In Search of Buried Treasure

In Members by MaryBeth Smith

by Lavinia Plonka

Image by Dean Moriarity from Pixabay

Imagine a world without the Alexander Yanai lessons, or the FI® videos of Moshe Feldenkrais. These precious resources became available because volunteers from all over the world selected, translated, proofread, and helped digitize this extraordinary material. IFF has revealed another trove from the archives and is inviting members to be part of a team that goes through the material and assesses its value. How, you may ask, could this “promote my practice?” 

Sometimes, success doesn’t follow straight lines. Many years ago, I was part of the team that proofread the translations of the AY lessons. I got a first glimpse at lessons only a few people had seen. I had to do the lessons to make sure the translation made sense. I had interactions with senior Practitioners who helped me grow my understanding as well as my confidence in absorbing the material. In other words, the experience, while helping the community, also made me a better teacher. It opened the door to new possibilities for collaboration. And it provided a service to the community. A win/win. Here is the letter from IFF explaining the project. Jump in, or just dip your toes. You decide on the level of commitment. Be the first to unlock this gift from the past.

Call for volunteers to review Feldenkrais® materials

The International Feldenkrais Federation is inviting you, individual Feldenkrais practitioners, small groups, or study groups, to participate in evaluating materials that are part of the IFF Archive of the Feldenkrais Method® and represent the Feldenkrais  legacy.

Over many years the IFF has stored hundreds of hours of materials on audio and video tapes. They have been digitised and inventoried as much as possible. It is now up to volunteers such as you to evaluate these materials.

Think of the 550 Alexander Yanai lessons, the Esalen workshop or the San Francisco and Amherst transcripts. All of these products started as projects of practitioners volunteering to listen to and evaluate the source materials. When these were deemed useful for the Feldenkrais community, they would be edited and published as audios, videos or transcriptions.

The IFF Archive holds materials in English, Hebrew, French and German language. You find recordings of Moshé, Franz Wurm and Gaby Yaron. We have mainly ATM® recordings but also talks and lectures and many FI® videos. A project around these materials can be anything from a single audio recording of 20 minutes up to whole workshops of 25 hours.

Questions to ask yourselves are, do I want to listen to something new and think about whether it could be published, either for practitioners or for the public? Do I want to engage in a conversation around these materials and commit myself to finishing a task for the Feldenkrais community? While you might like to work on your own, do not underestimate the fun and inspiration you can have from working with your Feldenkrais friends.

Please consider that deciding for an IFF Materials Project will be an engagement. The materials you will be evaluating are not your property and you cannot give them away to your friends. The final decision for publication will be taken by the IFF, based on your evaluation, and any possible product will be published by the IFF.

If you are interested in assessing new Feldenkrais materials, please contact me at [email protected] You can write in English, French or German. We can also arrange to discuss per telephone to find out what your particular interests are, how much time you can spare, and any other question you may have.

Kai Schaper
IFF Materials Manager
+33 5 61 23 80 40
[email protected]