The Alexander Technique - how it works

The technique works by freeing us from our habitual patterns of misuse that are built up over our lifetime. As we grow older we tend to hold unnecessary tension in our bodies, or collapse in our posture, causing symptoms such as back pain, headaches, digestive disorders, and a general lack of energy and well-being. Often we ignore these signs and even begin to regard them as a normal part of everyday living.

Lessons in the technique offer an opportunity to escpae from the habits by teaching us to relearn the natural patterns of use that undoubtedly had as very young children. We learn to understand the basis of co-ordination and to attend to the process of change. The teacher will show how to "inhibit" the immediate response to a stimulus to "do" an action and to replace it with a better one, creating a balance and flow in our movements closer to what nature intended.

Learning the Alexander Technique helps you to explore what you are actually doing in activity and at rest. As you learn to notice and let go of habitual patterns of tension, you rediscover your natural sense of poise.

The Alexander Technique is best learnt through regular one - to - one lessons with a proffessionally qualified teacher. A typical lesson will last 40 minutes during which simple activities are explored such as sitting standing, bending, walking and lying down. The teacher combines observation with gentle hands-on guidance to help identify your own habitual patterns of tension and let them go.

What can it do for me?

Your perceptions become clearer and you learn to apply this awareness to your everyday life, you create a foundation of balance and poise for all your activities. Many activities can present considerable challenges on our bodies, for example working at a computer, driving, lifting, gardening, playing an instrument, public speaking, acting, singing, dancing or playing sport. By applying the principles of the technique it is possible to minimise the damage to ourselves. As and added bonus you may find that the lessons in the technique give an incresed sense of self-confidence you are able to be more freely, breathe more easily and enjoy what you are doing from moment to moment.

Peforming artists and athletes of all standards around the world apply the Alexander Technique to their practise. It is also taught at most of the major drama, music, and dance colleges in the UK, in some cases as a required part of the course.

"Decrease in back pain and improvements in athletic performance, respiratory function, and stage presence, as well as enhanced emotional well-being."
John Austin, M.D., Associate Professor of Clinical Radiology, Columbia-Presbyterian Medical Centre, NY