|CEO Flat Out !|
I have recently commenced learning the Alexander Technique - named after actor Frederick Matthias Alexander,who developed its principles in the 1890s. Alexander believed his work could be applied to improve individual health and well-being. He further refined his technique of self-observation and re-training to teach his discoveries to others. He published four books to explain his thinking behind the various practices.
I am undertaking weekly private lessons with Elena Cabrera, who is able to teach me how to hold myself and move with better poise and less strain. The hour long sessions include chair and table work, often in front of a mirror, during which you are taught how to stand, sit and lie down, moving efficiently while maintaining a correct relationship between your head, neck and spine. The purpose of the Alexander Technique is to help you unlearn maladaptive physical habits and return to a balanced state of rest and poise in which your body is well-aligned. It teaches you how to stop using unnecessary levels of muscular and mental tension during your everyday activities which can cause neck, shoulder and back pain.
Practitioners say that such problems are often caused by repeated misuse of the body over a long period of time, for example, by standing or sitting with one's weight unevenly distributed, holding one's head incorrectly, or walking or running inefficiently.
The Alexander Technique is an educational process rather than a relaxation technique or form of exercise.
So why am I flat out? Well each day I take 15 minutes out of my day to do a daily un-exercise, which requires me to lie down on the floor in a semi-supine position. This balanced resting position helps me to unwind and builds my skills at maintaining my poise in any situation. This practice enables me to achieve a high level of muscular release throughout my body and a deeper breathing pattern occurs which helps my whole system to calm down.
The benefits of being ‘flat out’ for 15 minutes are very tangible. I am noticing:
- Releases muscles and joints
- Takes the pressure off spine
- Release diaphragm giving more rib movement
- Allows for regular breathing
- Gives digestive release
- Frees neck muscles
- Takes the pressure off the eyes
- Jaw releases
- Unclenches the hands
- Gives me time to think and become more conscious
I have also noticed that I have more stamina in the afternoon and I am developing a greater capacity to observe myself and not just react to events.