The Holistic Nurse: How Feldenkrais Can Benefit You

The Holistic Nurse took a bit of a mental health holiday as I wound down on school, but we should be getting back to our regularly scheduled programming. Except for one thing…

…We need more submissions! If you are a provider or a patient and you want to share a story from your world about what it means to be healthy, please send me a guest post. If you have an idea but you’re not sure if it would “fit” the Holistic Nurse, just contact me and we can chat about it. Chances are, we can make it fit.

I’m excited to be back in the swing of things this week with a second post by Kim Cottrell, our guest who posted about The Feldenkrais Method® last month. This time Kim is sharing brief case studies about the diverse group of clients who have benefited from Feldenkrais. Which reminds me…I need to go register for a class myself!

My last blog post described the Feldenkrais Method, but it’s often difficult to get a concrete sense of how it can help you, or what kind of goals to set when taking Feldenkrais classes. Here are a few descriptions of how Feldenkrais participants have benefited…


  • A psychiatrist suffered generalized pain in her neck, spine, legs, feet and hands, in addition to chronic migraines. After about a year of weekly sessions, she was able to hug her husband without back pain, take long walks in her neighborhood, and she returned to riding her bike.
  • A non-fiction writer was working on a book with huge social implications. She spent three or more days a week at her computer for 5-6 hours each time and walked away from her desk feeling like a much older woman. She now has helpful strategies for resting her eyes and improving her posture.
  •  A 38-year-old plumber with two small children was nearly unable to walk or work after years of extreme sports injuries. He has taken away new tools for resting and relaxing his back throughout his work day.
  •  A yoga instructor had developed overuse injuries in her shoulders from repeated yoga poses in multiple weekly classes over 15 years. She is re-organizing her poses and learning to put less pressure on the injured areas.
  •  A high school teacher commuted daily by bicycle 15 miles each way for 10 years. His family took a 2-month cross-country vacation by car, and when he returned to his bike-riding, he experienced serious low back pain. Despite x-rays that showed no physiological injuries and recommendations that he try a recumbent bike, the pain continued. We spent one session discussing his situation and the physical ramifications of being in a car for such long periods. After learning a few ideas about easing into new patterns, he excitedly returned to riding his regular bike without pain and with much enjoyment.
  •  A young social worker suffered from neck pain. After one session, she was pain free and was able to release her neck when she felt it beginning to hurt. She has since gone on to become a Feldenkrais practitioner.
  •  A dancer in her 30s had low back pain and hyper-mobility in her joints. She was very motivated to stay healthy so she could participate in activities with her young children. She learned to integrate her upper and lower body for greater comfort and long-term prevention of serious spinal problems.
  •  A 65-year-old carpenter learned to reorganize the way he swung his hammer so he could work through the day without pain and discomfort.
  •  A 40-year-old woman who enjoyed hiking slightly held back on downhill slopes, afraid of tripping or falling. She wanted to keep up with her husband. She’s now as quick as anyone and going strong in all her outdoor activities.
  •  A high school student who stood at 6’6” had grown so fast that he suffered from poor posture and low-back pain that prevented him from activities with his friends.
  •  A high school counselor had regular migraines. In sessions she learned to release the tension that developed during conversations with her teen clients. She became migraine-free.
  •  A 35-year-old woman was rear-ended in her car and suffered whiplash. The traditional treatments were not helping her and in fact, made her worse. Locked in a holding pattern, she was terrified to turn her head for fear of pain. With Feldenkrais, she returned to her normal level of function.

Want to know even more about Feldenkrais? Click over to Kim’s website for more informative reading or check out this video:


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