Left or right?

In her recent blog, one of my clients describes the differences she experienced trying to get into a bed at a relative’s she was visiting. The bed was quite high and my client clearly noticed how much easier it was to get up on one side, while getting in on the other side was a struggle. She joked that one side was actually higher and to have a laugh her relative used a  tape measure to show her that both sides of the bed were of equal height.

Last week I attended a 5 day intensive workshop for Feldenkrais practitioners in Montreal. The theme was lateralization which we interpreted as the study of right and left, front and back as well as inner sensations and outer, observable experiences. We explored, through Awareness Through Movement® lessons and hands on Functional Integration® practice, how we do things differently from each side, how we hear differently in each ear, breathe and smell differently through each nostril and use our eyes in interesting ways for vision and to organize movement.

So when my client told me she could easily get up on one side of the bed but not the other I was not suprised.

When I teach Awareness Through Movement lessons I will often ask students to try the movement on the side they feel is easier or the whole lesson might be done on one side only. That allows us to experience the differences more clearly and to ultimately teach one side from the other so we can function more or less symmetrically in the world!

For more on asymmetry from several perspectives I invite you to read Right Hand, Left Hand by Chris McManus.

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