The Lesson

Alexander technique teacher applying positioning to man's neckGenerally, the lesson is divided into two different platforms of work – table work and chair work, though these are by no means the only ways of learning the technique. Stimuli can be met and dealt with in a variety of circumstances though sitting on, or rising from a chair is a most basic of stimuli which we carry out many times a day and thus makes an excellent starting point in learning how to relinquish control by our habits. Table work on the other hand is an opportunity for gravity to do the work! Lying horizontally (or ‘semi supine’) allows the opportunity to release tension easier than when we are vertical. However, this does not make table work an opportunity to fall asleep! When lying in semi supine one still has the opportunity to release unnecessary tension while continuing to direct oneself in the same way as when in the vertical (i.e. standing). The fact that one is horizontal simply makes it easier to give in to gravity.

Lessons normally last around 45 minutes to 1 hour. The amount of lessons needed is completely dependent on the individual and how quickly you learn to apply the principles of the technique. As a general recommendation, taking 20-30 lessons is a good guideline to start, though many pupils choose to continue coming for lessons beyond this. Frequency of lessons also depends on the individual. In the early stages, the more frequent, the better. Though in the longer term, once a week will usually suffice.