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Introducing the Alexander Technique to Sonographers at the Royal Free

I have just finished running a three-session workshop on “Alexander Technique for the Prevention of Musculoskeletal Disorders and Release of Stress for/in the Sonography Profession at the brand new Chase Farm Hospital, for the Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust.

Over my years of working with Alexander Technique for the radiography professions, I have learned that working as a sonographer involves a sequence of repetitive movements carried out regularly. The concentration required by these precise movements together with the focused reading of images on screen often results in forgetting about one’s own body and how it is being used—or misused. In each session of these workshops I guided the team into experiencing how much tension they were unconsciously carrying in various parts of their body and how a better, more natural use could be learned and applied in the way they worked.

We looked at and explored together:

Session 1: Head-neck-back relationship – postural balance and spine upward direction

Session 2: Sitting bones and their supportive connection to fine-tuned hand movements

Session 3: Shoulders and arms support from the trunk

At the end of each session I guided the team in the Constructive Rest Procedure which consists of verbal instructions and hands-on guidance to carry out full mind-body integration and re-alignment. We also explored the importance of breathing naturally to re-balance the nervous system with guided Breathe in with Ease and Breathe out Tension exercises.

The Technique is a great tool to help overcome poor coordination and ensuing tension. At its root is a method of neuromuscular re-education that positively affects the entire musculoskeletal system. This leads to better understanding and use of the body – the way the various parts of the body are connected and affect each other and the way it is meant to function naturally in movements.

Learning and applying the Technique leads to improvement in mobility, postural balance and muscle tone – our coordination is enhanced and we function more efficiently.

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