… Is a Paradigm Shift
A shift from thinking of the person as a mechanical system that needs fixing and has a known limit to its potential to thinking of the person as an intelligent, information based system moderated by the brain with infinite possibilities for growth and development and therefore no certain or known limit to its potential.
… Enhances the Brain’s Ability to Learn
The perception of differences is the brain’s basic unit of information. ABM provides the conditions that allow the brain to better distinguish differences, enabling it to map the body and to evolve the ability of the person to move, feel, and think.
… Provides the Possibility of Transformation in the Whole Person
ABM works on the principle that the human being always works as one system. Improvements come as the brain maps and organizes movement, feeling, emotions, and thinking on an increasingly complex, more skillful level. Positive outcomes are a natural, spontaneous byproduct of the upgrading of the brain and nervous system.
… uses Nine Essentials for Optimal Learning
The ABM practitioner guides the client/student through slow, gentle movements executed with an understanding of the Nine Essentials and close attention to what they feel as they move. The Nine Essentials form the core of the neuromovement approach of the Anat Baniel Method. Incorporating the Nine Essentials into the movements ensures that the client’s/student’s brain has the optimal conditions for learning and growth, as each essential describes one of the brain’s requirements for maximum learning. The Nine Essentials have been validated by recent discoveries in the area of brain plasticity, and they offer immediate, concrete, effective ways to tap into the brain’s enormous potential.
Essential 1: Movement with Attention
When we bring attention to what we feel as we move, the brain immediately starts building billions of new neurological connections that usher in learning and growth.
Essential 2: Turn on the Learning Switch
The brain is either in a learning mode, or not. Repetition, drilling, and habitual patterns all tend to turn the learning switch off. Bringing the brain into a ready to learn state provides the optimal conditions for new information to be attended to, processed, and absorbed.
Essential 3: Subtlety
In order for the brain to receive new information, it needs to perceive differences. By reducing the force with which we move, feel, and think, we become more sensitive, thus enhancing the brain’s ability to distinguish differences of a finer and finer nature.
Essential 4: Variation
Variation provides the brain with the richness of information it needs to create new possibilities and potentials.
Essential 5: Slow
Slowing down gets the brain’s attention and stimulates the formation of rich new neural patterns rather than reinforcing automatic responses. Learning and mastering new skills and overcoming limitations requires going slowly at first.
Essential 6: Enthusiasm
Enthusiasm is a pointer for the brain, marking what is important and amplifying it. Things that are enthusiastically supported thus grow and prosper as they stand out to the brain and signal it what to pay attention to and to give energy to.
Essential 7: Flexible Goals
Leaving goals loosely held allows the brain to prioritize information and to optimize the system for the greatest likelihood of success. It also allows for the appearance of additional other positive outcomes that are unexpected and unplanned.
Essential 8: Imagination and Dreams
When imagining, the brain grows new neural connections, and figures out new possibilities without actually having to perform. Imagination and dreams provide the ability to create something that has never been there before, or to transcend current limitations. The blueprints for future success can come from imagination and dreams.
Essential 9: Awareness
Awaring—the action of generating awareness—is to be knowledgeable about what you are experiencing so that you can make a conscious choice in action. This type of knowing creates possibilities and potential rather than automaticity or compulsion.
Anat’s website has a wealth of information about the Nine Essentials. For a more detailed explanation of the Nine Essentials, click here. For information about research supporting the Nine Essentials, click here.