-- Text and Photos by Carmen Franco
Last Monday curiosity won over my stress of packing to go back home, so I assisted Dave Thind’s first class of 2024: "Less is More" Feldenkrais Awareness Through Movement® Series.
Dave is a well-known figure around the Florida Dressage circuit because of his worldwide famous adaptation of the Feldenkrais Method for riders. As a rider itself, holding a trainers’ license from Germany, he knows how hard it is to find ways to be balanced, symmetrical and supple, without much pain being involved; all that by being also supported with the mental ability to concentrate, relax, and process with logic. The method is about reorganizing connections between the brain and the body to improve movement and psychological state.
Increase Body Awareness to Become a Better Rider
The introduction to this session couldn’t be more appealing to the almost 20 people that came that day, as he proposed to work to “find a better version of ourselves. We can always improve as riders, not necessarily through lunge line lessons.” Each one laying over their own yoga mat started by doing a body scan of contact to the ground. The focus went to how many vertebrae each one feels, not how many you have, just how many you feel from tailbone to poll.
Bending the elbows simulating taking contact on a horse was asked a few times during the variation of postures and the riders worked on awareness of height, position, connection to other parts of the body while rotating, stretching, or bending. I thought it was fantastic to see the riders move minimal parts of their pelvic area and see a ripple effect over the back, the waistline, the upper legs… it really shows how every single part of the body is intertwined. Understanding how to manage ourselves can affect in a positive way what we do with the horses. “Like a marionette,” Dave said, “you have five lines: two for the legs, two for the arms and one for the head.”
Dave’s soothing voice invites the assistants to breathe while guiding them to the new position, and the new focus for their brain. Even though I wasn’t physically doing the exercises because of taking notes and pictures, I left the room so relaxed and at peace with myself! Now that I’ll be in another country, I’m glad there is an online option to be able to participate. The “Less is More” course it is as it says, requires very little effort and a great turn around.
Feldenkrais Awareness Through Movement® for Dressage Riders
While the live Wellington, FL class is currently full, Dave Thind offers private sessions for individualized coaching.
For those outside Florida, registration remains open for the online version of Less is More! Classes, held every Wednesday at 12:00 PM EST / 18:00 CET via Zoom. Students enjoy permanent access to recorded sessions and the unique opportunity for immediate feedback from Dave.
To register for online classes, visit Dave Thind's Zoom Registration. https://www.davethindmethod.com/zoom
Explore Dave Thind's diverse courses and learning experiences designed to benefit riders of all levels: Dave Thind's Courses. https://www.davethindmethod.com/courses
For personalized recommendations or inquiries, email Dave directly at firstname.lastname@example.org. If uncertain, consider starting with our signature program, "60 Days to a Better Dressage Seat." Unlock the full potential of your riding experience with Dave Thind's transformative programs.