Wednesday, November 9, 2011

The Fuzz Speech

This video is just so freaking cool. Cool enough to get a repost on my blog. If you're curious at all about how the human body works and the importance of stretching you should definitely watch. Don't get fuzzy! Keep On Moving!

Who Doesn't Love A Cute Baby Video

I love this video. I'm not quite sure why I love it so much, but I've watched it about 10 times. I guess I find the message really beautiful. The video, shot to demonstrate the principles of the Feldenkrais technique, shows a baby moving through it's first year of life. When developing movement patterns, a baby starts small, investigates and explores, takes rests, gradually develops the support, refines the movement, and later moves on to bigger things. I think this is a helpful reminder to adults, no matter what sort of movement practice we have. So often clients expect to start with advanced exercises, but it's so essential to first explore the building blocks that make up that movement or exercise.


Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Nice Article on Alexander Technique

I recently found this interesting article on NPR about the Alexander Technique. My first experience with Alexander Technique was when I was around 15 years old. I was at Interlochen Arts Academy and I heard that some of the music students were taking AT lessons to improve their practice or to get some relief from chronic pain. Intrigued, I signed up for a lesson and I remember how I felt afterwards. I felt a sensation as if I were floating; walking seemed effortless; I felt taller; more relaxed; and amazed that one session could do so much with what seemed like such little physical exertion. I am not an Alexander Technique teacher but it certainly has influenced my teaching and my own movement practice. When working with someone with chronic pain or tension, I think it is important to look at 'why' and 'how' it got there in the process of trying to fix it. For example, if your shoulder is chronically tight you can stretch it as much as you like, but you also need to bring some attention to your usage on a regular basis or your shoulder is going to end up tight again. Awareness behind movement is what creates change as the study in the article shows.

Monday, February 28, 2011

What constitutes an intermediate class?

Today, 10 minutes into my level 2 (intermediate) yoga class, a new student (to my class) popped his head up from uttanasana and asked me, "This isn't the level 2 vinyasa flow is it?"  I responded "yes" and he responded back in a puzzled manner, "but it's so different from the class I took Saturday."  It was easier than he expected.  An employee of the studio explained to me after that the sat. class he was referring to is a strong power vinyasa flow (even though it has the same label as mine).  There are many teachers at this studio and everyone has their own interpretation for what the levels are and unless we were each given a specific syllabus to follow there's always going to be variation.

This really made me wonder what constitutes an intermediate class?   I've always thought that an intermediate class meant you could give the student a bit more freedom (since they have a basic understanding of the asanas and practice) and offer more sophisticated instruction.  For instance, I've gone back to taking very simple classes, and I find that there's so much to understand even in the simplest of movements.  Going back to simpler asanas/movements allows me to go deeper into the postures and still gives me a challenge both mentally and physically.  Can you teach a class of basic asana vocabulary and call it intermediate?   Are some asanas inherently more advanced?

Thoughts anyone??

Saturday, February 26, 2011

What do you enjoy most from a class?

Hi everyone!    I am developing a new class and want to hear from you about what you enjoy most from a class?  This can be certain movement, pacing, structure, atmosphere, or anything else you can think of.  The class is in its infant stage, but will likely combine movement from different modalities, ie. yoga, pilates, modern dance, bartenieff, etc. 

I really appreciate your help!  :)