What Happens During an Alexander Technique Lesson?
The aim of The Alexander Technique is ultimately to have the student self-sufficient in its application. You should be able to apply the technique anywhere, any time, and without props or the assistance of a teacher.
The technique is taught rather than simply applied. That said, Alexander Technique lessons are hands on, tactile and very relaxing.
You are asked to wear comfortable, loose fitting or stretch trousers and socks. Sleeves are preferable to bare arms, as your teacher’s hands may need to slide out from your shoulder blades while you are lying on the table.
The teacher will ‘listen in’ with her hands gently on your torso, back, front, neck, ribcage. At the same time you will be asked to repeat a series of movements while answering questions- talking, sitting, standing, moving from sitting to standing. This will give your teacher an idea of your individual habits. With this knowledge, the teacher will gently direct with her hands, and repeat some of the movements without the tightening force of habits. It may feel very strange, but generally you will experience a sensation of freeing up.
For the beginner, much work is done on the table in a semi-supine position, which provides maximum rest for the spine. This is very relaxing and feels almost passive. Much decontraction takes place in this position, as the teacher moves the student further into expansion and away from their restrictive, tightening habits. For the mind, semi-supine is not passive, as you are asked to think into your body.