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Thread: Body therapies

  1. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by DannyL View Post
    I'm very into Alexander Technique. From what I understand, there are a number of rival schools - I go to a group that's teaching principles from the ITM (International Teaching Method) which was set up a guy called Don Weed. They seem to me to be very close to what Alexander originally taught and make great use of his books. Don writes somewhere that he found pupils who had studied the texts progressed quicker than those who actually had hands on work. It's a really deep discipline - there's nothing quite like it - it's the only thing that puts me into a similar space as to do Reichian bodywork.
    i did it for a while - and it was good as far as it went. alexander is an interesting guy. interesting to hear your view on that danny.

    [for those people apart from danny who don't know] he worked up his theories because he used to be a professional gambler at the race courses and he learnt to figure out, by way of their posture, which horses were going to win the race. people started to realise he was on to something - he always won - so he became a tipster/pundit in that field - before realising the same ideas could be applicable to people.

    from what i understood of it - cranial osteopathy (another one i've experienced - therapy whore innit) works from a similar position of physical "rectitude" and reverse mapping that onto psychological states. there's a big dose of traditional chinese medicine in that too i suspect (which is absent in alexander therapy)

  2. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by DannyL View Post
    And you'll struggle to get an answer when you bring nothing to the discussion beyond prurience.
    in think in fairness to luka he's already sold on the basic premise. see him like the gossip editor of "the sun" he's just trying to get the salacious stuff to hook other people into the matrix.

    plus it's always fun too.

  3. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by Matthew View Post
    i did it for a while - and it was good as far as it went. alexander is an interesting guy. interesting to hear your view on that danny.

    [for those people apart from danny who don't know] he worked up his theories because he used to be a professional gambler at the race courses and he learnt to figure out, by way of their posture, which horses were going to win the race. people started to realise he was on to something - he always won - so he became a tipster/pundit in that field - before realising the same ideas could be applicable to people.
    He was also an actor who was losing his voice wasn't he (not sure if someone has said this upthread), so the Technique was his response to his perception that he was damaging himself in the course of delivering speeches, through positioning his body in the wrong way.

  4. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by Matthew View Post
    in think in fairness to luka he's already sold on the basic premise. see him like the gossip editor of "the sun" he's just trying to get the salacious stuff to hook other people into the matrix.

  5. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by Matthew View Post
    in think in fairness to luka he's already sold on the basic premise. see him like the gossip editor of "the sun" he's just trying to get the salacious stuff to hook other people into the matrix.

    plus it's always fun too.
    thank you Matt.

  6. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by Matthew View Post
    i did it for a while - and it was good as far as it went. alexander is an interesting guy. interesting to hear your view on that danny.

    [for those people apart from danny who don't know] he worked up his theories because he used to be a professional gambler at the race courses and he learnt to figure out, by way of their posture, which horses were going to win the race. people started to realise he was on to something - he always won - so he became a tipster/pundit in that field - before realising the same ideas could be applicable to people.

    from what i understood of it - cranial osteopathy (another one i've experienced - therapy whore innit) works from a similar position of physical "rectitude" and reverse mapping that onto psychological states. there's a big dose of traditional chinese medicine in that too i suspect (which is absent in alexander therapy)
    I don't think that's right Matt! It's a good story though. Alexander was an actor and he started having problems with his vocalisation (I think he did solo recitations of Shakespeare) - voice getting hoarse when reciting. Normal medical treatment didn't seem to work so he resolved to cure himself which he did via a very long process of self-discovery. It's all detailed in the opening chapter of The Use of the Self (The Evolution of a Technique).

    I'm between counselling clients at the mo, so can't write at length.

    Luka, I've already mentioned at the top of the thread (IIRC) the most striking effect - sustained happiness arising out of the body. And just from the body, it's nothing to do with the mind or thinking or realisations at all. When I was doing Reichian work every week, it felt that I was moving around the underlying bedrock and this caused the neurosis that rested on top of this to just fall into line i.e. disappear or be radically diminished.

