Ellen Soloway Feldenkrais® mentoring

Ellen ~ February 2, 2018

Ellen Soloway
The Feldenkrais Method®
4919 Pitt St.
New Orleans, LA 70115
Cell # 504-908-5196
Land # 504-895-5196

Click here to leave a comment on Ellen’s page

Talk by Ellen Soloway on January 29, 2018
Topic: Exploration of concepts described by Dr. M. Feldenkrais during Amherst Training Week 3:

conscious, unconscious, subconscious
— foreground/background
— interior/exterior

Click on a topic below


Ellen Soloway graduated from the Amherst Feldenkrais® Training in 1983.  She is an Assistant Trainer and has worked at training programmes around the world.  Ellen has a vital practice in New Orleans and regularly teaches mentoring classes in Atlanta, San Antonio, and Chicago.

Attending Amherst and experiencing Dr. Feldenkrais’s thinking first-hand only whetted her appetite for more information on the subject.  Ellen developed an overview of functionally-based thinking and its relationship to learning when she typed and edited the first drafts of the San Francisco Feldenkrais training program, Years one and three.

Ellen assimilated another buffet of information while editing the Alexander Yanai volumes.  Indulging her desire for a “cohesive” Feldenkrais review, Ellen graduated Mia Segal’s basic training as well as her supervisor’s course between 1999-2004.  Ellen will be an assistant trainer at Jeff Haller’s new, innovative Feldenkrais training program starting in October 2018.

These combined experiences give Ellen a unique broad-based point of view for the development of her teaching skills, interests, and curriculums.  When mentoring, she helps practitioners develop their theoretical understanding as well as their technical skills.  Growing up with a partially deaf and blind Mother developed her interest in finding Feldenkrais-based solutions to sight and hearing impairments.  She works with adults & children using neurological developmental processes as a basic part of her functional integration lessons.
During 2017-2018 Ellen added online mentoring to her repertoire.  You can explore elements of Ellen’s online teaching through other tabs at Ellen Soloway Feldenkrais® Mentoring.
How to send contributions for Katarina ~ hosting tutorials
Some Testimonials for Ellen’s teaching:
#1 “If Moshe’s teaching makes the impossible feasible, Ellen’s teachings makes it understandable.”
–– Cristina Salgado
 #2. “Whether Ellen is teaching ATM®, FI®, or Mentoring she manages to break information into small concise groupings that are easy to follow and simple to learn from. “
––  Gika Rector
#3 “Usually I have many questions after experiencing a FI®, observing a FI®, or giving an FI® to my clients.  Ellen knows how to answer these questions as she weaves her teaching style into everything that is relevant.  She is very clear and direct in her presentation in our mentoring program.  I know that I am a better practitioner because of Ellen’s mentoring.”
–– Barbara Hartmann
 #4 “Ellen placed her hands on my pelvis and suddenly the entire architecture of the hip became apparent.”
–– Jean Gottleib
#5  “As Ellen’s hands illuminate the pathways of the body, her words explain what she is feeling, knowing, and doing. Rarely will you be so generously invited into a master practitioner’s thought process while working.  Through her words Ellen connects you to the mastery of her predecessors, her teachers. What you learn from Ellen will transform your work.”
–– Annie Gottleib
In the United States of America, the following are registered service marks, collective marks or certification marks of the Feldenkrais Guild of North America: Feldenkrais®, Feldenkrais Method®, Functional Integration® Awareness Through Movement®; Guild Certified Feldenkrais Teacher®; and The Feldenkrais Guild®. The following are trademarks, service marks or certification marks of the Feldenkrais Guild of North America: ATMSM, FISM, Guild Certified Feldenkrais PractitionerCM, and Feldenkrais™.

Ellen Soloway on conscious, unconscious, subconscious ... Monday Jan 29, 2018

PDF Ellen Soloway on conscious, unconscious, subconscious … Monday Jan 29, 2018


ELLEN SOLOWAY: On conscious, unconscious, subconscious …

Monday Jan 29, 2018

Copyright reserved by and to Ellen Soloway, New Orleans, LA, USA January 29, 2018.

Permission given to Feldenkrais® practitioners to use the information discussed for their own non-profit, educational purposes.

Talk transcribed and edited by Katarina Helm for the benefit of the Feldenkrais® Community.


— Thesaurus or dictionary definitions – so we have a basic starting point:

Conscious is aware, mindful, sentient, sensible, deliberate, premeditated, considered on purpose.

Unconscious is oblivious, ignorant, unwitting, automatic, mechanical, instinctive and involuntarily insentient.

Subconscious is considered subliminal, intuitive, unintentional and involuntary.

Webster’s says “Consciousness is being aware of something within oneself, a quality of state of being.

Now, Moshe had the idea that he wanted people to become conscious of what they are doing. So, a lot of what we tried to do in either teaching Awareness Through Movement® or Functional Integration® is to bring under people’s voluntary control that which they are doing. Or, if they decide to change what they are doing, to make those (changes) feasible and possible for them to consider.

