People often take lessons because of the following problems:
• neck, shoulder, or back pain
• repetitive strain injuries (RSIs)
• poor posture
• compression of nerves, discs, or joints
• stress and tension
• decreased mobility due to injuries or medical conditions
• vocal and breathing problems
• chronic fatigue syndrome
• difficulty performing tasks
The Alexander Technique does not seek to fix or cure any specific problem or condition. Instead, we look at how you use your body as a whole, and help you recognize and "undo" the harmful tension habits that are undermining your ability to function at your fullest capacity.
The habitual ways you use your body in everyday activity have a powerful impact (for better or worse) on how quickly you heal, and how well you function. By restoring the balanced working of your whole self, many problems will diminish or resolve over time and you'll learn how to maintain that balance on your own.
Please contact me to discuss in more detail how the Alexander Technique might be helpful for a specific condition you are dealing with.
No. Although exercise is important for health, it does not provide an effective way of changing unhelpful, deeply ingrained postural and movement habits. In fact, when you exercise, you are most likely ingraining your unhelpful habits even more deeply without realizing it. In Alexander lessons you will learn to identify harmful habits and prevent them while being guided through simple, everyday movements. The technique can be applied to any exercise, enabling you to benefit more from it while at the same time minimizing your risk of injury.
Yes, more and more medical professionals are familiar with the Alexander Technique and are recommending lessons for patients. Many of my students have been referred by their doctor or physical therapist. If your doctor is not yet familiar with the technique, I would be happy to provide them with an information package.
The Alexander Technique is not a cure for any medical condition, but an educational process that helps you effectively manage that condition with the most ease and the least stress possible on your body during your everyday life. The technique is not meant to be a replacement for proper medical care, but provides you with a valuable skill-set that minimizes symptoms, assists healing, and works in conjunction with whatever other treatment you and your doctor deem necessary.
No, it's different from both. Unlike yoga, the Alexander Technique is not a set of poses, breathing exercises or meditation practices. However, if you do practice yoga, the Technique will help you practice it more effectively with more balance, ease and comfort.
Unlike reiki, Alexander teachers are observing and guiding you in how you use your body during everyday movements. You are not a passive recipient of a treatment, but are actively engaged in a practical learning process.
Although the Alexander Technique does have strong therapeutic effects, it is essentially a learning process, not a treatment. I like to explain it this way: the Alexander Technique teaches you what you need to know once you're off the table and back on your feet. You'll learn to "think in activity." Your new self-care skills will have a life-long impact on your posture, movement, and overall functioning, as long as you continue to apply them.
The touch of an Alexander teacher is uniquely different from other methods. It is light, gentle and non-manipulative. Our bodies respond very favorably to that approach – it's a lot more effective than you might think!
That will depend on what brings you to the technique and your own personal goals. Benefits begin with the first lesson and accumulate gradually with each additional lesson. As with learning anything new, it takes time to develop skill and confidence.
Ten lessons will give you a good start, and some problems can be resolved within that time. More serious conditions will naturally require more time to change. A series of 30-40 lessons is fairly typical. Once you acquire the skills they're with you for life.
Students sometimes continue with lessons long after their initial problem has resolved – not because they have to, but because they want to keep refining their skills. Others return occasionally for "refresher" lessons. In the end it's up to you.
It would be extremely difficult. Habits are by nature difficult to perceive in oneself,
and very difficult to change effectively without help. Books, pictures, and videos can
only convey information and can be easily misinterpreted; they cannot give you the
first-hand experience of using your body in a new way, which is what you need
in order to change and improve.
No, that's not necessary. Whatever other modalities you pursue, the benefits will be enhanced by what you learn in Alexander lessons – it's the user's guide for your body, and can be applied to everything else you do.
No, if you are able to make it safely to my teaching studio then you are able to learn the Alexander Technique and benefit from it. You simply start from wherever you are and progress from there. I offer a special rate for seniors, please ask.
I have had students as young as 14 who have responded very well to lessons and enjoyed them. The most important factor is that they be motivated themselves, rather than the motivation coming from the parent(s). I also recommend that one parent take lessons as well; the parent's understanding of the technique will be a key factor in the child's progress. I offer a discounted parent/child fee package - please ask.
No. The Alexander Technique is based on physiological principles concerning the relationship of the head, neck, back, and limbs in posture and movement.
Frequently Asked Questions