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Alexander Technique Resources Library

A collection of downloadable books, articles and other materials of interest to AT teachers and trainee teachers

We update this page frequently. Remember to refresh the page to see the latest additions!

Very recent (in the last two - four weeks) additions to this page are usually in a red font.

Please note: there is another page of (mostly different) resources on the public-facing resource page of this website here.

MATTS has a large lending library. We also stock many books about the AT, both new and used, for sale. These are only available on-site.

Mouritz is run by notable AT teacher Jean Fischer and is probably the most important resource site for the AT. It includes:

A specialist publisher of books on the AT and a bookshop with the most extensive list of books on the AT available anywhere, together with -

The Mouritz Companion to the AT that "makes it easy to locate sources on a specific topic. It is not an introduction to the A.T. and most of the books, articles, etc. listed are not introductory material. The entries cover more than 1,150 articles and 160 books on the Alexander Technique, as well as some 55 books and articles not specifically on the Alexander Technique. A particularly helpful feature is a searchable list of people and topics that provides "a brief overview of a subject and to direct the reader to the most important sources available”." and

A Bibliography of the AT that "attempts to provide a complete listing of published material on the Alexander Technique such as books, journals, booklets, videos, and more. It contains more than 1,000 items" and

A Library that "contains a selection of quotations on key concepts from F. M. Alexander's books, free PDFs of articles and historical documents on the Alexander Technique, and more."

A new Journal called 'Poise', launched in July 2023 by Mouritz. Free to access.

There is a collection of videos on the Technique freely available on the website of the Alexander Trust.

Use of the hands in teaching:

Ruth Rootberg's wonderful article about the history and purpose of the use of the hands in teaching, published in the Journal of the American Society of Teachers.

Jean Fischer's rebuttal of Penelope Easton's new book (revised version) and a summary of Robin Simmon's rebuttal of Easten, the full version of which is only available to purchase.

"What is hands on for?" A talk by Malcolm Williamson on the reasons for hands-on teaching, video 31 mins, 19/11/20, under 'Other Talks' in Video Library 2.

AT history:

​Alex Murray's book on the history of the Alexander Technique "Alexander's Way" is a remarkable work.

An interesting account of training with Walter Carrington just after FM's death in 1955.

An interesting account of training with Walter Carrington in the 1960s.

Joe Armstrong's (somewhat critical) account of lessons with Frank Pierce Jones and a nice clear account of training with Walter Carrington 1969-72 here.

FMA:

Marjory Barlow's lecture describing the stages that FM went through to work out his Technique. It is essentially a review of 'Evolution of a Technique' in 'The Use of the Self'.

Use of the Self 'Evolution of a Technique', stages of discovery summarized by Ted Dimon.

A video of FM taken by Marge Barstow in 1934 at the graduation of the first teachers to emerge from the new training course. You can see FM acting in his white suit! Several of those graduates were still teaching into the 21st century.

A rather good free audio book of Constructive Conscious Control.

The Bedford Lecture, delivered by FMA in 1934.

MSI "Golden Moments" - a few of the best quotes from MSI, collected by Malcolm Williamson

An excellent new video on an interview with Rosslyn McLeod outlining the history of FM and the principles of the AT. Her book on FM's history is in the MATTS library and you can order her more comprehensive DVD here.

Robin Simmons' "The Gold Dust" in FMA's writings. "...I took it upon myself to summarize all 4 books and render them in a more modern language together with comments from my 50 years of teaching the Technique, plus quotations from modern authors to bolster and enhance the message Alexander was giving us 100 years ago. These summaries I call The Gold Dust because as well as much extraneous material there are items of supreme value in Alexander’s writings that can inspire and educate – the Gold Dust. I also include a number of photographs to enhance the text."

Walter Carrington

Walter gave several lectures each week, usually at midday. When Peter and Malcolm were training in the 1980s there were usually about 40 teachers and students in attendance. This was the era of the Sony Walkman, that made good quality, small recording devices widely available. There were at least 5 of these, often 10, spread about the floor in front of Walter's chair at the lectures.

Some of these made it into the two collections 'Thinking Aloud' and 'The Act of Living' although there were hundreds, if not thousands more recorded. Some of these were typed up and circulated. These will be gradually added below:

Primary control as a concept of wholeness

"Why do we stiffen our necks?" Transcript of talk given in 1972

Inhibition  Transcript of a talk given in 2001, edited by Malcolm Williamson

Printed, published lectures:

"On Categorising the AT" - Walter Carrington's pamphlet making the point very clearly that the AT is not "therapy", as such, but rather a form of health education. NOTE: A clear understanding of the central point in this lecture is essential for all AT teachers!

Recordings:

An interview with Dilys, then Walter Carrington. Much interesting content. From time stamp 12.30, an answer to the question of why readings from FM's books became the norm on teacher training courses.

Carrington Resource Page: A good number of articles and videos are available on this page.

"Human Movement", a very good article explaining the head-neck relationship, by Dilys Carrington, published 1977.

John Nicholls talks about Walter Carrington. A one-hour audio interview with Robert Rickover.

Dart Procedures:

A recent interview with Joan Murray on the Dart Procedures.

A book about Raymond Dart by Derricourt.

A video of a workshop with Jean Clark on the Dart Procedures. (you may need to sign in to view).

A few (of the many!) articles on the AT by Malcolm Williamson:

A Handbook for Musicians learning the Alexander Technique

Article - A Technique for Musicians

Article - Thinking about Thinking

Article - Working to a Principle

Some notes on the evolution of FM's concept of 'Primary Control'.

NEW article - 'The Readiness is All'. A new paper published in the American (AmSTAT) Journal. The significance of human evolution in the ability to prepare for activity by thinking through what will be required to make it effective.

NEW (2/23), Some notes on "Wall Work".

NEW (2/23), Some notes on FM's instructions to give directions "all together, one after the other" (The Use of the Self)

NEW (4/23), Notes on the "Hands on Table" procedure.

Malcolm's course of lectures on the text of MSI is on this page.

There is a more comprehensive list of Malcolm's publications near the bottom of this page.

You can also access a few of Malcolm's other articles on the Resources Page of his personal website here.

STAT Resources*

​There is a large Resource Library available on the STAT website.

STAT-Affliliated Societies The great majority of Alexander Technique professional bodies around the world are affiliated with STAT and on this website you can find a list of these, and approved training courses.

A downloadable STAT Student Membership form or as a filliable pdf.

The STAT Guide to Moderation.

The STAT Certification Assessment - A Guide for Applicants (June 2023).  STAT Assessment Procedure (SAP) (requires log-in to website).

The STAT CPD Guidelines (requires log-in to website).

The STAT Code of Professional Conduct and Professional Competence. A reasonable working knowledge of this Code is a requirement for final Assessment.

The STAT Child and Vulnerable Adult Protection Policy.

Policy for the use of the STAT 'Collective Mark' (such as the one at the very bottom right of this page).

Policy for the Destruction of Records by teachers (how to comply with the new laws about record keeping and privacy).

Anti-spam Guidelines (how to send emails to people in a way that complies with privacy laws and online server anti-spam rules).

DBS Application Form (This is required for STAT teachers' insurance. It is usually best to get the enhanced DBS with barred list checks from the beginning if you think that there is any possibility at all that you will find yourself working with children or vulnerable adults).

STAT Whistleblowing Policy and Bullying Policy.

*These documents are probably all up to date (2022/3), but if you are using any of the above for something important, it may be best to consult the STAT website Members' area to see if there are more up to date versions. If there are, please let me know, so I can update them here.​

Clinical Trials on the AT:

Students and teachers should have a working knowledge of the parameters and findings of the main clinical studies, especially the back pain, neck pain and Parkinson's trials.

There is a well-presented overview of the clinical research on the AT on Julia Woodman's website here. There is a very simple but accessible summary of the results of the main studies on Peter's website here. There is a video of Julia Woodman's Zoom lecture to MATTS "An overview of the clinical research that has been done on the Alexander Technique and the significance of this for teachers" on this page.

STAT summary of research: published research on the AT by category (back pain, neck pain, osteoarthritis, etc).

Alexander Technique Research Database by 'Alexander Studies Online'.

How does science work? Do you know what the scientfic method actually is? Do you know why are there no 'proofs' in science, only 'theories' that can be found to be false at any time? All is revealed in this transcribed lecture by Kathleen Ballard,  AT teacher and scientist.

Some Recent Scientific Publications:

Paper: Training for the self-management of workers to prevent musculoskeletal disorders. A descriptive and comparative study of precedents where the Alexander Technique has been applied as a tool to prevent occupational risks in different organisational settings throughout the world.

Paper: How does the Alexander Technique lead to psychological and non-physical outcomes? "A variety of non-physical outcomes of the AT were found, including improved general wellbeing and increased confidence to address present and future challenges, as well as identifying that difficult emotions can arise in lessons. Two main causal pathways were identified – 1) improvements in physical wellbeing leading directly to psychological wellbeing; and 2) an experience of mind-body integration leading people to apply AT skills to non-physical situations."

YouTube video A 2-minute science animation video (2022), commissioned by the FM Alexander Trust explaining an important science paper, ''Potential Mechanisms of the Alexander Technique: Toward a Comprehensive Neurophysiological Model’ by Timothy W. Cacciatore, Patrick M. Johnson, and Rajal G. Cohen published in Kinesiology Review 9 (2020).' You can find the paper here and a lay summary here.

A new small study on the AT for low back pain, published in the British Medical Journal, looking at combining group and individual lessons, with outstanding results and a video of an interview with the lead AT teacher, Carolyn Nicholls.

Other:

A newspaper article by Goddard Binkley on the A.T.

Nelly Ben-Or's very fine long articles on Preparation and Performance in Music & A Pianist's Thoughts on the AT.

and an excellent article "Performance and the AT" introducing the AT to performers as a way to reduce or eliminate unnecessary tension in performance.

Joe Armstrong's book on working on yourself with Direction.

Two letters to a newspaper by Margaret Goldie explaining the AT very well.

Channel 4 video from 1984, in the days when there were only 4 channels, so many people would have seen it. You get to see many teachers no longer with us, including Dr Barlow, Chris Stevens and Danny Pevsner (originator of saddle work).

​A "Family Tree" of AT training courses. "New MATTS" is not included yet.

The AT and Hypermobility - an interesting article.

Ron Murdock's video demonstrating the 'Whispered Ah' and an interesting and helpful article on the The Whispered 'Ah' by Jane Ruby Heirich.

Advice for teachers on Building a Successful AT practice, 22 points to consider, by Peter Bloch.

Some notes on "The Supported Breath" as used by singers, public speakers, wind instrumentalists, etc, by Peter Bloch.

The unpublished final edition of the AT journal "Direction" from 2016 on the subject of Music and the Alexander Technique.

A quite good introduction to the AT by Pedro de Alcantara, with several very lucid explanations, which attempts to define the usual AT terms (such as inhibition and direction) clearly.

Notable cellest and AT teacher Evangeline Benedetti's article "Practising The Practice" in which she addresses the question of how to approach musical (or any) practice, and presents "The Squit" - useful for anyone whose life or work includes a lot of sitting..

Some other websites of interest:

https://www.performingself.org.uk A website for the Alexander Technique and the Performing Arts.

https://thedevelopingself.net Specialised Postgraduate Training for Alexander Teachers Working in Education.

https://www.alexandertechniquescience.com This very impressive website is devoted to improving scientific understanding of the Alexander Technique (AT)—its principles, practices, reported and demonstrated benefits, and terminology.

https://www.alexanderstudiesonline.com A website full of interesting information all geared towards "advancing understanding of the Alexander Technique and its teaching through disciplined inquiry". See their recent series of interviews drawing out the role of the Technique in supporting people with dementia.

The A.T. and Swimming and videos demonstrating the Shaw approach to swimming.

The Posture Underground, AT teachers who are scientists present their work and organise workshops. Their first newsletter is here.

https://www.thepoiseproject.org  A website representing quite a substantial organisation in the USA dedicated to "Maintaining poise, dignity, and personal growth throughout all stages and challenges of life through the principles of Alexander technique (AT)". With fairly wide-ranging activities, but particular emphasis on organising conferences and supporting research into the benefits of the AT for people with Parkinson's disease.

Please note: there is another page of (mostly different) resources on the public-facing resource page of this website here.

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