One way that Feldenkrais® work is different is that it’s totally client-centered and client-driven. A friend of mine, Therese Stogner, a practitioner and former PT in Atlanta, describes it this way: When she worked as a PT, she decided what that client ought to do and ought to be like, and directed that client to do that which she (Therese) predetermined was in the best interest for her patient. When she switched her thinking over to the Feldenkrais Method’s way of thinking, Therese gave the client, her patient, the tools to achieve what that patient would like to be better at in their life, and it was their decision to use the tools or not.

I think that is fundamental if you are going to think of how these three words – conscious, unconscious and subconscious – can be used within the Feldenkrais Method®.

Now, what I’d like you to do is write on your piece of paper three different clients of yours that you know have very different, distinct, personalities. Leave room to write under each name.

Then, once you’ve decided on your clients, I’d like you first to think of what does that client dream for themselves, what would that client like to do better? What would that client like to be in his or her own world?

While you’re thinking, I’ll tell you a story that was told by Dennis Leri. The location was Boulder, Colorado at an interview given by Moshe. It was at an interview arranged for him as publicity for one of his public workshops:

Dennis saw the woman walk in and she looked frumpy, her clothing was not stylish, it didn’t fit well, it had spots and stains on it and her hair was not well-groomed. She came into the interview and started to ask Moshe standard interview questions. You know (the kind). “Where were you born? “What was your name? What was your family like?   “How did you start the Feldenkrais Method®?”

Moshe, in his inimitable self, was irritated by her questions. Finally, he said, “What about you? When you were a young girl did you think you would grow up to be a third rate reporter on a second rate regional newspaper? Or, did that girl growing up have different dreams? I have time tomorrow – I want you to think about that and come back tomorrow when I’ll give you another interview.”

And, with that, he harrumphed and walked out of the room.

The woman did come back the next day for the interview, and this time, her hair was styled, groomed and her hem wasn’t coming down. And, she asked a different level of question of Moshe and he engaged her in a conversation.

I never forgot Dennis telling that story because, to me, it’s the epitome of why people come to us in the long run. Initially, I freely admit, most of us get our clients because they have an aching pain that drives them in our door. But, what keeps them coming back is a practitioner’s belief that this person is capable of learning something.

So, under the level of “dreams”, you’ve marked what your client would like to do better or be better or achieve in his/her life. Put that under ‘consciousness’. Then think of all the motor little habits they have that help them get there.

The reason I ask you to list three clients is so you have both a variety and a contrast for perceiving how different people make solutions for their own lives, because in many ways all we do as practitioners is offer different levels of solutions to a person.


I am asking you to write down what this person actively does, consciously, that helps them achieve their goal. Whatever their dream…. Moshe’s word for it was “unavowed dream”. The most obvious dream that everybody likes to talk about is the two years it took Moshe to teach Ben Gurion to stand on his head. Okay? That’s a big dream.

Next, I’d like you to think of all the unconscious things the person does that helps them get to their goal.

Then … unconscious and conscious … I consider the subconscious to sort of be that middle ground between them. If you have ever seen colored spotlights, there is an arc of color gel here, then there is an arc of color gel over there. Then … a lighting technician can blend the colors on those big spotlights so this area where my fingers are crossing is where the color blends.

Next, start to write in these columns lists of behaviors — whether personality, social or actual motor habits — that prevent the person from achieving their goals. Again, divide them into the ones the person knows about and the ones that are unconscious, that they don’t understand or realize their contribution.

Next, I’d like you to think of all the unconscious things the person does that helps them get to their goal.

Then, another list you can make … Go inside yourselves and think what skills you have as a person? What interests you, as a person, that can help your client get closer to their dreams? Not your Feldenkrais skills — that is another category.

Then, as you continue, go to what parts of your knowledge of the Feldenkrais Method are right at your fingertips, that you know cold. They are your assets, your easily drawn-upon assets as a practitioner, that are useful for these clients.

Next, stand up and walk around for a couple of seconds. Come back while you are walking. Pay attention to how your feet make contact with the ground, and just doing that simple habitual instruction from the Feldenkrais Method may help you think of another one of your skills.

Remember how it felt to walk around the room after one of your favorite lessons, one where you stood up and felt glorious. Can you evoke that feeling again inside your mind, inside yourself?   Because we are all prejudiced. Feldenkrais practitioners are junkies. We think that this state of mind is a better part of our existence. So, after you’ve re-evoked that quality inside yourself, come up with one or two states of being or descriptive words and add that to one of your assets.

We’ll label this an example of a subconscious state of being, where it is just below the surface. You think you are being intuitive. Where you can just do something that is beyond your conscious mind and you will bring that with you, into your lessons with these three different clients.

Now, just re-route to the shadow side of ourselves, which can be a very important teaching tool for us. Think of whatever is on your shadow side, whatever it may be – your technical skill, your manual dexterity, maybe a thought that runs through your mind. Whatever it is, think of what you place on yourself as a limitation.

