The desire for freedom is both intrinsic to human nature and essential to human development. The brains of children who are denied physical freedom are shown to be underdeveloped. Children who are not allowed to move can develop cognitive, emotional and psychological problem.
In our youth, we learn by trial and error to move our bodies, from the moment we first lift our head and figure out how to roll over, creep, crawl, then walk, to the first success at riding a bicycle without falling off. Through repetition and habituation we create stability through movement patterns. Movement habits are formed in order to allow for efficient movement and conservation of energy.
The freedom to climb trees, run after soap bubbles, chase our friends, ride bikes, dance, jump, yell and shout teaches us about ourselves both on a personal, social and physical level. We learn how to problem solve, collaborate, create and strengthen ourselves, processes that occur from the inside out often unseen by others as we grow into adulthood. As we move and explore our environment our ability to make choices about our movement, our physical pleasure, what we like, what we dislike, is honed through trial and error. This is, at its essence, how we get to know who we are.
All life is sensory motor in nature.
Babies have one way of experiencing the world: through sensory feedback. They sense discomfort and cry, they sense safety and comfort, they relax, they sense danger or fear and cry, they awaken from a nap and paniculate their limbs, yawn and squirm in order to sense their bodies.
As we get older things change. Many of us, for a variety of reasons, stop
moving as freely as we once did. We adopt ways of moving that reflects
societal rules or restrictions and, inevitably, the many “insults” of life – accidents, illness, traumas both physical and emotional, psychological fears and family patterns. Others keep active with sports, playing, dancing, walking. as well as mentally or emotionally active, seeking help when we need it to create emotional patterns that serve us. All of this learning shows up in our bodies, our health and specifically our movement.
The goal of Hanna Somatic Education is to teach you to take back physical independence and control of your own ever changing, dynamic body and life. Our bodies and our lives are never static. As human organisms we are an every changing, dynamic, living process that can only, ever, be sensed by each one of us individually. Life is, indeed, lived from the inside out.
Muscle pain can disappear and aging can still be active and healthy. By learning to sense what it feels like to be “you,” from the inside out (physically as well as emotionally) you redirect your dependency on others and move toward authentic physical freedom.
A daily practice of somatic exercises and conscious movement that is pleasurable and fosters awareness is necessary to maintain the the self-awareness and skill it takes to maintain freedom – physical, mental and emotional freedom from patterns that don’t serve us.
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