Flexors, aka folding

Feldenkrais and his first assistants often taught a lesson exploring flexion as a first lesson in a series. I myself rarely do that! Partly because the movement challenges me at all my weakest points; partly because these lessons are the most likely lessons to remind people of doing a workout. So no matter how many times you say “do less; feel more,” people work hard. I gather from transcripts of Feldenkrais teachers three decades ago that it was the same story then.

I attempted to up the volume on the sound this week; let me know if this helps. It seems to have made the file size larger, even though the lesson is shorter, so I apologize to those of you with dialup connections.

Typical to the Feldenkrais Method, even though I just told you all about how the general body pattern of flexion (anxiety) is the cause of all sorts of ills of modern society and the human condition, this lesson refines and clarifies our ability to do this thing (that we already do so much of) well. In this way Feldenkrais aimed to be a polite conversational partner: let us talk first about what already preoccupies you. After we have done that for a while, we can talk about something new.

4 Replies to “Flexors, aka folding”

  1. I quite like these folding type lessons. It is going the other way moving the chest and pelvis forward that is diffiult for me. I didn’t notice a great deal during this lesson or straight after but then later on in the day I found that bending was easier and my spine felt lighter moving backwards. i have done this type of lesson from tapes that feldenkrais did in San Fransisco. Your lesson is much slower and seems less goal orientated in his lesson it is about moving the chin or forehead towards the knee and so it is difficult not to strain and try and make them touch. Thanks.

  2. Yes, there are versions that play with whether you direct the chin, nose, or forehead towards the knee. It might be interesting to go back to his recording and try out following the instructions with the same …er… aimlessness with which I teach! What I mean is that there really are interesting details about how the spine and neck are organized depending on whether you think of aiming with the chin, lips, nose, forehead towards the knee…but you’re right that if you strain with that “goal” in mind you get into the strain thing and don’t feel so much.

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