Okay, pick one of these clients… Actually I strongly suggest that it probably be the one you have the hardest time with. In the foreground, contemplate how that client has personal skills, personal wishes for themselves, and match that to what are your best skills.

So, in the foreground, you have the better parts of your client, whatever they are, and the better parts of yourself, meshing.

Now, throw into the background either your best wishes for this client or their best goals for themselves. Into the background, place your own sense of limitation, the things you know you are “less than wonderful” with, that could use more learning, more alternatives.

Then, just listen, while you are contemplating, how you can combine these aspects with one of your other clients.


From a paper that Mark Reese wrote on similarities between Milton Erickson (who was a brilliant hypnotherapist) and Moshe:

“Dr. Feldenkrais admired Erickson a great deal. They both believed that the unconscious is not a reservoir of difficult-to-manage instinctual impulses as depicted by Freud. Instead, it is a life sustaining activity that supports our thinking, feeling, sensing and acting. Many of their similar techniques are designed to reduce the interference of overly conscious direction and will.”2

So what do you know that can help your client be more involved in a life sustaining activity? I like to say, “What is it that attaches them, gives them a passion for living?”

The other thing is that (except for) a few lectures Moshe seldom used the term ‘unconscious’. Instead, most of the time, he directed his language to a biologically specific entity that is capable of a great deal of change. Moshe would say “the nervous system.”

The current term for the nervous system’s ability to change is “neuroplasticity.”

Here’s one of Moshe’s quotes:

“You do not decide how to do the nervous system. Let your nervous system decide for you. It has thousands of years of experience and therefore it knows more than you.”

(M. Feldenkrais San Francisco Professional Training Program June 1975)

So, think of your clients again. Think of your own skills and stature and make a few notes about how you can use this information in your actual practice, because in my mind, the work sheet I led you through is a practical application of conscious, unconscious, and subconscious, and then, foreground and background within the context of Feldenkrais.

So, make those notes. And now, if anybody has any questions or comments, it’s thrown open.


In Virginia. I’m requesting a clarification: When you set up the work sheet you asked us to put down the person’s dream. Then, later I wrote down that you were equating that with consciousness. Is that correct?


I would.

(Further clarification: As a professional Feldenkrais practitioner, you might think that your client has “unavowed” dreams for themselves that the client does not know how to express. I think those unrecognized dreams are unconscious or subconscious.


Okay, and the second thing I wrote down was ‘What are their motor habits?’ Is that conscious or subconscious…


It can be both. It can be anything. A person will come in the door and say “My back hurts. Get rid of my back pain. Fix me.”’ That is their current dream — to get out of pain. However, if you start talking to people, you find out that what they would really like to do is … I’m in New Orleans. (Right now, people want to) raise their hand and catch beads without throwing their back out. That’s their dream because they got a house full of company coming.

You know, I am working with a fifteen-year-old going into college advanced placement. She has cerebral palsy. Her real dream is to be able to walk across campus and not fall. So, in the background, every time I work with her, I am thinking, “She can walk. She can walk, she just doesn’t know how yet.” This is how I think about it.

And, it changes.   In the beginning, a successful series of lessons for her had, in the background. the belief that she could uncurl her foot because she walked on the inside edge of her foot. That was short term. Now, when I work with her, I actually think of her dancing hip hop because she is fifteen years old. That’s what kids her age do. Now, when she went to her prom, she could dance. Not for long, but before, she never got out of her chair to dance.

Do you understand how it becomes incremental? What skills can I build?

One of the things that people here in America I think are short-changed… but Daniella is in Israel. The original Israeli phrase/title for the book Awareness Through Movement” was Developing Abilities.

Do I have that right, Daniella? Because I usually mess it up.


Improving Abilities


And here, it became Awareness Through Movement, because it was the culture of the 60’s and the publisher (Harper and Row) wanted to sell copies. But, if you think of what abilities you have that allow you to help this person achieve (his or her personal dream or goal), and you keep it in the background of your mind, somehow people sense that you think of them differently. Does that answer your question?


Okay. Yes, mostly. I was just trying to make sure I had at least a basic sense of how you interpret the conscious, then the unconscious and subconscious. And, I can see how motor habits are both.

Then, what I wrote down was the question about what unconscious things do they do that help them get back to their goal or dream.

Right now I am thinking of unconscious things that do not help the particular person I chose. So, if you could give an example.


To me, that is the perfect trick. There is something magical when you start to think what is within the person’s reach. If you only think of the person’s limitations, then as far as I am concerned, they might as well go to a physical therapist.


And, I am a PT.


Okay. This is the hard part of your training. That is why I told Therese Stogner’s story, gave her credit for it. Because, by definition, the medical model defines people by their limitations. It is a legal set-up because that justifies the billing to the insurance companies…

You can be a fabulous Feldenkrais person and a PT. You just have to start thinking about what works. Personally, I use the stage lights where they cross, where they overlap. But if you know Venn diagrams from math, there is an area where circles overlay each other. You can shade that overlay in. If you think more about where there is a crossing, where there is a shading, it is a tremendous place for people to learn, because then you are working from where they are pliable.

