Halloween, Feldenkrais, and the Magical Movement of the Skeleton

Halloween has to be one of my favorite holidays. I loved it as a kid, and I still love it to this day. There is something special about the decorations, the costumes, and the sheer spookiness of Halloween. And of course there’s the candy corn. At Halloween you can be anyone you want to be. You can even be yourself if you like.

Another thing I love about Halloween are all of the skeletons hanging around, so to speak. As a physical therapist I’m used to looking at the skeleton in a variety of different ways. But I fell in love with the skeleton during my Feldenkrais training. Because there is something magical about the skeleton.

Our skeleton is the very core of our being, and it is responsible for holding our structure together. It’s just like the foundation of a house or a building. Without a sound foundation, the structure will begin to collapse upon itself. Unfortunately, my husband and I experienced that for ourselves when water in our basement damaged the foundation. It was a very expensive  and impressive lesson to learn.

Our bodies are very similar to structure of a building. However, they are far more beautiful, both in design and function. That’s where Feldenkrais comes in to play. In Feldenkrais, we focus on moving from our bones and our skeleton, rather than pushing from our muscles. Our skeletal structure supports us, our bones move us, and our nervous system is the computer which functions as the control center. Our muscles simply contract and relax as a result of the messages they receive from the very sophisticated, highly developed and extremely intelligent nervous system.

I know, it’s a different way of approaching movement, and it may be contrary to your current belief system about the science of movement. However, once you learn to move from the skeleton instead of pushing through your muscles, you experience how movement becomes easy, elegant and effortless. The truth is, when you move from your skeleton, magic happens!

This Halloween, put out the decorations, put on the costumes, consume the candy corn, and take a few minutes to celebrate and honor your skeleton. After all, it supports you every single day of the year. And it truly is a remarkable structure. Most of all, have a safe, healthy, and Happy Halloween. Boo.

happy-halloween