Friday, December 28, 2007

Alexander Technique and Neutral

Several trainings ago I experimented with some ideas I have gotten from my Alexander teacher. They were very successful and so I want to post the "thoughts" here -- and hopefully we can drop them in again when we are all back in the room. They may help us achieve this more dynamic neutral that we are looking for:
Try dropping a couple of these thoughts in at a time as you are standing and then "take them for a walk" and bring yourself back to standing:

Part A: Imagine you were nothing but two long legs that started way up behind your shoulder blades, with a little bean for a head. Take yourself for a walk and then come back to standing.

Part B: (take two or three thoughts at a time standing and then walk and come back to standing)
1. Ask your feet to please not pull down on the rest of your body.
2. Ask your legs to please not pull down on your pelvis.
3. Ask your pelvis to please not pull down on your rib cage.
4. Ask your neck to please not pull down on your head.
5. Allow the bones of your pelvis and skull to unfix. Imagine they could float -- continually reinventing themselves so anything can happen.
6. Allow your sternum or breast bone to float.
7. Allow your heart to move back in to your body.
8. Allow your sternum and your tail bone to balance with each other.

I find that once you achieve this dynamic neutral you are able to follow through more easily with suspension, momentum and gravity so that the act of walking or moving your hand/arm in space feels more like an "inevitability" and less of a forced activity or choreography.

-Margi

2 comments:

Magis Theatre Company said...

Thanks for these Margi. I find a couple of things that are great about this:
1) it reminds us that neutral is still active
2) this poses a corrective to what we are usually taught: that the way to "fight" gravity is to "pull up." Yet the challenge here is to allow our center to suspend rather than to counteract one pull with another. The floating image really works well with some of the other energy work that we've been doing
All good reminders as we search to find the energy that is there rather than what we usually do in "manufacturing" energy.

Magis Theatre Company said...

Margi-I love the idea of asking our feet not to pull down on our legs. I found the sensation truly remarkable and I especially love "asking" my body to do something-- so often I feel at war against my body rather than in cooperation with it! Erika