mandag 7. august 2023

Learning too easily

It is often said the Alexander Technique brings us back to the balance, ease and freedom of movement we had as children. Although there is some truth in this, the idea is problematic.

By unlearning bad habits we can achieve moving with less effort. In that sense, we do become more like children. But going back is not possible, and the question is, if we could, would we?
Naturally, small children have fewer bad habits than adults. They haven't had time to acquire them. We can admire and find inspiration in their free and spontaneous movements, their ability to sit in balance and easily squat. Children are perfect in their own way, but there are things they are not able to do. They are, after all, work in progress.

Instead of saying that we should become more like children, I think we should put it the other way round. The reason we get bad habits is that we humans learn so easily, good habits as well as bad. We could say that being like children is the source of our problems.

Putting it this way puts a positive spin on things. Our ability to learn is our greatest asset. It might lead to problems, but it is also the solution.

By learning the Alexander Technique we strengthen our ability to take charge of ourselves, to be aware and take conscious decisions (to the extent that is possible). Children have less of this ability. By learning the Alexander Technique and applying it in daily life, we become less like children. We grow up.

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