Saturday, February 7, 2009

The Alexander Technique

Everyone pretty much knows that I have severe scoliosis (untreated), and I've had my share of back problems - although not more or worse than most people who don't have scoliosis. In my attempts to stay away from the orthopedic surgeon, I faithfully exercise on weight machines, try to keep my weight down, and keep my eye out for good practices for back strength and safety.

I've been aware of the Alexander Technique for some time, but thought it was only something that actors and other performers used. Last week I watched an old video, The Alexander Technique: Solutions for Back Trouble, that I found at a library (natch!).

This has lots of excellent suggestions! I'll pass along just one: when you are standing at a sink - brushing your teeth or peeling potatoes - open the cabinet door under the sink so you can rest your foot on the bottom shelf. If you've got a low drawer nearby, you can use that, too - pull it out and put your foot on it. Raising one knee when you rest your foot on something low changes the position of your back for the better when you're standing. Great idea for everyone.


  1. I once went to an Alexander Technique instructor in my town. It was eye opening. She really made me aware of how out of alignment I was keeping myself. First problem, I was keeping my head too far out in front and dragging my shoulders down! Very easy corrections, but it's hard to maintain that self awareness 24/7.
    Nice post!


  2. quite a few people in our family have scoliosis to one degree or another. today as i walked i recalled the advice of one movement therapist: imagine you are held up by a fine strong cable attached to the sky. the sky holds up much of your body weight, like a puppeteer does, so that all you need to do is move your feet in order to walk. interesting. and i make very good time rather effortlessly when i remember to do this. it's not alexander, which is wonderful, but it's pleasant and restful.


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