on the World Wide Web:
a student's guide
What is AT?
AT and the Performing Arts
(1) Describing the Technique
From the ATI website: "After working for a lifetime in this
new field, I am conscious that the knowledge gained is but a
beginning, but I think I may confidently predict that those who
are sufficiently interested in the findings I have recorded, and who
will be guided by them in any further search, will find their outlook and
understanding towards the question of control of human reaction
(behaviour) so completely changed that they will see that knowledge
of the self is fundamental to all other." Frederick Matthias Alexander, 1869-1955
(2) The F.M. Alexander Technique
by Marian Goldberg "We are often unaware of habits that cause
us stress and interfere with our ability to respond effectively to the stimuli
in our daily lives. How can we change our habits so that we can respond
more effectively and achieve better functioning? This fundamental problem
is addressed and dealt with in the Alexander Technique, a method that has
been recognized for 100 years as a unique and remarkably effective technique
of mind-body reeducation."
(3) What is AT?
From the AmSAT website: "A proven approach to self care, the Alexander
Technique is a method that people of all ages and abilities can learn
to relieve the pain and stress caused by everyday misuse of the body.
With the Alexander Technique, you learn how to strip away the
movement habits and tensions patterns at the root of your discomfort.
You learn how to balance your own body and take charge of your own health.
You learn how to sit, stand and move with safety, efficiency and ease."
(4) Description of Technique from DIRECTION
From the DIRECTION Journal website.
(5) The Insiders' Guide to the Alexander Technique
From the Alexander Technique Center of Washington, D.C.
(1) An Introduction to the Alexander Technique
for Pianists and their Teachers
by Deborah Fishbein Adams
Reprinted from Exchange, The ATI Journal
"A student enters the studio for a lesson in the Alexander Technique. Before
her is a chair, perhaps a table and a mirror. The teacher guides the student
to the chair, his hands perceptively, gently cradling her head. He
says, "neck free, head forward and up.What does this instruction mean?
What is the purpose of this extraordinary event?"
(2) Singers, Singing Teachers and the Alexander Technique
from The Complete Guide to the Alexander Technique, by Sandra Head
"I have been a professional singer of theater and classical music for over
25 years. For the last fifteen years, I have also been a singing teacher
at the post-secondary level. About eight years ago I began to notice a
significant rise in tension when I sang and taught. It began with my awareness
that I was stiffening my neck, and feeling increased nervousness about performing."
(3) What Every Musician Needs to Know About the Body
a large website presented by Andover Educators, founded by Barbara Conable
"Musicians all over America are suffering from pain and limitation in
their playing, many to the point of losing their careers. Most of these
musicians hurt because they misuse their bodies, not because of disease
or structural anomalies. Music medicine is relevant to a minority of
suffering musicians; most only require information and retraining.
Music teachers have long had to teach without an effective way of
conveying information about the instrument that every musician
plays-the body. Until now, music teachers had to convey information
about movement intuitively, sometimes with misuse built in.
The Solution: The information provided in the course and text
What Every Musician Needs to Know about the Body is precisely
the information needed by musicians to prevent pain and injury
and to promote excellence in practicing and performing."
(a) Pianist's Injuries: Movement Retraining is the Key to Recovery
by Thomas Mark "Repetitive stress injuries bring misery to many pianists.
They are very common, and the pain they cause can be dreadful."
(4) The Alexander Technique
"The Alexander Technique is a means for changing habits and improving
coordination. The Technique can have great benefits for musicians dealing
with excess tension, stress or pain problems and for musicians wanting
|to enhance performance skills and expression. The Alexander Technique is
included in the curriculum of a number of conservatories and university music
departments. This site features informative articles and links to resources
for musicians." Website maintained by Marian Goldberg
Alexander Technique Center of Washington, D.C.
(5) Guitar Craft
SeattleCircle.com and the Seattle Guitar Circle, an approach
to learning the art of guitar playing which integrates the AT.
"If you are interested in learning more about Guitar Craft, a
number of Robert Fripp's published and unpublished articles are
reproduced here. Also provided are links to registrars and other
authorized sources of information."
