“These Retreats offer a weekend spending a length of uninterrupted time learning the Alexander Technique and consolidate my learning”.

The Venue

“It’s absolutely beautiful here, the accommodation is comfortable and well appointed. The good home cooked meals are wonderful, and the afternoon tea and cake delicious. “

“The hosts, Gabrielle and Andy and their helpers are so friendly, welcoming and helpful.   I particularly appreciate the special effort they make to accommodate my dietary needs”.

The participants

“What an amazing group of ladies, so supportive, great company and lots of laughter. “

“It’s so nice to be working alongside others who have similar issues with movement and pain. In everyday life you can sometimes think you are the only person with these issues.

“I returned regularly to these retreats because I have noticed the benefits when I apply Alexander Technique into my daily life.  I am always sad to leave and go home.

“I have appreciated that the learning was not in semi supine [whilst lying} on a table; it was learning to put the Technique into practice. This weekend has enabled the technique to become more alive.”

What I have learned this weekend

“I am learning to live by it [Alexander Technique] and move my body in so many different ways to achieve what I need to do in life”.

“I have benefited from the constant reminders to be present at all times”.

“I appreciate the reminders of what you may have forgotten from previous learning, they are reinforcing what I know”.

“I am letting go more” [letting go of unnecessary tension]

“Stopping, slowing up and thinking; there are huge benefits” [preventing habitual  unhelpful movement patterns]

“Moving the body as it should be used” [the way it is designed to move]

“I am finding a way to work and experience a more natural balance in my body.

 Breathing

“I am making my breathing a more conscious activity.”

“I have to exhale fully at my hospital assessments, and I know have done so with a lot of unnecessary tension, but now I can exhale with more ease and less effort”.

Walking on difficult terrain

“I have much more confidence with walking –  after 2 new knees, I’m feeling stronger in the legs”.

“I think I’ve got it now:  the spiral in the legs “, [it is helping to correct knock knees]

“I’m learning to lunge with a lengthened spine” [has helped manage stepping from one rock/stone to another]

“Advice on going up the hill will provide me with something to work with to lengthen the left side which drops.”

Pain

“Using techniques that prevent harm to our bodies in the busy lives that we lead, we can go forward and have a fuller and more pain-free future.”

“Where there was once pain, there is more ease”.

“I can now sit and stand without fear of pain”.

“I am learning how to minimalise the pain”.

“I can allow a natural healing.”

Alexander Technique is all about looking after yourself.   Kay Cady comments on the weekend:

We are not looking to stand up straight or try to get it right, what we are looking for is direction.  Your body is looking to be directed in a certain way, and you are the director.    Use your thinking to direct yourself into movement.  If you override your thinking and try to get something right, you are guaranteed to use excess tension and will result in a very stationary thing, like standing upright, still and straight. We don’t often stand still –  we are always moving. It’s far better to be soft and tall and comfortable in your body. Good posture makes us think that we must stand up straight and put our bodies into some tension ridden holding pattern, when what we really need is to be exploring, being curious and experimenting.  We need to find out what works in a situation, how we can be safe when we are walking.  How much more you will enjoy yourself, if you haven’t stumbled and hurt yourself and had to rely on others to rescue you out of a sticky situation.

You all did that today, you walked across those rocks, you had to work it all out, you took different routes to each other.  You worked out whether that rock you stood on was stable and whether it was safe to move to the other foot, you worked out whether you were balanced or whether you needed to rethink your plan.  And you let go of unnecessary tension which would have thrown you off balance. There are no written rules.     Learning Alexander Technique provides you with an underpinning knowledge and understanding of how your body moves, and from that you can adapt your plan to suit your situation.

It’s all about looking after yourself and learning the Alexander Technique helps you to develop your body awareness so that you can look after yourself.  You have direction:  you have to stop, you have to see the big picture, you have to breathe you have to think soft and tall. Those directions will bring back all the learning that you have taken away this weekend and help you to continue with this journey into the future.

For future Retreats and other events, please visit our “what’s on” page