What to expect in an Alexander Technique lesson?
The first Alexander Technique lesson will start with a short consultation where your teacher will discuss any specific health problems you may have and will take up to an hour. Subsequent lessons take forty minutes.
Attend the lesson in loose, comfortable clothing, preferably trousers as part of the lesson will involve lying down. Please bring socks to put on if the weather is hot and wear at least a short sleeved top (no vests) as sometimes the teacher will access your armpits.
Alexander Technique practitioners use the word ‘teachers’ rather than ‘therapist’ as we aim to help our clients improve their sense of well-being by re-educating the way they use their bodies. You will be asked about any specific health problems you may have. The teacher often starts by looking at how you stand and move.
A combination of gentle hand movements and spoken instructions will help to release inappropriate tensions and encourage the natural reflexes to work more effectively. This allows the pupil’s body to become better aligned and balanced. You will learn to communicate with your body in a new way using ‘mind messages’ that will help you to reduce tension and use your muscles in tandem with your skeleton which will enable your body to function more freely. Learning a small amount of anatomy helps with this change of emphasis.
Your teacher will work with you to re-educate your way of moving in everyday life such as when standing, walking, sitting, breathing and picking up objects. It’s not as odd as it sounds! The teacher’s hands on work enables the person having the lesson to understand how to change their thinking to influence the quality of their movement. With practice we can learn to reduce wear and tear on our bodies, move with more fluidity and use less energy on each task. In time the Alexander Technique becomes a natural part of a person’s thinking and becomes integrated into their everyday life. As well as being educational, lessons should be fun and inspiring.