David Dutton from East London writes:
As a teenager I developed mild kypho lordosis whereby the upper part of the spine curves giving the appearance of a slight hunch or rounded shoulders. A friend recommended the Alexander Technique, I read up on the theory and began having lessons.
I vividly remember my first lesson as it was very different to the stretching exercises recommended by a physiotherapist. I was unsure as to whether it would have any benefit but as Michelle pointed out the exercises I was doing hadn’t had much impact so I had nothing to lose by trying something new.
The theory of the Alexander Technique which is well documented is about not doing which takes time to get used to, particularly for someone that was used to pushing their shoulders back and consciously trying to straighten up. Even after the first lesson I felt the difference, both physically and mentally. It’s all about stopping or inhibiting in Alexander terms.
Lessons are very relaxing, they follow a similar pattern which builds a greater sensory awareness, over time you see and feel changes, the better posture, the easier breathing and the freedom of movement. It’s the mental / emotional changes that distinguish the Alexander Technique from other disciplines. With time comes a sense of calmness and of being more in control. The Alexander Technique is much more about the way you use your body rather than bashing it into shape through rigorous exercise. Consequently its far easier to maintain the benefits as they are primarily retained in the brain rather than in specific muscle groups.
Eight years on and I am in better physical and emotional shape than in my mid twenties. I no longer suffer back pain, my posture is much improved and I engage in other exercise and sports with far better results.