Wednesday, 7 January 2015

On 09:00 by Victoria Stanham in , , , ,    No comments

This means first stopping to give ourselves the chance to “say no” (inhibit) to our habitual way of moving and reacting. This habitual way is made up of our ongoing and ingrained tension patterns which make for an inefficient “starting place” or “set point”. 

So, after recognizing the stimulus to action, you give yourself a little pause, some space to stop your habitual reaction and really consider “how” you want to respond.

What you want is a better starting place; so you get your “primary movement” going. This “primary movement”, which concerns itself with the dynamic relationship between head & spine, leaves you in the best possible conditions for any action: a dynamic sense of poise and balance.

Still, you haven’t yet gone anywhere. And it’s the getting going, and the continuing to go, in the manner you decided that is the issue at stake here.

You’ve got to get the primary movement going first. But then you need to keep it going as you go into movement, when your brain recognizes what you’re up to and wants to insert the old habit of tension.

So how do you keep the primary movement going during all subsequent movements? You need to use your mind: mindfulness of movement and awareness of the body as a whole throughout all movements. In Alexander jargon this is called: “keeping your primary directions going”. F.M. Alexander himself once said, “You think that the Alexander Technique is a physical thing; I tell you it’s the most mental thing that’s ever been discovered.”

It’s a persistent, continuous state of monitoring progress, of mindfulness of movement and awareness of yourself and your relationship to inner and outer space. You want to catch yourself when the habit pricks up its ears, so you can let it go before it completely takes over your system. Your persistent, continuous monitoring gives the drive, the force, the energy to the new way.

This is how you build a new “habit”.


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