The Feldenkrais method was created by Dr. Moshe Feldenkrais, a Russian-born physicist, engineer and educator, who developed his technique in response to his own diagnoses. The method he created is based on principles of physics and biometrics, and observing how human physiology works in relation to the mind and the body. Those who apply the Feldenkrais method ask patients to come in for a session, either with a group or individually. Practitioners assist in correcting improper posture or movement by moving parts of the body slowly into positions that help with flexibility and coordination. Sessions typically last from 30-60 minutes while clients are sitting, standing, or lying on the floor. The practitioner will often use pillows, rollers, blankets, or other props that support the posture of the patient and help facilitate proper movement. The Feldenkrais method is usually performed for those who suffer from fibromyalgia and other conditions such as stroke, multiple sclerosis, brain tumors or other trauma to the head. Patients with orthopedic problems may use the method to better understand posture and movement as well as to decrease their painful symptoms. Most of the movements consist of ordinary, functional activities that occur normally in human development (standing, sitting, and reaching). Other exercises include “abstract explorations of joint, muscle and postural design.” The exercises have a way of “re-educating” the brain and nervous system to develop new ways of moving or perceiving the body during movement. Proprioception is a big factor in the Feldenkrais method, which is simply being aware of the movements your body is making in comparison with the other parts of your body. The goal of the Feldenkrais method is to teach movements that are more functional and to discover the quality of positive change that is happening within your body. Another factor in the Feldenkrais method is to improve overall mood and well-being. The experience of better posture while sitting or standing can also have the ability to improve a person’s mood and well-being. Learning how to focus on your abilities, rather than on your disability can be empowering. Since the Feldenkrais method is an easy, non-invasive procedure in treating your fibromyalgia, it is often the most popular in the realm of natural treatment. The Feldenkrais method has numerous exercises that you can use to treat your fibromyalgia. For example, here is a common Feldenkrais exercise:
- Sitting on the edge of a chair with a flat seat, slowly turn your upper body, as if to look to the right a little bit.
- Then return slowly to face the forward direction and rest for a moment before doing the movement again.
- Keep your feet flat on the floor during this exercise and repeat the movement 6-10 times, or as necessary.
- The idea is to try and notice how far to the right you can see, without feeling strain or discomfort.