Tag Archives: dance

More about Back Pain: Crooked Author Interviewed

If you’re an adult, you likely have had back pain or you know someone who does. It’s a sad fact of contemporary life.

Students in a ballet class. Dancers may think back pain's inevitable, even when they're young. It's not!Even folks you’d think would be pain-free, like elite dancers and athletes, may be moving through it. Someone told me a couple of years ago that half the first-year students at one of the best US dance programs come to campus with back pain. And these students are professional caliber. Heartbreaking! And unnecessary.

We can talk for quite a while—and if you’ve been in one of my classes, you know I do!—about why back pain is endemic in our society.

Front cover of CROOKED: Outwitting the Back Pain Industry & Getting on the Road to RecoveryIn 2017, investigative reporter Cathryn Jacobson Ramin published a groundbreaking book on the “back pain industry”—a disgusting phrase if ever I heard one. Her own pain led her to look for help. She found a whole lot of stuff which doesn’t help, and can harm. And she found some modalities which do help: the Feldenkrais Method® is one. (If you’ve not read Crooked: Outwitting the Back Pain Industry and Getting on the Road to Recovery, do! Aside from the great info, it’s a good read.)

It turns out that Cathryn has practiced Feldenkrais continuously since publishing Crooked. She was interviewed recently for the Feldenkrais website. She said: “I’ve sent countless people to Feldenkrais. I mean it is my ‘go-to,’ absolutely… it is a matter of gaining confidence that you can move and you will not die. And that is what Feldenkrais does: to actually tell your brain that you are in no imminent danger and things will improve.” Read the full interview here.

If you know someone living with back pain, share the interview with them. Or visit the Crooked website, which is chock-a-block with resources to help change their trajectory.

The takeaway: we don’t have to live in misery. We don’t have to suck it up, or push through, or grit our teeth. If we choose, we can move away from pain.

Anti-Fragile Walking Step by Step

Join us for this 2-day workshop

Andrew Gibbons working with a student.

Would you like to walk with greater ease and pleasure? Most of us walk with deeply grooved habits, repeating movements that lead to pain and stiffness. If we study these movements, we can create stability and integrity in our walk. With practice, we can clarify and ennoble an action we’ve done unconsciously our entire lives. Taught by Andrew Gibbons, GCFP.

In this 2-day course, you’ll raise your walking from an unconscious habit to an informed practice. You’ll emerge with a clearer perspective on how walking works and the art of transferring weight elegantly from leg to leg. You’ll learn what, why, and how to practice with greater specificity. Then walking can become a path to health. It can be your zen, your gym, and your joy. Limit: 25 participants. Room for 10 more as 5/1.

Who Benefits

  • Teachers & practitioners of somatic modalities: Feldenkrais Method®, yoga, Alexander Technique and more
  • Martial artists
  • Performing artists
  • Anyone who’d like to stand and walk with greater efficiency and pleasure

Feedback from Last Year

Instructor Andrew Gibbons works with a student in last year's workshop.The work Andrew has done is critical in our everyday life and applicable to the many other relative aspects of upright movement.

I better understand how my feet support my skeleton, and when properly organized and with mindful attention I can improve my organization. I learned just how much power I can have when my bones have proper support from down below.

Three Crucial Moments

The course focuses on three crucial moments in walking. These moments will set the parameters to test and improve your skeletal support, muscular efficiency, and balance.

As a participant you will learn:

  1. How walking is learned, and how learning is walked.
  2. Why your soft tissue cannot survive a disorganized skeleton.
  3. To see and sense shearing forces that poor walking creates, and learn how to move better by choice.
  4. Key relationships in the foot, ankle, and knee that every good walk maintains.
  5. “Do-anywhere” practices that help you tune your walking balance and maintain it throughout the day.
  6. How to use observational skills to improve by observing other people and yourself.
  7. Awareness Through Movement® practices that deepen your understanding and skill.

Instructor Andrew Gibbons is a Guild Certified Feldenkrais Teacher in New York City. He’s spent the last 8 years uncovering the moments in walking that tell us the most about our posture and self organization. In his private practice, he teaches the humans of New York how to organize themselves better for the second half of life than they did for the first. Andrew has been a Feldenkrais Teacher since 2003. Now an assistant trainer, he’s on the staff of Jeff Haller’s IOPS Academy, a graduate program for Feldenkrais teachers in NYC and Seattle.

Saturday & Sunday, June 2 & 3, 10am-4 pm.

Advance: $295.
Late: $325 After May 1.
At door: $350.
Register on Brown Paper Tickets.
Or send a check payable to “Dallas Feldenkrais” to: 3515 Cedar Springs Rd., Dallas, TX 75219

Gaga & Toolbox Workshop with Amy Morrow

Join us for a 3-day Gaga experience for dancers & people in Dallas.
“While Gaga is a serious new way of training the body, it is also about connecting to pleasure and. . . realizing that there’s nothing wrong with being silly.”
— Gia Kourlas,
The New York Times
People explore Gaga movement lying on the floor.

Gaga is a new way of gaining knowledge and self-awareness through your body. PHOTO: Gadi Dagon.

You’ll be guided using a series of evocative movement instructions that build on each other. Rather than copying a movement, you’ll actively explore these instructions, discovering how you interpret the information and perform the task at hand. It’s a creative framework for you to connect to with your body and imagination, increase physical awareness, improve flexibility and stamina, and experience the pleasure of movement in a welcoming, accepting atmosphere.

Led by Amy Diane Morrow, who graduated from the inaugural teacher training program directed by founder Ohad Naharin.
Open to people ages 16+, regardless of their background in dance or movement. All you need is curiosity!
Limit: 35. Room for 10 more as of 1/8.
Advance: $150 (Jan. 5 on)
At door: $175 (if space remains)
Please contact us to discuss special rates for your studio or dance company.
Register on Brown Paper Tickets. Or if you prefer, send a check made out to “Dallas Feldenkrais” to:
3515 Cedar Springs Rd., Suite 102
Dallas TX 75219
Friday, 1/26
7pm | Gaga Session
8-9pm | Toolbox Session
Saturday & Sunday, 1/27 & 1/28
11am | Gaga Session
1-3pm | Toolbox Session
Wear comfortable clothes. Be ready to dance barefoot or in socks. Bring a bottle for water and a towel.
Gaga is a new way of gaining knowledge and self-awareness through your body. Gaga provides a framework for discovering and strengthening your body and adding flexibility, stamina, and agility while lightening the senses and imagination. Gaga raises awareness of physical weaknesses, awakens numb areas, exposes physical fixations, and offers ways for their elimination. The work improves instinctive movement and connects conscious and unconscious movement, and it allows for an experience of freedom and pleasure in a simple way, in a pleasant space, in comfortable clothes, accompanied by music, each person with himself and others. Its emphasis on self-discovery complements Awareness Through Movement®.
Presented by Dallas Movement Lab, in partnership with The Theorists & Arts Mission Oak Cliff.