About the Alexander Technique
Muscians, performers and sports people often turn to the Alexander Technique as the way in which they use their main instrument, that is the body, directly effects the quality of the performance. F M Alexander himself started out as an actor and developed the technique as a response to difficulties when performing. It is now taught in many countries and establishments including the Royal Academies of Drama and Music in London and the Julliard School of Music in New York.
In young children we frequently see an alertness and poise that allows them to sit, stand and move gracefully and without strain.
Rarely however, do we see that same poise continuing into adult life. Most of us have developed habits which interfere with our natural coordination and functioning. We have become disconnected and find ourselves reacting automatically in ways which are frequently harmful to our well-being and reduce our effectiveness in whatever we do.
The results of this misuse may be experienced as specific symptoms including headaches, backache, stiff neck and shoulders, or more generally as a lack of poise, lack of vitality and a sense of being 'out of touch' with the body. Also, since the mind and body are part of one system, lack of physical poise can affect our state of mind and our ability to cope with life.
When I work with someone, I am not working directly with the symptoms. Rather, I'm encouraging the person to discover what it is, in the way that they react and use themsevles, which results in the problem. From here, using awareness and thinking, they will learn to do everyday activities without employing the destructive habits. Movement then becomes freer and there is a greater sense of control in life.
Holding ourselves when working, walking or perhaps playing an instrument puts a downward pressure on the neck and spine. This leads to discomfort and pain.
Remaining free while in activity stops the pain before it starts. Far better to change how were doing something than dealing with the symptoms later.