One day in 2006, whilst on my lunch hour, I literally stumbled upon a book which I was to discover was about the Alexander Technique. I still remember turning its pages, for the very first time seeing the reasons behind why I was as I was and was interested to learn more.
Some months previously I had experienced a bad fall which left me with a C4-C6 facet irritation and whiplash symptoms of lower back pain, neck tension and continuous headaches, but I also knew that my posture left much to be desired, having a left shoulder which was very shortened and narrowed, something I had lived with since my childhood and for which I never knew there was anything which might help. I was also aware that my harmful patterns of reaction growing up left much to be desired and were somehow inextricably linked to how I felt in my body afterwards, but I didn’t know why I reacted in such a way, nor indeed how this could be changed.
I found myself curious to discover how it was that I was interfering with my natural poise and balance, something I seemed to have been doing forever, and so began the beginnings of unravelling years of misuse twice a week for three years with Nöel Kingsley, the author of the book I had picked up. It was Nöel who first taught me the principles of the Alexander Technique and I owe him a huge debt of gratitude for his patient teaching and ongoing guidance.
In 2009 I was eventually in a position to enrol on the three-year training course taught by Ruth Murray and Alan Philps at The Constructive Teaching Centre, then based at its long-established address in Lansdowne Road, Holland Park, but which was to move to its present home in Imperial Wharf during the last term of my training in March 2012. Whilst on the training course, I experienced great change in terms of the calming down of my nervous system, increased muscle tone and the widening out of both my shoulders, but most especially my left shoulder. In fact I just couldn’t believe that such a thing was possible in respect of that shoulder, but possible it was. What were once unthinking, anxious reactions have now been replaced those which are much more reasoned. I am now privileged to teach on a voluntary basis at the Centre, thereby continuing to develop my skills both in terms of working with trainees as well as receiving work from experienced teachers. I also continue to read Alexander Technique-related writings.
I am a fully insured member of The Society of Teachers of the Alexander Technique (STAT).