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Our Breath During the Pandemic
I had felt terribly fatigued as 2021 started, and I promised myself I’d slow down even more…
and just like that, I found myself battling what the tests categorized as a “mild” form of Covid.
As far as I was concerned, there was nothing mild about it.
Luckily, my daily awareness group was starting a sequence of Feldenkrais breathing lessons just as my breath was faltering. To say I was grateful to the point of tears is not an exaggeration. Catching my breath was proving to be hard work.
The general advice for covid patients is to kneel forward in order to support the lungs in their struggle to combat covid. It did not feel comfortable or doable for me as I would’ve needed to be upside down for hours on end.
So I relied on the awareness through movement (ATM®) lessons that were starting.
They were about short, shallow inhales that expanded the lungs upwards and backwards. The lesson sequence came over a span of 4 days and provided my lungs with much needed support.
Now I’m well and covid-free, I would like to share with you a short breathing audio lesson.
It is not meant as a teaching, but more like a guide to support your lungs and your precious breath through this time.
Its meant feel doable and not too demanding.
As requested, you will find an English and Arabic track, in the Egyptian dialect.
I would like to invite you to use and disseminate these recordings as you see fit.
These are not therapies but aides.
Not “lessons” as much as they are explorations.
As I mentioned in that February email, during Covid they were god sends.
I welcome all manners of feedback. So, please, don’t hold back.
Just before falling ill I had written a descriptive post about the ribs and their joints, joints that within a week of writing that post were inflamed and keeping me awake. Having them so clear in my image of myself helped me dramatically. I had also posted a short exploration of the ribs and cartilages that I found expansive and relaxing.T ake a look at the posts and let me know if they clarify something about your chest for you. I’ve been asked to write them in English, let me know about the Arabic for now.
The 2020 Phenomenon
First and foremost, let me tell you I bloody know about pain!
I know about tight hip joints and weak knees, about stiff necks and clenched backs.
I know about heaving shallow breath, and fatigue that overcomes all willful resolutions!
Oh I know!
I also know about pretending to be okay.
Pretending that it’s all manageable, and counting the minutes till I can be alone, in my room, laying on my bed, so I can let the suffering out of its hiding, and then pray for sleep to give me a break…till it all returns the next morning…
But there is more.
I know it doesn’t have to be that way.
I know it doesn’t have to stay that way.
I know there is a gentle way out of this. I have found it for myself and for my clients.
My name is Marwa al-Sawi. I’m a certified Feldenkrais practitioner. I teach Awareness Through Movement, which is another way of saying I’m a movement learning coach. I’m also a Somatic Experiencing Therapist-in training.
During the pandemic I customized my lessons and sessions and brought my clients physical and emotional relief, via a screen! Yes! You heard that right!
I had to find a way around the dangers of Covid, and lo and behold, online sessions transformed the way I work.
You are receiving this email because at some point you showed interest in working with me. Perhaps the distances or schedules kept that from happening. But now, I truly have a simple and reliable, covid-safe means to give you.
And so, I extend you and yours the offer to work with me.
Book your discovery call and let’s chat about you, what would you like to work on to improve the quality of your life? Let’s see if we can’t replace your pain with pleasure, your worry with curiosity, and the pretence to be ok with authentic gratitude.
Gift yourself with the time to feel and heal your pains. If anything, this year has brought us all so much self-reflection, we can only build on it!
It doesn’t need to be so hard, there is a way, for you and for your loved ones.
I promise you! I know both ends. I choose healing every time!
What will you choose?
You can book your call HERE.
You can message me directly on 0122-3241610
You Can follow me on:
I look forward to hearing from you.
And If You Continue Doing Things The Same Way?
“In 10 years from now you’ll surely arrive. The question is, where?*
Have you thought about it? About where you want to be in 10 years time? What your life will be like?
Take a moment., and think about it, feel into who, where, what you will be 10 years from today.
If you continue to do things the way you are doing them now, where will your life go?
If you do what you’ve always done, you’ll get what you’ve always gotten.*
What do you see in the quality of your life? In the health of your gut, the calm of your mind, the peace of your soul, and just as importantly, in this beautiful vessel that carries all of that, Your body!
Your body is your home.
Are you tending to your home?
When I attend to my own body, and when I attend to the bodies of my clients, I can’t help but notice how habitual it is to have little reverence for everything contained within our own skin.
We give our thoughts a lot of power and allow our mind to override our brain, our body and our spirit.
We call that active. Busy. Modern.
How about you graph what you do everyday, and follow it 10 years from now.
Where does it lead?
Which direction does the graph reach?
Does it remain steady?
Dip a little? Alot?
Does it tip upwards?
As you consider this question and observe your everyday, ask yourself how you can make time to listen to your body.
What is keeping you from slowing down?
What if you were to communicate to your body a different message today?
Speak to me.
I will listen.
I will slow down and show you kindness.
Speak to me.
I will listen.
It is in your moments of decision that your destiny is shaped.*
Start where you are.
Start with one thing.
without emotional blackmail.
EMBODY you NOW.
Make space for yourself today.
Sense how you are
Do ONE thing, everyday, starting today to be your own best friend.
Drop me a line here, and tell me what is one sustainable thing that you will do to care for yourself. Something that will feed your soul, nourish your body, and bring you closer to the life you WANT to have in 10 years time.
Reply to this email and let me know if I can help you find this “nourishment” for yourself or for a loved one. I will be happy to receive your questions and to extend a hand where I can.
In February, I will start offering online workshops.
What themes would you like to work on? What hours and days suit you most?
Who would you bring along if you could? Someone that you know needs to slow down, as well. Forward them this email. Chat about your necks, backs, or weakened knees. And write me back, saying we want a workshop on this, or on that.
