Why Study the Alexander Technique?
Do you sometimes feel stiff, sore, or awkward while doing things that used to be easier?
Would you like to move more freely? Breathe more easily? Speak more smoothly?
Do you want to become a better performer or athlete?
Would you like to be more efficient at whatever you choose to do?
If you answered yes to any of these questions, you can benefit from learning the Alexander Technique.
What is the Alexander Technique?
The Alexander Technique is not a therapy. It does not “heal” you. It is not a panacea or a cure-all.
The Alexander Technique is a method of learning how to recognize and change the physical and mental habits that interfere with ease and efficiency of movement. It is an educational practice.
Over time, and for a variety of reasons, we all develop habitual patterns of movement and thought that can cause pain, limit mobility, and prevent optimal functioning. The Alexander Technique helps you recognize and change these patterns. It’s a useful way to deal with both tension and stress, the mental manifestation of tension.
You’ll work with an accredited teacher who provides verbal and tactile cues to help you reorganize your body and movements in specific ways, especially in the relationship of your head, neck, and back. This new kinesthetic experience allows a natural ease of movement to emerge.
As your coordination improves, you’re likely to notice that you feel more freedom in both everyday and specialized activities. You’ll also experience increased mental clarity and a sense of organized well-being, because you’re changing the habitual thought patterns that can affect your ease and efficiency of movement. You’ll find yourself able to tap into greater endurance than ever before.
The Alexander Technique is a gentle, subtle, gradual restoration of your natural coordination process. You actively participate to develop a stronger sense of observation and a deeper awareness of both yourself and your environment. The result is greater psychophysical integrity and a sense of well-being in your body.
Will I always need to work with a teacher?
No. You will not become dependent on someone else. Eventually, you’ll be able to practise the Alexander Technique on your own—whenever and wherever you like.
You can choose for yourself how many lessons to take. You can check in occasionally with a teacher, or come more often. It depends on your goals and what you bring to the lesson. If you have a chronic illness, for example, you might want to come a little longer than if you’re simply looking for a healthier way to enjoy a favourite activity.
If you’re interested in more intensive study, you can choose to work with your teacher on a long-term basis. Many have done so. It’s up to you.
Who can benefit from the Alexander Technique?
There are many reasons for learning the Alexander Technique. Typically, people who seek out Alexander experts come with questions such as the following:
- “I’m getting more tired and sore from my work. Is there anything I can do to improve my situation?”
- “My back is killing me. I’ve tried everything I can think of, and it still hurts. Is there any hope for me?”
- “I’ve been taught to ‘cough’ my words out when I stutter. It doesn’t seem to work. Can I learn to talk more smoothly?”
- “Could I learn to move with greater ease?”
- “I just want to be more efficient at whatever I do. Is this even possible?”
- “I have a chronic illness, and I want to take some responsibility for managing some of my physical challenges. Can you help?”
- “I’m a performer, and everything is getting more and more difficult to do. Is there any way to reverse this trend?”
- “I’m an athlete. I don’t hurt or anything, but can you help me improve my game?”
The answer to each of these questions is yes. The Alexander Technique can help people deal with all of these conditions. Improvement comes with study and practise.