    Alexander said something interesting to his niece, Majory Barlow - he said "you know, dear, I'm always happy". I think I know what I meant. Not that you never have a bad moment, but more that your responses to negatives are appropriate and you have a basic core of real happiness that you keep returning to.

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  8. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by DannyL View Post
    I don't think that's right Matt! It's a good story though.
    always possible im wrong - i just heard that from my practitioner that's all

    quite a lot about his lifelong love of horses here:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/F._Matthias_Alexander
    https://www.alexander-technique.lond.../fm-alexander/

  9. #38
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    I've definitely heard that he liked a flutter so I imagine there's something in the story, though I'm sure that the origin points of the technique are with his difficulties onstage.

  10. #39
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    Bit more on AT - the thing that intrigued me about is that it isn't just about the physical. It's really about thinking - not going to go into that too much 'cos I've not got my head around all the material yet but there's the idea that's emphasised in the school my teacher is in (the ITM), that the mental disciplines you develop are applicable elsewhere in your life. An Alexander Technique lesson is one level a metaphor for the rest of one's life - and the skills you develop - observation/problem solving/inhibition of automatic response/direction of thinking/sticking to a "reasoned plan" - are all skills applicable elsewhere in your life. You can find this stated clearly in Alexander's writing. That was the initial hook of interest for me.

    So you might have a dodgy shoulder - in the course of fixing that you might develop skills that map over into, say, the launch of a business. Sounds weird stated bluntly like that but it makes sense when you look at the material.

    I quite like this women's blog - she's an ITM person. It might flesh out what I'm talking about: https://activateyou.com/blog/
    Last edited by DannyL; 12-07-2018 at 12:41 PM.

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  12. #40
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    Talking about his work with a pupil, a writer, who'd just buggered himself up again by working too hard Alexander says "I wished to convince him that the gaining of control in the simple psycho-physical evolutions which we were engaged during the lessons meant sooner or later the gaining of control in the practical spheres of his daily life."

    From Alexander, Conscious Constructive Control of the Individual.

  13. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by DannyL View Post
    inhibition of automatic response
    which links in with so many disciplines/ideas - mentalisation, practised through mindfulness, as the way to prevent one's emotional automatisms from escaping unbidden; the idea with yoga that you're tolerating -often mild - physical discomfort for long periods, and that this can have knock-on effects in terms of being able to tolerate the psychological discomfort of not following one's usual patterns of response....

  14. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by baboon2004 View Post
    which links in with so many disciplines/ideas - mentalisation, practised through mindfulness, as the way to prevent one's emotional automatisms from escaping unbidden; the idea with yoga that you're tolerating -often mild - physical discomfort for long periods, and that this can have knock-on effects in terms of being able to tolerate the psychological discomfort of not following one's usual patterns of response....
    very interesting. and good that you have brought up Yoga. i tried to lure danny on the crossover between reich and some of the experiences of the indian yogis but he was having none of it

  15. #43
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    you'll break his resistance soon I'm sure! I don't know that much about yoga, but my partner says that (a vanishingly small) minority of classes she's been to did explicitly make the link between physical and psychological discomfort.

    A quick google of the potential links between yoga and Reich brought up near the top of the results page an article in the ever-delightful Daily Mail entitled "How SS recommended yoga to death camp guards as a good way to relax". Being a bit slow this afternoon, I've only just realised why.

  16. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by Matthew View Post
    very interesting. and good that you have brought up Yoga. i tried to lure danny on the crossover between reich and some of the experiences of the indian yogis but he was having none of it
    Do you mean the crossover between Reich's 7 armour segments and the 7 chakras? That's something a fair few people mention - doesn't totally work for me for various reasons.

    Will try and expand on the above and reply to Baboon etc. in a bit - cooking for the fam.

  17. #45
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    one level a metaphor for the rest of one's life
    tbh this is everything and all roads lead to rome.

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