(6) Tools to Learn about Ourselves and How to Change
Another extensive website with work related to the AT,
developed by David Gorman
(7) The AT and Dance
"Jayne Stevens and Martin Leach, members of PAAT teaching in
The Department of Performing Arts, De Montfort University, Leicester
and working in cooperation with academic colleagues there, have
published a series of academic articles on the relationship between
the Alexander Technique and the performing arts." Collection of 5 papers.
(8) Photographs: Musicians Applying Principles of the AT
From a webpage by Jane Brown, School of Music, Appalachian State University
Boone, NC USA.
(9) The Alexander Technique: It's Role in Dance Training
by Glenna Batson, PT, MA (Dance) "Dance is a performing art built upon
the ebb and flow of muscular tension. Through muscular tension, dancers express
their aesthetic sensibilities. The word "dance," in fact, stems from the Old High German
"danson," meaning to stretch, and from the earlier Sanskrit root "tan," meaning tension.
The building and resolution of tensions we experience in performance touches us deeply --
kinesthetically, emotionally, and spiritually."
(10) The AT and Performance
Featured at a website by Michael Shellshear in Australia. "If you are a performer
there are great benefits to be had through the study of Alexander Technique.
Many of the finest acting schools and music conservatoriums in the world have
Alexander Technique departments."
(11) Dance, Movement, and Sports Medicine Internship Program
The Body Technic Systems® Dance, Movement and Sports Medicine Internship Program
|is a 6-9 day course, taken over a series of 3-day weekends. Each weekend has a particular
focus featuring experts in those fields. The course is designed for dancers, physical
therapists, sports medicine specialists, athletic trainers, or those with a background
or related interests in movement training methods.
[Photo: Nancy Crego demonstrating a point of Alexander Technique with
Internship participant, Gary Schudel.]
(12) The Alexander Technique and Musicians
by John S Hunter BA, MSTAT.
'The Alexander Technique is not about "good posture for bad backs".
It is one of the most subtle ways of taking responsibility for our continuing
growth and development as human beings."
(14) Alexander Technique: Posture & Movement for Back Pain and Stress
(15) Pedro de Alcantara
(5) The Alexander Technique: An Innovative Approach to Reducing
Physical Tension and Stress An article by Karen H. Siegal, Ph.D.
from "Practical Psychology for Physicians." "Most physicians frequently encounter patients
who suffer either directly or indirectly from severe chronic physical tension. Eternal
regimens of minor tranquilizers sometimes must seem the only solution for these
patients, many of whom have already had extensive psychotherapy. But the problems
in prolonged use of these drugs have received enough publicity that both doctor
and patient seek alternative. The Alexander Technique addresses itself to just such
physical tension and to related disorders, with great success."
(6) The AT for Riders
How to order a tape and book from Sally Tottle.
(7) The AT and Children
(8) Marjorie Barstow Homepage
"Marjorie Barstow, from Lincoln, Nebraska was the first person to graduate from
F. M. Alexander's first training course in 1933. After working as A. R. Alexander's
assistant in Boston and New York, she returned to Lincoln. She continued teaching
in Nebraska until shortly before her death in 1995 at age 95."
(See also: Aphorisms of Marjorie Barstow Collected by Marion Miller
and Jeremy Chance, from the ATI website.)
(9) Alexander Technique Consultants
(10) The VoiceCare Network
(5) AT Books at the Library: Toledo (Main Branch)
Ask your librarian for a pincode number so you can find, order and
have books and tapes delivered without charge to your local branch.
(1) Gelb, Michael. Body learning : an introduction to the Alexander technique (1981)
(2) Leibowitz, Judith, The Alexander technique (Harper & Row, 1990)
(3) Movement [video recording] directed by Celia Tait ; (1996)
(4) Stevens, Chris, Alexander technique : an introductory guide to the techniques and its
benefits (London : Vermilion, 1996) (5) Stransky, Judith. The Alexander technique : joy
in the life of your body (Beaufort Books, 1981)
(6) OhioLink A large selection of 51 books and video tapes
(7) The Back Alive Advantage