Health Benefits of the Alexander Technique
The Alexander Technique is renowned the world over for its value in helping with back pain, neck pain, and a whole range of other health problems, so here is how it works:
Firstly it is important to make it clear that Alexander Technique is not a therapy and that Alexander Teachers are not therapists. In fact the Technique isn’t even a form of alternative medicine or complimentary therapy, and we don’t offer any treatment, or claim that we can cure anything at all. What Alexander Technique does is to teach people to use themselves in a better way, and one of the results of pupils learning to use themselves in a better way is that some of the health problems that they had will tend to improve. So Alexander lessons are about learning ‘good use’.
‘Use’ is simply a term to describe how go about every physical activity from sitting and standing, to running, walking, riding horses, or playing violins. We can do it well or we can do it badly.
Alexander Technique and Poor Use
One of the reasons many people suffer from health problems because they use themselves badly. The person sitting at the computer is obviously a mess: The spine just isn’t meant to spend hours bent over like that. This not only affects the neck and back, bad use like this results in all the internal organs being squashed and put under pressure. It wouldn’t be surprising if this person not only had back, neck and shoulder problems, but over time could develop problems with any internal organ due to pressure and restricted blood flow. Lungs just won’t function properly if you distort them like this, and the same goes for the heart, liver, pancreas, guts and so on.
All animals, including humans, have an amazing ability for self repair, and medicine in its true sense helps to facilitate this. Learning good use is one way to help that process. So an Alexander Teacher doesn’t cure or treat anything, and The Alexander Technique is not a treatment for any medical condition: The Alexander Technique simply teaches good use, and as a result the body can resolve some self-inflicted problems. It won’t sort out every medical condition, but even for people with incurable conditions it can help people to make the best use of what they have.
And of course the Alexander Technique brings other benefits too. It can help with anxiety and relaxation, and has even been said to improve people’s temper …
Of course if you have a health problem, do consult a doctor first: we are not medically qualified, and we don’t diagnose or treat illnesses. We teach good use, and this often results in an improvement or even in some cases a complete recovery.
Although often associated with complementary medicine or alternative medicine, Alexander Teachers don’t cure or heal, but teaches a better way of using ourselves, and we certainly don’t make any claims. We specifically do not claim any cure, treat or alleviate any medical condition such as arthritis, bad back, pain, RSI, breathing problems, headaches, depression, migraine, and general problems with, knees, ankles, hips, scoliosis, sciatica, stress, ME chronic fatigue syndrome, fibromyalgia, neuralgia, etc, however, over many years, people who learn the Alexander Technique have reported improvements in these and many other medical conditions.
The British Medical recentlyreported on a randomised controlled trial of the Alexander Technique for the alleviation of back pain. Read it here:
Any opinions expressed on this site are the opinions of M Ashworth and/or F M Alexander
Testimonials on this site are intended to be read as news items or anecdotes and no claim that you can expect similar results is implied or intended
© 2013 – The Alexander Centre
Testimonials on this site are intended to be read as news items or anecdotes and no claim that you can expect similar results is implied or intended – See more at: http://www.alexander-technique-teachers.co.uk/#sthash.jWdRfjfk.dpuf