| Photo by Avrielle Suleiman|
April 7, 2023Yoga & the Feldenkrais Method® From the Editors
Yoga is globally recognized as a mind-body practice that improves your mental equilibrium as well as your physical abilities. The same is true of the Feldenkrais Method of somatic education, which seeks to develop the flexibility of your mind along with the inherent strength and capability of your body. It seems natural that these two rich and profound routes into self knowledge would have something that they could teach each other. Moshe Feldenkrais himself investigated various yoga movements within a handful of his Awareness Through Movement® lessons.
In this issue of SenseAbility, three Feldenkrais® practitioners who are also trained yoga teachers share through their own personal lenses how these two paths both intersect and diverge. Readers more familiar with yoga will learn here how the Feldenkrais approach can create new possibilities for comfortable practice of yoga asanas.In her interview with Seth Dellinger, practitioner Faye Berton talks about how she uses the exploratory nature of Feldenkrais to refresh yoga practice when it becomes overly routine, including suggesting a unique approach to the classic posture of Downward Dog. Rachel Potasznik writes about how the Feldenkrais Method helped her to recover from injury caused by a yoga teacher’s “adjustment” and underlines the importance of the student’s autonomy in movement learning. Barbara Anderson, who also found relief from injury after discovering the Feldenkrais Method, writes about her development of Awareness Based Yoga and shares a short video demonstration of how she integrates these two systems.
Jane, Joe and Seth Improving Yoga Asana with Feldenkrais®
A Video Interview with Faye Berton
This month Seth Dellinger interviews Faye Berton about how “Yoga and Feldenkrais are for me inextricably interwoven.” Watch Now About Faye: Faye has been teaching yoga since 1988 and holds the highest Yoga Alliance certification. She is a Feldenkrais practitioner and an Ayurvedic Institute graduate. She founded the Laurel Yoga Studio in Minnesota, and Casa Lalita Retreat Center in Mexico. After 25 years teaching asana, she developed the Fluid Strength Yoga Practice. She lives in St. Paul, where she teaches Fluid Strength, does private sessions in The Feldenkrais Method®, and develops health/wellness workshops. Faye has also authored two books: The Fluid Strength Yoga Practice: Vitalizing the Body and Resting the Mind, and Embodied Ayurveda for Yoga Practitioners: Increasing the Healing Potential of Yoga Her website is faye-berton.com My Journey from Yoga to Feldenkrais® and Back Again
Photo by David WhippleBy Rachel PotasznikFrom a very young age I relished any kind of movement – dancing, running, climbing, biking, gymnastics, etc. Now in my early 70’s, I still love movement and am passionate about helping others to move better and feel joy in their bodies! I began to study and practice yoga in my late 30’s in addition to my other regular physical activities. My yoga practice began in an attempt to address increasing discomfort from scoliosis which was discovered in my adolescence. My studies were primarily in the Iyengar tradition…
Read More About Rachel: Rachel Potasznik is a Guild Certified Feldenkrais Practitioner CM, Certified Yoga Teacher, who among other activities enjoys, swimming, dancing, travel, cooking and nature. She also has a Juris Doctor, practiced law and held court for over thirty years. She served in the U.S. Peace Corps in Botswana, where she helped to establish and manage a community based wildlife project. She lives in New York City and since the pandemic has been teaching Feldenkrais lessons online. She is also trained as a teacher of Bones for Life, Ruth Alon’s Movement Intelligence program.Her website is www.betterbodylab.com
Awareness Based Yoga – Combining Feldenkrais® and Yoga Photo by by Barbara AndersonBy Barbara Anderson
At age 15 I found Richard Hittleman’s “28 days of Yoga” in a local grocery store and began teaching myself yoga. Yoga felt so familiar to me, as if I had done it many times before. But 10 years later when I developed a severe lower back problem, yoga didn’t make a dent in the pain. But then nothing else did either.
My “lower back’ problem began when I started studying dance. I was taking one of my very first modern dance classes in an unheated, old church in the winter in Chicago. The teacher had us sit on the ground to cool down. Then he opened a huge window behind me. I felt that freezing air hit my back. That night I was in the emergency room bent over and unable to stand up…
Read More About Barbara:
Teaching people to move better has been Barbara’s passion and profession for 35 years. Holding a M.A. in Dance, Barbara currently teaches online yoga and Awareness through Movement® classes. As a Feldenkrais practitioner Barbara is partial to the profound effects that slow, small and gentle movement can have in relieving pain and improving performance. Her clientele is mainly people over 60. Together they move younger every year.
See Barbara’s class schedule and get her free booklet on Awareness-based yoga at bodyandsoulkc.com
ResourcesFaye Berton has a series of 7 free short videos ‘The Fluid Strength Yoga Practice‘ available on her website. A video demonstration of Barbara Anderson’s Awareness Based Yoga.
Click here to watchBarbara also offers a package of classes for purchase: Happy Hips and a Healthy Lower Back and for Comfy Shoulders.
Did You Know?
You can access free lessons on Feldenkrais.com Listen to them nowYou can rewatch previous SenseAbility interviews on our Youtube Channel
You can find hundreds of Feldenkrais® classes taught online. Go here to find a class you will enjoy. The following are service marks, trademarks, collective, or certification marks of the Feldenkrais Guild® of North America in the US: Feldenkrais Guild®, Feldenkrais®, Feldenkrais Method®, Functional Integration®, FI®, Awareness Through Movement®, ATM®, Guild Certified Feldenkrais Teacher®, GCFT(CM), Guild Certified Feldenkrais PractitionerCM, GCFP(CM), Certified Feldenkrais Awareness Through Movement Teacher(CM), CFATMT(CM), Feldenkrais Journal(TM), Friends of Feldenkrais(SM), and FGNA Feldenkrais Method Logo.
The following are service marks, trademarks, or certification marks of the Feldenkrais Guild® of North America in Canada: Feldenkrais GuildTM, Feldenkrais®, Feldenkrais® Method or Feldenkrais Method(TM), Awareness Through Movement®, ATM(TM), Prise de conscience par le mouvement(MD), Functional Integration®, FI(TM), L’intégration fonctionnelle(MD), Guild Certified Feldenkrais Teacher(TM) , GCFT(TM), Guild Certified Feldenkrais Practitioner(TM), GCFP(TM), Certified Feldenkrais Awareness Through Movement Teacher(TM), CFATMT(TM), Friends of Feldenkrais(SM), Feldenkrais Journal(TM), and FGNA Feldenkrais Method Logo.
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