Moshe Feldenkrais 1904-1984
The Feldenkrais Method® of somatic education was developed by Dr. Moshe Feldenkrais. Born in Russia, Feldenkrais immigrated to Israel at the age of thirteen. After receiving degrees in mechanical and electrical engineering, he earned his D.Sc. in Physics at the Sorbonne in Paris. He subsequently worked for a number of years in the French nuclear research program with Joliet Curie.
Physically active, Feldenkrais played soccer and practiced the martial arts. He studied with Jigoro Kano, the originator of Judo, and in 1936 became one of the first Europeans to earn a black belt in that discipline.
A chronic knee injury prompted him to apply his knowledge of physics, body mechanics, neurology, learning theory and psychology to a new understanding of human function and maturation. His investigations resulted in the formulation of a unique synthesis of science and aesthetics, known as the Feldenkrais Method. Dr. Feldenkrais wrote five books about the method as well as four books on Judo.
He conducted three professional trainings during his life, one in Tel Aviv, Israel (1969-1971), one in San Francisco, CA, USA (1975-1978) and one in Amherst, MA, USA (1980-1983), training approximately 300 Feldenkrais® practitioners in total. Today, there is a thriving community of over 10,000 Feldenkrais practitioners worldwide.