Tag Archives: Alexander Technique Research

More Research Into the Alexander Technique

Fascinating Research Trial into Standing
Recently, I was delighted to be a research subject at the prestigious UCL Institute of Neurology, Queen Square London. 
The research study, which is run by Prof. Brian Day’s Whole Body Sensorimotor Lab is investigating whole-body actions and the neural processes that control them.  Dr Tim Cacciatore is looking at the way Alexander Technique Teachers use our bodies when we move, compared with the way matched members of the public, who have never had any Alexander lessons.
For the research, I was all wired up with infrared body markers on my arms, legs, spine and skull and signals from these were picked up by sensors as I moved. I also sat and stood on some force plates, that measured my force levels as I moved. 
Gradually an outline of my skeleton appeared on the computer and I could observe the way I had been moving. Dr Cacciatore has already published some findings related to this type of research and it was fascinating to be involved. I shall be very interested to find out the results of this study when it is published. Watch this space for further info about this research trial.
This type of research not only increases our understanding of the Alexander Technique but its findings may eventually be used to help people who suffer from disorders resulting from damage to the central nervous system.
Information about a previous study by this research team may be found here.

Alexander Technique Research to Help Neck Pain

Research to Help Chronic Neck Pain

Another major research trial into the Alexander Technique has just started at York University, funded by Arthritis Research UK.

The 3 year randomised controlled trial will compare the Alexander Technique, Acupuncture and regular GP care in the treatment of 450 people with chronic neck pain. Once the results of the trial are available, it is hoped that this will enable recommendations to be made about the most suitable treatment/s for neck pain to be used within the NHS.

It is already known that both lessons in the Alexander Technique, or having some Acupuncture treatments can be effective in reducing problems such as neck pain but this has not been backed up by clinical research, so this is a very welcome study. 

BMJ publishes ATEAM Research showing 1:1 Alexander Technique lessons help reduce low back pain

There is good news for people interested in the Alexander Technique and for anyone who is suffering from chronic back pain.

The BMJ has just published the results of the ATEAM Research Trial which shows that people who had 1:1 lessons in the Alexander Technique, with a registered teacher, experienced a significant reduction in levels of back pain along with an improvement in the quality of their life. Importantly, these results were sustained one year later.

It is likely that if people maintain their improved use and application of the Technique,  the results could be sustained for even longer but it has not been possible to clinically evaluate this as yet.

Recurrent back pain is extremely common and is one of the main causes of disability and absence from work in developed societies. However, until now there has been little clinical evidence to show which treatments may help people and the ATEAM trial now shows that supervised exercise can have some benefit, massage has less but that the Alexander Technique offers the greatest long term benefit for people with non-specific back pain.



As one of the registered A/T teachers selected to teach on the ATEAM Research Trial, I am particularly pleased that the results show so clearly that learning the Alexander Technique can be of great benefit for people with low back pain. Alexander teachers have known for a long time that the Technique can help people with chronic back pain and it is good that there is now some statistically significant evidence to this effect that we can put before the scientific and medical community. You can read my article about the ATEAM Trial here.

If you would like more information about the Technique or individual Alexander Technique Lessons in Stoke Newington N16, you may contact me here.

You may also phone me:
+44 (0) 20 7254 9206

Randomised controlled trial of Alexander technique lessons, exercise, and massage (ATEAM) for chronic and recurrent back pain
BMJ 2008;337:a884