Am I making sense or should I sketch it out?


It does make sense. It is obviously a shift in thinking, and I have gone through a big shift in the last two years because I went from the traditional physical therapy … You know the sort of time-unit model, to an independent cash-based practice so I could do more of this (The Feldenkrais Method®) and more of what I think really helps people for the long haul.

So, helping me with your analogies was very helpful. Thank you.


Marci wants a sketch. Okay, can you see it. This area in here is where there is an overlap where skills overlap. And, here’s the limitation — in this area here. If, when you are formulating your lessons, you operate in this place (where the two circles overlap), you are very potent. Is that understandable?




I have another question. Somebody else asked for a clarification on background vs foreground. You’ve already partially explained the background point you made about what the best wishes are for them, both on their part and your part, but you also said something about our sense of limitation. I didn’t know how you would apply that to background as something helpful, short of recognizing our limitations.


For one thing it helps you to learn where you need to study, where you need to improve your competency. Then, you know either to seek out mentoring or study with a person whose interest matches your need to learn certain skills

For example, you get to hear the “voice.” There’s a practitioner I know who has a very difficult time making short, concise sentences.


[Laughing] There’s only one?


I’m being kind… Everything that practitioner say goes like this, “I’m curious. What about if the person stood on their feet and their head came forward. … etc. …” That’s a lot of words and I have spent a lot of time with Anat and Mia. Both of whom … Anat gets impatient (with the time it takes to listen to those long sentences) and Mia just likes concise statements. So, you quickly learned that if you wanted an answer, you go, “If a person stands up and their head goes forward, what do I do?” (You learned to) skip all the introductory things and just get to the meat of the question. If you are a person who meanders all over the place, it is a practice, an almost daily one, to edit yourself at least twice a day, and just have a simple direct conversation.

Now, the reverse is also true. If you are abrupt to the quality of being abrasive, learn the language that softens your talk. This is a limitation that you can work with daily with your clients, when they come in for a lesson. You do not have to do it constantly, just twice a day. And, after a while, there is a verbal dexterity that creeps into your interactions, where you can be terse and short when you need to or verbose when you need to.

Here is another one … a limitation…” As a practitioner all my lessons are slow and languid. They are always at this very soft pace. And, my client falls asleep on me. How do I keep my client awake?”

Well, if you know that that is your limitation, for three minutes, just practice with every client you see in a day, speeding up your hands. Or, if you only give really quick fast lessons, practice slowing down.

This is how knowing what your limitation are is an important learning tool for bringing variety into your FI lessons. You know … G___, can I publicly pick on you?

Okay, when I first met G___, she was in her training program, and she had the lightest hypnotic touch. She had a beginning practice but she had no variety (of touch). So, when she was working with this lovely special needs kid, she could not get the kid to feel his bone. This kid did not know the “aaack” that happens when a foot really is on the ground. You know, there’s the move where you just let the feet drop? And, it was really hard for G____ to get the kid to feel this, or to push the floor with his hands.

Then, gradually over time, she developed a sense of variety in her touch and now she can shift from this light very soft, soothing, wafting lesson. Now, when she wants to, she can be firm. I have seen this. She can put her hands on somebody, hold the bone, and get movement to go through the system. That took her time and it was a huge learning process for her, but the upshot is that she is a lot better practitioner because she has both voices available to her now. Because she has those two choices available now, she has access to the graded shaded area in-between (the two circles on the Venn diagram). She can be medium hard, very hard, moderately hard, softly hard… Does that answer part of it?




Somewhere there’s a list of what is called “The Competencies”3 I think you find them on an IFF worksheet or web site. You go there and the list tells you all the things you are supposed to know. Some of them you will and some you won’t. That is a limitation. Knowing makes the difference.

Anything else?


I guess I would ask you to give an example of an unconscious thing that helps them reach a goal. So, you could use one of the examples you have already given, like your…


Okay, I will put that on a broader theoretical level. It has to do with the fact that about 90% of our brain is taken up with inhibition, so we can get repeatable orderly movement patterns. One way of defining cerebral palsy, Parkinson’s and a bunch of other so-called diseases is that the brain is chaotic and does not have a reliable way of repeating motor patterns.

A lot of that is unconscious. Speaking of an unconscious one … What hand do you use to brush your teeth? Almost always, you will use the same hand. Spend a week brushing your teeth with the other hand and you are on your way to break a habit, because a lot of what we do can be defined as breaking a habit on another level, on a thinking level, on a motoric level.

One of the reasons why … Let’s say, this business of being able to repeat patterns with trust and surety, that is what gets us through life. I mean, if you are driving a car, if you didn’t have the habit of responding to situations … Did that answer your question?


That was very helpful, thank you. It is one of the things that I have actually addressed with this gentleman that I have been thinking about. He is challenging, so I am hoping to use some of this to address (him) differently. So, thank you.


Misha asked would I speak further on identifying a client’s subconscious activity since we are not always in our lives.

Good question. The truth is we do not have to be in their lives. We do have to be able to ask questions though. Or to be observant.

