The Alexander Technique was established over 100 years ago. It was developed by a Tasmanian actor, Frederick Matthias Alexander, who suffered from persistent problems with his voice and breathing whilst performing on stage, and from ill health in general. He got very little help from conventional medicine, but he was absolutely determined to find the root of his problems. He was to discover that there were certain fundamental truths about human activity, especially our co-ordination and movement.
After many years of observing himself; how he moved, how he held himself and his co-ordination, he realised that habitual patterns of misuse involving the whole of his body and mind were the roots of his problems. Over the years he discovered how to consciously change these patterns of misuse, and developed a Technique which not only eliminated his vocal problems, but also brought about a remarkable improvement in his general health.
At the heart of his discovery was the importance of the relationship between the head, neck and back, which acts as the ‘primary control’ of our whole body. Through years of unconsciously developing bad habits, we unsettle the fine tuning of the body’s primary control, resulting in tension, pain, lack of fluidity in movement, anxiety and many other things. By stopping to think before we react to day to day demands we can change those unhelpful habits, hence preventing the interference with the primary control. This is at the heart of the Alexander Technique.
Alexander began teaching others by giving them the experience of what he had learned through working on them with his hands. He came to London in 1904, setting up a teacher training school thereafter. His work has spread all over the world since.
F M ALEXANDER (1869 - 1955)
You translate everything, whether physical, mental or spiritual into muscular tension…