By Omid Bahramzadegan
I just had my first session of Alexander Technique with Leland. Since there’s no Alexander teacher in my country, I settled for the next best thing, which is classes on Skype. On videos I’ve seen Alexander teachers guiding their students with their hands, but on Skype we just have our eyes and voices. It was sort of challenging. Based on what I had seen or read about the Alexander Technique, I was expecting tips about my neck, but the session was focused on sitting on a chair and getting back up. When I watched Leland do it, he seemed weightless and comfortable. Slowly or quickly didn’t make any difference. But I found it pretty difficult at first. I exercise a lot and am pretty strong, but I became interested in Alexander when I realized that if you perform such a simple action the wrong way, not only it may hurt you in the long run, but also it is like a hard workout and takes a lot of energy. Once every 5 or 6 times, I did it right and it felt great. This made me want to get the hang of it and apply it to my daily life. I realized some mistakes that I wasn’t even aware of. For example, I was pulling my feet backwards instead of pushing the floor. I don’t know how Leland was able to notice that by just watching me through the camera! What came to me as a shock was that I knew pretty much most of the Alexander Technique concepts and had tried them on my own, but never got any results. But during the session, his words seemed to affect my mind so much and my body immediately reacted to my mind and thoughts. The day after, I noticed that I felt my feet on the ground more than before. Walking felt more stable and in control. Perhaps the session triggers something inside the student and brings about some changes subtly.