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The Body Has Its Reasons: Self-Awareness Through Conscious Movement Paperback – May 1, 1989


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 176 pages
  • Publisher: Healing Arts Press; Original edition (May 1, 1989)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0892812982
  • ISBN-13: 978-0892812981
  • Product Dimensions: 5.4 x 0.6 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.5 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #181,749 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Language Notes

Text: English (translation)
Original Language: French

From the Back Cover


THE BODY HAS ITS REASONS
by Thérèse Bertherat and Carol Bernstein

“All our lives we juggle words so that they’ll reveal the reasons for our behavior. And what if we were to seek, through our sensations, the reasons of our body? . . .it is possible for you to find the keys to your body again, to take possession of it, to live in it at last, and to find your proper vitality, health, and autonomy.”
--from the author’s introduction

“ A compelling, often personal, account of the ways in which movement affects well-being and can literally transform lives.”
--Deborah Hutton, Vogue

In this revolutionary and highly readable book, Thérèse Bertherat and Carol Bernstein shatter myths about traditional exercise and health. They introduce movement that is based on a profound selfawareness, freeing us from our limiting attitudes about ourselves and our bodies.

Strangers to our own bodies, many of us spend our adult lives suffering from tensions and chronic aches and pains--problems that have no apparent genesis or solution. In repeating habitual patterns of movement, we ignore the range of possibilities available to us, so that the body suppresses and eventually forgets its natural grace and integration. Employing traditional exercises to alleviate the symptoms of a round stomach, a bad back, and muscles that ache after sports, we often force the body to act against itself and perpetuate our discomfort.

A physical therapist and teacher of movement in Europe, Bertherat takes the reader through a series of precise, gentle, organic movements. These “anti-exercises” develop the body’s range and freedom of movement, releasing constraints and reawakening dormant muscles. By using the appropriate energy for each gesture, they bring relief from a multitude of ills, at the same time awakening the senses and sharpening perceptions.

The Body Has Its Reasons offers a realistic alternative to conventional body work that can help you become more efficient, creative, and self-confident. It can increase your intellectual capacity as well as your athletic ability and free you of sexual problems, including frigidity and impotence. No matter what your age, the information in these pages can help you release the beautiful and well-made individual that you were meant to be.

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Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
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Easy to read.
Amazon Customer
Ms. Bertherat uses a clear and inviting writing style to powerfully impress upon us the need to be more fully in touch with our bodies.
Joel Rosenfeld
This book changed my life.
Matthew Wood

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

31 of 33 people found the following review helpful By Sravaniya D. Pecoraro on April 28, 1999
Format: Paperback
Written by a woman whose husband - himself a medical doctor - died in hospital from suspected neglect, this book is a uniquely satisfying revenge. For here, Therese Bertherat makes bold declarations and assertions, tearing the shroud from the naked dead body of society's assumptions about the medical profession, health, exercise and physical therapy. Her writing is passionate, with the certitude of a preacher. And why not? This is hot stuff!
I have been teaching yoga professionally for 16 years, and I totally empathize with her stories of treating students with her method - gleaned from her amazing teachers and which she calls Preliminaries. She describes with sometimes breath taking clarity her viewpoints, the incidents which led up to their formulation, the difficulty in working with the bodies of unconscious people and the shadow presence of something else which resists being helped at all. So much of it was familiar to me from my own work.
No airy fairy theories here, folks. Just real life experience which can be applied practically. If you are into alternative therapies in general and body work in particular, this book is not to be missed.
Sravaniya DiPecoraro, Yoga Instructor, Hong Kong, 1999
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Joel Rosenfeld on October 20, 2005
Format: Paperback
Ms. Bertherat uses a clear and inviting writing style to powerfully impress upon us the need to be more fully in touch with our bodies. Rather than always seeking beautiful theories and insights about life from others, one can be greatly nourished and helped by gaining this Understanding that Ms. B shares and by doing simple physical non-exercises which demonstrate how our body is integrated and how good it feels to live inside that body.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By S. Grant on November 8, 2010
Format: Paperback
This is a nice verbal way to begin appreciating the body as it changes and adapts. There are many who have no ideas whatsoever on this and only USE the body. That the the physical body is having reactions & adaptations within itself and unbeknownst to the USER is a fresh concept. Because this is verbage it can reach people in this day & age where everyone takes a course to do anything and relies heavily on verbal introductions. Unfortunately it doesn't offer many clues for where to go next to get in sync with ones body perhaps because it was written in 1989. It also does not introduce the pioneers of modern bodywork or the ancient modalities still practiced .Perhaps she knew nothing of Jean Paul Barral, Upledger, japanese shiatsu's, yoga & meditations. The bibliography is limited. Presently there is still limitaion in Physical Therapy instruction even though he range and scope of therapies readily available to learn is now large, but relies entirely on learning through practice usually under the banner of PT/OT. Constraints initiated through certification limit public awareness and trust in their own relationships within themselves. So books like this fill a big gap. Ways to increase self awareness are not covered in the book , it offers some evidence the body is ready to be listened to and will adapt continually. Before it has sealed of all possibilities & succumbs to disease it is still very responsive to bodywork and most of it can be done by oneself. The first step is basically to take the time to actually observe & feel ones own body.
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on January 21, 2001
Format: Paperback
I was impressed with the method presented. Finally, something to help me get in touch with my cell memories/feelings, correct them and be better for it! The only problem is that there is no one to teach here....... Anyone teaching this method, please feel free to contact me at Rikitikitavi97@aol.com.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Matthew Wood on May 25, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book changed my life. I used to stumble to the ground almost everyday, and had chronic tension in my shoulders I was unaware of. After reading this short book and using the information and techniques within, I have stopped stumbling and tripping over things, have loosed the tension in my shoulders, and gained a better posture as well as balance. All from relaxing the overdeveloped posterior musculature and getting a chance to use and learn my body in the new relaxed state. The book also briefly discusses musculature armor, pressure points, and restrictions enforced upon the body by society and industry. Extremely deep, especially for the length of the book.
The techniques are simple, no impact movements (the focus is on one's comfort, instead of pushing and challenging the person to reach a certain position or "level" of ability; you just go at your own pace, as your body tells and allows you to) that teach one about the human body, and their body. I know this may sound too good to be true... it is true and that's why I love it so much: I am often negative and skeptical about lofty promises but this book simply and effectively delivered the goods in an undeniable way that transformed me by expanding my physical awareness and capability! This method is currently little known, because it originated in Germany and France in the 20th century, and it's founders did not seek to turn it in to a multi-national-corporate-product or -series or -system at the time. Passed on by word of mouth, someone finally decided to write it down and share it with the world!
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