Alex Proudfoot

MSTAT MBBA CBT/REBT, Hypnotherapy

Using Thinking Methods to Regain Physical & Mental Ease

Lessons & Coaching

MANCHESTER

Tel: 07927 303711

Alex Proudfoot

MSTAT MBBA CBT/REBT, Hypnotherapy

Using Thinking Methods to Regain Physical & Mental Ease

Lessons & Coaching

MANCHESTER

Tel: 07927 303711

Applications of the Alexander Technique

A Skill for Life

Because it is a ‘skill for life’, the Alexander Technique can be applied to everything we do. It is also widely used by people to deal with pain, discomfort or stress; and by actors, musicians, dancers, performers, athletes and sportspeople.

Here are just a few more specific applications:

Sitting at a Computer all Day

This is a regular and growing occurrence for many people and we often blame it and other activities for ‘causing’ our discomfort. But this to my mind is back to front! Being human means we can be flexible and adaptable to many situations. Conversely, if we ‘choose’ to slump or have poor posture, we can achieve this in any mode, not just working at a desk.

The body is designed to move, so we can help the body by not putting things in its way. Movement includes blinking and breathing too, as we tend to stare and stop breathing when overly focused. There is a saying in some circles that reflects the problem we give ourselves when we do not move: ‘atrophy aches’. This means if we prolong rest periods where there is no acute injury, the muscle wastage brings with it some pain. Perhaps connected to this is where one has developed a habit of pulling down in space. Some muscles are over-tight, and some muscles are floppy. When the balance is tested, the floppy muscles offer little support, which invites the other muscles to spasm to prevent injury. These spasms are incredibly painful and can become chronic.

Many people look for answers by adjusting the equipment they use. My advice would be to look after your own use first – and then fit the equipment around you, ie learn the Alexander Technique to develop your skill to look after yourself, then follow the guidelines about how your equipment is set up.

Mental Ease

I have talked on this website mostly about the Alexander Technique in action. It also has a unique perspective in improving mental ease.
The link between mind and body is increasingly acknowledged these days. However, it is still not well understood and few ‘treatments’ or ‘therapies’ really reflect this truth in practice.

If you have some experience of mindfulness and meditation, you will know something about cultivating awareness of body or mind. But F M Alexander was way ahead of his time in recognising that the mind and body are inseparable. He developed his Technique based on an individual’s psycho-physical use of themselves. So when we talk about ‘use of the self’, we do not just mean the use of the body and limbs in activity and movement, but comprehensively including the brain, mind, thought, feeling and emotion.

As working with the Alexander Technique allows us to change unwanted behaviour patterns, our attitudes and outlook tend to change. This frequently results in more mental ease, more balanced moods and a better capacity to deal with the challenges that life throws at us.

Pregnancy & Childbirth

The Alexander Technique is tailor-made for pregnancy and childbirth; for coping with the weight of the growing baby, avoiding backache, breathlessness and fatigue, facilitating and easing natural labour, developing a stronger sense of your own self and trust in your ability to give birth, and getting back into shape more quickly.

Special consideration needs to be made to movement/fixity. A pregnant woman should not remain standing or sitting still for too long as this can cause them to feel faint. Also with the increased Progesterone (relaxin) in their bodies, any ‘misuse’ of the body prior to pregnancy will be exacerbated during and will become more fixed within two months after childbirth.

Similarly, misuse during pregnancy can also be exacerbated and ‘set’ in the body after childbirth – this is the reason many women suffer with postural problems after childbirth. A basic course of AT around pregnancy can undo 35 years of misuse!

There are of course many more applications of the Alexander Technique. I encourage you to come along for lessons to discover them for yourself.

Contact

07927 303711
alex@coordinate-align.me.uk

Counselling and Psychotherapy Accreditation

Practice Location

The Clockworks
93 Princess Road
MANCHESTER
M14 4BR