Functional Integration for individuals with Special Needs

In my work as a Feldenkrais practitioner, I’ve been helping people overcome physical and cognitive challenges.

By harnessing the profound connection between movement and brain function I enable the person with special needs to enter an enjoyable learning process in which they discover new abilities.

I’ve been working with babies who suffered brain trauma. With a gentle approach and touch they begin to understand how different parts of their body can work together more harmoniously, thus enhancing their motor skills, which are crucial for the continuity of their development.

I use this approach, often with a more dynamic rhythm in the sessions, also when working with children and teenagers with a diversity of needs, ranging from behavioural to emotional, cognitive and learning difficulties. They feel accepted and listened to, and learn to play with new movements and ideas which connects them to a fuller and happier sense of self, in their bodies – feelings – emotions & thoughts.

Working with adults has its own dynamics yet it follows on the same principle as working with babies and children. They all need to approach new situations with greater ease and confidence; By fostering a deeper awareness of movement and its connection to the brain, it opens up new possibilities for physical and cognitive development.

My first client with special needs was an old academic who one day suffered a serious head trauma. The hospital had given up on him in his paralysed condition, but his loving family didn’t give up on him. They have heard of the Feldenkrais Method’s unique achievements in the realm of people with special needs, and especially in relation to how it facilitates recovery of functionality through organic learning. His recovery was so quick that after I’ve seen him for ten sessions he was out of hospital and back to his everyday life. This was a lucky start for me, as it gave me the confidence to continue working with ‘hard’ or ‘lost’ cases of patients with brain injury.

Naturally, not all cases I worked with were so miraculously fast or successful in terms of full recovery. Yet, that first experience made me appreciate the great potential of learning, to restart a healing process in which the person continues to grow and develop new skills. This personalised approach ensures that everyone can benefit, regardless of their starting point.

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