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Press Release

Major British Study Shows The Alexander Technique Offers Long-Term Relief From Back Pain Ė The Alexander Learning Studio Offers 2 Free Lessons For 24 Lessons Purchased To Celebrate

PORTLAND, OR, August 21, 2008 Ė To celebrate the release of the first major scientific study on the long-term effects of the Alexander Technique, The Alexander Learning Studio offers 2 free lessons for the purchase of an initial 24-lesson course of study. This offer is good from now until December 31, 2008.

Paul Little et al Study Background
On August 19, 2008, BMJ online, the British Medical Associationís journal, released the findings of Professor Paul Little and colleagues on the subject of the effectiveness of Alexander Technique lessons, massage and exercise in treating recurring back pain (BMJ 2008;337:a884). The study included 152 teachers and therapists and was set in 64 general practices located in both Southampton and Bristol, England.

After following 579 patients for one year, the study concludes that the Alexander Technique offers long-term relief from recurring back pain. In contrast, massage may be effective in the short-term but its benefits fade away after 3 months.

In the western world, back pain is one of the biggest sources of disability. Yet, its effective long-term resolution is rare.

This study used control subjects who received normal medical care as a benchmark. They were reported to suffer 21 days of pain in a 4 week period.

In comparison, after one year, subjects who underwent massage suffered 33% fewer days of pain. However, subjects who were given 24 one-on-one Alexander Technique lessons from certified teachers suffered 86% fewer days of pain.

Although the exercise group did not reduce their days in pain after one year, the number of activities limited by their back pain (e.g. going out of the house or doing chores around the house) decreased by 17% Ė the same amount as for the group who took 6 Alexander Technique lessons. The subjects who took 24 Alexander lessons saw a 42% decrease in this figure. Massage did not produce any such decrease.

Only the Alexander Technique group reported a significant improvement in their quality of life however.

(Full survey text available at: http://www.bmj.com/cgi/content/full/337/aug19_2/a884).

The Alexander Technique
Frederick Matthias Alexander, a Tasmanian actor, invented the Alexander Technique at the end of the 19th century to relieve his vocal and breathing troubles while reciting on stage.

His technique helps us examine our reaction habits. If we react with more poise, we use ourselves better, which in turn has positive effects on how we function.

Lessons are taught one-on-one because each personís habits and learning needs are different. The teacher uses gentle, non-manipulative touch to guide the pupil through simple movements. In the process, the pupil is taught to use their thought-process in a new way, which helps them become conscious of and stop those habits that come in the way of their natural poise and functioning.

The skills acquired in a lesson can be applied in any situation and stay with the student for the rest of their life.

About The Alexander Learning Studio
The Alexander Learning Studio offers private instruction and introduction workshops in the Alexander Technique. Christine Eidson, M.AmSAT, founded the Studio in 2005. Christine is certified to teach the Alexander Technique through AmSAT (the American Society for the Alexander Technique). AmSAT teachers have undergone the most stringent standards of teaching certification offered in the U.S. today.

Christine started studying the Technique back in 2001 in order to relieve the disabling repetitive stress injury she contracted in both arms while working as an internet graphic designer.

The Alexander Learning Studio
2170 NW 111th Avenue
Portland, OR 97229
Tel: 503-643-9339

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Copyright © 2005-2022 Christine C. Eidson, AmSAT Certified, The Alexander Learning Studio

(1) Photograph of F.M. Alexander © 2002, The Society of Teachers of the Alexander Technique, London