuable adjunct to the field of physiotherapy. If you think you can benefit from this exciting method of treatment, come in and see us for a consultation. We will be happy to go over everything with you.