The History Behind the Alexander Technique
The Alexander Technique is named for its founder, Frederick Mathias Alexander born in Tasmania, Australia in 1869. Mr. Alexander was a Shakespearean actor who began to suffer from voice problems while reciting. Noticing that he stiffened his neck and pulled his head back during his recitation he began to observe himself speaking. He discovered as a result of this observation, the critical relationship among the head, neck and back. Changing his use while acting resulted in the elimination of his voice loss. This discovery became the basis for his technique and the key to his better use and balance.
Mr. Alexander served students ranging from actors and writers to people suffering from back, neck and shoulder pain. He died at the age of 86 in 1955. Mr. Alexander conceived of his technique as a process of re-education as students identify habits of movement that contribute to strain and bodily tension. Students learn to move with ease and freedom in their daily activities.
For further information about FM Alexander and his technique go to:
Photographs of F. M. Alexander © 2009 Society of Teachers of the Alexander Technique