by Barbara Curialle
I’m not advising you on who or what to protest, but I marched on Sunday at a big anti-Trump rally in Midtown Manhattan. As I was remembering my Alexander principles, I came up with a few guidelines for participating in the demonstration or march of your choice.
1. Remember the head-neck-spine relationship. Most marches move very slowly, so you will need to be aware of keeping your back back, your legs separated from your torso, and your knees moving forward with each step. Your march probably will pause at intersections while the police clear traffic. This is a great opportunity to recall Alexander’s directions and your head-neck-back relationship.
2. You’ll hear lots of slogans, and you’ll probably want to chant along with at least some of them. It’s very tempting to throw your head back and yell at the top of your lungs! If you keep a free neck and remember that your jaw is part of your head and not your neck, your voice will resonate much more, and your throat will get less tired. Most chants last only about 60 to 90 seconds, and you don’t have to go along with all of them! Take advantage of pauses to remember your directions. And remember that you can chant your favorite slogans only on an exhale!
3. Demonstrations are exciting—they’re supposed to be! It’s easy and completely natural to get caught up in the enthusiasm, but if you remember to pause (in your thinking at least) and direct, you’ll still be excited, but a whole lot less tense.
4. If you’re carrying a sign, please do check the ACLU Web site (see below) for what kind of sign you can carry. Remember that your arms originate in your back, and that the energy flows up through the top of your spine, down your back, through your legs and into the earth.
5. Last but not least, a demonstration is an excellent opportunity to practice global awareness. When you’re in a large crowd, it’s important to be aware of who is marching on either side of you, ahead of you, and behind you. A lot of parents brought their kids on foot or in strollers, and it helps to be aware of them too.
6. Once you’ve finished marching and get home, drink some water and do constructive rest. Then have a good dinner—you’ve earned it!
As I said above, it’s always a good idea to check the ACLU Web site for important information on your rights: https://www.aclu.org/
March on and stay safe!
[author] [author_image timthumb='on']http://www.acatnyc.org/main/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/currialle.jpg[/author_image] [author_info]BARBARA CURIALLE, a graduate of ACAT, has been a nationally certified Alexander Technique teacher since 2009. She also holds a Bachelor of Arts in music and social science from Fordham University and a Bachelor of Music (piano) from Manhattan School of Music. In 2011, she underwent spinal-fusion surgery and credits the Alexander Technique with a very directed recovery. She maintains a teaching practice on the Upper West Side and feels at her best when applying the Alexander Technique to physical activities such as walking, running, strength training, yoga, and swimming. She can be found at barbaracurialle.com [/author_info] [/author]