The “wince” moment
Last weekend in Houston, The Texas Educational Theatre Association hosted TheatreFest—a weekend of workshops and performances celebrating the value of arts in Education. My workshops gave me the opportunity—an opportunity I treasure-- to introduce the Alexander Technique four times—twice to teachers and twice to students.
In each of the groups, in addition to talking about how this Technique can improve quality in performance, we also needed to discuss comfort in daily life. In one class, everyone was a bit startled when I said, “You know, there is absolutely no reason for you to be in physical discomfort in front of a computer.” And to the teachers who talked about experiencing back pain from standing all day, I said, “I stand all day too, and I don’t hurt. It’s your idea of pulling your arms back for ‘posture’ that is causing you to lean backwards. Then you end up sitting on your lower spine and it complains.”
The “wince” moment happens to me when someone is moving down the street (or texting, or picking up a bussing tray, etc.) in a really inefficient way –and I know that pattern is easily preventable. I even stopped going to one dentist because the hygienist had such poor use that she was hurting her wrists and saying “ouch” and moaning a bit while she was cleaning my teeth. (I did give her some AT literature.)
My own introduction to the Alexander Technique was related to improving performance rather than in response to discomfort; and much of my teaching is also focused primarily on improving performance. And, it is always a privilege to offer someone who is hurting because of how they are coordinating themselves.
So, here is the much-posted link to the British Medical Journal study on Back Pain. We pass it around, because it is a good study from a scientific/medical perspective and confirms what we know empirically. And maybe, if you pass it to a friend who hurts unnecessarily, it will help them decide to invest in education towards comfort in living.
British Medical Journal study
I JUST WINCED!
COMFORT IN LIVING IS POSSIBLE
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ALEXANDER TECHNIQUE INTERNATIONAL