FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What is the Alexander
What is the Alexander Technique?
How is the Alexander Technique different
from other bodywork?
Who studies the Alexander
How do I learn the Alexander Technique?
What is an Alexander
Technique lesson like?
Who was Alexander?
What training is required to be an Alexander
What is AmSAT?
Where can I find out more about the Alexander
The Alexander Technique is a basic resource for health, productivity
We all have unconscious habits that interfere with our body’s
natural and efficient coordination. After years of slouching, hunching over and
overly tensing our muscles, these habits begin to feel “normal” and it is very
difficult to change them. Yet, it is these habits that put excess strain and
stress on our bodies and in many cases exacerbate or even cause many of our
persistent aches and pains.
The Alexander Technique provides a practical
means for overcoming these impeding habits and learning to function with less
effort and more
ease. Whether you are an athlete with back pain, or a business
executive who gets nervous making speeches, Alexander lessons are fundamentally
the same—under the skilled guidance of a teacher, you learn that you have choice
within your habitual response patterns and can experience an increased general
The Alexander Technique is not a therapy that treats a
passive patient. Rather, it is meant for those who are interested in learning
what they can do for themselves to improve their overall well being. The
Alexander Technique does not teach you something new to do but helps you bring
more practical intelligence to what you are already doing. It is not a series of
treatments or exercises but rather a re-education of how you use yourself in all
your activities throughout the day-from walking, to working at a computer, to
singing, to doing yoga.
The Alexander Technique is unique in its approach
because it recognizes the need to improve the general coordination of the body
as an indirect and long-lasting way to deal with specific problems such as low
back pain, RSI and asthma.
With the Alexander Technique you can encourage
a marked improvement in overall health, alertness, and performance by learning
to consciously eliminate harmful habits that cause physical and emotional stress
and by becoming more aware of how you engage in your activities.
How is the Alexander Technique
different from other bodywork?
The main difference between the Alexander Technique and other
traditional bodywork therapies such as massage therapy is in its approach.
When you go to a traditional bodyworker you are a passive recipient of a
treatment, manipulation, or adjustment. You "get worked on" and you look to the
practioner or therapist to "fix you". When you go to an Alexander Technique
teacher expect to be an active participant in a learning process. The teacher
and you will work together to discover habits that are contributing to or
causing your problem. The Alexander Technique teacher is not going to offer to
fix you but will offer to teach you. You must take some responsibility for your
learning but in the process you take credit for your improvement and gain some
degree of control over your problem.
Who studies the
The Alexander Technique benefits people with a wide variety of
- People looking for an effective way to deal with
persistent muscular tension,
strain injuries (RSI), and
- People wishing to better perform and more fully enjoy a particular
activity such as music,
- People wanting a better way to manage
- People wanting to better meet the challenges of
Who was Alexander?
As a young man, F.M. Alexander (1869-1955) had a promising career as
a Shakespearian actor. However, problems with chronic hoarseness
plagued him from early on. Not able to find lasting relief from
treatments offered him by his doctors, Alexander turned to himself
for answers. After carefully observing himself in a series of
mirrors over a period of years Alexander discovered that a pattern
of muscle tension throughout his entire body, caused by interference
with the natural balance between his head and neck, was the source
of his voice problems. This discovery enabled Alexander to
eventually solve his vocal difficulties and was the basis for the
development of the Alexander Technique.
about the history of the Alexander Technique
What training is required
to be an Alexander Technique teacher
AmSAT certified Alexander
Technique teachers must complete 1600 hours of training over a
minimum of three years at an AmSAT
approved training program. Alexander teachers are trained in careful
visual observation to spot the source of movement problems. They are
schooled in teaching skills that encourage learning in a
non-judgmental, supportive atmosphere. And they are trained to use
their touch to impart the subtle suggestion of expansion and
lightness in movement. Additional studies include anatomy, study of
F.M. Alexander's theoretical writings, as well as literature and
research by Alexander scholars and those in related fields.
What is AmSAT?
The American Society for the Alexander Technique (AmSAT)
is the largest professional association of board-certified Alexander
Technique teachers in the United States. Its mission is to establish
the Alexander Technique as a basic and recognized resource for
health, productivity and well being.
maintains the nation's highest standards for teacher training,
certification, and membership and maintains affiliation with similar
credentialing bodies worldwide. Since its formation in 1987, over
have completed a rigorous training process to earn
In addition to providing educational support services for its
information and assistance to the public in locating qualified
Where can I find out more
about the Alexander Technique?
There is a tremendous amount of information about the Alexander
Technique-in print, video and on the Internet-to learn more visit
the American Society for the Alexander Technique website:
contact Lauren for additional information.
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