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What is Feldenkrais?

The Feldenkrais Method® is a body education system based on physics, neurology and bio-mechanics. The Feldenkrais Method works to improve posture, flexibility, co-ordination and to alleviate chronic pain and tension (including back pain).

The Feldenkrais Method was devised by Moshe Feldenkrais (1904–1984) a Russian-born Israeli physicist and engineer who was also an active soccer player and judo master. Motivated by pain from his own injuries, Feldenkrais devised a method of re-educating the neuromuscular system and re-evaluating movement to increase efficiency and reduce stress, using his knowledge of mechanics and engineering and applying some of his martial arts training.

How Does Feldenkrais Work?

Students are taught to become aware of their movements and of how they use themselves, thus discovering expanded movement options.

The Feldenkrais Method is taught in two complimentary formats – group classes known as “Awareness Through Movement®” and private lessons called “Functional Integration®” 

During group classes, the teacher generally takes the class verbally through a sequence of movements involving standing, sitting in a chair or sitting or lying on the floor. One of the primary aims during these classes is to teach students how to reduce unnecessary muscular effort and improve awareness of their whole self in motion. Classes usually last between 30 and 60 minutes and cater for all levels of movement ability.

The one-on-one "Functional Integration Lesson" is a hands-on form of tactile, kinesthetic communication and is tailored to each individual's learning needs. In addition to verbal guidance, the Feldenkrais practitioners uses gentle non-invasive touching to guide the student  through movement sequences which help the student learn how to re-organise themselves for movement. These sessions are performed with the student fully clothed, usually lying on a table or with the student in sitting or standing positions. At times, various props (pillows, rollers, blankets ) are used for support or to facilitate certain movements.

How Can Feldenkrais Help Back Pain? 

Feldenkrais practitioners beleive that movement habits can lead to unnecessary tension and movement restriction causing back pain. They advocate that learning in the  Feldenkrais Method provides expanded movement choices and improved posture which can alleviate back pain and improve efficiency and freedom of movement.  


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