When I tell people what I do, I often get some variation of the question, “Why do Feldenkrais?”. It’s a tricky question to answer, because as much as marketing specialists will tell you to have a narrow focus and target a specific audience, Feldenkrais will help almost anyone.
Feldenkrais helps children and infants with neurological, developmental, and movement difficulties. It helps people with Parkinson’s and MS regain functioning. It helps mathematicians and writers think more clearly and creatively and look at their work from new perspectives. It helps seniors maintain their balance and mobility. It helps students complete their work with less effort and more creativity. It helps athletes, musicians, dancers, and actors to sense their bodies more clearly, perform better under pressure, refine their movement, and avoid or recover from injury. It helps people recover from trauma by feeling more empowered and embodied. It helps people with pain or injuries learn to move in a more comfortable and efficient way.
I was attending a class recently with one of my colleagues and mentors, and in answering this same questions, she replied, "If you have a brain, you're alive, and you care about something, Feldenkrais will help.” So how does that work?
Feldenkrais is about learning. Movement is the tool we use—it’s the vehicle for change—but the change itself is happening in the brain. By doing these gentle movements, your nervous system is able to take in sensory input and reorganize itself around what it senses. It’s able to sort out where your effort is useful and where you’re getting in your own way. Your brain is able to form new pathways, and you become able to act in ways that are more graceful, efficient, and effective. So whatever it is you do, Feldenkrais will help you do it better.
But here's the thing: you have to actually do the lessons. No matter how much you conceptualize or analyze it, it doesn't work if you just read about it.