Spiral Power Class (Tuesdays)

How will your life be different when you can:

  • Roll over smoothly and effortlessly in bed – without waking yourself (or your partner, if you have one)
  • Get out of bed (or out of a chair or even up off the floor) in a smooth, elegant spiral
  • Feel the ground under your feet pushing up through your skeleton so you can hold your head high with ease
  • Walk, run, or exercise with powerful, flowing movements
  • Experience your arms and hands being free and supported* (more…)

Spiral Power Class (Wednesdays)

How will your life be different when you can:

  • Roll over smoothly and effortlessly in bed – without waking yourself (or your partner, if you have one)
  • Get out of bed (or out of a chair or even up off the floor) in a smooth, elegant spiral
  • Feel the ground under your feet pushing up through your skeleton so you can hold your head high with ease
  • Walk, run, or exercise with powerful, flowing movements
  • Experience your arms and hands being free and supported* (more…)

Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes, Hands and Fingers

Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes, Hands and Fingers

A free workshop in the Richard Ehrman Memorial Feldenkais® Series at Berklee.

Teacher: Helen Miller, GCFP

In this Feldenkrais and drawing workshop, we will begin by drawing our attention to the subtle and revealing movement of our musical instruments. We might ask – as you have no doubt asked many times before – how do we hold these instruments? How do we hold ourselves, our hands, as we play? Where does the skillful manipulation of our fingers begin? In our hands or in our heads? What about the pelvis, the undulation of the spine, the opening and closing of the eyes and the connection of our feet to the floor? (more…)


Spiral Arms, Nimble Hands, Supple Back

Spiral Arms, Nimble Hands, Supple Back

A spiral reach creates Adam on the ceiling of the Sistene Chapel

Would you like to improve the strength and agility of your fingers? Learn to move from your back.

Would you like a more comfortable back and neck? Try getting your arms involved.

Everything is connected to everything in the human body.  What may look like a limitation in one place is in reality a limitation of the whole system. The good news is that, by the same token, an improvement anywhere can be an improvement throughout the whole system — if we pay attention to the connections. (more…)



Breathing retreat at World Fellowship Center, Conway, NH

Breathing retreat at World Fellowship Center, Conway, NH

Quick info:

Dates: July 3 – 6!

If you’ve ever been to a Feldenkrais Awareness Through Movement class, you’ve probably experienced the wonderful, and at times profound, changes that can take place through this method in your body and in your sense of self.

Now imagine what could happen over the course of four whole days, as you go deeper and deeper into your senses, and flesh out the map of your self-image.

And now imagine that you are spending those four days in a beautiful location, exploring and improving your breath!

(more…)


“Open Phones” – What do you want to learn?

Awareness Through Movmement

I generally choose a theme for my classes – breathing, or sitting, or spirals, or whatever – and take care to build one lesson on the other in a coherent series, so that week flows into week in a coherent manner. But I’ve noticed that this is difficult to do over the summer, because all our schedules are in flux, and we can’t expect to be at all, or even most, of an eight- or ten- or even six-class series.

So in the summers I like to offer what I call “Open Phones” in my weekly classes. Like a talk-show, when there’s no set theme, and the callers – that’s you! – get to set the agenda.

So what do you want to learn? What do you want to improve in your movement? Just drop in and let me know! Maybe we’ll all get interested in it enough that I will offer an extended exploration of the topic sometime in the future….

Please note: there will be no class on Tuesday 8/5, or Wednesday 8/6 and 8/27


“Open Phones” – What do you want to learn?

Awareness Through Movmement

I generally choose a theme for my classes – breathing, or sitting, or spirals, or whatever – and take care to build one lesson on the other in a coherent series, so that week flows into week in a coherent manner. But I’ve noticed that this is difficult to do over the summer, because all our schedules are in flux, and we can’t expect to be at all, or even most, of an eight- or ten- or even six-class series.

So in the summers I like to offer what I call “Open Phones” in my weekly classes. Like a talk-show, when there’s no set theme, and the callers – that’s you! – get to set the agenda.

So what do you want to learn? What do you want to improve in your movement? Just drop in and let me know! Maybe we’ll all get interested in it enough that I will offer an extended exploration of the topic sometime in the future….

Please note: there will be no class on Tuesday 8/5, or Wednesday 8/6 and 8/27


Embodied Teshuvah: a course of transformation for the High Holidays

Embodied Teshuvah: a course of transformation for the High Holidays

Josh blowing shofar
When:  Tuesday evenings 6:30-8:30pm
Aug 26 (1st of Elul) to Sept 30 (6 Tishrei)
(No class Sept 23. New students welcome 9/6)

Where:   Havurat Shalom
113 College Ave, Somerville, MA

Cost: suggested donation – $120

Click here to register

This class will give you space to explore what kind of change you feel you need in your life this year. Through a combination of Jewish text study, ritual, and Feldenkrais Awareness Through Movement lessons (with a bit of influence from Taoist and Zen teachings) we will create the conditions necessary for that change to begin.

