The Feldenkrais Method: Developing the Mind Through Movement

by | May 12, 2023 | Children's Book | 0 comments

Mona’s Mitten: A Story to Move to by Kristina Orliczky is based on the Feldenkrais Method, which blends physical activity with cognitive development.

Mona’s Mitten: A Story to Move to by Kristina Orliczky asks its readers:

Who said we have to sit totally still to listen to a story?

Mona’s Mitten is a fun and amusing story about a short but adorable skiing enthusiast who simply adores being on the move and living life to the fullest. 

So what is going to happen when during one of her skiing trips, she finds her hand without a mitten? 

What will happen next when said mitten looks like it will be a good house for a sleepy mouse to live in?

While the premise of Mona’s Mitten sounds like an entertaining read—and that is because it is—Kristina Orliczky’s use of the Feldenkrais Method essentially elevates it as just a fun children’s romp through the mountains and pushes it to become a brilliant tool for further cognitive and physical development.

The way that Kristina Orliczky incorporates the Feldenkrais Method is astonishingly clever. By weaving in simple instructions for physical activities together with the text of the story, Mona’s Mitten achieves its mission to become a book to move to. 

So, you, parents and teachers, should always remember to look out for those directions.

What is the Aim of Mona’s Mitten?

Mona’s Mitten: A Story to Move to is a wonderful story with an even more wonderful twist. Kristina Orliczky, as a licensed physical therapist and a certified practitioner of the Feldenkrais Method, hopes to encourage children to partake in physical exercise more and not spend too much of their time on technology. Children today are more sedentary—meaning that they are moving less—than previous generations, and that is because they are becoming more and more caught up with the instant gratification that comes with modern technology.

While children might act afraid or frustrated with car seats, high chairs, and strollers at first, they will soon grow quite accustomed to sitting in front of the television or the computer monitors or hunching over their phones or tablets. 

That is why teaching them to have an appreciation for moving and exercising is key to giving them a path for balanced and holistic development.

It is through physical activity and motion that most children get to know more about the world and learn about themselves. By exercising, children develop their strength, flexibility, coordination, balance, and posture further. And if children have a healthy body, they tend to have healthier minds. And when children have both a healthy body and a healthy mind, they have the tools and the disposition to better reach their goals and fulfill their aspirations.

What is even the Feldenkrais Method?

The Feldenkrais Method is an educational approach that relies on the deliberate use of gentle movements and conscious awareness to support the day-to-day actions of people. The developer, Moshé Feldenkrais, was also a physicist, a judoka, and an engineer, as well as a student of the great teacher Jiddu Krishnamurti. 

The method hinges on the idea that the brain is perennially collecting sensory information from around the body and adapting the neural network to take in that information. This means that people and individuals are constantly altering their movements to better fit in with their environment. 

The Feldenkrais Method helps participants learn to become more aware of their bodies and how to efficiently and effectively make choices for their bodies, especially with how to make movements. 

Here are some benefits afforded by the use of the Feldenkrais Method:

  • Improved movement
  • Reduced pain
  • Increased flexibility
  • Improved balance
  • Enhanced coordination
  • Reduced stress
  • Improved mood
  • Increased self-awareness
  • Improved learning
  • Improved performance

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