by Mark Josefsburg
1. Pause…Breathe fully…
2. Become aware, and then let go of the muscles in the back of your neck.
3. This will move your head up.
4. Free your neck again, and slightly, slowly, lower your nose.
5. Repeat from the beginning. (1, 2, 3, 4) Let your sit bones release down in your chair but, in opposition, let your torso and head move up.
6. Let your jaw dangle open, even when your lips are closed. Teeth open, lips gently touching.
7. Let your throat open as if you’re about to whisper ‘ah’.
8. Re-visit 1, 2, 3, and 4.
9. Let your shoulders rest on your ribcage. See if you’re lifting them up. Smile, and then let them ease down.
10. While sitting, let go of excess tension in your legs, without collapsing your torso.
11. Think of your knees going away from your torso, and away from each other.
12. Notice if you’re squeezing your legs together. Release your thigh muscles. Free your neck of excess tension again.
13. Notice any gripping, anywhere.
14. Go back to 1, 2, 3, 4 anytime. Breathe fully.
15. See if you could do less with your fingers, hands, biceps, and shoulders.
16. Think of something funny or pleasant and smile. Include the muscles in the corners of your eyes.
17. Breathe out through your mouth as you whisper ah. Let the air come back through your nose, silently. Repeat.
18. Bring awareness to your forehead and facial muscles.
19. Notice if you’re looking at these words too intensely, and see if your gaze can be softer.
20. Whisper "ah" on a long exhale. Breathe in through your nose, silently.
This post previously appeared at www.MarkJosefsberg.com
Mark Josefsberg is an Alexander Technique teacher in New York City. He began studying the Alexander Technique in 1995 to relieve his severe neck pain. Mark completed ACAT’s training course and was Certified in 2003. Mark is a current faculty member of ACAT. In addition to his private practice, Mark has taught the Alexander Technique Barnard/Columbia University Department of Physical Education, The New York Spine Institute, Step Into Stride Physical Therapy, NeurOasis, Music Cares, The Collective School of Music, and The 92nd Street Y. Many of his students are people getting relief from neck pain, back pain, and those wanting to improve their posture and performance. www.MarkJosefsberg.com