When to Refer Your Patient to a Feldenkrais® Practitioner?

Other health practitioners often get a very positive outcome with their patients when they team up with a Feldenkrais Practitioner.

If you are unsure how I or another practitioner could help your patient, here  is a handy list of signs and symptoms that might help you decide when to team up.

1. Your patient walks “funny”. You can identify that there is something odd about the gait pattern but it is hard to pinpoint or to correct.

2. Your patient has a chronic muscular issue that is very stubborn and will not go away! This can be very frustrating and have you and your patient scratching their head. Often a few sessions with a Feldenkrais Practitioner can solve the puzzle.

3. Your patient has a scoliosis which is worsening.

4. You notice your patient has an atypical breathing pattern. It can be difficult to unlearn old habits, but using the Feldenkrais Method can help uncover issues and send him/her in the right direction.

5. Your patient has a stubborn pain/injury that is not resolving within the normal time frame or they keep re-injuring that area.

6. Your patient has poor posture or poor body awareness.

7. Your patient has proprioceptive issues. This could be from a condition such as Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome or from surgery such as a knee or hip joint replacement.

8. Your patient has had a stroke and is needing more help with regaining movement.

If you are frustrated with your patient’s progress, or wonder if there is something else that could speed up or augment their recovery, please call your local Feldenkrais Practitioner. There is a wonderful directory on the Feldenkrais Guild of North America’s website.

We are all aware that some people’s bodies are better organized than ours. I am not just talking about the Roger Federers of the world, but also about that friend of yours from college who seems to pick up new sports effortlessly, and glides through his or her day without any sign of trouble or effort. The rest of us have bodies that seem compromised in various ways. Some have a stooped posture, others walk with a curious shuffling gate, yet others are flat-footed and must wear arch supports or orthotics in their shoes (as I did for 10 years). We see this diversity and tend to think: “This just the way the body/skeleton happens to be.”

It has therefore been a source of great surprise to me that most such aspects of the body can be brought under our control and changed using something called the Feldenkrais Method. I was led to this method while seeking a solution to a RSI/typing related injury that wouldn’t go away. However, in retrospect I realize that in addition to curing my RSI it gave me a much better sense of my body and a much better posture and alignment. Every aspect of my life —swimming, walking, sleeping, picking up new sports, etc.—became easier and lighter. It let me do things like rollerblading that I was convinced I could never do.”

Dr. Sanjeev Arora  Computer Science, Princeton University