A key component in the Connected Movement method is re-examining deeply rooted habits, or motoric patterns: the automated solutions we have to any situation that requires us to respond by moving.
Even our most simple movements entail the use of many muscle groups and the reorganization of our spine. None of us moves the same, because our movement reflects not only our unique body structure but also our different history, type of training and personality.
In real time, while we are performing our every day activities we do not stop and think how we do things and whether the action we are taking is the best possible solution for our needs. In our lessons these movements become our center of attention.
Our patterns are so deeply rooted that we find it difficult to even realize them and that they can be performed differently.
Habits are not a bad thing. They free us to do other things, and they allow us, by repetition, to keep improving our performance. However, when we become aware of the pattern we can assess whether this habit is serving us, could be improved, or perhaps another habit can be developed or modified to perform the same task.
When we practice Connected Movement we are performing movements in lab conditions: we often start by isolating movement components, studying them closely and then integrating them into a more complex movement. We often learn the movement independent of the function it is designed to serve.
In our pair work we are creating an optimal learning environment we do not have outside of class: our partner is supporting us, and we are supporting them, thus creating an information highway between us that provides us again with a lab- like learning environment.
An eye of a pier can be very helpful when we are trying to observe things we find difficulties doing so ourselves, provided this extra pair of eyes comes from a friendly, safe and non-judgemental place. Therefore, setting up a haven for playful self-exploration is essential to our classes.
The new discoveries we make about our movement patterns needn’t be purposefully implemented into our everyday life. To assume that we will be able to consciously use this newly acquired knowledge in real time is not very likely.
However, since the knowledge we gain is experiential, the new movements become available to us even when our conscious mind is not focused on performing them.
Two welcome side effects of learning in this manner are that since our learning experience happens in a relaxed and safe environment, this experience of being at ease and in a safe environment is reconstructed outside of class, allowing us to calm ourselves down and eventually to apply the same exploration methods in our everyday lives.