So, if I am giving a lesson, let’s say … I will take an extreme example because there was a time in my life when I gave a lot of volunteer lessons to people who were survivors of Latin American jails. I was arrogant. I was a new practitioner. I could save the world and I had a lot of energy. You know, “newcomer’s energy.”

And, it was assumed that some or all the people that this organization gave me had been tortured. So, I didn’t have to be in their lives and it was preferred that I didn’t ask questions, and I couldn’t speak Spanish anyway.

But, what I could do was look for certain responses. So that, if I was picking up a leg of the person lying on their back … I am picking up the leg to bring it in the direction of a shoulder. That is a standard Feldenkrais move/technique, however you wish to see this. Correct? Yes. Okay.

If I was alert, I could move that knee in this trajectory and they were perfectly comfortable. If I changed the angle this much, though the knee was angled out, I could see suddenly a licking of the lips, maybe flushing of the face, maybe the breathing would change a little bit. That was a cue that whatever was going on was not right with this person. That was one of the things I had to be alert for. They are classic signs of anxiety. (Can you see what I am doing?) [Note: Ellen is demonstrating some of these response.]

So, I did not have to ask a question. I had to pick up these non-verbal cues about a person’s comfort or discomfort. There was a generalized response that it was always safer if I took the leg, picked it up, and moved the knee across the groin towards the opposite shoulder. But, if I did the standard Feldenkrais habit … we tend to pick up the leg and move it so the knee goes outward … I was more likely to get a nervous reaction if the leg went outward than if I put it towards the opposite shoulder. That is just something I learned only by observing. Did that answer your question?


Yes, that’s fine. I was looking for those cues. I was expecting a much larger…. So this is very helpful, thank you.


Another good one for this topic is watching for the dilation of the pupils or the squinting of the eyes or the eyes getting rounder or more almond shape. These are all very important cues to the state of the parasympathetic nervous system.


She says, ‘I wonder if Moshe adapted any of Erickson’s techniques for making verbal suggestions to clients?’


Yes. He uses a lot of future pacing. “You will find” is one of them that you can find in the AY or Amherst. It is a whole subject of picking out his phrases, but he definitely used a lot of hypnotic phrasing. Rather than talk about it off the top of my head, I would rather have exact quotes of his language, but definitely.


When you say “future pacing”, is that a term specific to auto-suggestion or where does that come from?


I think it is actually an NLP term. In technical English — Annie, who is an editor or Nancy-Laurel, who is a grammarian — I think it is called ‘future perfect’ tense. In Latin, it was future pluperfect. Annie is nodding her head, “Yes.”

So yeah, he definitely did, and if you can put your hands on it… One second, let’s see if I can find some of them. (Ellen is scanning her desk for notes on Moshe’s hypnotic phrasing and cannot find them)

You know, the biggest hypnotic technique that we use in Feldenkrais is we put everybody into a kinesthetic-based trance. That’s the Elusive Obvious!


I guess I’m interested in asking the question is how we maximize our use of that. In other words, any guidance I could get. I mean, I am aware that a couple of trainers in our training [Feld… 4] … where we had a lot of visiting trainers … seem to really make maximum use of this. II would really love to know the resources for developing more consciousness about my speech and the things that I say.


The best I can tell you is actually start reading Milton Erickson. The easiest introductory book is called Uncommon Therapy. Then, almost anything by Jeffery Zeig4 or Ernest Rossi5. If you want shorthand, NLP – any book by a good NLP person will give you the grammar constraints.

It is this double-edged thing. … where at one time … I spent a lot of time actually studying hypnosis, because I needed it. Now, I am just not as interested, so I do not have the (grammatical) constructions present in my mind. I have my own take on this. My personal opinion is it is good to know the stuff, but if that is only how you communicate with people, people sense the falseness. There is this subliminal, subconscious realization people have when people talk the truth.


Of course. I am not interested in manipulation. I am simply interested in the most effective editing.


So, what I am saying is that if your interest is genuine, I don’t really think it matters that much what your grammar is and what the construct is. They are tools. Without that, inner truth in your communication with your clients, something falls flat. At least it did for me. And, I was around some really excellent people and I could tell, not initially but after a while, who was just using the constructs and who had some interest in me as a being, as a human. That is who I remember.

I mean, to this day… It will sound funny, but if I go out and buy new luggage at the discount stores I know I am going through a change in my life, for the better.

The next step/signal is when do I donate my old suitcases to the Goodwill. That’s another marker for me. Why? Because of a long term induction that I had with one particular psychotherapist who was Ericksonian. I can laugh (at myself). But, when I find myself at the luggage counter in a discount stores and I just go, “Oh …You know the words from West Side Story, “Something’s coming, something good, don’t know what but it is…” I can be standing there with that song going through my mind. I travel a lot anyway and need suitcases. Yet, I know whenever I buy new suitcases, something is going to happen for the better.

