What people say about the Alexander Technique

Complete understanding of the system can only come with the practice of it. All I need say in this place is that I am sure, as a matter of personal experience and observation, that is gives us all the things we have been looking for in a system of physical education: relief from strain due to maladjustment, and consequent improvement in physical and mental health; increased consciousness of the physical means employed to gain the ends proposed by the will and, along with this, a general heightening of consciousness on all levels; a technique of inhibition, working on the physical level to prevent the body from slipping back, under the influence of greedy ‘end-gaining,’ into its old habits of malco-ordination, and working (by a kind of organic analogy) to inhibit undesirable impulses and irrelevance on the emotional and intellectual levels respectively. We cannot ask more from any system of physical education; nor, if we seriously desire to alter human beings in a desirable direction, can we ask any less.

Aldous Huxley English writer (1894 – 1963)Ends and Means – 1937

Alexander established not only the beginnings of a far reaching science of the apparently involuntary movements we call reflexes, but a technique of correction and self-control which forms a substantial addition to our very slender resources in personal education.

George Bernard ShawIrish playwriter (1856 – 1950)

.. an extremely sophisticated form of rehabilitation or rather of redeployment of the entire muscular equipment and through that of many other organs.

Nikolaas Tinbergen, Dutch ethologist (1907-1988)Ethology and Stress Diseases – Nobel Lecture 1973

I find the Alexander Technique very helpful in my work. Things happen without you trying. They get to be light and relaxed. You must get an Alexander teacher to show it to you.

John CleeseEnglish actor and writer (1939)

Mr Alexander has done a service to the subject by insistently treating each act as involving the whole integrated individual, the whole psychophysical man. To take a step is an affair not of this or that limb solely but of the total neuromuscular activity of the moment – not least of the head and neck.

Sir Charles Serrington (1857 – 1952)1932 Nobel Prize winner for medicine

In the present state of the world it is evident that the control we have gained of physical energies, heat, light, electricity, etc., without first having secured control of ourselves is a perilous affair. If there can be developed a technique which will enable individuals really to secure the right use of themselves, then the factor on which depends the final use of all other forms of energy will be brought under control Mr Alexander has evolved this technique.

Professor John Dewey (1859 – 1952)American philosopher

How, then, is poise to be acquired if lost or defective? The shortest road towards neuromuscular education of the body is doubtless at the hands of skilled people who practise an appropriate technique. The technique designed by Alexander is appropriate because it is based on the fundamental biological fact that the relation of the head to the neck is the primary relationship to be established in all proper positioning and movement of the body. But, if we are not so fortunate as to have an expert personal assistance, can the individual do anything? Alexander himself holds little hope for the unassisted person beyond the patient process of self-correction relative to movement before a mirror which he followed out himself in improving the use of his own body and in discovering the importance principles at which he arrived.

Raymond Dart (1893 – 1988)Anatomist and anthropologist