Since 2005, I have been refining the movements I use to play the flute through Body Mapping. The process involves understanding the body’s design for movement, observing my movement, pinpointing the movement in myself, updating the movement for greater ease and precision, and then integrating the new movement back into flute playing. This process has been a wonderful journey of self-discovery, freeing me from tension and discomfort that limited musical expression. This process is something that I also practice away from my flute, cultivating awareness during routine activities such as, washing dishes, walking, sitting at a table, and my favorite, exercising. The awareness I gain from practice away from my flute feeds right back into music-making.
My experience and practice in trapeze class has brought my awareness and movement precision to an entirely new level. As I practice awareness during each flight, I have the opportunity to broaden awareness a little bit more. The whole body movements of the tricks, have helped me to become even more aware of movement and support. The process has been gradual and not always linear. At times I struggle with being aware of all that is going on and all that I’m doing. This struggle has not carried over outside of class, instead the experience and practice have effortlessly enhanced my awareness, particularly my awareness of the kinesthetic (movement) sense. I am becoming naturally more mindfully engaged in the sensory experiences (sights, sounds, smells, movements, touch, and tastes) of daily activity. My focus shifts easily and fluidly as I teach, work, manage a home, help my family, and play. I can’t wait to see what else will emerge as I continue classes through the next two months.