We all have that. That is my personal example of unconscious at work. I call them, in my slang irreverence, the poker tells. (Note: Someone in the zoom screen looks puzzles so Ellen explains more.) If you are a gambler and you play poker, when you become very good at it, you can figure out who has a good hand or not by their facial expression or their tick or how their hands hold their cards, etc.

So, that is one of my poker tells (luggage). I don’t always buy the luggage but the fact that I am looking at it, amuses me.

Did that help?


It very literally helps. I can’t tell you the synchronicity of what you just said. Thank you so much.


Would the person who is named the Woman of the Celt please say your name for us?


My name is Deborah Hughes and I’m from [Feld… 4], completed in 2016, but was exposed to Feldenkrais many years before that in what was called a synergy dance class in DC. Then, I lived in [Kripalu] for a year, and knew MISHA, who was participating in her training at that time and exposing me somewhat.

But, I didn’t have the awareness how all these things came together until my own direct encounter with Feldenkrais named as Feldenkrais.


Irene posted a link for a YouTube in the chat … something about hypnotic future pacing. By the way, I hope you liked the way I structured this instead of a straight lecture.


It was fabulous.


It would be great to get a document that shows us how you would lay out on paper this whole process, because I’m not sure I got it in the way that’s most useful so I could re-do it when other questions come up for me.


I was a designer for many years before Feldenkrais, and I think you can design a format visually that would be suitable for you.


[Laughs] That would be my inferior function. Thank you though…


Then, push your inferior function. Enlarge it. You know, I can do that and post it but graphically what is suitable for me may not match your brain. Another thing — There are people who need to do outlines: a, b, 1a, 2b, 3c. And then, there are people who can plan workshops and projects by mind-mapping, where they just scribble things on a piece of paper. And, I plan my workshops by cleaning house and filing papers. So, you have to figure out really what visually works for you.


I really like that Ellen. I really, really appreciate that because it goes in the face of my wanting to figure it all out and get it right, and then I never understand anything deeply for myself. So, thank you.


And, you know CAROLE, the truth of the matter is we never get it all right. You know, Daniella likes anatomy. She will get that. That is the way her mind works. I mean, I know I talk anatomy in AY a Day but I learn it after the fact, backwards. Annie knows her anatomy cold, much better than I. But, the difference is to know how to apply what you know, not the form it takes. So learn something deeply.


1 Anecdotal story from Dennis Leri after observing an interview between Dr. Feldenkrais and a newspaper reporter. Boulder, Colorado; probably Fall 1981 or1982

  1. Mark Reese, Moshe Feldenkrais’s work with movement — A parallel approach to Milton Erickson’s Hypnotherapy, June 26, 2016.


  1. IFF Competencies: The Competency Profile

From  https://feldenkrais-method.org/iff/competency-profile/

The Competency Profile is meant to be a guidebook for tracking and planning professional growth. It is not meant for a single use, but rather to help one evolve over time. Some may choose to use the process daily. Some may enjoy a re-mapping once a year or every couple of years. Some may choose to keep the process private and journal their way through their development. Some may choose to create partnerships or groups for support and discussion.

This Profile is a compilation of knowledge and experience of hundreds of Feldenkrais Practitioners from many countries and innumerable backgrounds. It can be used right now to inform each and every practitioner about where they are professionally, where they want to be, and how they can continue to become more competent.

The IFF page includes Competency Profiles in several different languages.

  1. Jeffery Zeig, Experiencing Erickson, Routledge Publishing, 1986



  1. Sidney Rosen, My Voice Will Go with You: The Teaching Tales of Milton H. Erickson, W. W. Norton & Company, March 17, 1991
  1. Ernest Rossi and Milton Erickson, Creative choice in Hypnosis (The seminars, workshops, and lectures of Milton Erickson, Vol. 4) May 1, 1991
  1. Jay Hayley, Uncommon Therapy: The Psychiatric Techniques of Milton H. Erickson, W. W. Norton & Company; Reissue edition (April 17, 1993)

Sample worksheet for Talk by Ellen Soloway on January 29, 2018 Topic: Exploration of concepts described by Dr. M. Feldenkrais during Amherst Training Week 3: Conscious, unconscious, subconscious — foreground/background — interior/exterior

Sample worksheet for Talk by Ellen Soloway on January 29, 2018

Topic:  Exploration of concepts described by Dr. M. Feldenkrais during Amherst Training

Week 3:  Conscious, unconscious, subconscious — foreground/background — interior/exterior   

PDF Ellen Soloway’s Worksheet for applying concepts from Amherst Week 3 to your Feldenkrais Practice 

Concepts:  Conscious, unconscious, subconscious — foreground/background — interior/exterior   

From the point of view of the student/client

What does your client dream for themselves on a conscious level?  What would your client like to do better?

e.g. Please my back feel better; I want better balance; I want to dance the tango

What would your client like to achieve in their life that they do not know how to express?  Take a guess if you are not sure what this would be.

What does your client/student do for enjoyment, fun, pleasure that connects them to living a well-rounded life?

List the small motoric habits your client has that help them move forward, toward their goals, their dreams.

List the motoric habits that hinder your clients’ progress toward their dreams.

