The second year of the Training Program addresses the structure and function of both ATM and FI lessons. In order to prepare you for teaching ATM to the public at the end of the second year, the implicit structure and pattern of lessons will be made evident. All aspects of teaching ATM will be covered and you will have time to practice under supportive supervision. You will begin to recognize fundamental functional configurations and learn how to incorporate these observations into FI and ATM. FI practice will be used to help give you an inner understanding of ATM lessons.
The fourth year continues all the themes of the previous years and adds extensive FI practice with clients from outside the training. To provide as much individualized feedback and attention as possible, we make greater use of small groups. Working under close supervision you will learn how to maintain an open attitude toward learning and analysis of movement patterns as you construct meaningful learning situations for others. Discussions on how to coordinate and begin a professional practice will be conducted throughout. The ATM themes in the fourth year will be very rich and will foster a lasting grasp on the power, beauty and satisfaction possible through the Feldenkrais Method.
To insure that students receive substantial individual attention, The Feldenkrais GUILD® Training Accreditation Board guidelines require that a training program maintain a student to teachers ratio of 20:1 for the first two years and of 15:1 for the final two years. In addition, each year distinguished guest lecturers from related fields will join the training program. These invited teachers, scientists and thinkers will broaden your understanding of the Feldenkrais work, your sense of its relationship to the arts and sciences and your appreciation for the future development of the work.
The progress and learning of each student in the training program will be closely supported, guided and followed throughout the four years. Personalized supervision will be an ongoing part of the training process and will be used to build your skills and understanding. Upon satisfactory completion of the second year of the Training Program, qualified students will be certified to teach Awareness through Movement to the public. At the end of the fourth year, upon completion of the Training Program requirements, graduates will become practitioners of both Awareness Through Movement and Functional Integration and will be eligible for full membership in The Feldenkrais GUILD®. Students must meet training program attendance requirements. Any students missing more that five (5) days of training per year or a total of more than ten (10) days over the course of the entire four years will be required to make up lost time. The Educational Director reserves the right to ask any student to receive further training before being considered for graduation and full Feldenkrais practitioner status.
The following sections will explain to you the teaching and learning approaches which will be utilized in the training program. These include class ATM lessons, individual hands-on (FI) lessons, small group work, class discussion, lectures, supervision, and between-segment study groups.
You will experience many hours of Awareness Through Movement exercise lessons throughout the training. The core lessons will be drawn from the professional trainings that Dr. Moshe Feldenkrais conducted and from classes he taught. You will experience different types of lessons, including intricate lessons that have an extended and interwoven structure, as well as basic lessons which are taught to the general public. As noted above, we will not make a strong distinction between Awareness Through Movement and Functional Integration, as they are simply two sides of the same coin. We will begin developing basic FI skills right from the start and will continue to emphasize ATM through the program.
As part of your professional training experience, you will receive at least three private Functional Integration lessons each year from members of the faculty or invited practitioners. There will be ample opportunity to arrange for supplemental lessons. You will have many opportunities to observe lessons given during class, lessons given to other students during non-class hours, and videotapes of Moshe Feldenkrais giving lessons to people with various physical challenges. We will begin teaching touching and contact skills early in the program, emphasizing the development of sensing abilities and "seeing with the hands." You will refine your tactile, as well as kinesthetic acuity in ATM lessons and in small group work. During the third year of the program you will begin giving your fellow trainees supervised FI lessons and in the fourth year you will work with "clients" from outside the training.
Small sized groups are used to foster your learning from the training staff in an intimate and personalized context and to facilitate the process of learning cooperatively with your fellow students. For example, in topic-oriented discussions, you will bridge the gap between readings and your class experiences, make connections between ideas, and devise ways to put those connections into action. Small groups will also be used to develop your ability to understand and teach FI and ATM. For example, you will review ATM lessons in class, analyzing and discussing the structure and logic of the lessons. As the training progresses, you will have the opportunity to present short sections of the lessons and develop your presentation skills. We are committed to creating a constructive atmosphere, where all students can speak and be heard. We want to expand beyond the idea of being in a group and learning individually to create a process of learning with a group and as a group. By drawing on the different skills and background that each participant brings, the training will be a place for collaborative interaction and cooperative learning.We will hold regular discussions, both in small groups and with the entire class. These discussions will vary in style from question and answer periods, dialogues, open-ended talks, and conversations oriented to specific topics.
Trainers, assistant trainers, and guest lecturers will present talks on the background of the Feldenkrais Method, related areas of current knowledge, and the specifics of developing and conducting a practice. You will learn about Moshe Feldenkrais and how he developed the Method as well as the historic, philosophical, and scientific bases of his thinking and work. To help you understand how the Feldenkrais Method relates to prevailing theory, you will be introduced to relevant topics in contemporary education, movement science, and philosophy. The curriculum may include special guest lecturers in the areas of: Anatomy & Kinesiology, Cybernetics & Systems Theory, Neurobiology & Philosophy of Mind, Motor Control & Learning Theory, Embodied Cognition, Communication Skills, and Martial Arts.
To deepen your understand of the Feldenkrais Method and to strengthen your ability to express that understanding, we will ask you to read selected texts. We will also supervise the formation of local and non-local study groups for between session learning and support. These groups are an integral part of the training and learning process and in the past have been a very rich and dynamic part of the training. We will support the study group's activities by meeting with them during training segments and regularly giving them assignments and learning structures with which to work.
The Training Program appeals to a diverse and varied group of participants. In the past training program participants have ranged from 18-80 and have come from a wide range of fields, interests and backgrounds. The Training offers the possibility of joining a rewarding multi-disciplinary profession offering a broad range of applications. In addition those looking to bring new perspectives to their work or people who are interested in improving their own health and comfort are also welcome. In addition to maintaining independent private practices, many Feldenkrais Practitioners work in such diverse fields as physical and occupation therapy, rehabilitation medicine, psychology, education, physical education, massage therapy, art, ergonomics, gerontology, theater, dance and music. There are no specific pre-requisites for admission to the Feldenkrais Training Program. We are seeking a well-balanced student body, representing the full diversity of human experience, professions and backgrounds. We are committed to accepting people into the program regardless of age, gender, race or physical ability.
The East Coast and California Feldenkrais Professional Training Programs are fully accredited by The Feldenkrais Guild of North America and recognized by all international Feldenkrais teacher organizations throughout Europe, Australia, Israel and South America. Upon the satisfactory completion of the second year of the training, qualified students will be authorized to teach Awareness Through Movement to the public. At the end of the fourth year, upon completion of the training program requirements, a student will become a Practitioner of both Awareness Through Movement and Functional Integration and will be eligible for full membership in The Feldenkrais GUILD of your country of residence.