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The Feldenkrais method and women with eating disorders

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Abstract:

In this article, we present an action research project conducted over 21 weeks with seven women suffering from eating disorders for an average of 34 years. The aim was to (1) describe the women’s experiences of Feldenkrais classes via a variety of qualitative data collection methods and (2) to identify any possible relationships between changes of their body awareness and their eating disorders. A thematic analysis inspired by grounded theory showed that the action research using the Feldenkrais method of somatic education demonstrated a potential for helping the participants to consciously challenge dominant social discourse by engendering concrete changes in the way they perceived themselves. They reported being able to occasionally change their daily activities and various eating habits, thus revealing transfer of learning from the Feldenkrais classes to their daily lives.

Keywords: Feldenkrais method; Foucault; eating disorder; empowerment; somatic education; technology of the self

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1386/jdsp.3.1-2.127_1

Affiliations: Université du Québec à Montréal

Publication date: April 27, 2012

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  • This journal focuses on the relationship between dance and somatic practices, and the influence of this body of practice on the wider performing arts. The journal will be aimed at scholars and artists, providing a space for practitioners and theorists to debate the work, to consider the impact and influence of the work on performance, the interventions that somatic practices can have on other disciplines and the implications for research and teaching.
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