This lesson convinces the beginning student that exertion is required, whereas the experienced student will listen to the body and move what is possible, without exertion. Thus the beginner will be frustrated and learn little; the experienced student will discover many things and feel great benefit.
Benefits to the student include: increased abduction of legs; better balance; spine being more erect; chest opening; shoulder-hip orientation clarification; increased side flexion of ribs; increased side flexion of neck.

  • On the side the student lifts the (upper) leg and, while the leg or foot is connected with the hand/arm on the same side, does a variety of actions. A criterion movement is proposed at the end, lying on the back, spreading the legs, noting the amount they spread — so this could be an interesting initial reference movement.
  • With some adjustment, this lesson can be done sitting and standing. It is very informative in these other orientations.

Lesson Outline

  • In the lesson, Dr. Feldenkrais alternated from side to side. For this outline, I will only summarize one side, noting when he switched sides {with curly brackets}. Numbering reflects numbering in the transcript.

1. Lie on right side, left hand holding the arch of the left foot, from the outside. Lift the knee and the leg, [and the hand] many times. Rest. {same on other side} Rest
3. on R side, holding Left foot from outside with Left hand.[This is repeated in later steps as “Same Position”] Lift leg in air, transfer elbow to the inside and the out. Repeat. {same on other side} Lie on back & rest.
5. [same position] Take foot & hand behind body, lift until the hip turns forward and then return. repeat. {same on other side} Rest. {same on other side} Rest
7. [Same position plus]- Right arm on floor so palm is on floor. Extend R leg straight down.

  • Draw circles in air with L hand & foot — as if the foot were standing… drawing circles around the hip. [if you were standing, L foot flat on floor, drawing circles on the floor] Repeat. … Change the direction.

Rest. {same on other side} Rest on the back
9. [Same position as in #7] Catch the heel with the Left hand. try to straighten the leg “in the air” [downwards], allowing yourself to lean with the palm of the right hand. Head and shoulders lift from the floor.

  • Rest on the back. {same on other side} Rest on the back

11. On Left side, two legs straight, one exactly on top of the other. L hand available to assist lifting. R hand on hip. lie completely on the side… without bending or folding Raise R leg, slide R hand along the straight leg. Repeat with bending only to the side.
try to lean on the L elbow & forearm. Then the L palm. repeat.
Rest on the back.
12. On Right side. same as #11
13. Lie on Left side, catch the right heel with right hand. raise leg in air, make circles. notice if it is different.

  • take heel & hand behind the body…. high in the air….
  • take head backward to see the hand & foot

14. Rest on the back. {same on other side} Rest on the back
15. on back, Spread legs, move them together. note if the opening is larger than usual.
Come up to standing. take time to stand, then walk and notice changes.

Focus of Moshe’s Teaching

  • Oh, how I wish I could interpret Moshe’s thinking.

Related ATMs



Share Your Insights (ideas, principles, strategies, experiences, …)

  • Parenthetically, a course named “101” usually refers to a beginner course. This is not!
  • Restriction can be attributed (in part) to incorrect (or habitual) tonus in inner muscles of leg (for balance in standing) (the actual muscles are far too numerous for me to delineate – all from the inner shin through to the inner pelvis, and upward through the sacrum to the lumbar sine) . This is particularly obvious in abduction — foot towards ceiling).
  • Explore the concept of force being transmitted through the “inner pelvis” to the foot.
  • When holding the outside of the left foot, note the pressure on the right hip socket. One can actually use the constriction of the left side to allow rotation in the right hip socket. When this becomes apparent, then the left foot and hand become light and movement is accomplished. For example, left foot and hand go upward (towards head) by increasing the angle through the right joint; similarly, they go down by decreasing the angle. Similarly forward and back.
  • Awareness of 4th metatarsal, passing force to it; differentiating it from heel.
    • note that the lesson does not include pressing through the big toe/inside of foot
  • A little standing awareness activity:
    • Stand sideways on steps. Lift inner foot to next higher step, and as weight is transferred to rise to that step notice that efficient force goes straight down (perhaps to outside of foot). Any bending forward, back, etc, leads to reduced balance.


  • Work: many construction jobs require balancing on uneven surfaces (think on a roof) and lifting, carrying, swinging tools. In the past, climbing trees (e.g. fetching coconuts).
  • various Yoga positions require precision in the turning out of one leg, or both legs.
  • Ballet
  • Climbing
  • transmitting force through a Karate kick (front, back or side, as illustrated below). Interestingly, one way that the side kicks are taught is to start in the same position (i.e. knee bent, hand near the shin, but standing) and pushing the foot out.
  • – rblack Jun 12, 2017 Rob Black

Inner Pelvis: Thinking of the inner part of the pelvis, the actual joints of the hips and the sacrum (5 points). Most people think of the outer, downward-pointing triangle made up of, with the iliac crest, or the head of the femur (greater trochanter) and the pubic bone.
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