“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
“Simple pleasure and surprise working with Mary / her lessons: a new-found physical balance and open core sitting Zazen, long distance cycling with a consistently lower heart beat. Who would have thought.
-Kit Uren, Principal Uren Myers Insurance Broker
“Feldenkrais is not just pushing muscles around, it’s changing things in the brain itself.”
-Karl Pribram, Md, PhD, neuroscientist
“Feldenkrais lessons with Mary Spire have helped me overcome serious arthritic conditions. As a musician the work not only is sustaining my career – it has improved my tone and created more freedom and ease in my playing.”
– Brian Marcus, Bassist, San Francisco Symphony
“I very much appreciated the FI that you taught on the video. It was of the best examples I have yet to see on a video or live. I found it mature, respectful, perceptive and functional. Your communication of the instruction, intention, and direction of the burgeoning outcome, was superb. You helped to guide her to understand precisely what, why and how her body was moving and being perceived by her while coming to a deep and subtle conscious awareness of herself, concretely revealing “Awareness Through Movement”.
You took her through all the coordinates of lengthening (top up and bottom down) and rotation of her head, neck shoulder girdle, spine hips and knees. It was a stellar model.
Thank you very much for demonstrating your style generously, gracefully, and professionally, I will revisit and watch this FI many more times and continue to learn from it while keeping it in mind and emulating it.
I admire the way you work and if you had DVDs of FIs in that style I would want to avail myself of them.”
“Feldenkrais builds on a method that every singer is acquainted with: repeating actions until they become automatic and no longer require conscious effort. Singers use this for control of the tongue and palate, the larynx, the ribs and abdominal muscles. Feldenkrais applies it more broadly throughout the body. Working with the pelvis, chest and neck, allowing the whole body to take part in movements rather than restricting and localizing them, learning to stand strongly and quietly–all this has great benefit for a singer. I have also found that Feldenkrais work clears the mind and makes memorization and concentration easier.”
– Allen Shearer, composer and singer
“Since arriving in London, I have had some pretty rough days, back-wise, especially when it came to walking. So I decided this morning that I would take the 45 minutes to complete the recorded lesson you recommended prior to my departure. Mary, I can’t tell you how silly I felt. There I was dealing with serious back issues and you had me moving a single hand and fingers! Really!! I did it, but all the while I thought you must have made a mistake. My hand was just fine. My back was the problem. Nevertheless, I completed the lesson. I really couldn’t tell if it had made any difference, but decided to find out. I would make my way to the Charles Dickens Museum, which I knew would be tricky, and probably required significant walking. Would my back hold out? After two hours of travel that involved several blocks of walking I arrived at Dicken’s Bloomsbury neighborhood only to find the museum closed for repairs. But to my surprise, my back felt great. So despite my disappointment with the closed museum I was pain free. To me this was some kind of miracle…something to be celebrated. That lesson you recommended changed everything. I just had to share this with you, and can envision that knowing smile on your face as you read this email.”
– S. A., Berkeley, CA
“I appreciate the “how” of Mary’s teaching. Her teaching praxis directly reflects the principles of the method, providing rich layers of experience and learning to her students. The classroom environment, instruction, feedback and progression through content, all coalesce to reveal dynamic applications with the method.”
– Sarah M. Nemecek, MFA
(Eugene, Oregon: Feldenkrais® Professional Training Program, June, 2012)
“Thanks so much for the great workshop. I came with a sense that I had reasonable ideas as to what would be more optimal for the musicians I see and have worked some with their instruments- but seeing what a master actually chooses to do was really the next step for me.”
– Marsha Novak, GCFP, P.T.
“Thank you for a superb first training session in the Feldenkrais Method. You are a topnotch teacher, and so real and available. More than ever, I feel open, relaxed, and at one with my feelings and my body. As a musician, this is very important to me. My neck, shoulders, and spine have never felt so supple and unified. I have more mobility as a violist than at any time during the last ten years, and am enjoying a new appreciation of how I practice.”
– David Daniel Bowes, Viola/Violin Teacher and Performer, Philharmonia Baroque
“Thank you for a wonderful wonderful experience–it’s been quite a special three weeks! It’s a tremendous amount of work to put together a training, and I am so glad you are doing it…. I like very much how you emphasize the `method’ part of the Feldenkrais Method. And thank you also for your spectacular ATM teaching (and sequencing) in the first two weeks!”
– Student from Teacher Training Program
“I am a Traumatic Brain Injured patient of Mary Spire’s. I was severely injured by a bike accident in June 2012. Mary is an expert/experienced Feldenkrais instructor. She has helped me relearn how to walk. Her instructions started with safe, basic moves in a chair. When I was ready, practices became more advanced. Using Mary Spire’s gentle exercises has helped my brain synapses to re-knit and fire more accurately. I now walk with much more fluidity than when we began 6 lessons ago. I now walk adequately without using a wheelchair, walker or cane. Each morning, for about 15 minutes, I begin by warming-up with Mary’s basic Feldenkrais exercises. This results in my walking movements being enhanced and a much more positive start of my day. I highly recommend Mary Spire’s Feldenkrais treatments. She is known by me as “Mary Inspire” due to her notably helpful instructions.”
– Michael Buckley
“Mary’s expertise in the Feldenkrais Method along with my home use of her easy-to-follow audio taped movement lessons combined to help me where conventional medicine had failed. I have achieved a dramatic reduction in neck muscle spasms caused by dystonia, a neurological disorder. I cannot express my appreciation enough.”
– Joanne Volponi, Chemist
“I love Feldenkrais! I found Feldenkrais to be neither a cure nor a fix, but an accessible and enjoyable way of learning to engage mindfully with myself and the world at many different levels. Through Mary Spire’s lessons, I gained insights that I have carried over into other areas of expertise. Mary’s superb understanding of Feldenkrais’ teaching in action even inspired me to take a training myself!”
– Marianne Constable, Professor of Humanities,
“I had a bicycle accident with a mild traumatic brain injury that effected my vision. Mary has helped tremendously with her therapy in dealing with my double vision, acuity, perception,eye movement and anxiety. She encouraged me with gentle eye exercises and CD’s for body and eye movement that I continue to use to improve my vision. Thank you Mary.”
“The following is a copy of an article published in the NSTA (National Spasmodic Torticollis Association) newsletter. I thought it may be helpful to other dystonia patients who might be interested in trying an alternative therapy called Feldenkrais. It has helped me immensely!” article
– Joanne Volponi