I would love to hear from you.
An Invitation to Walk on National Walking Day
There is so much that can be said about walking.
In her stellar book, Wanderlust, a History of Walking, Rebecca Solnit casually writes,
“Walking is a state in which the mind, the body, and the world are aligned…
Walking allows us to be in our bodies and in the world without being made busy by them.”
Tomorrow, Thursday April 7th is National Walking Day.
I love to walk. It settles me.
But more and more I notice with myself, my kids and clients that everyone is walking less and less. And that our bodies are interacting with the transmission of force and movement shifts necessary to walk with more difficulty. So lately, I’ve been making a point to walk longer than usual, intentionally extending my walking time and frequency. And in doing so I’ve been learning a lot about my state of being and my body.
Do you walk?
Do you consider walking as part of your self-care?
The beauty of walking is it doesn’t need to be a stressful to-do, it can be incorporated into our everyday and made into a to-be…
Please, share with me your experiences of walking.
What do you like/dislike about walking?
How often do you walk?
What do you struggle with when walking?
Would you be interested in joining a WALKING CLUB?
Walking is good for the bones, for the mood, for mobility and for hormonal balance.
It is considered a gentle activity and it is an opportunity to align with oneself.
Walking back to happiness is a song I discovered recently in the Be Here Now Bookclub, when an esteemed member shared it with us, and now everytime I play it, I find a spring in my walk:)
Give it a listen!
There are countless articles about the benefits of walking, I will share with you this concise one which I received today from the wonderful Feldenkrais Practitioner Sonja Johansson. If you don’t know Sonja, please, make the time to check her out. And watch her latest video on bringing a spring back into your walk.
I would looooove to start a Walk club, one where we each walk individually, and meet twice a month to work on our musculoskeletal organization to improve our walking, and share insights about our sense of self as we walk the terrain we inhabit <3
We have all become quite sedentary, let’s slowly give our minds and bodies the soulful dynamism they were designed for.
I will leave you with one of my all-time favorite quotes, which is significant to today’s topic
You need to keep walking, though there is no place to arrive at.
Oh! Look! Its Meeee!
Last week I was on TV talking about awareness through movement (ATM) as an approach and a lifestyle.
When I was asked to go on the show, for the first time in years, I did not brush it aside or hesitate, instead I heard myself say yes, I will do it! It will be good practice.
When I used to teach at the Nahda Street Theatre School I repeatedly refused offers to do TV shows or even radio and newspaper interviews. I have changed!
And let me tell you, I really enjoyed the experience. I mean what is not to like when it comes to chatting about something you love, and sharing it with…well, I don’t really know who watches TV these days, but my family and friends encouraged me by watching on their screens.
I have more of “me” to share with you…
I make a guest appearance tomorrow on the Arabic rendition of the American show “Suits”…. I have a whole range of emotions about this one. I’m excited! I’m terrified! And have no idea what to expect. Sure, I enjoyed myself during the shoot, but that was then, now I’m…anxious!
You think it would stop here! Here would be a good place to stop, but I’m on a roll!
Look! Its me again!
This is one of the posters for the amazing lineup of teachers that will be teaching live awareness through movement lessons in the
I’ve been lucky to participate before in lessons with Future Life Now, but these were pre recorded and for Arab speakers only- as in my lessons were in Arabic.
This year all lessons are live and in English.
Mark your calendars for May 1-2, 2022.
I teach along some great names in the field, including my own mentor-guru, the incredible Jeff Haler, she of the voice Maggie Burrows, and the ever inspiring queen of ATMs Erifily Nikolapoulou, to name a few.
Have you registered yet? https://resources.futurelifenow-online.com/mbfb-atm/atw-2022
When you do, you will have access to over 15 ATM lessons taught by practitioners from around the world
There are lessons for beginners, intermediate level movers and advanced body folks 🙂
There will be a LIVE movement lesson at the top of every hour, for 48 hours.
And if you can’t attend live, free replays will be shared free for a few days.
I do hope to see you there!
Oh, and if you catch me on Suits tomorrow, let me know what you think 🙂
My TV Interview on Awareness Through Movement
Exactly a month ago I went to Maspero to talk about Awareness through Movement. If you are clueless as to what that means, or know a little but don’t mind learning more, I think this episode is for you. Towards the end, in the last 10 minutes I start a simple, gentle exploration that sadly we run out of time for, so it doesn’t complete, but if you follow the instructions you can still complete it though the episode ends.
I”m sharing this with you now especially, to encourage you to attend Saturday’s zoom call for the developing “Walk Club”. I hope you decide to come a walk-ING with me.
من شهر بالظبط عملت حلقة في التلفزيون عن دروس الوعي من خلال الحركة.
لو متعرفوش حاجه عنها أو تعرفوا شوية بس مش متأكدين أوي ده ايه، اتفرجوا علي الحلقة وأظن إنكم حتلاقوا أجوبة علي أسئلتكم.
في أخر ١٠ دقايق من الحلقة بعمل استكشاف بسيط بالجسد و الحركة، للأسف مكنش عندي وقت أخلصه لكن ممكن تتبعوا الارشادات و تخلصوا انتم رغم انتهاء الحلقة
بما إني حالياً عايزه أشجعكم علي الإنضمام لنادي المشي فمش حلاقي توقيت أحسن من ده إني أشارك فيه الحلقة التعريفية دي.
سجلوا معايا و أحضروا مقابلة الزووم يوم السبت
Preview YouTube video
برنامج بيت العيلة – الحركة وتاثيرها على الصحةا\ مروة الصاوى -مدرب حركة علاجية