Mary Spire is the Educational Director and main trainer for the Optimal Moves® Feldenkrais Teacher Training Program. She will be at the Training during all of the segments. Well-known internationally as a trainer, and for her work with children with special needs, with performing artists, and with those with neurological conditions, she brings extensive experience as an artist and musician to her work as a Feldenkrais teacher and trainer.
“Mary is more than an experienced Feldenkrais instructor. She is sensitive, caring and perceptive about each person she works with. She is innovative and challenged to find solutions, even with the most difficult and challenging problems. I enjoy having the opportunity to work collaboratively with her in the care of our common patients.”
– Nancy Byl, PH.D., PT, UCSF School of Medicine
Other Faculty consist of highly qualified and certified trainers with many years of teaching experience. The Trainers include: Carol Kress, Dennis Leri, Olena Nitefor, Aliza Stewart, David Zemach-Bersin and Arlyn Zones. Kathy James will be the Assistant Trainer as well as the Administrator of the Training.
Experienced Feldenkrais practitioners will also be part of the educational team. They will provide support for the training and give FI lessons.
Carol Kress is a highly experienced Feldenkrais Practitioner of more than 20 years, and Trainer who brings to her teaching a desire for excellence and a wish to communicate the essence of the Feldenkrais Method. In her private practice she works with both adults and children with a variety of difficulties, including chronic pain and neurological problems, as well as performing artists. Her work is informed by a long-time involvement in equestrian arts, yoga, a passion for Argentine Tango, and her practice of the martial art of Aikido for which she holds a 4th degree black belt.
Carol first began to study the Feldenkrais Method in1985, she finished her Feldenkrais Professional Training Program in 1993. Carol teaches throughout the United States. She is currently completing the editing of Volume One of an in-depth biography of Dr. Feldenkrais, written by her late husband, Trainer, Mark Reese. Carol lives in Marin County, California.
Dennis Leri, Guild Certified Feldenkrais Practitionersm and Guild Certified Feldenkrais Trainersm has worldwide experience presenting the Feldenkrais Method® in training programs, seminars and workshops. He graduated from the first professional American training (1975-1977) and he apprenticed with Dr. Feldenkrais at the Feldenkrais Institute in Tel-Aviv, Israel. He has taught the Method for over 34 years. His accessible and challenging teaching style reflects his training in Western and Eastern philosophy, psychology, martial arts and poetics. He has published articles, translated into several languages, on the Feldenkrais Method®
Olena Nitefor: Feldenkrais Practitioner & Assistant Trainer — Olena Nitefor, M.Ed,
In private practice in Toronto since 1987, Olena works with people dealing with pain and neurological difficulties, as well as dancers, musicians, athletes, people with “poor posture” and those looking to enhance any aspect of professional or personal life which required improving or rehabilitating movements.
In addition to working in individual Functional Integration sessions, Olena leads workshops for movement professionals, for the public and for Feldenkrais practitioners in North America and Europe. She teaches in Professional Training Programs in Toronto, the U.S. and Europe.
Olena brings to the work her extensive background in anatomy, kinesiology, movement studies and dance. In the early 80’s the Feldenkrais Method served as her means of recovery from back injury. From that start, she had continued to find the method invaluable as an ongoing transformational process.
Aliza Stewart has been a Feldenkrais practitioner for 29 years and is an accredited Feldenkrais Trainer, teaching in trainings in the US, Europe, South America and Israel. She has given classes, workshops and presentations in institutions & organizations about the benefits of Feldenkrais in medical cases, the ergonomics of the workplace and the arts. The institutions include The Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory, The Maryland Medical and Chirurgical Society, and The University of Wisconsin at Madison. She has taught Feldenkrais classes to medical students at the University of Maryland Medical School.
Originally trained as a concert pianist, Aliza Stewart has a great understanding for the needs and problems of performers. For fifteen years she has taught a Feldenkrais class at the Peabody Conservatory of Music and is at the Mannes School of music. She has been in residence at the Marlboro music festival and the Yellow Barn music festival, working with internationally acclaimed musicians. Aliza has given special workshops at the Juilliard school, Manhattan school of Music, the Mannes School of Music and the University of Vienna, Austria.
Ms. Stewart has a private practice in Baltimore and in New York City.
David Zemach-Bersin, co-founder of the Feldenkrais® Institute of New York, is one of Dr. Moshe Feldenkrais’ original American students. He studied with Dr. Feldenkrais from 1973-1984 in the U.S., Europe, and at the Feldenkrais Institute in Tel Aviv, Israel.
David is one of the world’s foremost Feldenkrais teachers and trainers. For over 35 years, David has been involved with the development of the Feldenkrais Method®. He co-founded Feldenkrais Resources in 1983, with Elizabeth Beringer, and the Feldenkrais Institute of New York in 2005, with Marek Wyszynski. He also co-founded the Feldenkrais Research Foundation in 2007, a non-profit supporting scientific research on The Feldenkrais Method. David is a former President and Training Accreditation Board Member of The Feldenkrais Guild of North America.
David is an enthusiastic and experienced teacher. He directs Feldenkrais Method Training Programs in New York City, and Baltimore. He also teaches in programs in California and Europe, and offers popular post-graduate courses for Feldenkrais practitioners. For almost 40 years, David has maintained a private practice working with a diverse population including people with movement limitations, neurological problems, children, seniors, performing artists, and people with chronic pain. David is a Honors graduate of UC Berkeley, with extensive post-graduate work in physiological psychology, and is the co-author of Relaxercise (HarperCollins), a popular introduction to The Feldenkrais Method. He has created a variety of Feldenkrais audio programs.
David Zemach-Bersin lives with his family in Bucks County, Pennsylvania.
Arlyn Zones (MA Theatre Arts) has been involved in the Feldenkrais Method since 1977 and graduated in 1983 from the last training that Dr. Moshe Feldenkrais conducted. She is one of the most experienced Trainers in the U.S. and has taught in numerous trainings worldwide. She has directed her own programs in Europe and North America. Over the last 30 years Arlyn has taught workshops for health professionals, performing artists, and the general public as well as offering post-graduate seminars for Feldenkrais Practitioners. She lives in San Francisco where she maintains a private practice in which she works with infants, children and adults who are seeking help for a wide range of physical and neurological difficulties. Her private practice also includes work with dancers, singers and musicians.
Assistant Trainer, Administrative Director and Member of the Continuity Team:
Kathy studied with Dr. Moshe Feldenkrais in the early 1980′s and became a certified Feldenkrais Practitioner in 1983. In 1997, she became an Assistant Trainer and has worked in numerous trainings for over 15 years as an assistant trainer. She leads workshops throughout the U.S., and has been on the adjunct faculty in the Holistic Studies Department at John F. Kennedy University.
She currently holds a fourth degree black belt in the martial art of Aikido, trained as a professional dancer and worked in the industrial health and safety field for over ten years. She has taught in a variety of organizations from Hospitals, Physical Therapy Clinics, Universities and Businesses. Kathy lives in Petaluma, CA where she teaches and has a private practice.