Xander Barel

Xander Barel BSc : Kinesica creator & educator.

Xander is a behavioral scientist and movement educator with a lifelong fascination for learning. From an early age obsessions drove his learning, often to the frustration of teachers. These experiences formed the basis for his view that curiousity and full engagement with anything is necessary for deep learning. This behavior is often called playing.

At the Human Behavioral Faculty at the University of Groningen he came into contact with many views on education, the works of John Dewey and early pragmatism being major influences on his philosophy. It was in Groningen that he came to learn martial arts from and later work together with Jan Bloem.

This set him on a new obsession. Movement. This drove him to study the development of movement from birth onwards, biomechanics and the relationship between movement, education, psychology, emotion and health.

“First you are taught for years to sit still and quiet. Once you sit still you have to be afraid of becoming fat, weak and unhealthy. Then, when you do train you have to be afraid of injury. That’s stupid. There has to be another way.”

The works of Feldenkrais, Myers, Dewey & Laban have a strong impact on his perspectives on training. Together with Jan he has been developing Kinesica as a movement method to explore the possibilities of physical training and as a laboratory for educational principles.

Learning to move better for him comes not from repetition and imitation of an ideal, but from variation and deep focus, a maelstrom of possibilities out of which new patterns of behavior will emerge. Only through emergence can any student become anything else then a copy of their teachers.