woman tumbling
Photos © 2009 Barbara Hohenadl
Heidelberg, Germany

FeldSciNet for Researchers and Practitioners

FeldSciNet is for people interested in actively doing or supporting research concerning the Feldenkrais Method® of somatic education. It is a space in which Feldenkrais practitioners with research interests and researchers who are exploring human development in educational, clinical, and research circles can all cross paths. Through this forum, we can discover common interests, combine resources, and share our findings with others.

Featured  Article

Bodywork as systemic and inter-enactive competence: participatory process management in Feldenkrais® Method and Zen Shiatsu

By Patricia A. Buchanan, Feldenkrais® training program graduate

Please note: I submitted this for FSN member Martin Luger. I am not an author on this fine paper. Please contact Martin.

Feldenkrais and Shiatsu enable somatic learning through continuous tactile coupling, a real-time interpersonal dynamic unfolding in a safe dyadic sphere. The first part of our micro-ethnographic study draws on process vignettes and subjective theories to demonstrate how bodywork is infused with systemic sensitivities and awareness for non-linear process management. Expressed in dynamic systems parlance, both disciplines foster metastability, adaptivity, and self-organization in the client’s somato- personal system by progressively reconfiguring systemic dispositions, i.e., an attractor landscape. Doing so requires a keen embodied apperception of hierarchies of somato- systemic order. Bodyworkers learn to explore these in their eigenfunction (joints, muscles, fascia), discriminate coordinative organization in small ensembles, and monitor large-scale dynamic interplay. The practitioner’s “extended body” reaching forth into the client’s through a resonance loop eventually becomes part of this. Within a bodywork session, practitioners modulate this hierarchical functional architecture. Their ability for sensorially staying apace of systemic emergence allows them to respond to minute changes and customize reactions in a zone of proximal development (dynamic immediacy). They stimulate the client’s system with a mix of perturbing and stabilizing interventions that oscillate between eigenfunctions and their coordinative integration. Practical knowledge for “soft-assembling” non-linear synergies is crucial for this (cumulative local effects, high-level functions “slaving” the system, etc.). The paper’s second part inventorizes the bodyworker’s operative tool-box—micro-skills providing the wherewithal for context- intelligent intervention. Practitioners deploy “educated senses” and a repertoire of hands-on techniques (grips, stretches, etc.) against a backdrop of somatic habits (proper posture, muscle activation, gaze patterns, etc.). At this level, our study addresses a host of micro-skills through the lens of enactive cognitive science.

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Featured  Book  Review

The Brain That Changes Itself

Reviewed By Ryan Hoffman, Feldenkrais® training program student

This book presents a lucidly written and accessible introduction to the clinical applications of current models in neuroscience. Injuries or other challenges that were previously thought to be incurable are now being treated, leveraging some of the cutting-edge research. Unfortunately, the book relies on some flawed premises, makes some very questionable assertions, including the assertion of many parallels between psychoanalysis and neuroscience. The book is entertaining but not a good introduction to the underlying neuroscience.

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Newest  Project


By Robert Webb, Feldenkrais® training program graduate

In this project a 30-week program of two ATM lessons per week will be provided to people aged 55-75 who have Osteoarthritis of the hip, knee or ankle.
Participants will be assessed at the Rehabilitation Sciences Research Centre, Melbourne, Australia before and after the program to determine outcomes. Tests include 3-dimensional gait analysis and leg power test, pre-post testing for function (timed up and go, four square step test, and 6 minute walk test) quality of life and activity level.

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Coming soon! Request for Grant Proposals from the Esther Thelen Research and Education Fund.

Plan now to share your research and scholarship with us at the Feldenkrais Method Conference in the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains of Asheville, NC, July 7-10, 2016. Stay tuned for the Call for Abstracts in 2016.

Become a supporter of the Thelen Fund today. Here's how …

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