Today I was reminded of the difference between an Awareness Through Movement workshop and other ways of working with the body. Or more correctly, with the body-mind. Although the workshops can be tiring and this is rarely due to the physical exertion. It’s the mental effort and focus on making moves that we have forgotten we can do.
The re-wiring of the neural networks require only small movements together with focused attention. The guidance is to keep movements small – this can be as little as a movement of a centimetre. Veronica invites us to pay gentle attention while playfully exploring the guided moves: notice how that might feel, the way things change might feel different for each participant. There is no right way. Explore.
This approach cuts across so much of how we do things. Veronica might repeat: do small movements, less than you can. Avoid pain and keep movements small. Even knowing this, I can sometimes forget. When you try Feldenkrais Awareness through Movement , perhaps you’ll see what I mean.
For some of us this afternoon’s workshop with Veronica meant that after the first ‘lesson’ we were walking with ease, with a greater sense of balance and flow. One participant found the relaxation and exploration of movements led to a feeling of being more grounded, another with a feeling of being taller, more relaxed. Engaging shoulders, arms and allowing the pelvis to move, all part of the awakening of the nervous system to the potential for engaging in new non-habitual patterns.
Many of us left the workshop with the sense that walking could be lighter. more balanced, more flowing, a fully engaged and graceful way to move .