Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Alexander Technique: FM's MSI 6 Point Sitting Plan Revisited

Alexander Technique: FM's MSI 6 Point Sitting Plan Revisited: "http://dialoguers.livejournal.com"

I choose "re-decide" based on Alexander's 5 point plan in UOS Chapter 1 "Evolution of a Technique" where he uses the word "decision" and "reconsider" when describing how he used his plan to overcome his habitual response. I guess "re-decide" comes from combining those two!

This is the passage:

" (4) while still continuing to project the directions for the new use I would stop and consciously reconsider my first decision, and ask myself "Shall I after all go on to gain the end I have decided upon and speak the sentence? Or shall I not? Or shall I go on to gain some other end altogether?" -- and then and there make a fresh decision..."

Thursday, October 19, 2006

FM's MSI 6 Point Sitting Plan Revisited

FM's 6 Point Plan for Sitting In A Chair (MSI Part 2 Chapter 7)

"20. These same rules are equally applicable in principle to the acts of sitting and of rising from a sitting position. Very few people have the right mental conception of the ”means whereby” of these acts or of the correct use of the parts which should be employed in their performance, and this despite the fact that we are performing these acts continually, and with such apparent ease from our own point of view. If you ask any of your friends to sit down, you will notice, if you observe their actions closely, that in nearly all cases there is undue increase of muscular tension in the body and lower limbs; in many cases the arms are actually employed. As a rule, however, the most striking action is the alteration in the position of the head, which is thrown back, whilst the neck is stiffened and shortened. Now I will describe the correct method, but it must be borne in mind that it is useless to give what I here call ”orders” to the muscular mechanism, until the original habit and the principle of mental conception connected with this action have been eradicated. If, for instance, before giving any of the ”orders” which follow, the experimenter has already fixed in his mind that he is to go through the performance of sitting down, as that performance is known to him, this suggestion will at once call into play all the old vicious co-ordinations, and the new orders will never influence the mechanisms to which they are directed, because those mechanisms will already be imperfectly employed, and will be held in their old routine by the force of the familiar suggestion.
Firstly, then, rid the mind of the idea of sitting down, and consider the exercise and each order independently of the final consequence they entail. In other words, study the "means,” not the "end.”
Secondly, stand in the position already described as the correct standing position, with the back of the legs almost touching the seat of the chair. Thirdly, order the neck to relax, and at the same time order the head forward and up. (Note that to ”order” the muscles of the neck to relax does not mean ”allow the head to fall forward on the chest.” The order suggested is merely a mental preventive to the erroneous preconceived idea.)
Fourthly, keep clearly in the mind the general idea of the lengthening of the body which is a direct consequence of the third series of orders. And
fifthly, order simultaneously the hips to move backwards and the knees to bend, the knees and hip-joints acting as hinges. During this act a mental order must be given to widen the back. When this order is fulfilled, the experimenter will find himself sitting in the chair. But he is not yet upright, for the body will be inclined forward, unless he frustrates the whole performance at this point by giving his old orders to come to an upright position.
Sixthly, then — and this is of great importance — pause for an instant in the position in which you will fall into the chair if the earlier instructions have been correctly followed, and then, after ordering the neck to relax and the head forward and up, the spine to lengthen, and the back to widen, come back into the chair and to an upright position by using the hips as a hinge, and without shortening the back, stiffening the neck or throwing up the head."


Jeremy's Simplified Generic Version
1. Clarify your intention
2. Unify your Field of Attention (i.e. your self, your surroundings, your intention)
3/4. Ask for your co-ordination
5. Move from the leading edges of the movement while letting your arms go on a holiday
6. Re-decide - clarify leading edge - move.