Mark Josefsberg Alexander Technique Teacher NYC NY | Homepage MarkJosefsberg
Imagine yourself with better posture— Sitting upright, walking tall, with less pain and stress.
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In the late 1990’s I came to the Alexander Technique to get relief from extreme neck and hand pain, caused by my work as a musician. The Alexander Technique stopped the pain.
Since becoming a full-time, nationally certified Alexander Technique teacher in 2003, I have helped countless people stand taller, decrease their stress, increase their confidence, and reduce their pain. My articles have been translated into several languages and featured in New York Magazine, altmd.com, AlexanderTechnique.com as well as the health and wellness site MindBodyGreen.com.
Good posture isn’t stomach in, chest out, shoulders back, tuck your chin in… That doesn’t work—you know because you’ve tried it. Alexander Technique good posture is easy, moveable, and sustainable. Back pain and neck tension disappear in the process.
Back Pain Relief
When we slump at the computer and other devices (like now?), we compress our spine. It is no wonder so many people are experiencing back pain and neck tension. The good news is that we can stop the pain—I witness it every day.
Some habits keep us in a terminal state of stress. Being “stressed out” becomes normal—it becomes who we are. With the Alexander Technique we diminish the stress by stopping it’s physical expression, stopping the vicious cycle.
Alexander Technique teachers instruct, demonstrate, and coach people how to use the computer without injury. If people are in pain we teach them how to stop injuring themselves, and the steps to take to allow the body to heal.
Let's try something right now. See if you can notice any tension in your neck. It's there, though you may not be able to sense it right away. You can learn to let these muscles go. If you release your neck muscles, your head will rotate forward, and move up. You could think this way: I want my neck to be free so that my head will move forward and up. This 'forward' business doesn't mean forward as in your face moving towards the screen...
The stresses and strains of modern living, combined with the ubiquity of the computer, cell phone, blackberry etc., seem to draw us in, collapsing us forward and down and giving us one version of bad posture. (Another version of bad posture would be sitting up rigidly straight. That doesn't work because it won't be maintained, and it's not helpful to add extra tension. Sitting or standing up straight usually means military posture.)
So as not to smash our faces into the screen, desk, or floor...
The Alexander Technique For Dummies is a slight put-down. 'Calculus For Dummies', 'Biology For Dummies', 'Basket Weaving For Dummies' , ''The Alexander Technique For Dummies' are all slight put-downs. I realize these titles actually mean for beginners, but 'For Dummies' is a derogatory term. The only 'For Dummies' book I can think of that would not a put down and would, in fact, be uplifting and inspirational would be 'Ventriloquism For Dummies'...
Many Alexander Technique teachers are slumpers, or former slumpers. My name is Mark and I'm a slumper. Slumping was my habit before I became an Alexander Technique teacher, and it will be my habit forever. Although slumping is my habit, I don't have to 'do' my habit; I don't have to inhabit my habit. I could observe it. Through awareness...
I have a stiff neck. We say we have a stiff or sore neck, as if someone gave it to us and now it’s ours. In Alexander Technique terms it might be more accurate to say “I’m stiffening my neck.” Of course if you say it that way you sound insane...
1. Become aware, and then let go of the muscles in the back of your neck.
2. Think of your head moving up. (The crown of your head)
3. Slightly, slowly lower your nose.
4. Continue 1,2,3, and let your sit bones release down in your chair, but your torso moves up.
5. If you're standing, let your feet release down while the rest of you moves up.
6. Let your jaw dangle open, even when you're lips are closed. (Give it a try)...
Inevitably, students of Alexander Technique become aware of previously unrecognised habitual tensions. When interference with easeful movement or balance of tone is recognised, change for the better c...