I know. I haven’t written a blog in ages. But I have a very good reason. Nick Hern publishers have commissioned me to write a book on Feldenkrais for actors and as I have to write it in between my public Feldenkrais practice, drama school teaching, running and karate training and attempting to be a half decent mother/spouse/sibling/friend to various different people, the book takes up all other available corners in my life.
So this will be short. Continue reading
Brown belt grading for me on monday evening. It feels significant. As Sensei Kevin says: from here you can smell the black belt. But that depends if I get through. I don’t think I ever imagined I would get this far. Now I can’t see myself giving up until I am just clearly too old. Not that I am looking forward to the actual grading: two hours of incredibly hard work which I am just hoping I manage without losing my wits, being overcome with exhaustion or my arms getting too battered to continue. Hopefully I will get through. If I do it will feel fantastic.
I haven’t written for a while. Partly because all my writing time is going into a book I have been commissioned to write on Feldenkrais for actors (very exciting) and partly because I still can’t write about martial arts in anything other than a personal journey kind of way as I am just not remotely an ‘authority’ and I didn’t have any more to say about it for a while. But recently Sensei Kevin asked me something about what I had learnt from Karate and how it was affecting my Feldenkrais work with clients and my Feldenkrais Trainer, Garet Newell, was curious about aspects of it too and as I think I am the only Feldenkrais Practitioner who does Karate (as opposed to other martial arts) I thought this grading was an interesting time to re-collect my thoughts around those good questions. Continue reading
Terrible name for workshop. So sorry. Time pressure.
But I have been working a lot both myself and with many, many people who come to see me for one- to-one (F.I) with this issue of the freedom of the head in order to be able to look around (obviously) but also balance better, move from one position to another better (lying to sitting to standing etc) or one point of balance to another (one leg to the other), be able to use the arms for pushing, pulling, reaching, typing, playing an instrument – even punching. It can be so difficult to do these kinds of things without fixing the head by hanging on somewhere in the neck or right at the junction of neck /torso or neck/shoulders and so limiting possibilities and disrupting the very activity we wish to improve. And then of course there is tension and pain etc that can go along with it. Continue reading
It often surprises people that ‘stretching’ is not a word that is often used in the Feldenkrais Method (in my experience). However there is a rather different – and very valuable – approach to enabling muscles to find their length in the Method. So I put up an article from the New York Times called ‘Reasons Not to Stretch’ (April 2013) about research into static (usually passive) stretching before exercise on my Facebook page a short while ago, because I felt it represented a piece of scientific understanding that is potentially going in our direction. (The link to it is currently broken everywhere so will have to refind the original research or find another way to get the article to post it!)
However, it caused a little bit of a stir, Continue reading
I just found this article on Anxiety and Stress which I wrote a few years ago for the newsletter of the health centre I work at. Trauma and anxiety have been cropping up as a theme in one-to-ones lately and I thought this article still read quite well – though it is a little more formal than my usual ‘blog’ style’ – so here it is: Continue reading
Karate? No. Surely not? Not You, Vic! Is often the response I get, when I finally tell someone I am a student of Go Ju Ryu Karate. If I had said I was doing T’ai Chi or Chi Gung or even Aikido or Judo there would be less surprise. Sometimes the surprise is because I weigh less than 50kg, am built like a bird and am known for being rather the opposite of confrontational. Continue reading
A lot of things get said about the ‘core’. Principally that it must be ‘strong’ and it must be ‘stable’. And of course those can be useful ideas. But it begs a whole lot of questions. Continue reading