Questions about TaKeTiNa
Is TaKeTiNa only for musicians?
No, everybody can take part in a TaKeTiNa Workshop, there are no musical experiences necessary.
What do you do in TaKeTiNa?
You speak rhythm syllables and put steps onto them, over which an additional rhythmic clap layer is built. Once that is established, a call-response singing with the TaKeTiNa leader and the group takes place. Each rhythmic layer as such is very simple, but adding them all together leads to a complexity which the rational mind cannot handle any more.
It´s only through releasing control and gaining flexibility that your body can realize these rhythms in their complexity. Each participant can follow his or her individual learning pace at any time.
What if I cannot follow along with the exercises?
Since TaKeTiNa is a non linear learning process, you can never get lost during the process. Even if you don´t take part actively for a while, you can step in at any time. You always decide for yourself which or how many of the rhythmic layers (voice, steps, claps) you actively do.
Isn´t it better to do as much as possible?
Best for your learning and progress is to follow your individual learning pace and are in peace with what is possible at every moment. This is not static, but can change every second. If you follow that and don´t fight it, you´ll be amazed at how quickly you proceed.
To sit or to lie down can be much more effective than the effort to do all the movements. The learning process is non-linear. More effort and control does not lead to more success. It could be that one moment you find yourself immersed in all the different layers and one second later have no clue how that could have ever been possible.
I don´t want to "march in step" with everyone else. I want to find my own rhythm.
You can move in your own rhythm any time you want to, walk freely through the room, dance, sit down or lie down. If you follow what your body tells you to do, you will benefit immensely for the development of your ability to synchronize.
Why do people lie down in TaKeTiNa?
Ultimately it is about internally sensing the carrying power of rhythm. Your body movements, stepping and clapping, are just functioning as catalysts which open your inner sensations. To lie down induces, through stopping external movement, that other channels of your perception, like listening, sensing and inner visualization, are more tangible.
Rhythmically I am very untalented, I cannot even clap along to a song. Can I nevertheless take part in TaKeTiNa?
Especially if you experience yourself as rhythmically untalented, TaKeTiNa can help you like no other teaching method, to improve your sense of rhythm. In other courses which use rhythm, like drum- or danceclasses, it is about learning certain rhythms.
TaKeTiNa however is not about learning certain rhythms, but it is about removing obstacles which lie between you and rhythm. TaKeTiNa works with rhythms which are embedded in every person´s body.
I always had troubles in dance classes. TaKeTiNa is probably not something for me, or is it?
In dance classes you learn certain steps for certain rhythms. In TaKeTiNa the steps represent something completely different: the carrying and usually inaudible wave which lies underneath the music. Together with the clap layer, the steps represent rhythmic archetypes, in which you "fall", if there´s the right balance between doing and letting happen, releasing control.
You might be surprised to find yourself immersed in effortlessness doing steps and claps at the same time, just to completely "not get it" a second later - wondering how that ever was possible.
Why should I learn rhythms? What is the benefit for my life?
In TaKeTiNa you don´t learn rhythms, because the rhythms we work with, your body already knows. What you learn and develop are abilities which you need for synchronization, the "falling into rhythm" as we call it. Along with that you learn essential qualities for your life.
For example: Flexibiliy, serenity, release, presence. Your perception is broadened, space opens up in which you can process much more information simultaneously with no effort at all. Your body develops the skills you need to stay focussed for long periods of time, being concentrated and at the same time completely relaxed.
Isn´t it embarrassing if everyone else is capable of doing something and I´m not?
Shame and the fear of being "caught" when making mistakes accompanies many people when learning because we were all raised in environments where mistakes were something to avoid. TaKeTiNa frees from that because in this learning process mistakes are integrated intentionally. The fear and unpleasant feelings which are associated with mistakes gradually fade away.
Why can children and adults learn together?
TaKeTiNa enables individual learning in any group. Different age, different pre-experience and professions, diversity of all kind, fertilizes the collective. Nobody is over- nor underchallenged. In a linear learning setting this would not be possible at all. In TaKeTiNa it is. Adults for example can learn from children to follow their own learning pace and this way learn to refrain from doing too much and trying too hard.
What is my benefit when I try to clap a rhythm correctly?
It is not about clapping a rhythm correctly, but it is about the hidden knowledge inside of you which can open up and has nothing to do with effort and endeavour. The TaKeTiNa process enables you to connect to this rhythmic potential, through your release of control and trust that rhythm will carry you, if you stay relaxed also in chaotic moments and present with your awareness.
If I don´t put much effort into it, how can I manage to perform complex rhythms?
These are rhythms which you don´t have to learn, but which are inherent in your being. Only because of that it is possible that you "fall into rhythm" and realize what is hindering you.
How can I get rid of obstacles that are hindering me to fall into rhythm?
Through developing the ability to synchronize which needs flexibiliy. You can achieve it by losing the rhythm yet stay calm and don´t get tense or cling on as a reflex.
TaKeTiNa is a playground for dealing with mistakes. In which other realm of life do you have this possibility? You learn to release. With every falling out of rhythm you get the chance to become more flexible. This flexibility is what you need in order to be one with the rhythmic flow.
