Have you ever woken up with a stiff neck and had no idea how to get rid of that pain? Or hurt yourself while doing something you love, like yoga?

Feldenkrais allows you to learn about and take care of yourself in a safe and pleasant way. It will slow you down and make you re-learn, but it is not for the faint. “The Feldenkrais Method has shown me how to balance my body and improve my flexibility”, says Chris Dudley an NBA player on the New York Knicks team.

When we want to improve ourselves and our ability to move, respond and be flexible, we are well advised to start changing where it will be most effective: in our imagination, or more precisely, our brain. But how exactly do we talk to our brain?

sports

Slow movements

Practicing this method entails gentle, slow movements that are aimed at the one and only human organ that is really able to learn. So, while other approaches try to stretch muscles or crack joints, doing Feldenkrais addresses the brain and is thus a highly sustainable way to get better at whatever you like to do, be it sports, singing or recovering from an accident.

Donna Ray, M.A., is an internationally known trainer in Feldenkrais Training Programs in North- and South America, Japan and Europe. She has taught for many years at the Feldenkrais Institut Wien. The institute offers year-round workshops and events for seekers of wellbeing, many of them in English.

Increase of vitality

“Benefits include, for example, improved posture, breathing, walking, rolling to sit up and so on. With this comes the reduction of pain and stiffness. Participants in Feldenkrais lessons also report an increase of vitality, ease and joy in their lives – because they enhance their self-perception”, says Donna Ray.

The lessons are playful, pain-free and inspiring, and paradoxically, the slow and gentle approach is highly attractive for expert movers and their performance. Athletes from all fields describe the effectiveness of the method and how it has enabled them to accomplish fast athletic movement – because it has made them more efficient in using what they have: a body, steered by an amazing brain.

Donna Ray

The next opportunity to experience the benefits is in a workshop on October 12 and 13, where you can learn how to use a Feldenkrais approach to deepen your yoga experience and make your practice safe and pleasant.

Vienna is also home to the Feldenkrais International Training Program for people who want to become Feldenkrais teachers. The Training Program is “really diverse,” Donna Ray explains, “with participants from all age groups and more than 10 different nations. Our training is internationally accredited, so our graduates can work as practitioners anywhere in the world.”

feldenkraisFree guest days

The Feldenkrais Method is easily understood if experienced and the effects of gentle, small movements are best felt by simply doing a Feldenkrais lesson. Therefore, Feldenkrais Institut Wien is offering free guest days. Get in touch asap with the team at the institute to reserve your free appointment from November 8 to 16, 2019, during the ongoing International Training Program.

To find out about all Feldenkrais Institut Wien offers, visit www.feldenkraisinstitut.at/english.

You can sign up for their free newsletter there, too.

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Founder of the Feldenkrais Method, Dr. Moshé Feldenkrais, has worked with children, researchers and artists, among them Margaret Mead, Yehudi Menuhin, and Peter Brook. One of his most interesting students was David Ben Gurion, the first prime minister of Israel, who at the age of 70  – with the help of Moshé Feldenkrais – learned how to stand on his head.

FOTO Ben Gurion, credit: Paul Goldman

(Paid cooperation with Feldenkrais Institut Wien)

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