Alexander Technique Canberra
What is Alexander Technique?
Alexander technique (A.T) is a method of improving freedom of movement, balance and co-ordination. It involves a process of 'un-learning' and changing physical, emotional and mental habits of daily activity.
Alexander discovered how unconscious habits interfere with the relationship between the head, neck and back which in turn effects the functioning of the whole human being. By inhibiting our habitual functions and re-directing them consciously, we educate the body and mind to operate without excessive effort, and with greater freedom. A.T students can experience an effortless and natural state of greater freedom and ease. With time, these qualities grow to become a part of every day life.
A.T lessons can involve activities such as sitting, standing, walking, lifting or any other daily activity. Through various activities the teacher assist and directs the student to find greater balance and freedom in the action they are engaged in. A.T classes often leave the student feeling lighter, happier, more free and present.
Would Alexander Technique benefit me?
Alexander Technique works to improve the co-ordination of the human body-mind as a whole. It allows you to improve the use of yourself in everything that you do. What this really means is that it has a very deep effect on ones physical and mental way of functioning. Basically, if you suffer from any musculoskeletal pain that is caused by ‘bad’ habits – Alexander Technique is for you!
The reason we find such deep changes in people who practice A.T is due to the fact that the student himself/herself is creating change
in themselves - it is not a change that is inflicted by someone external. The teacher acts as a guide. Any change that is not dependent on some thing external brings greater freedom.
A.T is beneficial for any daily activity such as cooking, exercising , improving your yoga practice, desk work, computer work, gardening and more. Many actors and musicians study A.T in order to improve the quality of their skill.
Here is an example: If you are sitting in front of a computer a lot and suffering from neck and sholder pain, A.T can assist you to change the relationship between your head, neck and back. This change will allow you to sit more comfortably and with less effort. You may also be aware of a tension in yourself in relation to your wish to complete the task in hand. After exercising Alexander principles, you might find that when your physical habit changes, you also feel more quiet, alert and centred. The change in your neck and back will be the result of you changing your own habit.
Flowers blossom effortlessly
In my opinion Alexander Technique is one of the most magnificent processes available today in the western world. It does not offer a magical treatment that fixes everything in one moment, but it does offer an opportunity for those who are ready to be authentic and free. The physical-postural changes that take place in the student are only the external expression of deep changes in the student's mind. The changes that take place seem ordinary in first site, however they are nothing but extraordinary and profound! With time and the right conditions each student blossoms. The student is not pushed and hurried to open and change, but as the physical, mental and emotional organisation of the person comes into harmony and they cooperate with their original design - they naturally and effortlessly blossom. It is not something that can really be explained in words, only through experience!
About F.M Alexander
Frederick Matthias Alexander was born in Tasmania in 1869. He developed a passion for arts and theater and became a professional reciter. As he progressed in his carrier he found that during recitals his voice became hoarse and often he would have no voice by the end of his recitals. Alexander observed himself in front of a mirror and found that when speaking or reciting he pulled his head backwards and was using his mouth to breath. As much as he tried consciously to change his habit, he could not. He realised that by being aware of his habitual functioning, inhibiting his responses (in that case, his desire to speak) and with his thought offering new
direction to his neck and back, hishabit was changing. What Alexander realised was that his unconscious, habitual physical and mental conditioning were interfering with the relationship between his head, neck and back. That interference was effecting his overall functioning.
Alexander's public performances improved to such extent that many were interested in his discovery. He taught in Melbourne and Sydney and with time found that his method had great impact on daily functioning as well as overall health and well being. Many people were reffered to him by their doctor!
In 1904 Alexander moved to London. He traveled to teach in America but never returned to Australia. Over the years Alexander expanded his work and published several books. In 1931 he offered his first teachers training in London. He died in 1955.