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Alexander Technique/Alexander Method: Backs, Back Pain


Backpain, lumbago information
Glossary of terms
The Golden Rules for Low Back Pain:
  • Mobilize the Hip Joints.
  • Stabilize the Lower Back at its Optimal Positioning.
  • But do not become tense or fixed.
When you are struggling with back pain that is very hard to do! You can and will make progress by use of exercises and correcting "posture". However the profound inner awareness that the Alexander Technique brings to you will make it easier for you to protect your back.

FM Alexander himself despised exercises!
- whether for lower back pain or any other cause - because he saw the damage that the physiotherapists of his day were doing! The exercises merely re-inforced the bad posture-movement habits of their victims! Even today, some physiotherapists advocate mobilization of the spine and hip joints together. This is wrong!

Further Information on Alexander Technique and backs, Refer: Austr. Soc. of Teachers of the Alexander Technique: Article on Lower Back pain.
Alexander teachers will agree that the best approach incorporates the "Golden Rules" for Low Back Pain listed above..

The Alexander Technique needs to be learned. The Back Maintenance Manual will help you to do that.

Note: Text and pictures will never totally replace the unique hands on method of the Alexander Teacher.
(Alexander Technique - Backs Scroll right>>>>....)
Alexander Technique and "Releasing and Lengthening Taller" - It's not easy!
Study the "Optimal Posture" Picture below left, & copy it by "releasing & lengthening taller" as Alexander Technique describes it. Look side on in the mirror, or ask a friend to take a side-view photo picture of your back! Your attempts to align your back with your new found "optimal posture" map will meet with resistance - "The body... in carpentry terms is a bodger. An artful bodger and an end-gaining bodger" (4). Your lower back will go back to its old "comfortable" feel! It needs to develop a new feel for muscle tension patterns as well as positioning. For example, in order to protect the back, the Gluteus maximus must engage as it is designed to do, thus tensioning the thoraco-lumbar fascia. Examine the top right picture of FM Alexander. Note how he is bending just one leg! This is a powerful strategy for engaging the Gluteus maximus & protecting the back!
Picture: Optimal Posture
Alexander Technique Picture: 'releasing and lengthening taller'(Ideal Posture).
Picture: Sway-back
Picture: Kyphosis
Picture: Kyphosis-Lordosis
Picture: Flatback
Picture: Flat-Back
How to do Alexander Technique for Backs -

Alexander Technique Defined:

"Use affects function....['Use' means] the way we use our bodies from moment to moment. Use applies to:-
  • the positioning of body parts
  • the tensioning of the muscles which support the body parts." (4)
How to do the Alexander Technique for Backs
In order to do the Alexander technique, we need mental "maps" of optimal positioning of body
Picture -  Alexander Technique unique hands on method - doing monkey Picture - Alexander Technique releasing and 
lengthening taller
parts and awareness of muscle tensioning. We need to pause ("inhibit") at the moment of starting an activity to compare these optimal mental maps - position and tension - with what is actually happening in our bodies, & make corrections accordingly. That is how to do the Alexander Technique. The Alexander Technique is a mental process by which we "compare and correct" each moment of the day and night. The Alexander Technique needs to be learned.
alexander technique for backs The Back Maintenance Manual
will help you to do that.
(alexander technique backs, unique Hands on method, releasing and lengthening taller © Bruce Thomson, EasyVigour Project)