Live Well: The Alexander Technique Helps People Unlearn Physical, Emotional, and Mental Habits | Way of life
From the moment we are born, we react to our environment and create habitual responses.
These habits come in all flavors: physical, mental, emotional. And they often hamper our body movement or affect thought patterns, leading to pain, stress, anxiety, breathing problems, and other less important outcomes.
This is when one can look for an Alexander Technique teacher, who can help them unlearn these habits and move more freely in their body.
“At the simplest level, it’s about the head, neck and back relationship and keeping it free,” said Laurie Sellers, a longtime Alexander Technique teacher who works at Manitou Springs.
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She first studied the method while working as an architect in London.
“I was hunched over a drawing board, all tight, hunched over. I had a difficult childhood, with a lot of emotions. I was very tight in my body, ”she said. “I thought I was going to take just one term of the three-year course to straighten my back, then go back to architecture. “
But as she began to work with teachers and on her body, she began to experience sensations that prompted her to complete the course and become a teacher herself.
“We look at the usual behaviors and we start with the basic behaviors, which are sitting, standing, walking,” Sellers said. “This is where you learn to break free from all of those usual waiting patterns. That’s why they say it helps with posture. This is not the end goal, but it improves your posture because it aligns your body.
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Frederick Alexander is the man behind the technique. Born in Tasmania in 1869, he dreamed of becoming a Shakespearean actor and moved to England in the early 1900s. But a dilemma arose: he lost his voice every time he took the stage.
Curious to know what was going on in his body, he installed mirrors around him so that he could watch himself play. As he started to speak, he noticed that he was pulling his head back and holding it in his throat, which made it impossible for him to speak. After overcoming his habits and becoming a great speaker, people began to ask him for lessons on how to make a similar change in their own lives. Eventually he opened a kind of high school for young girls, where he taught the Alexander Technique and staged plays.
Alexander’s students begin taking classes to help reduce pain and anxiety, improve balance and movement, help with aging issues, and relieve arthritis. Sessions with salespeople last around 45 minutes and are likely to be different for each person, depending on their body and intentions. She will watch people walk and sit and help them remember the mantra of the technique: let your neck free so that your head can move forward and stand up, and your back can lengthen and widen.
“It’s pretty basic. As you sink in you let your elbows relax and move outward, let your fingers relax, ”Sellers said. “It’s always about letting it all grow and open and expand, but not to the point where you are all spaced out. Rather, it’s about releasing that tension and becoming in conscious control.
Contact the author: 636-0270
Contact the author: 636-0270