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MoonDragon's Alternative Health Information
FELDENKRAIS METHOD
Touch & Movement Therapies


For "Informational Use Only".
For more detailed information, contact your health care provider
about options that may be available for your specific situation.





  • Feldenkrais Method Therapy Description
  • History
  • Evidence & Research
  • Conventional Medical Opinion
  • Consulting A Practitioner




  • FELDENKRAIS METHOD THERAPY DESCRIPTION

    This system of physical re-education, named after Dr. Moshe Feldenkrais, was developed in the 1940s to explore body awareness, improved flexibility and confidence, and enhance well-being. Practitioners believe that certain habitual postures and movements reflect disruptions in the nervous system, and they teach students to identify and avoid them. Gentle manipulation is used in individual lessons to help those with disorders such as cerebral palsy and multiple sclerosis. Dr. Feldenkrais initially taught in Israel and the United States, but Feldenkrais classes are now held worldwide.


    MAIN USES OF FELDENKRAIS METHOD

  • Muscle pain.
  • Back pain.
  • Learning difficulties.
  • Neuromuscular conditions, such as cerebral palsy & multiple sclerosis.
  • Sports injuries.
  • Strokes & paralysis.
  • Improved physical & mental well-being.


  • MoonDragon's Health & Wellness Index: Disorders, Therapy & Nutrition




    HISTORY

    Moshe Feldenkrais was a Russian-born atomic physicist and engineer who worked in France until World War II, when he escaped to England. An enthusiastic soccer player and judo black belt, he began to study human movement when recovering from a serious knee injury. His work was initially based on observation of the spontaneous natural grace of children, which he supplemented with a study of anatomy, physiology, neurology, and psychology. In 1950, he settled in Israel, where he further developed his method and aimed at encouraging ease of movement with "minimum effort and maximum efficiency." He founded the Feldenkrais Institute in Tel Aviv in 1962, and also worked in the US and Europe, using his method to help in many neuromuscular conditions. There are now over 2,500 practitioners worldwide, particularly in Israel, the US, Australia, and Europe.




    EVIDENCE & RESEARCH

    Feldenkrais was noted for his work with severe neuromuscular disturbances, such as cerebral palsy, but the long-term results have not been well studied and there is no direct research on his method. There have been studies in areas such as educational psychology and rehabilitation.




    CONVENTIONAL MEDICAL OPINION

    Most conventional health care practitioners would find the neurological theory behind the Feldenkrais method plausible and should have no serious medical objection to the use of the therapy alongside conventional physiotherapy. However, without medical research, conventional practitioners might hesitate to recommend the method for those with severe disabilities.




    CONSULTING A PRACTITIONER

    Feldenkrais practitioner are essentially teachers of their method, preferring to talk to students or pupils rather than patients. Practitioners believe that our postures and movements reflect the state of our nervous system: for example, somebody suffering from depression often has hunched shoulders. The feldenkrais method aims to improve physical and mental health by reprogramming movement patterns and is based on two approaches, as described below.

    AWARENESS THROUGH MOVEMENT

    The first of these approaches is known as "awareness through movement". It is designed to help you develop body awareness and increased mobility as part of a group by following the practitioners instructions. This learning experience aims to replace old patterns of movement with new ones, improving breathing and circulation. It is said to benefit both mental and physical performance, and is often used by actors, dancers, and musicians.

    Awareness through movement.
    Awareness Through Movement: Simple exercises, designed to improve posture and breathing, are central to the Feldenkrais method.


    FUNCTIONAL INTEGRATION

    The second approach is "functional integration," a one-to-one technique that uses touch and manipulation, and is tailored to your individual needs.

    Functional Integration.
    Functional Integration: Moshe Feldenkrais uses this technique to help a disabled child achieve increased mobility and greater control over limb movements. This manipulation treatment is slow, gentle, and painless.





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