Whereas we are normally conscious of the space surrounding us we are rarely conscious of our own ‘space’ – our size, our shape, the space we take up. We frequently diminish ourselves in two concurrent ways: 1. by too much tension which tends to pull us downwards and inwards, in effect squeezing ourselves; and 2. by collapsing (frequently called ‘relaxing’) which also compresses us, reducing our shape and size. Both decrease our ‘inner space’ which in turn affects the functioning of our entire organism, both physically and psychologically. For example by diminishing our breathing capacity, compressing our joints, narrowing our blood vessels, and therefore making us feel smaller. With the Alexander Technique we are not setting out with an idée fixe as to what we are or should be – there is no predefined ‘ideal’ posture – but we are learning how to prevent constricting ourselves. The AT is how to allow ourselves our true size and shape. And it is an ‘allowance’, not an imposition. We can allow ourselves to take up the space we inhabit. It is much more an ‘inner’ expansion rather than ‘outer’ expansion (although there are visible effects as well, these are side-effects and not the primary object of the AT). The Alexander Technique is inviting you to boldly go where you may have not gone before – your own personal and individual space.
* With apologies to Star Trek.