Your technique must at all times be guided by principles. With Alexander’s principles you will be able to observe yourself and learn to refrain from using undue force, from locking your joints, from holding your breath.
In so doing you will prevent … With principles to guide you, technique will serve you in drastically changing your body structure in such a way that will enable you to build up your strength around open joints. This openness is the key for achieving fluidity, vitality, and true control. This is the process by which you will attain your true goal, unifying mind and body in movement.
“Correct Alignment” is a term commonly used in dance. Yet the term is static and therefore a confining term. As an Alexander teacher I prefer to talk of lines of movement – hence, of directions. In my teaching you will progress from “linear directions” to “opposing directions.” When the opposing directions – the upward direction and the grounding direction – integrate, they create one force which unifies the body in movement.
Jumps: I’m often asked by dancers how they can improve their jumps. If you have problems with your jumps, then the plié which precedes the jump does not generate enough bounce from the ground. Strengthening the opposing directions in plié will generate more bounce also solve this problem.
As a former soloist with Martha Graham and a person living with debilitative neuro muscular disease, I have found the Alexander Technique an invaluable tool for growth and health. My ongoing 6 years of study with Ari Gil are crucial to my work as a choreographer/dancer. It is a cohesive way to approach alignment and movement that utilizes the breath as fuel and the body’s ability to translate the thought of line into movement. The work can free one from the limits of habits and open one’s physical and spiritual potential. The process and rewards are ongoing irrespective of age.
– Ellen Siegel
Over the years there have been at least forty dance students from my classes who have studied the Alexander technique for various reasons…. I noticed that all of these dancers leave Ari’s classes with a broader view of movement and a deeper grasp of the fundamentals common to all movement …..… (Ari’s teaching)… can lead a dancer to REAL technical and stylistic versatility. The format of Alexander Technique workshops (5-7 students working separately, with personal guidance from Ari,) foster one of the essential tools for survival in dance… INDEPENDENT thinking. It pleases me enormously that there have been NO major injuries among these students. Not even any of the usual minor injuries associated with dance. …..potential injuries are recognized in their early stages and dealt with.
Katheryn Irey : Artistic Director Stage 7