How can the Alexander Technique help

Breathing

Breathing is an automatic response, it just happens, day in day out approximately 25,000 times a day.  It’s not something we forget to do. As you are reading this, breath is entering and leaving your body something like 17 breaths per minute. If you are able to observe a baby or an animal breath you will see optimal breathing at work - breathing that is uncomplicated and coordinated.

For breath to occur in a coordinated manner the diaphragm is the driving force, while other muscles of the torso work in conjunction with the diaphragm. The diaphragm is a large dome shaped muscle attached to the ribs and the front of the spine, separating the respiratory system from the digestive system. It is an involuntary muscle and cannot be moved directly.  What you feel moving when you notice your breath are the supportive muscles of the torso responding to the action of the diaphragm. 

Complications with breath occurs when we get in the way of this process, and organise our bodies in an inefficient manner so the diaphragm and ribs can’t work effectively. We either create too much tension or lack the appropriate amount of physical and mental bounce required for this action to work effectively and efficiently.

The Alexander Technique is an indirect way to re-educate the breathing muscles. We notice our habits or patterns of use which interfere with optimal breathing and through the appropriate organisation of the head, neck and back relationship we can learn to let go of these patterns so that the breath can take care of itself.

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