List the emotional or thought patterns that help your student achieve their dreams.  Place the unconscious and conscious ones in separate categories.

List the emotional or thought patterns that hinder your client, that prevent them from reaching their goals.

Place the unconscious and the conscious ones in separate sections

List the skills that the client accesses easily when they are involved in pleasurable activities that connect them to a well-rounded life?

Copyright reserved by and to Ellen Soloway, New Orleans, LA, USA January 29, 2018.

Permission given to Feldenkrais® practitioners to use this information for their own non-profit, educational purposes.


Katarina Halm, M.A., GCFP, CFT
Thinking in Movement! 
Feldenkrais® & Focusing
Movement Intelligence
Sounder Sleep System™
Work Study or Contributions to the studio help ensure the studio may continue:
1. it will be helpful if someone can assist with navigating facebook
2. contributions for the studio by pay pal at this link
Telephone: (1)-604-263-9123 (1 is the country code for Canada)

Ellen’s Advanced trainings:

Click on the summary below

Summary of Ellen’s workshops

#1  British Columbia Canada: (Vernon is the town — Kelowna is the airport)
Dates: 2 days, May 11 & 12, 2019 (Saturday-Sunday)
Subject: Working with your Eyes and carriage of your head  2 days
Contact: Brent <brent@okanaganfeldenkrais.com>
The Okanagan Feldenkrais Centre
3005-32 Street, Vernon, BC, V1T 5M4
25 minutes north of the Kelowna International Airport.
Website:  www.okanaganfeldenkrais.com/

#2 Ann Arbor Michigan is the town — Detroit (DFW) is the airport.
Dates: 4 days, June 20 -23, 2019 (Thursday-Sunday)
Subject:  Ribs, breath, and your spine   
Contact: Dale Jensen <djensen1@gmail.com>
#3 Washington, DC  
Dates: 2 days, Either August 24 & 25 OR August 31 & Sept. 1, 2019  (Saturday-Sunday)
Subject: Eyes part 2   
ContactChrish Kresge <chrish@chrishkresge.com> or Jane Johnson <fitoverforty@jesed.com>
#4 Durham, North Carolina (Durham is the town — airport is Raleigh-Durham).
Dates: 4 days, Oct. 10 – 13, 2019 (Thursday-Sunday)
Subject:  The ribs transmit and connect movement
Contact: Marcia Eagle <meagle001@gmail.com>
Attendance is usually limited to 20-24 people.
Ellen seldom allows more than 12 Feldenkrais tables to be active during FI practice.



#1 Ann Arbor Michigan is the town — Detroit (DFW) is the airport.
Topic:  The midline and the importance of crossing it.
Dates: either June  21-24, 2018 (Thursday-Sunday)
FI’s available on the day before the advanced
Contact: Dale Jensen. <dale@mindbodymove.com>

#2 Raleigh-Durham area (Durham is the town — airport is Raleigh-Durham).
Topic: The spine, the head and face.
Dates: August 9-12, 2018 (Thursday – Sunday)
FI’s available on the Wednesday before the advanced.
Contact:  Ellen Soloway <ellen@soloway-feldenkrais.com>

#3 Arlington Virginia  Washington DC area 
Topic: Seeing beyond your limitations.
Dates:  Nov. 3 & 4, 2018 (Saturday & Sunday)
Contact:  Ellen Soloway <ellen@soloway-feldenkrais.com>
REGISTRATION: https://www.eventbrite..com/e/ellen-solaway-tickets-50575426462

Ellen Soloway Feldenkrais® mentoring ~ Online Tutorial Group

FI Tutorial Series with Ellen

Click on a topic below


Click on a question below

Q 1) How many hours per session? (I may need to be very precise about when i start and end, with no slop time, no fudge factor. I hate that, but it may be necessary.)

 A 1) One hour per session, two sessions comprise a series!

We begin at 4;45 pm Pacific, for one hour.

Q 2) Is there repetition of the material? Or does each offered day contain new material that builds on previous? Or is each day a stand alone experience?

 A 2) Each hour is unique according to the practitioner working with a lesson they choose to study, and unique to situation of their student/client.

Usually there will be one practitioner working with a student
`Ellen observing, giving verbal cues
`Observers offering questions/thoughts

On some days  there might  be two practitioners working with a student
` 20 min One practitioner works with a student, Ellen observing, giving verbal cues
` 20 min Second practitioner works with her student,Ellen observing, giving verbal cues.
` 20 min Ellen gives a summary and observers offer questions/thoughts

Q 3) And then, how many sessions would Ellen recommend? Q 4) What would be considered the complete series?

A 3, 4)
Ellen recommends at least two sessions for your practice with your student which will be a lovely complete series. And of course you may enjoy being with us to observe others in additional sessions!

We have decided to record only Pinned Gallery View.

We have decided to record only Pinned Gallery View.


