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Offer/Request -- Free [Mind-]Body Work for Farmers -- need practicum subjects  RSS feed

 
Joshua Myrvaagnes
pollinator
Posts: 563
Location: Massachusetts, 6b, urban, nearish coast, 39'x60' minus the house, mostly shady north side, + lead.
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Dear Homesteaders, Farmers, Permies, Horticulturists,

I want to work with food growers, I want to work with communities and the growers of food are the ones who nourish the very physical existence of communities.

For three years I have been training in a body-mind reeducation modality called the Alexander Technique, and now in my third year I have to do practicum hours. I am really thrilled that I can begin helping people now, and at the same time can learn from real-life persons and situations. I believe this Technique can be of great benefit, helping farmers prevent injuries and stresses on body and mind, and get more bang for their buck in their work. It's been used by factory workers, athletes, dancers, scientists, and thinkers--all of which a permie has to be.

Alexander Technique is, in my view, permaculture principles applied to the self--to the body-mind--in a more lucid way than any other. Coincidentally, it was a free-thinking individual from Tasmania who discovered these principles, and they've become a worldwide phenomenon. I believe this is a more portable form of aid for the worker than something that separates you from activity (yoga, Pilates, running, stretching, etc.), and while those other forms of help for the body may be useful there is a whole other order of magnitude to the usefulness of what Alexander discovered in the midst of activity. I want this to be available to change-makers, to people who work with the Earth, plants, and animals, building a new world.

I can't promise any results, and in some cases there may be no perceptible benefit. In some cases it may be I have more I need to learn; in others I might not be the right teacher for the person; in others it may not be a resource the person needs at the time. But the potential return on investment is huge, and the investment is not overwhelming.

For the practicum, I need people who are willing to commit to six sessions of one hour and then fill out a brief questionnaire about my work. I will come give one lesson as a trial, and then you can decide if you want to do the full six, or more. ("Lesson" is a strange term, but the best I can give--this is experiential learning, not empty intellectualism, and it is a learning that stays with you, not a treatment that can wear off or depends on the therapist.)

I know how precious time is for farmers and homesteaders. Hopefully some of you are in the "work 12 hours a week and laze about the rest of the time" phase of things, but I know that many are not and are working hard to get there. If this appeals to you but you just don't have the time, please print this out and bookmark it for the winter. If you can send a quick note saying "interested--please contact me in January" that is also good.

I'm willing to come to you, and to pitch in if I can lend a hand if that can thereby free up some bit of time so you can do an hour session. Also, I have some experience pulling a weed or two on farms, and I can be pretty well trusted not to do anything stupid. I will have to figure out the transportation, and so some locations I may need to decline, but I will try to come wherever the work is wanted.

If there are other things that you would need in order to make this work, please let me know what they are.

If you are not a grower but know one, who's probably too busy to be reading this, please do me a favor and pass on the word.

I have to do literally hundreds of practicum hours.

To make things absolutely clear, this is my practicum, and I will not accept any payment for this. I will gladly accept surplus veggies or weeds if you are literally looking for someone to take them off your hands, but otherwise nothing.

You'd be helping me and the mission of helping farmers in the long run. I need these practicum hours to complete my training.

If you want to know more about Alexander Technique you can start with Frank Pierce Jones' _Body Awareness in Action_ or this video
(Marjorie Barstow, a teacher of the Technique who was also a rancher).

Thanks for reading this and considering the request, and for feeding us all and keeping us alive through your labor.

In Community,


Joshua
 
Donna Kolaetis
Posts: 5
Location: South-central PA
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I am familiar with "the Alexander Technique", and like it very much. And I am not just saying that because my shoulder is complaining about something I did to it when clearing brush on Saturday! I would like to help you complete your training, but alas, we live easily 8 or 9 hours from you. We are not true permaculturists, but trying to homestead nonetheless. I think that those of us who work with land and animals and plants could definitely benefit from attentiveness to body mechanics and good care of the body as we use it. Thank you for doing this important work and sharing.
 
Joshua Myrvaagnes
pollinator
Posts: 563
Location: Massachusetts, 6b, urban, nearish coast, 39'x60' minus the house, mostly shady north side, + lead.
19
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Sure Donna, and thanks for writing back!

There is a training center in Philly, Martha Fertman is the trainer, and her students undoubtedly have to do practicum hours. You might contact them, they'd be pleased to hear from you I'm sure. Anywhere that we can be of service and make a useful contribution is great, and especially people who are doing what they do with a focus on sustainability.

Feel better, and see if you can make any discoveries investigating what Alexander discovered on your own! observe, observe, observe. That's what he did.


Donna Kolaetis wrote:I am familiar with "the Alexander Technique", and like it very much. And I am not just saying that because my shoulder is complaining about something I did to it when clearing brush on Saturday! I would like to help you complete your training, but alas, we live easily 8 or 9 hours from you. We are not true permaculturists, but trying to homestead nonetheless. I think that those of us who work with land and animals and plants could definitely benefit from attentiveness to body mechanics and good care of the body as we use it. Thank you for doing this important work and sharing.
 
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