What is the Alexander Technique?
The Alexander Technique is a form of physical re-education, whereby you learn how to use your body correctly: something we all used to do naturally as young children, but which may have become distorted as we grow older.
We are all born knowing instinctively how to move and hold ourselves so that we can use our bodies freely and have access to abundant energy. As children we can do everything easily, without pain. As we become adults we often develop bad habits, sometimes because of shyness or awkwardness, or perhaps through incorrect teaching, which make us lose touch with this instinctive grace.
Using your body wrongly may not give you problems for many years, but eventually it takes it toll. This can result in aches and pains or worse. The effects of holding and using your body wrongly over the years impacts on the spine, your joints and your internal organs, leading to many ailments, some of them serious, and even the minor ones can need medical attention. Most people don’t even realise that some of the problems that afflict them can be cured simply by relearning how to use the body the way it was designed to be used. Not only that, correct use of your body makes you appear taller and slimmer, and increased freedom and suppleness takes years off you.
The teacher looks at what you might be doing that contributes to physical problems, as well as whatever might be stopping you excelling at your chosen art, sport or professional activity. Then, in a series of lessons, you are gently guided and re-educated so that you learn once again how to move and hold yourself in a freer, more balanced way.
Over a period of time you develop new habits to take the place of the unhealthy old ones.
Once the healthy habits have been formed and you understand for yourself what you should be doing, you can continue to apply the Technique yourself.
The Technique is widely used as part of the curriculum in performing arts academies and colleges throughout the world, where it is well understood that being in touch with their bodies helps students to become masters of their craft.