Serving the greater Boquete, Panama area
In this charming narrative, 28 year-old Alexis recounts her experience with Alexander lessons. Notice how this Alexander Technique testimonial illustrates the wide range of benefits of the work.
"Kevin Barber is a schoolteacher, but his twin passions are rock climbing and playing the guitar, accompanying himself to songs he has written.
"The discovery of the Alexander Technique was the beginning of a new chapter in my life - almost a rebirth. From a life of constant discomfort, and often pain, I am now - at 56 years of age - pain free and active. I am free to pursue my sporting passios with a degree of confidence that, for many years, was denied me.
"As a young man I participated in a number of sports: football, rugby, basketball and athletics. Skiing became a passion and I would holiday in the Alps as often as I could. I also ran to keep fit and this, combined with an old rugby injury, eventually led to the beginning of a recurrent knee problem which forced me to give up skiing and running when I was in my late thirties. This was a bitter blow but at least I was able to find a new passion: rock-climbing. My knee stood up to this new sport rather better and, as I had already been forced to give up all other sports, was an enjoyable way to keep fit and active.
"Worse was to come, however, as in my early forties I developed a recurrent lower back problem which rapidly became a chronic condition. I soon reached the position of being in discomfort all of my waking hours and this deteriorated into pain for most of that time. I had sciatica giving pain in the leg and my back would frequently go into spasm and force me to become completely immobile. I couldn't even stand still without having to shift constantly in an attempt to relieve the pain. I don't like to take drugs and would only resort to pain relief when it became unbearable. Fortunately for me I was able to sleep quite well without too much discomfort and at least I was able to still climb!
"I tried osteopaths, chiropractors, conventional medicine and acupuncture - all to no avail. I resigned myself to a life of pain.
"About this time I met a climber who was training to become an Alexander teacher. She was loking for subjects on who to practice abd she invited a few of her climber friends, me included, to come along to the training course with her. This ws the start of my new life!
"At that first meeting I met Carolyn Nichols, now my Alexander teacher. The information I received at that first meeting immediately caused me to realize that the Alexander Technique offered me a lifeline. I was already aware of many of my bad postural habits but never realized the possibility for change existed. I began one-to-one lessons with John Nicholls. The first lesson was a revelation. I left the lesson more upright, relaxed and balanced than I had felt for years but even better news was just around the corner. Within three months of starting lessons I could feel an improvement in my knee. I tried a cautious visit to the dry ski slope. No pain. No swelling. I gradualy increased the frequency of my visits and I was back on the slopes that same year. I have been skiing every winter since. Sometimes I go two or three times a year with no adverse effects. My knowledge of the Alexander Technique even allowed me to improve my skiing technique.
"This was, of course, unbelievable news for me but I still had the back pain. Checking in the mirror each day I could see the characteristic imbablance in the pelvic bones and this persisted even after two years of lessons. I could manage my pain better but I resigned myself to never being entirely free of discomfort.
"After two years of lessons I found myself on holiday in Spain one summer. I was standing by the swimming pool watching my two daughters swimming when I became aware that I was not having to shift my weight from foot to foot in order to relieve my discomfort. I was standing, balanced equally on both feet and free of pain. I went inside and looked in the mirror. My pelvic bones were level. At that moment I genuinely felt as if I had been reborn. The freedom to stand and walk in a balanced reborn. The freedom to stand and walk in a balanced, pain-free manner is something I have tried never to take for granted since then.
"I have found the Alexander Technique a great help with my other passion - singing. I play the guitar and sing in clubs and pubs and the skills I have learnt through the technique have allowed me to manage my voice, posture and playing position effectively as well as helping me to manage the contradictory effects of rock-climbing and guitar-playing on my hands.
Body, Breath, and Being, a new guide to the Alexander TechniqueISBN 978 1 904468 42 4© 2008 Carolyn Nichols. You will enjoy her web site.(click here). Reprinted with kind permission of the publisher, D and B Publishing, www.DandBPublishing.com.
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Sandy and Forrest Hawkins,
AmSAT Certified Alexander Technique consultants
Call us with questions or to book an appointment:
We are located near downtown Boquete
"We can throw away the habit of a lifetime in a few minutes if we use our brains."