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The Liminal Lesson: Transitions Between Action and Rest (Patrons)

Liminal: adjective, “at a point where one perception or condition blends or crosses over into another”

– Webster’s New World Dictionary

Mostly side-lying. Improving quality of rest and efficiency of action by clarifying the transitions between them. Get to know the actual sensations and somatic processes of preparing for action and transitioning to rest. Explored in a lesson structure designed to improve uprightness and gait.


Before you begin read this for practical tips and your responsibilities, and check out Comfort & Configuration below.

Recorded live in a Feldenkrais Awareness Through Movement (ATM) class, this lesson is copyright Nick Strauss-Klein, for personal use only.

Tip 1 – Interrupted?

Study tip: Interrupted or don’t have enough time? You can return to the lesson later today or tomorrow. Read how best to continue your learning on our FAQ page.

Tip – Directions are Relative

Study tip: Directions are always relative to your body. For example, if you’re lying on your back “up” is toward your head, and “forward” is toward the ceiling.

Tip 3 – Head Support

Study tip: It helps to have a large bath towel nearby when you start a lesson. You can fold it differently for comfortable head support in any configuration.

Tip – What’s New

Community tip: See what Nick and other Felden-fans are interested in right now. Check out What’s New at the bottom of our homepage for recent blog posts and listener comments.

Tip – Complete the Movement

Study tip: Complete one movement before beginning the next. You’ll improve faster if there’s enough time between movements that you feel fully at rest.

Tip 4 – Padding

Study tip: Comfort first! Carpeted floors usually work well, but it’s great to have an extra mat or blanket nearby in case you need a softer surface in some configurations.

Tip – Lesson names

What’s in a lesson title? Lessons are about an hour unless a shorter duration is shown in the title. Thanks to our donors they’re freely offered unless marked “Patrons” – those are how we thank our Patron-level donors.

Tip – Join!

Join the Project! If you already have, thank you for your support! Members and Patrons see streamlined lesson pages, and can access the Related Lessons and Source tabs below.

Tip – LESSS is more

LESSS is more: Light, Easy, Small, Slow, & Smooth movements will ease pains and improve your underlying neuromuscular habits faster than any other kind of movement, no matter who you are or what your training is!

Tip – Comments

Project tip: Leave a lesson comment below! It’s a great way to give feedback or ask a question, and it helps google find us so we can achieve The Feldenkrais Project’s vision!

Tip 5 – Discomfort

Study tip: If a configuration or movement causes any increase in discomfort, or you feel you just don’t want to do it, don’t! Make it smaller and slower, adapt it, or rest and imagine.

Tip – Technical Difficulties

Tech tip: If you have any trouble with the audio player, reboot your browser. That solves most issues. If not, please contact Nick.

Tip – what to wear

Study tip: Wear loose, comfortable clothes that are warm enough for quiet movement. Remove or avoid anything restrictive like belts or glasses.

Tip 2 – Social Sharing

Project tip: Try the social buttons below. Please help us to achieve our vision: spreading the life-changing benefits of Feldenkrais study as widely as possible!

Tip – Rewinding

Study tip: Many instructions are repeated. If you get a little lost, rest and listen. You’ll often find your way. Or use the rewind button on the page or your mobile device.

Tip – skip a lesson

Study tip: If you can’t find a comfortable way to do the initial movements or configuration of a lesson, it’s ok to skip it for now and go on to another lesson.

Tip – Pause the recording

Study tip: If you’re really enjoying a movement and want to explore longer, or you just need a break for a while, pause the recording!

We offer over 50 free lessons, but this one's just for our Patron-level donors. You can learn about it in the free lesson notes and comments below, but to access the audio you’ll need to join The FP as a Patron. Learn more

If you are a Patron, please log in:

Avoid high-friction mats (like a tacky yoga mat) for this lesson.

“Up,” “down,” “behind,” “in front,” and “pull up” are frequently used directions in this lesson. Note, as always, that directions are relative to you. Since you’re lying on your side, this means that these movements are sliding on the floor, or parallel to the plane of the floor. When you’re lying on your side “up” and “overhead” never means toward the room’s ceiling (that would be sideways).

This lesson inspired a Patrons newsletter about liminal moments and the class’s theme of “Rest and Recharge” at the end of 2020, which you can read here.

This lesson is found in Patrons Monthly, our collection of lessons exclusively for Feldenkrais Project Patron-level donors, with one or more new lessons added every month.

It also appears in our Deep Dive course called Breathing with Vitality.

Audio was captured during a live Zoom lesson on Dec. 1, 2020, in an ATM class hosted by my colleague Frederick Schjang.

Members and Patrons. Learn more or login:

Members and Patrons. Learn more or login:

Got a question for Nick, or a thought about this lesson?

Use the comments section below! Public comments build our community and help search engines find us.



  1. Niva on December 30, 2020 at 10:05 am

    Many thanks, Nick, for this beautiful lesson!
    I’m well aware of my body asymmetries in rest & action, but it is not quite like comparing “level of rest”.
    I love to learn to look a little differently at things…
    The rolling gently of this lesson is a real pleasure.
    I found myself smiling often during the lesson, like a kid on a dreamy swing.

  2. Lorraine on February 12, 2021 at 3:23 pm

    And now I’ve finished this lesson and I can feel myself resting on the seat, very thoroughly resting.

  3. Lorraine on July 30, 2021 at 4:08 pm

    In the first few weeks of my twins life if I stopped moving I could fall asleep standing up – invoking my inner horse.

  4. shan shnookal on December 26, 2021 at 1:47 am

    Wow, such an interesting concept – to move from action to rest! I’ve just realised that this is a bit foreign to me; when i lie on the floor after being active, i’m aware it often takes a long time to “let go”. Such a profound lesson to learn!

  5. Sara Firman on July 10, 2023 at 12:03 pm

    What exquisite guidance you give into this process … the experience truly lived up to the description for me … how to make that transition. Thank you.

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