This realisation is what led me to explore Feldenkrais for the first time. I seem to have an uncanny knack of wanting to be qualified in things that no one's ever heard of, but Feldenkrais is slowly growing in reputation as neuroscience starts to confirm some of its findings regarding the link between proprioceptive awareness, pain and dysfunction. Famously difficult to explain, sessions take the form of 'lessons' rather than treatments, and is all about playing and exploring movement, in much the way a small child would. As adults, most of us move habitually and without really thinking about it - little bad habits get picked up over the years and are repeated over and over, potentially creating the environment for strain and injury. Exploring easier and more pleasurable ways of moving can hugely improve our quality of life, cognitively and emotionally as well as physically. This course will see me schlepping to Brighton about seven weeks a year for the next four years, but it will all be worth it, and I can't wait to get properly stuck in.
So why do I care? Well, in chronic pain situations, clients who receive pain education experience less pain than before. And the improved body awareness, proprioception and relaxation that good manual therapy provides can help too. At the moment I am just at the tip of the information iceberg (and new discoveries are being made every day), but it is exciting stuff.
The dissection course run by Gil Hedley (www.gilhedley.com) was another 2012 highlight. Paying (rather a lot of) money to hang out with cadavers for a week might not be everyones idea of a good time, but for a bodyworker it is like opening the most amazing present ever. Tactilely exploring structures which previously were available only in picture form was incredible, and I am grateful to Gil and to the donors themselves for the experience.
What will 2013 bring? I can't wait to find out!