“It doesn’t interest me where or what or with whom you have studied. I want to know what sustains you from the inside, when all else falls away“
( The invitation, inspired by Oriah Mountain Dreamer, Native american Elder)
A method is a way of doing something, or a way to get better at something.
Looking at movement, one can find many methods to get more fit, more flexible, stronger, etc. These methods may vary in effectiveness and different people prefer different methods.
Sometimes these differences of opinion even spark ideological wars, especially amongst ‘trendy’ methods which feel a need to compete with rival factions. In this sense, each method should be framed in its historical and sociological context.
The wow factor brought on by fashionable methods tends to fade quickly. In order to understand how we can create lasting changes, we need to first understand how learning takes place. This brings us to science. The human anatomy is not a matter of opinion or debate. We all have a diaphragm and it does the same thing for everyone. The same goes for neuroplasticity, proprioception, muscles, ligaments and bones. These functions and structural components are universal, as is our exposure to gravity and biomechanics.
However, what does differ are the thoughts and images in our heads, and the ideas that we carry about our past and our future. These mental models influence how we move, even if they are out of touch with our actual physical anatomy. This is where Body Mapping and the Franklin Method come in.
Body Mapping is a simple way of becoming aware that we are ‘movers’ and learning how unclear ideas lead to unclear movement. This is a valuable tool for musicians, as playing music and movement are intrinsically connected. Through correcting false images about our functional anatomy, one is able to achieve more freedom and enhance performance.
The Franklin Method is not really a ‘method’ in the sense that are no fixed exercises. It is a continuously evolving system that does not claim to be perfect. The aim is simple: to improve what we do most; sitting, standing, walking, breathing,…
Here, movements are examined in 3D, focusing on bones, joints, ligaments, muscles and organs using both anatomical and metaphorical imagery.
In improving what you do most in life, you are improving your life. Your body will be better able to play music, dance or run. Ultimately, you become a more ‘natural’ version of yourself.