How can I lose my fear of making mistakes?
As opposed to life in TaKeTiNa there are no people in front of whom you´d have to conceal your errors, no teacher, no boss, who is judging you, no fear of losing a job etc. You know that mistakes are inevitable in this learning process. So you can approach the whole learning situation in a very playful way.
Soon you will discover that the largest critic is the one inside of yourself. With every time you lose the rhythm you get the chance to observe your very personal reactive patterns and to transform them. Every time you "fall out" of rhythm you get more flexible, release control and lose your fear of making mistakes.
What about scientific proof for the effectiveness of TaKeTiNa?
There are medical research studies that measured body reactions (qEEG, Heart rate variability) during TaKeTiNa sessions. All the positive physiological effects are scientifically explicable.
"The measurements clearly show that TaKeTiNa repeatedly and predictably can cause ideal conditions for the nervous system and the body’s rhythms." Dr. Klaus-Felix Laczika, Medical University Vienna, Internist AKH Vienna
Photo: Klaus Laczika
What happens if others learn faster than I do?
In TaKeTiNa it doesn´t make a difference how much pre-experience the other group members have because everybody goes his or her own individual path of learning. In order to feel part of the whole rhythmic happenings you don´t have to realize all of the rhythmic layers. You can, for example, be in with your steps and benefit from other group members because they are clapping which you can "take in" your system by just hearing them.
Could I feel underchallenged if there are many rhythmically unexperienced people in the group?
This will never be the case because the leader sees all group members all the time and adjusts the intensity of the calls according to what it needs. That way everyone sooner or later will find him- or herself in the zone where there is an appropriate extent of challenge. Also, it is not about the WHAT, but about the HOW. You can experience one and the same exercise as boring or as going deeper and deeper.
I don´t feel good in big groups. The pictures of circles where people are holding hands, trigger oppressing feelings in me.
TaKeTiNa is a learning process in which you are part of a collective while your individuality is always maintained as well. There is no exercise at any time which you have to "follow along" if you don´t want to or where the group or single group members have a disadvantage if you do.
You are always free to decide what´s best for you in every moment. TaKeTiNa provides an environment in which you can benefit from the advantages of a group and sense qualities like: belonging, being carried, being part of something bigger. At the same time you are an individual person: free, self-determined, autonomous.
Do you always have to be in a circle when doing TaKeTiNa?
No, this is one form in which TaKeTiNa can take place. With smaller groups or in the one-on-one setting a circle is not even possible. As a participant you can decide any time if you want to stand in the circle or somewhere else, sit down, lie down or move freely through the room.
Why do people hold hands in the circle?
The connection via holding hands has a rhythmical function because synchronization requires not only flexibility but also connection. You can also be connected only through hearing, speaking, seeing and sensing and don´t have to hold hands. But since it is very effective for the building of the ability to synchronize, it is used in TaKeTiNa.
I heard it is not about learning rhythms. What is it about then?
It is about the experience of becoming one with the rhythmic flow without having to put effort into it or practice it. In TaKeTiNa anyone can come into that flow. Also, it´s about building qualities and skills which you need in your life using rhythm as a tool.
What is singular about TaKeTiNa, compared to other rhythm classes?
Crucial about this method is the opening of simultaneous perception. The learning process is non-linear. It is the sum of several simple rhythmic layers which leads to a complexity that the mind cannot coordinate any longer. Release of control leads to falling into rhythm. This is only possible because the rhythms we work with are primal rhythmic movements, innate in every human being.
Why is TaKeTiNa reffered to as the "Yoga of rhythm"?
TaKeTiNa is, like Yoga, one of many ways to the realization that we are more than this body and this mind which we usually identify with. Being one with rhythm is a door opener to our essential core beyond any identifications with our mind. "Many people who have been fortunate to experience this state, call it inner home." (Reinhard Flatischler)
What does it mean to "fall into rhythm"?
This is how we call moments in which nothing seperates us from rhythm, in which we do not "do rhythm", but we "are rhythm" - comparable to the heartbeat. These are the moments in which it flows and in which the highly complex and seemingly unreachable structures become so effortless that you could have doubts wheather you´re actually doing everything "right".
What are the positive effects of "falling into rhythm"?
Subjectively and unscientifically phrased effects are moments of deep happiness, the feeling of arriving and home, moments of tangible profound inner peace.
Medically scientifically phrased Dr. Klaus-Felix Laczika states about "falling into rhythm": "This reintegration at a higher level, done without any conscious cognitive effort, is seen in the participant’s HRV graphic together with an immediate rhythmicisation of the parasympathetic nervous system."
Dr. Laczika´s conclusion from the HRV-measurements with TaKeTiNa participants is "that TaKeTiNa repeatedly and predictably can cause ideal conditions for the nervous system and the body’s rhythms."
Which instruments are used in TaKeTiNa?
For participants the body is the main instrument. For the TaKeTiNa leaders, instruments are Surdo und Berimbau. The bass drum Surdo accompanies the carrying fundamental structure, the steps. The berimbau along with rhythmic structure (subdivision) brings the basic tone and, along with that, melody into the process. Participants also sometimes will use rattles or clickers.