THE FELDENKRAIS METHOD AT THE MCMA

FeldenkraisWebThe MCMA is pleased to offer lessons in the Feldenkrais Method of Somatic Education®, delivered by MCMA faculty member Colin Mehmel, a certified Feldenkrais practitioner.

In the Feldenkrais Method, students learn to move with greater ease so they can better attain their goals, whether those goals are superior musical performance, sitting more comfortably in an office chair or any other task that requires body awareness.

Used by Yo Yo Ma, Yehudi Menuhin, and lauded by Margaret Mead, The Feldenkrais Method®, was developed by physicist, engineer, and martial artist Dr. Moshe Feldenkrais. It uses movement and the intelligence of the human nervous system to teach people how to improve their daily functioning. In a lesson, a practitioner uses verbal cues and gentle touch to help students learn about themselves and sense differences in ease, quality, and organization of movement.

One-on-one (Functional Integration) lessons are individually tailored to the needs and interests of the student and can be sought after for many purposes, from improving range of movement or reducing pain from a chronic condition to being a better athlete or achieving a new level of excellence in one’s music making.

Regardless of the specific request, Feldenkrais lessons help the student to move, think or perform as a better-integrated whole.

“What distinguishes the Feldenkrais Method in my mind is that it is a scientifically devised movement-driven Colin1learning pedagogy,” Colin says. “Feldenkrais students are regularly surprised at how the exploration of movement within this method relates to their comfort and capability, and how it helps alleviate discomfort they’ve been experiencing.”

Musically, people have come for lessons for a variety of reasons, and very often that reason is to improve technique. Musicians of all skill levels have come  wanting to improve their instrumental or vocal tone quality, produce a bigger sound, facilitate more comfortable fingers that can move quickly over keys and strings without pain, improve the quality of their bowing or articulation, or improve the clarity of their conducting.

In addition to improving technique, students of the Feldenkrais Method come to improve the quality of their practice and performance skills. People find that as their movements become more harmonious (small pun intended) they are able to make music more naturally and fluidly, and public performing becomes more comfortable and enjoyable.

Here’s what one student wrote after taking a series of lessons:

“This week I received a letter of admission to McGill for a Master’s in Baroque viola. Prior to taking Functional Integration lessons I would definitely not have had the comfort or confidence levels to pursue that particular impulse. Thank you!”

Do you want to learn more?  Contact the Conservatory to set up a consult and/or session with Colin to experience the freedom of movement and improved function Feldenkrais sessions provide.

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