Alexander Technique

“Every single thing we are doing in the work is exactly what is being done in Nature where the conditions are right, the difference being that we are learning to do it consciously.”

 

~F.M. Alexander

 

 

 

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The Alexander Technique is a method of working with your self.  It is a way of helping yourself during the activities of your life in order to enhance your performance and ease.

 

"The Alexander Technique promotes a new way of thinking; a daily awareness of sensing ourselves as a whole and understanding that movement doesn’t have to take a lot of effort. Diane is a wonderful teacher who is smart, sensitive, and can quickly identify problems. She has helped me to recognize and release areas of tension so as to keep a better alignment of my spine and allow energy to flow and be directed more purposefully, especially while playing the piano. This has greatly enhanced my tone and ease of playing.  As a physician and pianist, I highly recommend this technique to anyone."

                     

 ~Rosanne Nahass, MD/ concert pianist

With the Alexander Technique you can:

  • Physically
    • Manage chronic pain by learning your body's early warning signals and choosing ways to work with the natural functioning of your body
    • Use your neck, and back with less strain on your muscles and joints
    • Encourage a freer range of motion
    • Avoid tension and repetitive strain issues
    • Improve posture - sit and stand upright without strain.
    • Release and Prevent spinal compression and muscular tension
    • Improve the use and alignment of your arms, shoulders, and head to reduce stress on the wrist and carpal tunnel
    • Maximize your balance and coordination
    • Direct your neuro-muscular energy so you are using the appropriate amount of energy for the task at hand
    • Transform stage fright into performance energy
  • Address balance, coordination, and strength issues

 

  • Vocally
    • Improve breathing, resonance, intonation, range, and various vocal issues
    • Utilize your body’s structural support that is necessary for effective breath support and tension free singing and speech

 

  • Mentally
    • Create a calm, centered, and quiet internal state in which you can more accurately be aware of your habits of use, so you can choose which ones work for you and make choices to help yourself
    • Learn to calmly and effectively make conscious physical and mental choices that support your body’s natural way of functioning
    • Acquire a process-oriented approach to problem-solving that brings physical ease, creative inspiration, and mental clarity to your everyday activities
    • Become skilled at being “in the moment”
    • Increase your stage presence
    • Stop trying too hard and getting in your own way

 

How Does The Alexander Technique Work?

The Alexander Technique is a method of working with your self.  It is a way of helping yourself during the activities of your life in order to enhance your performance and ease.

 

As you study the Alexander Technique, you learn about yourself and the habits that are keeping you from functioning at your best.  We all have unconscious physical, mental, vocal, and emotional habits that we take into everything we do. Some of these habits work for us and help make activities easier, and some of them don’t. As you apply the Alexander Technique to the activities in your life, you become aware of your habits and discover which habits work against you. You also learn to undo unnecessary effort and make specific choices so that you can function with less strain and greater physical, vocal, and emotional freedom. 

 

The Alexander Technique increases awareness of habitual patterns of mental and physical use through gentle hands-on guidance and verbal instruction.  Because the Alexander Technique addresses the use of your whole self, people apply the Alexander Technique to a variety of activities in order to improve their coordination, breathing, balance, posture, endurance, vocal use, and ability to think calmly, clearly and creatively.

 

The Alexander Technique helps people with so many issues because it heightens your awareness and ability to release and direct your head/neck/back/pelvis relationship, which is your body’s primary relationship for coordination.  This relationship is called the  “Primary Control.” As you use this primary relationship between your head, neck, back in an increasingly coordinated, balanced, and effortless manner, your nervous system calms and the functioning of your entire body is improved.  The Alexander Technique teaches you to access the natural freedom and functioning of your body through your Primary Control.

What happens in an Alexander Technique or Feldenkrais Method® lesson

for Performers?

For part of the lesson I may ask you to lie on your back to help you release habitual tensions outside the demands of activity. I can also work with you on a performance activity that interests you (walking, standing, siting, playing an instrument, singing a song, working on a monologue, dancing, doing a vocal exercise, stage combat moves, singing in a particular part of your vocal range, coloratura, singing or speaking a specific passage, etc.…) A lesson is a relaxing and empowering experience that teaches you how to most effectively work with yourself as you rehearse and perform.