Driving and Dynamic Sitting: two new free lessons added!

Nick discusses some learning context for these new lessons

[When you’re ready to explore the lessons click here to go to my new Driving and Dynamic Sitting miniseries.]

I’ve been meaning to teach more explicitly about sitting and driving for a long time, since for so many people these everyday activities are frequently challenging and even painful. Over my years as a Feldenkrais teacher I’ve noticed that most people who come to me with concerns about discomfort in sitting have the idea — consciously or unconsciously — that if they could just find the “right” chair and the “right” way to sit in that chair they would be able to engage in sedentary activities for hours without moving much.

I used to believe this too. I discovered Feldenkrais as an injured concert pianist. My study and intended livelihood required me to sit on a piano bench for 3-5 hours a day. I was rarely comfortable for much of that time, but I did what we so often think we have to do: I hunkered down into the position I thought was best, accepted the pain, and got my practice hours in. Over the years the unnecessary efforts, pain, and inefficiency of my static sitting began to interfere with the freedom of my arms and fingers for playing the piano, and I developed repetitive strain injuries that traditional medical approaches couldn’t relieve. Luckily I discovered Feldenkrais, which helped almost instantly when I began to think about and support myself better as a whole, and far more dynamically. Continue reading

Recording update: JCC is under construction

I haven’t been recording for the last few months because my class venue building is under construction and there’s been a lot of background noise. As soon as I get the chance, I’ll be hoping to dive back into my takes on Moshe Feldenkrais’s Esalen lessons, and hopefully continue work on Series 3 (lessons from the Feldenkrais’s classic Awareness Through Movement book).

Thanks for your patience everyone, and your ongoing support in the form of spreading the word about my free online ATM resource and donations (Why donate?).

Mean while I have over 30 hours of free lessons to explore!

Added Spine Like a Chain, Freeing the Shoulder Girdle

I’ve been deep-diving into classic Spine Like a Chain lessons this summer because I’m finding them very helpful for my own personal learning and for my students. I love the way this one in particular relates to posture and the anxiety pattern. Enjoy Spine Like a Chain, Freeing the Shoulder Girdle.

For now I’m trying it out as part of Series 2: Freeing the Spine, Chest, Shoulders, and Neck.

Free ATM project flyer for practitioners

ATM project flyer for Feldenkrais practitionersDear colleagues,

I created an informational flyer for Feldenkrais Practitioners attending the Feldenkrais Guild of North America conference, August 23-27, 2017 in Seattle.

This is a great way to tell professional Feldies about my extensive free resource, including suggestions about lesson planning for class, studying ATM pedagogy, “homework” for FI students, and a few testimonials.

Click here to check it out. Visiting a study or mentoring group soon? Kindly print a few copies to share with our colleagues!

I am able to continue this free lesson project because of the growing user base and the generous individuals who donate. Thanks for helping me spread the word!


An overseas student comes back to Feldenkrais basics

Ever wrestle with an ATM lesson that seemed impossible, only to later discover something new and wonderful? I enjoyed an email exchange with Maria Noel from Uruguay, who was struggling with one of my more challenging audio lessons, Legs Crossed, Freeing the Spine and Chest Part 1. She gave me permission to share our thread.

Notice I initially gave her a firm nudge toward simply not doing the lesson (safety first!) but she persisted in a beautiful, sensitive-to-herself way, and reaped the benefits. Too long, can’t read? Just skip to the bolded sentences below.

For all of us doing ATM lessons I find these kinds of study stories to be a helpful reminder of the value of going back to the Feldenkrais basics. Look what can happen when we explore from a place of kindness and curiosity towards ourselves!

Maria: Very difficult for me to tilt the legs while they are crossed and I do not improve although I have been doing it for a very long time. And impossible to leave them tilted to one side. Continue reading

Added Integrating the Shoulders and Hips, Part 2 (and renamed Part 1)

I’m very pleased with how the last two recordings have turned out. They’re an ATM expression of ideas I’ve been working with closely for years, for myself and my students, and I’m so happy to share them with you!

Here’s Integrating the Shoulders and Hips Part 2.

And please note I renamed the last lesson I published, which was called Clarifying Shoulders and Hips. It’s now called Integrating the Shoulders and Hips Part 1.

My free audio ATM project turns two today!

Two years, 30 free ATM lessons
(and counting…)

Thank you listeners and donors from around the world!

Back on May 11, 2015 I launched my free streaming audio ATM project as a personal passion project. Sharing the life-changing benefits of the Feldenkrais Method as widely as possible — without paywall or password — is my goal. I love the feeling I get from freely sharing something incredibly valuable to me, as well as the learning opportunities I’ve found while creating and uploading these edited, live-recorded classes.

Just this week I finally presented a satisfying new teaching of an important Feldenkrais “basic training” lesson. I studied, recorded, edited, and uploaded this month’s featured new lesson… Read more in the May edition of the Twin Cities Feldenkrais Newsletter.

You can click here to sign up for this monthly email!

Feldenkrais basic training: new lesson added

Photo © International Feldenkrais® Federation Archive, Robert Golden

This week, just in time for the second anniversary of my free streaming audio ATM project, I finally captured a good recording of a basic lesson I’ve been trying to record for a long time: I’m excited to finally publish a lesson that I’ve been trying to capture for a while! It’s a loving, image-rich presentation of a Feldenkrais “basic training” lesson: side-lying, relating shoulder and hip movements. Lots of very fine proximal movements, eventually expanding toward more distal explorations like the photo. It was a magical morning in my weekly class. We had a very full house and we were meeting in a beautiful alternate location — a library with lovely natural light — due to construction near our usual studio.

I’m calling my version Clarifying Shoulders and Hips (click to listen now). Feldies will recognize it as a familiar ATM that I’ve built out a bit toward a more explicit exploration of the self-image than usual with this basic lesson. I’m pleased with the gently introduced variations toward larger, more distal movements. This lesson is often taught entirely with movements so small as to be disorienting for newcomers — just the people we don’t want to turn off since this lesson is so important for them.

I’m hoping to record one or two lessons soon heading directly into circling the arms, and possibly both arms.

Hope you enjoy it, and if you do, please share the word or consider a donation!

National Press: I’m in Experience Life Magazine!

I’m excited to share with you that my work is featured in the April 2017 issue of Experience Life magazine, the national publication of Life Time Fitness Health Clubs! Last fall Maggie Fazeli Fard, Senior Fitness Editor for Experience Life, attended one of my walking workshops and interviewed me for her feature on rediscovering the joys of walking well. The article strikes a really healthy tone about self improvement. I’m quoted several times at the beginning and end, along with various walking experts.

The piece ends with a complete text Feldenkrais Awareness Through Movement lesson I wrote. It’s based on a lesson I taught in the workshop, and there’s a link to a version of it I recorded as one of my free online audio lessons.

Click here to read the main article, “Relearn to Walk.”

The last section is “3 Steps to Better Walking,” the magazine’s title for my Feldenkrais Awareness Through Movement (ATM) lesson. It’s a chair-seated text adaptation I made of my free streaming audio lesson called Your Navigational Pelvis.  Unfortunately in the magazine version there’s a misleading illustration and a text error. Click here for a correction, or to stream Your Navigational Pelvis right now.

Continue reading