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Alexander Technique

About Alexander Technique

 

FM Alexander and Student

F.M. Alexander and Debby Caplan (who was my teacher!)

The Alexander Technique has been used by people of all ages and professions. From people suffering from back and neck pain, Scoliosis, spinal stenosis, to mothers lifting children, computer users, and artists like dancers, singers, and actors. Taught throughout the world in private and group classes, the Alexander Technique is often a required study in certain curricula at prestigious universities, schools, and conservatories. It is recognized as one of the most effective ways of changing habitual patterns of movement, posture, and functionality. Alexander Technique will teach you a unique process of mind and body self-observation so that you will be able to easily and effectively modify your muscular responses to create freedom and ease of movement. You will learn to achieve greater mobility, comfort, and confidence in movement. Awareness and re-education of your postural habits will invite a path to a well-balanced ease in the body. Australian born F.M. Alexander (1869-1955) became a successful actor throughout England and Australia in the early 1900’s. At the peak of his popularity, he developed a chronic case of hoarseness and laryngitis for which doctors were unable to find a physiological cause. After years of meticulous observation and experimentation, he cured his vocal problems and evolved a method that profoundly changed peoples’ lives.

 

The Benefits

 

 

Active mom and baby

The Alexander Technique is recognized as one of the most effective ways of changing habitual patterns of movement, posture, and function. It helps alleviate pain and weakness, offers improved pain management for chronic disabilities, and enhanced rehabilitation following surgery or injury. We all have familiar habits and don’t think about them or even realize that we have them. As you advance in the Alexander Technique, you will become aware of your movement habits and choices. You will discover how to guide yourself through thought and application to better balance, freedom of movement, and ease. You will learn to make new choices when responding to a stimulus, and your unique mechanism will change and support you in the most efficient way in the activities in which you engage. This awareness and re-education invite self-discovery and leads the way to a improved lifestyle.

Here are some good articles about Alexander Technique:

Who can benefit from Alexander Technique:

  • artists: actors, singers, dancers, conductors
  • chronic pain sufferers: spinal stenosis, fibromyalgia, multiple sclerosis, back and neck pain
  • surgery and injury recovery
  • athletes
  • office workers and IT specialists who spend long hours at the computer

What to Expect as a Student

 

Gwynne and student

 

Gentle hand-on guidance and verbal instructions are given to help students gain proficiency in basic movements. In each lesson we will explore habits in everyday activities such standing, walking, climbing, and sitting. A lesson consists of several different parts and will be designed according to your needs. Students will be asked to lie fully clothed on a table to help integrate the concept of “not-pulling down” and depending on your needs, an awareness of your movement in an everyday activity. We can tailor our study to make you more aware of your habits. From playing the piano to working towards a triathlon, from singing to working at a computer – Alexander Technique is perfect for anyone. Private lessons at the Strength in Balance studio are 45 to 60 minutes in length. We recommend taking 10 lessons close together to integrate and empower the student’s new learning patterns. Improvement in this method relies on the student’s active participation. Gwynne Marshall is available for onsite private lessons as well as corporate educational group classes. To inquire, please call 212.874.6216

 

Many multinational companies have also turned to the Alexander Technique for help including Chanel, the BBC, Google, HM Treasury, and the Cabinet office in Whitehall. In fact, Victorinox, the makers of Swiss Army Knives, managed to reduce absenteeism by 42% by employing Alexander teachers to help their staff. And over 20 NHS trusts and hospitals have also brought the benefits of the Alexander Technique to their own staff.