My Story

Al Wadleigh

 

That's it. I give up.

I'm in my mid-30s, it's 1997, and I'm in trouble. I have intense back pain, difficulty in breathing, and I feel exhausted all the time. And I have severe anxiety.

Though I've done extensive self-work through NLP training and other modalities, I still feel empty and sad.

Though I've done extensive self-work through NLP training and other modalities, I still feel empty and sad. Don't get me wrong. It was helpful. Very helpful. But I feel like something important is missing from my life. I had started an audio publishing company, but I wasn't making much money at it. So I am resigned to do whatever work I can to get by.

Al with Sisters

Al with his sisters, Jan and Lois.

I am dyslexic. Reading has always been difficult. The library was like a chamber of horrors for me. Since childhood, my movements have been effortful and uncoordinated. I couldn't catch, throw, kick, or run. Anxiety characterized my life, and the feelings of pain, anger, and frustration were my constant companions. 

I am dyslexic. Since childhood, my movements have been effortful and uncoordinated.

I am dyslexic. Since childhood, my movements have been effortful and uncoordinated.

Jack Heggie

Jack Haggie, Author, Feldenkrais Practitioner

Around that time, my mother calls, she knows my struggles well. She tells me, “Al, try seeing a Feldenkrais Practitioner in Boulder, Colorado, named Jack Heggie.” I hesitated. I don’t know how I can afford it. But, with the intense pain, I’m willing try anything that might help. I arrive at Jack’s office. Jack is gruff and not a man of many words. He watches me walk in, grumbles something and instructs me to lie on his table. I’m thinking, “what the hell?” He starts moving me around, but the movements are small and subtle, I don’t feel much. I don’t believe they can help me.

But it does! 

It made a huge difference! I felt better, I stood taller, and I could walk and breath with ease. 

I go on to do a series of Feldenkrais lessons with Jack that fundamentally change the way I feel and move. After one experience, in particular, something fundamental changes in the way I sit, stand and walk. And to my surprise, when I get in my truck, I have to adjust the mirrors and seat. My truck didn't fit me anymore! And guess what? I never put the seats and mirrors back!

It made a huge difference! I felt better, I stood taller, and I could walk and breath with ease.

Jack and I become good friends. He is the author of several books using the Feldenkrais Method to improve vision, running, and skiing. Using my publishing skills, and he and I go onto publish four excellent Feldenkrais audio programs, even though I wasn’t a Feldenkrais Practitioner. I record, edit, and create the artwork for the programs.

A Healthy Back
total Body Golf
Total Body Vision
Running with the Whole Body

It’s now 1999. And at this point in my life, I’m feeling much better but I still don’t know where I am going in life. Then one day Jack invites me to videotape one of his workshops. The workshop was for Feldenkrais Practitioners teaching the hands-on approach to the work. My mind is blown as as I see firsthand the instant results he achieves, this ignites wonder and curiosity in me I had never known before.

My mind is blown as as I see firsthand the instant results he achieves, this ignites wonder and curiosity in me I had never known before.

I pick up a few things from watching Jack, and I start trying them out on people. One night I say to my wife, "Sarah, get on the floor, let me try this with you." I move her around as best I can remember, and when we finish, she feels better. Wow! For the next month, when I'm with someone, I say, "Hey, get on the floor, let me try this with you." And guess what? They feel better.

My wife said, "you have to take the training." I’m like, “are you sure?” (She hated for me to travel). She said, “yes!” and I said, “yes!” 

Author-Elizabeth-Beringer

Elizabeth Beringer, Feldenkrais Trainer

The universe aligned with me to get me into a Professional Feldenkrais Training with Elizabeth Beringer as my primary trainer. Doors just opened for me. My boss gave me the time off. My parents offered to help pay for it. And my best friend from Junior High, who lived near the training site, said, "come stay with me." I said yes, stepped through those doorways, and joined a four-year professional Feldenkrais training in California. 

That was it! I finally found something that made sense to me. I found something that made sense out of me! I found my purpose in life. And that which I felt had been missing from my experience, was found — it was Me!

That was it! I finally found something that made sense to me. I found something that made sense out of me! I found my purpose in life.

This work helped me resolve my kinesthetic dyslexia. I now live comfortably in my body. I am well coordinated and move with ease. I am no bookworm, but I can now read and write comfortably.

It’s been over 2 decades since I felt like “That's it. I give up.” And today, my greatest blessings is helping others. I love doing Feldenkrais lessons; I love teaching, and love working with people. 

Join with Me on Your Feldenkrais Journey


There are several ways in which we can work together

Al Wadleigh, GCFP
Awareness Through Movement

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ebook to relieve neck and shoulder pain

Got a stiff neck? Tense shoulders?

Get My Free E-Book

Relieve Tension in Your Neck and Shoulders with Feldenkrais Exercises

  • What are Feldenkrais exercises?
  • Why are they so effective?
  • Who developed them?
  • How can Feldenkrais help me?
  • Where can I get more?
Trust Badge

Pay with PayPal
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