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How You Stand, How You Move, How You Live: Learning the Alexander Technique to Explore Your Mind-Body Connection and Achieve Self-Mastery Paperback – May 23, 2007
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From Publishers Weekly
Vineyard, founder and director of the Alexander Technique School of New England, presents a thorough introduction and guide to the posture and movement method that's been used for more than a century to improve performance, reduce chronic pain and heal injuries. In this volume, "the first authoritative, comprehensive and all-new guide" to the technique in 20 years, Vineyard shows readers how understanding and improving habits of movement like "head-neck coordination" and even sitting "help you achieve self-mastery," here defined as the "self-understanding" and "bodily control" needed to "identify and release our harmful reactions to pain, fear, and anxiety." The upshot: a healthier, more resilient mind and body. Through numerous case studies and a handful of exercises, Vineyard teaches self-awareness and the primary Alexander Technique skills: conscious inhibition-"quieting your inner conversation"-and "directing," a heightened sense of space and the body's place in it. Vineyard details the internal processes which govern movement, and the factors that lead to "maladaptive change in muscle activity"; she also has tips for troubleshooting common problems like pain and weakness. Those already familiar with the Alexander Technique or other mind-body methods will get the most out of this book, though newcomers will find it a sound introduction; unfortunately, all readers will lose patience with Vineyard's case study overkill.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
How You Stand, How You Move, How You Live by Missy Vineyard is an engagingly presented, comprehensive book with usable, practical advice on the complex study of the Alexander Technique. Insightfully, she has emphasized and expanded the important concept of inhibition, an often-overlooked or understated aspect of the Alexander Technique that is the key to change. I applaud her work. -- Evangeline Benedetti, cellist, New York Philharmonic, certified teacher of the Alexander Technique
How You Stand, How You Move, How You Live is at once an intellectual tour de force integrating knowledge from several disciplines and a practical guide to psychosomatic re-education. Theoretically informed yet thoroughly accessible, it makes fascinating reading. Contemporary interest in the representation and uses of the body will make this book very valuable to students of cultural studies as well as teachers and students of Alexander Technique. Missy Vineyard writes eloquently and from a position of mastery of her material. How You Stand, How You Move, How You Live is a pleasure to recommend. -- Murray M. Schwartz, Professor of Literature and Psychoanalysis, Emerson College
A unique book in the Alexander literature, How You Stand, How You Move, How You Live examines in depth the mental processes needed for successful mastery of the Technique. Missy Vineyard's unusual approach to the difficult subject of inhibition will give the reader many new and useful insights that significantly will enhance freedom and coordination. -- Paul Garner, clarinetist, Dallas Symphony Orchestra; music faculty, Southern Paul Garner, clarinetist, Dallas Symphony Orchestra; music faculty, Southern Methodist University
An uncommonly clear introduction to the rationale for the Alexander Technique and the perfect accompaniment to hands-on Alexander lessons ... How You Stand, How You Move, How You Live is an engaging invitation to explore the Alexander Technique as a way to inhabit our bodies more enjoyably over a lifetime. -- Frances V. Moulder, PhD
Missy Vineyard enlightens both the teacher and the student with her original thesis bridging the working principles of the Alexander Technique with current knowledge in areas of neuroscience, human behavior, performance and medical rehabilitation while bringing new meaning to the self-help book ... She reaches beyond the typical Alexander Technique primer to shed light on the subtleties of human behavior with shrewd observation, original thinking, and rare honesty. -- Idelle S. Packer, MS, PT, certified teacher of the Alexander Technique, owner of Body Sense, Inc., an integrative physical therapy practice in Asheville, NC
Missy Vineyard has developed an innovative and creative approach to teaching the basic mind-body skills that are the foundation of the Alexander Technique. She has a rare talent for explaining key ideas in simple, everyday language. Missy tells engaging stories about herself and her students to illustrate her points, then she presents a sequence of `self-exercises' that teach the thinking at the heart of the Alexander Technique. By breaking down the learning process into small steps and avoiding jargon, she makes it easy to understand the interaction between mind and body. I have experimented with these `self-exercises' myself and tried them with my students and they are truly effective teaching tools! -- Phyllis G. Richmond, certified teacher of the Alexander Technique and editor of AmSAT News
Missy Vineyard has distilled 30 years of work with the Alexander Technique into this volume. My own experience of this Technique, which spans the same length of time, has continued to reinforce my estimation of its power. I wish the success of this book to encourage many readers to undertake the quest for this invaluable experience of rediscovery in the wisdom of the human body. -- Chungliang Al Huang, founder/president of Living Tao Foundation; author of Embrace Tiger, Return to Mountain, and Essential Tai Ji; and coauthor of Tao: The Watercourse Way, Thinking Body, and Dancing Mind
Missy Vineyard is an inspired and inspiring teacher, and her book about the Alexander Technique will help many people become aware of their own potential for self mastery. How You Stand, How You Move, How You Live deserves a wide readership. -- Alice Parker, founder of Melodious accord, board member of Chorus America, composer, conductor, and teacher
Thanks for the opportunity to look at this book. I've been an Alexander Technique student on and off for several years. Although this book is readable and interesting, I think it could use an appendix of illustrations of common `exercises'--otherwise, it's extraordinarily text heavy. -- Shantia Anderheggen
Vineyard's book is particularly successful in two ways. Her description of the Alexander Technique is clear, comprehensive, compelling, and pragmatic. She has also made an important contribution to our appreciation of the value of the Alexander Technique through personal stories of challenge and accomplishment. -- David Feldshuh, MD, PhD, professor of theater, Cornell University; artistic director, Schwartz Center for the Performing Arts
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She does a remarkable job of explaining what Alexander Technique is about. The case studies and pictures are really helpful and engaging. Some parts are a bit dense as she explains the science and the physiology (which I love to learn). I am sure that as I learn and practice AT, I will be able to return to this book again and again and read it with an even greater understanding and get still more out it.