What is Feldenkrais® and what is neuroplasticity?
Simply put, neuroplasticity is the capacity of the brain to change throughout our lives. The Feldenkrais Method harnesses the brain's ability to reorganize synaptic connections to bring about physical and metaphysical improvements. Through slow, gentle movements, and bringing one's awareness to how different parts of the body move, habitual tensions can be replaced with more optimal movement patterns. As the brain learns new habits, old tensions and chronic pains are either greatly reduced or disappear completely. (For more information on Feldenkrais and neuroplasticity we recommend Norman Doidge's book, The Brain's Way of Healing.)
How is Feldenkrais different from health disciplines (e.g. PT, Yoga) and can I do Feldenkrais in conjunction with other practices?
Yes, you can absolutely use Feldenkrais as complement to your other wellness or exercise practices. Unlike most other modalities, our main tools are comfort and pleasure. We practice mindfulness— not mindless repetition. We don't believe in “no pain, no gain”— but “do less.” Our postures (and pains) are a result of myriad factors: injuries, surgeries, accidents, sitting at desks, using computers, and being good, just to mention a few. A Feldenkrais approach considers the whole person in their whole environment, and aims to integrate that person considering every relevant factor.
What is 5 Lines Fitness and how is it different from other forms of exercise?
5 Lines Fitness courses are based on methods developed by martial artists over centuries for improving fitness, performance, and focus. 5 Lines has adapted these movements using Feldenkrais principles of efficiency, learning and integrated movement to develop three course levels for people at different points in their journey toward increased vitality. Most exercise methods promote extreme effort and a “no pain no gain” attitude. 5 Lines promotes a different approach - moderate exertion with a focus on efficient, healthy movements that stimulate the body's natural process of strengthening and creating health.
Each class is limited to three participants so the training can be tailored to individual needs. A course will provide you with a daily routine you can do anywhere with nothing but a little space and your own body. You will learn integrated, efficient, whole-body movement, breathing, and meditation techniques that promote vitality, strength and flexibility while connecting you to your hara - the power center of your body that martial arts traditions have been learning to strengthen for centuries and that recent fitness movements have started to call the “core.” Rather than feeling spent after a workout, you'll finish your 5 Lines routine feeling more connected to yourself and ready to take on anything.
Do you take insurance?
We do not. Feldenkrais is viewed as an educational system with therapeutic benefits. Some insurance providers will reimburse for visits, or you may be able to use funds if you have a flexible medical spending account.
What do I wear?
Comfortable clothes. We recommend wearing (or bringing along) clothes that you would be comfortable lying down in and moving in. For instance, some people find that belt loops or rivets of jeans are uncomfortable when lying on the table. Nothing too restrictive or revealing. We also suggest layers so that you're sure not to be too cold or too warm.
How many sessions until I feel better?
It depends! Some people feel an amazing improvement after one session. However, like other types of therapy, you will see more benefits as your process unfolds over time. Your nervous system has been acquiring habits over the course of your lifetime. The type of learning that allows those habits to change typically takes 10 or more sessions.
How should I expect to feel after my first session?
It depends! Different people have different reactions to their first (and subsequent) sessions. Some people feel different in a generalized way: taller, lighter, more 3-dimensional, more optimistic or enlivened. Some feel a more specific difference: a miraculous disappearance of back or knee pain, a feeling of heaviness/relaxation in the shoulders, a sense that the entire foot is now making contact with the floor, or an ability to hold oneself upright without effort. Other people don't feel much of a change at first, though they usually feel a meaningful difference after 2 or 3 sessions. It is also normal to feel confused. We are in the business of changing habits. Habits are, by definition, what we know. If you feel confused it is because your habitual way of doing something (reaching or walking, etc.) has been influenced during the session, and is no longer readily accessible. Now is your chance to relearn how to do that movement in a way that is more optimal for you.