American Society for the Alexander Technique Gains National Visibility - During International Alexander Technique Week

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Teachers of the Alexander Technique promote this effective practice nationally October 10-16 by introducing it to new communities. The British Medical Journal (BMJ) has determined that back pain can be reduced by 85% by using the technique.

Members and students of the American Society for the Alexander Technique (AmSAT) will celebrate International Alexander Technique Week, October 10-16, 2011, highlighting the growing awareness of this successful approach to pain relief and prevention and overall recognition of the 100-year-old technique.

Recently recognized in the New York Times, the Alexander Technique teaches how to change faulty postural habits, enabling improved mobility, posture, performance and alertness and relief of chronic pain, stiffness, tension and stress. People study the Technique for a variety of reasons with the most common being to relieve pain through learning better coordination of the musculoskeletal system.

Knowledge and use of the practice is growing rapidly around the world, partly a result of recent publicity surrounding a study published by the British Medical Journal (BMJ). The study determined that back pain can be reduced by 85% through the study of the Alexander Technique. The major clinical trial also examined massage, standard medical care under a General Practitioner, and standard aerobic exercise, finding that the Alexander Technique offered the most significant long-term benefits for patients with chronic, non-specific low-back pain.

Catapulted by this validation, AmSAT intends to further introduce the Alexander Technique to chronic pain sufferers while educating the broader U.S. medical community on the AT’s benefits during IATW. Throughout the week, a collection of initiatives are planned including a consumer-facing Facebook drawing where students can describe the impact of their experience with the Alexander Technique for a chance to win a prize. Many of the 600+ U.S. AmSAT members will be reaching out to their own communities and offering educational opportunities for further visibility.

Those interested in becoming a student of the Alexander Technique can find a teacher through the organization’s website: Through a series of lessons, people typically experience alleviation of pain and stress as what’s learned becomes incorporated into their everyday lifestyle.

In fact, the Alexander Technique was developed through a similar experience by Frederick Matthias Alexander (1869-1955) who was a Shakespearean actor challenged by a recurring voice problem. Chronic hoarseness interrupted his burgeoning career and he frequently lost his voice while performing.

Because doctors found nothing wrong with his vocal mechanism, Alexander reasoned that the cause might be related to how he was using his voice. After years of rigorous self-observation and experimentation, he found what he was doing that was causing the problem: speaking with habitual patterns of tension that are common to most people. Once he figured out how to speak without those patterns, Alexander then no longer experienced vocal problems, regained a full, rich voice and returned to the stage. Because those habit patterns affect overall human functioning, Alexander found that his posture and overall coordination also improved and he no longer had the breathing problems that he had experienced since childhood.

Alexander continued to develop his technique, exploring the relationship of habit, thought and perception to human movement and functioning. He taught his discoveries to other actors with such success that doctors began referring to him patients with various breathing and coordination problems. As word of his success spread, people came to study with him from various places around the world.

To find out more about International Alexander Technique Week, to find a teacher, or to learn more about the Alexander Technique, visit or find the organizational page on Facebook. Activities for International Alexander Technique Week will vary in each market depending on each teacher’s preference.

About AmSAT
The American Society for the Alexander Technique (AmSAT) is the largest professional association of certified Alexander Technique teachers in the United States. AmSAT's mission is to establish the Alexander Technique as a basic and recognized resource for health, productivity, and well being. AmSAT is an educational, nonsectarian, nondiscriminatory organization that has been incorporated in New York as a general not-for-profit corporation. It has been determined to be federally tax exempt under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as amended. AmSAT maintains the nation's highest standards for teacher training, certification and membership and maintains affiliation with similar credentialing bodies worldwide. Since its formation in 1987, over 1000 teachers have completed the rigorous training process to earn AmSAT certification.


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Dawn Shalhoup
Potion Public Relations
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