THE ALEXANDER TECHNIQUE
“Between stimulus and response there is a space.
In that space is our power to choose our response.
In our response lies our growth and our freedom.”
What is the Alexander Technique and how can it help you ?
The Alexander Technique (AT) is often described as the study of human reaction. It allows us to look clearly into our reactions, responses and relationships with what we do and are. It is not a form of bodywork, nor is it about posture, although it will improve both. It is rather a set of skills that you can learn with the help of a teacher in order to be able to apply it autonomously. It has more in common with the Taosist concept of Wu Wei and Buddhist Sati than it does with “good” posture or sitting straight. On a more general level, it is a powerful psychophysical tool which allows you to become aware of and undo any patterns of psychophysical misuse. Traditionally harnessed by actors, musicians and dancers to improve performance, it can in fact benefit anyone do whatever they do, better, more easily, with greater freedom and choice. On a deeper level, the Technique can enrich all areas of your life and open you more fully to the mystery of being.
The AT for pain
It also can treat a broad range of issues such as anxiety, eye strain, back pain, chronic pain, tension, asma, breathing difficulties, stuttering, or repetitive strain injuries (RSIs). In two randomised controlled trials published in the British Medical Journal it emerged as more effective and with longer lasting effects in treating back pain than traditional hands on intervention.
How it can help your Yoga, movement or mindbody practice
For practitioners of Yoga, martial arts or other forms of mindbody work the AT can reveal a whole new world. Not only will it make your senses sharper and clearer and your movement easier, but it can also help anyone with RSIs or pain when their movement practice is not helping, or even making conditions worse. It can also help with hypermobiliy, improved postural tone, elasticity, balance, coordination, breath, anxiety and stress.
The AT can be especially useful for Yoga, movement & mindbody teachers
Along with the above, it can also help with insecurity, clarifying objectives, finding and projecting your voice, observation skills and hands on use, as well as teaching more effectively with greater ease and clarity, even when you need to teach for long periods and/or in challenging situations.