Viola – The Main Strength of an Alexander Technique Teacher (Musicians)(Psychology)(Pain)(Strain)(Injuries)(Posture)(Albuquerque)

by ethankind on December 24, 2012

This ebook, An Alexander Technique Approach to Viola Technique, is published on this website in a PDF format. It is very detailed and practical, and it will give you the physical tools you need to take the limits off of your ability to create the accurate viola technique you want without sacrificing your body.
This ebook is also for sale on all AMAZON websites in a KINDLE format.
Located in Albuquerque, New Mexico, U.S.A. (MOVEMENT THERAPY)

What makes the Alexander Technique teacher so extraordinarily good at working with violists is our ability to work outside of the box, whether the Alexander Technique teacher has played the viola or not. In fact, the Alexander Technique teacher who has never played the viola may be able to give the viola player what he or she needs in a way that is way outside of the box. What do I mean?

When I was an aspiring concert guitarist, I went to an Alexander Technique teacher, because I was causing carpal tunnel syndrome to my left wrist, practicing the guitar hours and hours every day. Because the Alexander technique teacher I worked with was not a classical guitarist, she effortlessly got me to question everything I did on the guitar from head to toe.

It was extraordinary for me after years of playing and after many fine guitar teachers, to dismantle everything I thought was necessary to be a concert guitarist, and create my own personal guitar technique.

I kept what worked, let go of what didn’t work, fined tuned what almost worked, and added whole new ways of accomplishing for the first time what I was truly capable of on the guitar.

What I bring to the violist are the eyes of an Alexander Technique teacher. I assist the viola player in being able to consciously use his or her whole body in a completely elegant, athletic, and coordinated way. I teach the violist how to play extraordinarily accurately without paying a physical price by collapsing or hunkering down to play.

How do I do this? I went through a three year training, and in my Alexander Technique training I learned to use my whole body with ease and balance in everything I do, from running, to brushing my teeth, to playing the guitar, to teaching the Alexander Technique.

My training also taught me to look at any activity, from walking to playing the viola, and to spot when the person is sacrificing his or her body for the activity. What does this mean? It means when I work with the violist, I can clearly see when the viola player is hunkering down paying a painful physical price to play with accuracy and feeling. I can see when the violist is not connected to his or her torso and legs when playing. I can see when the violist is not balanced from head to toe when he or she plays, and because of this whole body imbalance, is using too much upper body muscle to play.

What I also bring to the violist is that I embody whole body good use as I assist the viola player in creating his or her personal effortless and accurate viola technique. This means, even if the violist doesn’t know it consciously, I demonstrate to the viola player with my own posture how to play without pain, strain, and compression. I also use verbal directions and directing hands on the violist’s body to communicate what is needed to create a pain-free viola technique.

SINCE I AM NOT SACRIFICING MY BODY AS I TEACH THE VIOLIST, EVERYTHING ABOUT MY POSTURE, WORDS, AND HANDS COMMUNICATE TO THE VIOLA PLAYER HOW TO DO THE SAME ON THE VIOLA.

An Alexander Technique teacher is extraordinarily unique in the world of postural teaching, because the Alexander Technique teacher is teaching the violist to do as the Alexander Technique teacher EMBODIES and says, rather than doing only as I say. Simply, if I tell you to play without locking your neck, and I tell you this with poor posture, you will have one heck of a time learning to play the viola with a released and lengthening neck and decompressed spine.

You won’t know why playing the viola with a free neck seems so hard, but it is because unconsciously you are receiving conflicting messages from me talking about good posture and exhibiting poor posture. A certified Alexander Technique teacher can truly say do as I do, do as I say, and do as my hands are communicating to your nervous system through my free nervous system.

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