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The Alexander Technique
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"I have been in pain for over 4 years before I started with Lori and the Alexander Technique (AT). With Lori’s help, expertise and training, I am off all my meds and have no major pain unless I push myself too far. Lori helped me get my life back and am very thankful for her passion to help others. She is a Godsend and I am very thankful that she is helping me to be more efficient with how to use my body properly and not cause damage. Thank you!"
-- Jarka M.

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Alexander Technique Scientific Evidence

A 2008 randomized controlled Alexander Technique trial published in the British Medical Journal found marked improvement in addressing back pain. Those receiving 24 Alexander Technique lessons had 3 days of back pain in a four week period, 18 days less than the control median of 21 days. The cohort receiving 6 lessons had a reduction of ten days in days-of-pain reported. Outcomes were also measured by Roland disability scores, a measure of the number of activities impaired by pain, with a control baseline of 8.1. 24 lessons reduced this by 4.14 points, while six lessons combined with exercise produced a reduction of 2.98. A subsequent review of the economic implications of the study concluded that "a series of six lessons in Alexander technique combined with an exercise prescription seems the most effective and cost effective option for the treatment of back pain in primary care."

Prior to this there was a lack of peer-reviewed studies in scientific journals regarding the effectiveness of the technique. In 1999, Dennis ran a controlled study of the effect of AT on the "Functional Reach" (associated with balance) of women older than 65 and found a significant improvement in performance after 8 sessions but this improvement was not maintained in a one-month follow up. Further, in 2004 Maher concluded that "Physical treatments, such as ... Alexander technique ... are either of unknown value or ineffective and so should not be considered" when treating lower back pain with an evidence-based approach. Finally, in 2002, Stalibrass et al. published the results of a significant controlled study into the effectiveness of the technique in treating Parkinson's disease. Four different measures were used to assess the change in severity of the disease. By all four measures, Alexander Technique was better than no treatment, to a statistically significant degree (both P-values < 0.04). However, when compared to a control group given massage sessions, Alexander technique was only significantly better by two of the measures. The other two measures gave statistically insignificant improvements (P-values of approximately 0.1 and 0.6). This appears to lend some weight to the effectiveness of the Technique, but more studies and data are required.

While there is an abundance of anecdotes which suggest that AT instruction contributes to improved vocal quality and vocal health (including its apparent success in treating the vocal health issues of its creator, Alexander), only two studies of AT use with voice were found, neither of which was published in peer-reviewed journals. In both, there was an apparent attempt to measure the effects of AT on voice and to analyze some data; however, neither methodology nor statistics were provided to lend scientific credence to the interpreted results (e.g., representative sampling, control groups or blind testing) or acoustic measurements (i.e., microphone type, microphone placement, microphone directionality, recording environment, recording media – all of which could affect the spectral characteristics of the recording). Thus, while both studies may report actual effects, one cannot have confidence that they demonstrate anything more than possibly placebo improvements without the inclusion of carefully designed methodologies, legitimate metrics or statistical analysis. With regard to the claims made for reducing the need for medication in patients with asthma, Dennis concluded that "robust, well-designed randomized controlled trials are needed."

More on The Alexander Technique
History
Basic Premises
Alexander Technique Benefits
Scientific Evidence
Research & Medical Testimonials

source: wikipedia

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