I cannot remember where I heard about the Alexander Technique, but my first real encounter was very dramatic. Attending a Saturday morning course, I learnt the AT art of walking upstairs and how to carry parcels and bags. As I had been hauling myself upstairs by the banisters, it was a revelation to discover that I had the freedom to ascend without any external help. Twenty years later, at eighty-one, I can still climb stairs without assistance and know how to carry weights and stay in balance (even if many things are now too heavy to carry!).
Overjoyed with success, I attended a weeks holiday course, which proved to be the ideal way of learning to live an Alexander life without distraction. The overall effect lasted for many weeks. One or two further courses reinforced much of what I had learnt as well as opening new areas. An ‘extra three inches’ was added to my height so that I regained the height I had had at twenty-one, and which I appear to still retain. At work, the AT gave me extra confidence, and I felt as tall as others who were often, in reality, taller than me. I could only wish that I had learnt the Technique much earlier in my life.
Over several years, as I retired and moved around, I went to a number of teachers, all of whom helped me in various ways. One helped to Straighten out the scoliosis in my back. I encouraged my horse-riding daughter to see her and she realised how much AT could contribute to the teaching of riding. Eventually my daughter trained as a teacher and now she teaches both riding and AT.
I am aware that I am not a ‘good’ AT student because I am very forgetful and find it hard to remember to inhibit and to lie down every day. However, I am absolutely convinced that it has transformed my life and allowed me to be active in playing croquet, gardening, driving my car and looking after small grandchildren, all of which are fundamental parts of my life.