 

A space for personal preparation

Have you ever had the experience that, as the Days of Awe progress, you’re just beginning to touch something, just beginning to see and feel your life for what it really is, just beginning to realize what it is that you need to do to really turn over a new leaf in the new year … and then … it’s all over. The final shofar blows, and … you feel lighter! The Holidays have worked their magic once again.

But what of that glimpse? What was that possibility of redemption? Of transformation? Of some fundamental shift in your relationship to the way you inhabit your life?

It is for this reason that we are invited to begin the process of self-examination a full month before Rosh Hashanah. To “prime the pump” as it were, in order to discover what it is that we feel the need to address in our lives before the gates open, so that we can allow the magic of the season to work more deeply upon us, and help us make the changes we need to make in our lives.

A way in to the liturgy

.אשמנו. בגדנו. גזלנו

“We have sinned. We have been traitors. We have stolen.”

-High Holiday liturgy

So you come to High Holiday services for that magic. You are moved by the mood, the music and singing, and the words of the service leaders. But have you ever looked at the words of the prayers and felt alienated by what looks like a theology of reward and punishment? Have you ever felt yourself balk at the breast-beating, ostensibly in contrition for transgressing laws created by men (yes, men) and attributed to a God you’re not sure you believe in?

On its face, some of the theology of the High Holidays can be quite challenging to those of us who have come to understand spiritual growth as a function of self-acceptance and self-empowerment. This class will look at some of the central prayers of the High Holiday liturgy and see how they can be – and have been – read and understood in a deeply and genuinely empowering way.

Why Embodied?

וְתִפְתַּח אֶת סֵפֶר הַזִּכְרוֹנוֹת וּמֵאֵלָיו יִקָּרֵא וְחוֹתָם יַד כָּל אָדָם בּו

“You will open the Book of Remembrance, and its content will speak for itself, for it is sealed by the hand of each person”

– High Holiday liturgy

“The truth of our lives is the closest thing to us there is, as the Torah reminds us. It is right in front of our eyes. It is embedded in our bodies”

– Alan Lew.

Our bodies tell the truth about our lives, if we can only learn to listen. Paying attention to our felt sense of ourselves will reveal to us what really matters in our lives, in a way that no amount of intellectual exploration can accomplish.

At its deepest level, the Feldenkrais Method invites us to notice ourselves. To notice our actions on the most fundamental and subtle level: in the way we make every single movement. As we do that, we also become aware of our assumptions about ourselves and about these habits, and realize – finally – that we are not our habits. Our habits do not define us. They are not truths of our bodies beyond our control like the shape of our bones, nor are they immutable aspects of our personalities. The way we have always done things is not our destiny, is not how we must do things forever. By becoming aware of ourselves in action, we open ourselves to choice. We open ourselves to Change. We open ourselves to Life.

In the language of the High Holidays, this process is called Teshuvah: Repentance, Return.register button shiny blue


Dynamic Exercises in Sitting Posture

Dynamic Exercises in Sitting Posture

Evolution and devolution - the challenge of work and sitting posture

We did not evolve to be sitting creatures, and certainly not sitting in chairs and staring at a computer screen. Yet so many of us spend so much of our time doing just that, and most of us know that we don’t do it in an optimal way. We don’t need a physical therapist or a mom to tell us that there is something wrong in our sitting posture: we can feel it in our aching backs and sore shoulders and necks (though we may need a professional to point out to us that our so-called repetitive strain injuries are also linked to the way we work at our computers).

The key to improving your sitting posture lies not in the position in which you sit, but in the way you move while you sit.  Not just how you move your hands as you reach for the mouse (though that’s important too) but how you organize your back and move your pelvis, how you breathe, and how you receive the support of the floor through your feet and of the chair through your bottom.

This series of Awareness Through Movement lessons will teach you how. We’ll learn to relax our shoulders and reach easily with our arms, and we’ll also learn a few movements inspired by Sounder Sleep® Day-Tamers® that specifically work to counter the stress most of us experience during our sitting times. Some of the lessons will be in sitting, and some will be mostly on the floor, sitting only at the beginning and end as reference points. We’ll even do some lessons with a table, which you can use with your desk at work.

All lessons will be recorded for review at home, but there will also be time in class to review and/or jot down parts of the lessons that seem especially useful as “awareness breaks” to be practiced during the day.


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