Falling in love with falling … or learning to love the floor

How do you know you are getting old?
When you bend over to tie up you shoelaces you start to ask yourself:
“What else can I do while I’m down here?”

From fit young dancers and athletes to the elderly, bending over to reach down or go down to sit or lie on the floor and getting back up again presents a challenge to us all. While the motivations might be different, we can all benefit from inquiring into how we can make this easier for ourselves.

In a very profound way I consider investing in such an inquiry to be the very best form of health insurance. One of the biggest indicators for the elderly losing their ability to live independently is breaking a bone after a fall. The figures speak for themselves. One thing is for sure, we are all growing older.

The core practice for this workshop is a simple developmental sequence that begins in stillness tracing sensation through the body and releasing weight into the ground and transitions into gentle rolling and sliding on the floor. From there we explore how pushing into the floor creates the possibility to begin to come away from the floor towards and into sitting. And from there, awakening to the possibility to orient to the world around us stimulates reaching into space and the possibility to come up to standing.

Some dancers will recognise this as a variation of the developmental warm-up for contact improvisation. In this workshop however, this is our focus, and I’ve found that anyone of any age, senior citizens included, can enjoy and benefit from exploring this material in depth – even contact dancers!

As in all BodySchool workshops, well explore our anatomy, work with images and Feldenkrais Awareness Through Movement classes to continually clarify and bring more ease to this basic sequence.

And of course reversing the process creates the possibility to transition from standing softly back down into the floor. As the ability to receive support gets clearer then the lighter, easier and more powerful our sense of ourselves in all our activity can become. And while standing, then subjectively the floor doesn’t seem so far away, and the possibility of bringing ourself down to meet it, falling, becomes less scary, inviting maybe, and possibly even a pleasure.

Upcoming BodySchool Workshops

Berlin, Germany
BodySchool: Authentic Movement and the Feldenkrais Method
5-7th January 2018

By | BodySchool, Past Workshops, Workshops
BodySchool: Authentic Movement and the Feldenkrais Method In the frame of Winter Tanz 2017/18 In some ways, the Feldenkrais Method and Authentic Movement adopt contrasting approaches to supporting our growth as humans. While both encourage us to listen to ourselves and develop a respectful attitude to learning, the first confronts us...
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Copenhagen, Denmark
BodySchool : BodySchool : Exploring The Feldenkrais Method
23/24th September 2017

By | BodySchool, Past Workshops, Workshops
BodySchool : Exploring The Feldenkrais Method In this weekend workshop, we'll explore some Feldenkrais Awareness Through Movement (ATM) classes. We'll see how to relate the movements of a particular class to everyday life as well as considering the general application of the skills we learn through practicing the method. The...
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Koli, Finland
BodySchool Weekend Retreat: Feldenkrais and Authentic Movement
8-10th September 2017

By | BodySchool, Past Workshops, Workshops
BodySchool Weekend Retreat: Feldenkrais and Authentic Movement In some ways, the Feldenkrais Method and Authentic Movement take opposite approaches to supporting our growth as humans. While both encourage us to listen to ourselves and develop a respectful attitude to learning, the first confronts us to recognise our perceptual and kinaesthetic habits,...
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Vienna, Austria
BodySchool : Making friends with scoliosis
20/21st May 2017

By | BodySchool, Past Workshops, Workshops
BodySchool : Making friends with scoliosis Scoliosis is most commonly thought of as a lateral asymmetry of the spine that shows up as a sideways curve. But considered three-dimensionally, it's more like a twisting or coiling of the spine that produces the characteristic two-dimensional curve. Since nobody has a perfectly straight spine, and...
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