<p>There is no such thing as a right position, but there is such a thing as a right direction.</p>
I have suffered back pain for a long time and the last 15 years have been a merry-go-round of doctors, drugs and complementary therapies. At the end of my second Alexander session I started to ease into the process. I followed my teacher's instructions between sessions, and found I could focus on my body, its movements and its tensions. It now seems possible to be free of pain and my usual cocktail of painkillers is no longer necessary. I wouldn't hesitate to recommend the technique.
By learning to release excess physical tension and mental stress you will feel more relaxed, however it is not a relaxation technique per se.
Many teachers will do home or hospital visits for people who cannot come to them for health or other reasons.
No. AT teachers use their hands in a very gentle and non-invasive way. They do not manipulate or practise massage and you do not need to remove your clothes during a lesson.
Yes, many teachers give introductory group classes, either as a series of evening classes or as one-day and weekend workshops. There are also introductory group classes in adult education centres and some group teaching in performing arts colleges.
In theory yes, although not all that many GPs know about the Alexander Technique.
NICE recommendations refer to Alexander Technique lessons for back pain in relation to exercise, and also for people with Parkinson's disease (helping them to make lifestyle adjustments that affect both the physical nature of the condition and the person's attitudes to having Parkinson's).
Only a few private health insurers (PHI) provide cover for AT lessons.
The following companies are known to reimburse Alexander Technique sessions, mostly on a Consultant’s prescription:
The Alexander Technique does not subscribe to the dictum of "no pain, no gain". It is more concerned with helping you to learn to move and use your body in a way that frees you from pain. Learning to change the way you use your body can sometimes trigger old pain as you go through the process of letting go of tensions.
If you have a sufficient number of lessons and you apply what you learn on your own in your everyday life, then the benefits will last for ever.