I am not a musician. I am not a singer. I am not a tennis player. I don’t know how to read music, but I can see how a musician moves, breathes (or stops) when he plays his instrument. I can sort of carry a tune, but I can see how a singer moves, holds, breathes (or doesn’t), and strains her neck and shoulders when she sings. I can also see how a tennis player overuses her tiny shoulder muscles when she serves a tennis ball.
I am a Guild Certified Feldenkrais Practitioner.® I work with all kinds of folks with all kinds of abilities, from someone relearning to walk after a stroke to Baby Boomer friends who are hopping when playing hopscotch.
I consider myself to be somewhat of a dancer. I was a student of tap until recently. I have danced on a Lindy/swing team and done extensive ballroom dancing. I can figure out if I am moving efficiently or not. Just because I know how to tap, and can see what another tapper is doing, doesn’t mean I can change what they are doing by just telling them. They must learn what they are doing, what works or doesn’t. A dancer, or musician, or athlete must feel it and know the options for herself. All humans have nervous systems and skeletons in common, but their habits and how they have learned to move are different. While basic strategies might be the same, I would never consider that someone else use the same strategies for dancing that I do. Everyone has a different body, a different perception of the moves, and different strengths and weaknesses. I would never expect anyone to do what I do or perceive how I perceive. However, there are some similarities, simply because we are human. We have two arms, two legs, a spine, eyes in front of our face, lungs, feet. And, we all are governed by physical forces, such as gravity. We are all trying to stay safe and upright.
When I work with someone, or I create the space for that person to work with themselves, it is about them. It is not about me, and certainly not about what the book says. Everybody is different, and as Moshe Feldenkrais said, “there is no need to prescribe a uniform path that everyone must follow.” This is not a recipe or a one size treats all. To put it differently, everyone has the ability to move efficiently, the way he or she wishes to. I often say I help people learn to move the way they did 20 years ago. It occurs to me that some people might not with to do that. They might, however, wish to go forward easily and efficiently, and not to stop moving due to arthritis, spondylitis, stenosis, and syndromes of age. Aging with energy and vitality is not haphazard. People live it.
You can see that your particular sport of profession doesn’t matter as much as how you use yourself to perform it. You will learn to play your instrument better. I know this because everyone who comes to my studio for individual sessions or classes and workshops does.
- Move with less effort, reducing wear and tear and preventing future injuries
- Do what you wish to do with greater ease and coordination
- Move in novel ways, not repeating the same movement over and over which might not be working
- Be empowered to learn from your own experience, and not depend on me forever
- Become the most trusted authority on your own body
Do the sport, exercise, or activity you want to, but do it efficiently. And if you choose not to, have that be your choice.
Are you curious? Would you like to explore the possibilities? Contact me for individual sessions or weekly classes.