Sometimes I think my body should have come with an operators manual.

‘My body was letting me down……’

Before I started Alexander Technique I had no sense of my body really, all I knew way that it was letting me down. I suffered regular episodes of neck or back pain. Noticing some other people, it seemed like they had received the manual, they seemed to move with ease and experienced no pain. (Fred Astaire might be a good example).

‘Knowing the architecture of your body can really help in the way that we move’

What was interesting in through having AT lessons and also studying other methods such as the Feldenkrais I started to understand the workings of my body. The first thing I learnt was about my head, neck and back relationship. I was poking my head forward but also tensing the back of my neck. Hence the main image ‘This way up’. It amazed me the difference this made.  I am making better connections all the time. It is like I have finally found that elusive operators manual.

‘We are all connected…..’

When someone comes to me in pain I try to explain that we are all connected. So someone may have lower back pain but that if they are tight in their legs or tummy this may contribute. They also could be standing out of balance on their feet. Many people with back and neck pain often stand too far forward on their feet.

Other observations that could be made –

  • Freeing the ankles can bring about a positive freeing in the neck.
  • Exploring the mobility of the pelvis can not only help the back to be freer but it is also strongly linked to the shoulder girdle. Often people with shoulder problems may not be sitting nicely balanced on their sitting bones so this is a good place to start.
  • Stiff knees might be helped by including gentle sideways bending exercises. Exploring more mobility in the ankles may also help.

‘Go gently……..’

We have to go gently in the beginning as everyone is different. I would only introduce gentle movement explorations once I am confident that the person is released enough elsewhere and wants to explore further.

‘Exchange curiosity for fear…..’

Some people also may have a fear of certain movements due to previous experience so we have to make sure together they really want to explore a movement. Introducing a bit of curiosity to a movement can help. When someone is fearful they are usually already gripping in their tummy.

I ask these questions first:

‘Do you want to give this a try?’ They may say ‘Oh yes’ but I get them to check in their body and notice if they are starting to grip in their tummy or stop breathing. If they are, then although they are saying ‘Yes’ with words, their body is saying ‘No’!

The body never lies…….

I have a method to help them to release that tension first or they can just chose to leave the exercise for now. We can come back to it another day or not, I leave it up to the individual.

Please note  As an Alexander Technique practitioner we do not diagnose. Also there is more to the sessions than mechanics as pain can also be due to stress, anxiety or worry.

Why not try an introductory session for yourself. Online booking here.