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Alexander Technique

Al
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Alexander Technique
Hi Esther, Are you familiar with the Alexander Technique?  What are your thoughts and opinions on the recommendations for posture used in that protocol? Regards, Al
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I have great respect for AT. I think they are especially strong in the neck/shoulder area - this makes sense since AT was evolved by Alexander as a solution to his problem of losing his voice when he went on stage. Their direction on the pelvic area seems undeveloped. Because the pelvis doesn't get well-settled in AT, students are obliged to "think tall" or cue themselves in other intellectual ways indefinitely. I am not an expert on AT, so consider my opinion in that light. I have had AT work done on me and it felt great (so does any good bodywork!) One problem is that you don't understand what is happening, so you just have to keep coming back for a very long time. I figure we work hard to carry around our grey matter - we might as well use it!
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Dear Esther,

I am an Alexander Technique teacher and am very interested in and appreciative of your work.

I am responding to some of your comments that indicate a lack of in-depth understanding of the Alexander Technique. 

The Alexander Technique is a method of education and re-education, rather than bodywork. The thinking mind is essential for participation in lessons and one's attention should be engaged throughout an Alexander Technique lesson.

An Alexander Technique teacher is working to change "the use of the self," a pattern of cooordination and the consciousness that maintains that pattern, rather than merely addressing parts. Because the originator of the Alexander Technique found that the relationship of the head to the spine was a primary determining factor in the coordination of the whole self, there is an emphasis on the relationship of head to spine, as well as the relationships of all other parts of the body.

I have experienced significant immediate and long-term transformation through the Alexander Technique and often see rapid improvements in posture, movement, pain, demeanor and self-knowledge in my students. Sometimes change and understanding takes time, and I encourage my students to ask questions and to read about the Alexander Technique in order to increase their understanding and take ownership of the material. 

Because every Alexander Technique teacher teaches in a unique way, perhaps you had lessons with a teacher who was not the best match for you. I hope that, in the future, you have the opportunity to experience the depth and power of the Alexander Technique, which is such a valuable resource for so many people. 

For more information about the Alexander Technique, you can go to these websites:

The American Society for the Alexander Technique:

http://www.amsatonline.org

The Complete Guide to the Alexander Technique:

http://www.alexandertechnique.com

 

Thank you, Esther, for the work you are doing!

 

~Sami

http://www.samipincus.com

 

 

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I felt the same about my couple months of AT. She had a highly tuned sense of touch so the part where I laid down and she would simply lay her hands on a spot until I relaxed it deeply was amazing. But I'm a thinker, I need to know WHY and she couldn't provide that as she was naturally a feeler and because AT is kinda...spacey...mystical...no, I'm not sure what to call it. But GM is elegantly logical, I love it and I love all of you for teaching it or even just being interested. Step by step we can regain our healthy movement heritage

Al
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Esther, Thank you for your reply. I asked this question because I had a little difficult understanding how their method would help structural strength.  For instance, if I actually need to carry something on top of my head, I fail to see how thinking,"Allow my neck to be free, etc..." will actually help me support the load. I highly value your opinion as I figure you have come to your conclusions after long, hard study. Gassho, Al
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