Erin, a young child with cerebral palsy, learns to walk better as Moshe Feldenkrais constructs for her a series of thematically interconnected learning situations. Jerry Karzen, Moshe’s close friend and former secretary, provides simultaneous commentary detailing major features of each lesson. Based on rare archival video sources, these classic 1982 lessons show Dr. Feldenkrais in top form and provide a fascinating insight into the integrated theory and practice of Functional Integration®. With the addition of Jerry’s insightful commentary, the five lessons masterfully illustrate a vital alternative to standard manual therapy practices.
Intended for Feldenkrais Practitioners and Trainees.
In the DVD set, Erin Learns to Walk Better, Jerry Karzen illuminates the thinking behind Dr. Feldenkrais’ Functional Integration® strategy with a small child who has cerebral palsy. Each disc has one lesson with the commentary, and then the same lesson without commentary. In the lessons with commentary, Mr. Karzen chose to pause the lesson while he describes Dr. Feldenkrais’ approach, which takes a 45-minute lesson to an hour and twenty minutes.
The first comment I have about this DVD set is technical: the sound is very low. I had to listen to it with earphones to get a clear sense of what was being said. Following that, I would highly recommend it. Mr. Karzen’s comments lead the viewer to a much deeper sense of the lesson than I expected. For example, he places Dr. Feldenkrais’ movements in a developmental context — not just in the context of an individual’s sensorimotor development, but in the context of the development of the human species overall. This lends a depth and richness to the commentary, and for me, it brought more attention to the ways Dr. Feldenkrais was layering movement relationships for the child.
The commentary is neither idle nor obvious. It added new ideas to think about and created a thread for me to follow throughout the lessons. Also, I imagine it presents Mr. Karzen’s thinking about the method in particular, which is always interesting to hear. On one level, it feels like having a fruitful, creative discussion with a colleague — albeit one with many more years experience than me!