Record to Pinned Gallery View. & also (separately) to Cloud for Speaker and Gallery view

Record PIN video / Cloud for Speaker and Gallery views`PDF
Below is described a way to BOTH record to a computer to PIN video

AND also record to cloud so as to have both Speaker and Gallery view

Notes compiled from correspondence with

Zoom Support! with many thanks for all the help!!

Currently there is not a way to BOTH record to my computer to PIN video AND also record to cloud so as to have both Speaker and Gallery view

UNLESS I were to have another device (iphone or tablet which I do not)

OR Someone else to record as well (which might be possible, therefore the notes below)

There currently is not a way for ONE person (Katarina) to record both to the cloud and their local computer simultaneously;. SO WE WOULD NEED TWO RECORDERS to have both the Pinned and Speaker and Gallery views

WE DO have the option to allow A SECOND participant to record to their local computer if we have someone in the meeting that we trust to get the other video to Katarina.

I am able to record automatically to the cloud,

and then go to the Participant management panel

during the meeting, hover over the user


Click the “More” button and allow that user to record.

THEN we make sure that the new recorder

does PIN  the appropriate person on their screen,

record to their local computer,

and send me the finished recording afterward.


Here is link and excerpt from Zoom article


Pin video allows you to disable active speaker view and only view a specific speaker. It will also only record the pinned video if you are recording locally (to your computer). Pinning another participant’s video will only affect your local view and local recordings, not the view of other participants and will not affect cloud


Warmest regards,
Katarina for Ellen

Only those who are in training or practitioners pay Ellen

“I do have one other question:  I have a client I would like to bring to Ellen’s mentoring.  Do the clients all pay now or just the ones who are practitioners?”
Only those who are in training or practitioners pay Ellen, and only from May 2018 onwards when Ellen decided that those practitioners or trainees begin to pay Ellen when they are ‘students’ for a practitioner during a tutorial. .

1. Those who are in training or practitioners should not pay for the times they were a student and did not expect to pay. . However, Ellen will gladly accept donations if they wish to contribute because they learned a lot.

2.  In the future — they should expect to pay when:
     A.  He/She is a student for a practitioner during a tutorial.
          Why? Because He/She is learning something to help his/her future career.
      B. He/She is an observer.
Details on amounts for Ellen and how to send are listed here.
Additional fee for Katarina, a separate additional fee for bookkeeping and video recordings by donation listed here.


• Fees for attending Ellen’s online mentoring class

A graduate of either a Feldenkrais® or an ABM training, as well as anyone currently enrolled in a Feldenkrais training or an ABM Training, contributes to Ellen’s Soloway’s teaching fee and to Katarina’s administrative fee.

* Anyone attending a tutorial as a STUDENT RECEIVING A LESSON,
who is not a graduate of a training program, is not an active practitioner,
or is not a student enrolled in a training program is NOT EXPECTED
to contribute towards Ellen’s teaching fee or Katarina’s administrative fee.

* Those who are graduates of either a Feldenkrais® or an ABM training,
as well as anyone currently enrolled in a Feldenkrais training or an ABM Training,
who are attending a tutorial as the ‘STUDENT RECEIVING A LESSON’,
DO contribute towards Ellen’s teaching fee and Katarina’s administrative fee.

SaveFees to Ellen ~ Mentoring:
Practitioner/graduate/trainee participants share the fee 
Fees sent to Ellen:  $35, $45, $55, or $85.  The fee changes a
ccording to the number of participants. $35 is the minimum amount we send for Ellen for each tutorial.  Payment is divided among the participants of each class.

Anyone living in the United States and is a practitioner or in a training sends a check directly to Ellen.  The check is made payable to Ellen Soloway and sent to 4919 Pitt St. New Orleans, LA 70115.  Anyone living outside the United States sends payment via PAYPAL to ellen@soloway-feldenkrais.com.  You can send an approximate sum for several tutorials and save on the PayPal transaction fee.

$35 per class is the minimum anyone sends Ellen, thank you.
2 people attending send Ellen $85 each.
3 people attending send Ellen $65 each.
4 people attending send Ellen $45 each.
5 people attending send Ellen $35 each.
6 or more attending send Ellen $35 each.

Maximum size of each class Six Zoom Windows
Usually, the tutorial includes one practitioner with a student
and five observers (or more if two share a Zoom window).
Note: We can add more participants if two people share a Zoom window.
Only six or fewer zoom windows will be permitted.

Fees to: Katarina ~ Hosting tutorials:
$75 USD to Katarina for each quarterly.  Those in Canada may send by e-transfer.
OR by PAYPAL to katarina@thinkinginmovement.ca
OR by cheque to Katarina Halm, Thinking in Movement!, 3552 West 41st Avenue, #71069. Vancouver, BC, Canada V6N 4J9.
OR (or ask if you prefer to contribute to Katarina through a work-study project instead of payment)

1 reply
  1. Ginny Waterstreet
    Ginny Waterstreet says:

    You mentioned in the past about giving a paid talk on a subject, we were all interested, you may have already given it…I can’t remember what on, buy o was wondering if you could give a talk on scoliosis, and ideas on how to give FI that you know are helpful. Thanks


Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *