Gwynne Marshall

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Thoughts for the Day

Two thoughts for the day:

  1. Remember we have choices — we can slump or we can sit upright. Alexander Technique teaches us that.
  2. Lengthen your spine like there is a string holding you up from the heavens. This is especially important to remember when you’re sitting at the computer.

The “Means Whereby”

When we talk about the “means whereby,” we are talking about what happens from the start of an activity to the end of the activity.  This is usually the time when we are implementing unconscious movement and it’s the time we need to be more aware of.

Some examples are:

  • How do you we hold our toothbrush while brushing?
  • What happens when we run late?
  • How do we take the time while putting on our coats, boots, gathering our keys, closing the door?

We need to be more aware of these moments and how we’re using our body. We have more time than we think we do.

When we’re not being constantly pulled down and in during these activities, we have more space for our bodies to work more efficiently. This creates more body awareness (in space) as we go through these small movements. These movements are the “means whereby.”

Educating Speakers & Singers

Vocal health Un-slumping:

Singers and executive speakers think your body as a large container that the sound moves up & out of. Undo the slumping and lengthen up through that whole container. It’s elegant not because we are trying to be elegant but because we are unslumping and the sound carries up & out.


Learning to Pivot Efficiently

Working with a group of Physical Therapists at Riverside PT, I showed them the importance of their hinges and how we need to get into a practice of utilizing them rather than relying completely on our spine (where there is no hinge).

Hinges work on a ball and socket and rotate more freely. An example is your hip socket.

When you go to use the computer, or pick up a heavy object, use the hip sockets to fold over and get closer. This implements the Alexander Technique in your everyday life.

Spine 3

Tips for Sitting at the computer

It’s about sitting on those “sits bones” and for support move up out the top of your head and your spine will follow. Think you spine like a lovely building moving up to the sky.  Your sits bone are the basement and the head your penthouse!


So it comes back to your being able to make a choice. Not that this technique give you the “right answer” but it gives you something different than what you’ve been doing and it also gives you a means for choosing.

Non doing & Alexander Technique

So back to my last post on 6/21/17  This Alexander Technique teaching we are doing gives you NOT the right answer but it gives you something different than what you’ve been doing before and therefore gives you a means for choosing.  Where as before you just went and did the same thing you’d been doing before which wan’t working.  Now you can do that or undo the old thing which is choosing & would allow something new to happen.

Becoming organized in the body

As an Alexander Technique teacher my job is to teach my students how to become more organized.  Meaning to have them notice their habit, own it & let it go.  What happens is they then get organized by not doing their habit and the “right ” thing does it self,  ie: organization.  More on this later

Pilates tucking & neutral spine

In Pilates we talk about the core all the time, “use your core.”  This does not mean tucking to get use of the core. It actually means letting the spine enjoy the last curve, the lumbar lower curve and not tucking.  So often I see & hear students say “oh that’s what I was taught.  Bruce King (One of Joseph disciples, there were 6 he was 1) talked about leaving the spine as it is which is not talking the curve out of it.  He was my teacher.

More to come about the core.

student on ball

Spine, Part 2

So now we know more then we did before about the spine.

More fact about how we might “use” ourselves around posture and uprightness.

I like to think of the spine a a long beautiful pole that has 3 curves, moves & has flexibility.

WE want to think about LENGTHING through the spine, not pulling down and collapsing.

So what do we mean when we say that.    It is usually when we feel back pain, compression and are folding in 1/2 under our rib or any other place through the spine.  We want to un-do that and length up, out through our heads.  Like a whale with a spout!!! UP TO THE HEAVENS!

more to come…..


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