Alexander Technique Centre Ireland Newsletter, January 2013



Welcome to the January 2013 edition of the newsletter, and Happy New Year 2013!

A special welcome if you are new the Alexander Technique mailing list. You will be sent an e-newsletter about 3-4 times a year.

We hope you find this newsletter useful.

Featured in this issue:

The Alexander Technique really works   — Roald Dahl, author

Special Offer on Alexander Lessons

During January 2013 the Alexander Technique Centre is offering a special rate for subscribers of our newsletter. If you book and pay for two lessons any time in January you get the third lesson completely free of charge (normally €60). The offer is open to those new to the Technique as well as those who have lessons before and may want to have some refresher lessons. All lessons are with Richard Brennan, Please quote '3 for 2' when booking. To avail of this offer please call 091 555800 or email

New - Wednesday morning Group Sessions

Starting on Wednesday 9th of January there will be an Alexander Technique morning class from 10am to 1pm. The class will run for 5 weeks and will include some individual sessions with the third year trainees at the college. This course is ideal for those who have had some experience of the technique. To book a place please call 091 555800 or email

New ebooks by Richard Brennan

Cover of Alexander Technique: Natural Poise For Health by Richard Brennan

I am pleased to let you know that Richard Brennan's book The Alexander Technique – Natural Poise for Health is now available as a Kindle book and is available from Amazon. It is a simple, easy to read introduction to the technique and the new ebook edition has been thoroughly revised and updated for 2013 including up-to-date useful websites. The price is attractively low at about €4. It is available on the various Amazon sites: here for Irish readers, and here for readers in the UK.

This brings to three the number of Richard's books available as ebooks. The other two are: Mind & Body Stress Relief with the Alexander Technique and Change your Posture – Change your Life.

The ePub versions of The Alexander Technique – Natural Poise for Health and Mind & Body Stress Relief with the Alexander Technique will be available in a few weeks from usual sources, such as iBooks, Barnes & Noble etc.

'Using Alexander's Directions with Spatial Awareness', a three-day workshop with Azize Sterling, January 15th - 17th

Azize Sterling, Alexander Technique teacher

From Azize

A short while ago I found myself in a beginners Flamenco class. The teacher, a visiting Spanish Flamenco dancer, walked up to me and said, "If you learn nothing else today, I hope you learn something about posture." Standing there, wearing my 19 years of Alexander teaching proudly, I was flabbergasted. But she was right. Here is a link which will allow you to watch her dance - pay close attention to her rib cage, arms and shoulders: Amor Flamenco III.

Rather than roll out a prepared, preconceived workshop, I would prefer to work with you first and then pull out themes and ideas as we go. But I thought that I would write about some of the things that are currently interesting me.

Spatial directions: I know some of you have read Missy Vineyard, this was the first time I had heard of spatial directions, and I have been working with them ever since. In particular, I have found that it helps people new to the Technique to make sense of directions, and then of course, inhibition.

Working in opposition: most of what I know of this, I learned from Avi Granit. Of all the wonderful contributions visiting teachers have made to the Oxford training school, this may have had the most profound effect.

But getting back to Flamenco. As Alexander teachers we constantly need fresh light to shine on our understanding and practice. I have been working for years on the importance of considering the front of us as well as the back. Watching the Flamenco dancer, studying a photograph of Aung Sang Suu Kyi, and experimenting with what I've found, on myself and in my teaching, I'm struck by how it can change feeling and thinking. Feeling and thinking is less explicitly talked about in the Alexander world, as the word 'use' tends to be applied more to physical manifestation. I am currently reading Full Catastrophe Living by Mindfulness pioneer, Jon Kabat–Zinn and Breaking the Habit of Being Yourself by Joe Dispenza. Both are steeped in current neuroscience findings on how human beings work or don't work as an integrated whole. What interests me is: what can all this contribute to our teaching, and more importantly, what can the Alexander technique contribute to this new emergence? I'm training to be a teacher in Mindfulness technique and the first thing I want to do is take a group of Alexander teachers and teach them mindfulness, and a group who practise mindfulness and teach them Alexander technique, over an 8 week period.

About Azize

Azize Stirling was trained by Elizabeth Walker and has been working as an Alexander Technique teacher for nineteen years. After finishing her training Azize taught on Elisabeth Walker course until she 'retired' in 1999. Since then she has taught on Stephen Cooper's course in Oxford for 12 years, the last 6 years as assistant director. Azize has taught in the Music Department of The Abingdon School, working with boys 14 to 17 years of age and has been a guest teacher on Alexander teacher training courses in London, Tel Aviv, and Galway. During the nineteen years of teaching the technique she has taught many musicians, the majority of whom are classically trained, professional musicians.

Course Details

Dates: Tuesday 15th - Thursday 17th January 2013
Times: 10.00 am – 4.00 pm each day
Venue: The Alexander Training College, Moycullen, Co. Galway
Cost: €195 for three days or €75 for one day
Suitable for: People who have had 10 individual lessons or who have attended an Alexander workshop
To Book:Please contact Richard Brennan on 091 555800 or email

'The ABC Alexander Technique workshop', a three-day workshop with Wolfgang Weiser, Sweden, February 19th - 22nd

Wolfgang Weiser, Alexander Technique teacher

The ABC workshop is based on the contents of:
A – Anatomy, function and design
B – Balance experience, balance work, balance art
C - Circus skills and new ways of movement

After his last very successful visit the Alexander Centre is delighted to welcome Wolfgang back for another fun-filled week of learning! This will be a practical workshop which will provide you with a number of unusual activities. Participants will gain new ideas and experience about their balance, habits, co-ordination and movement. The basic idea is for the participants to use unfamiliar activities to give them the chance to work with the Alexander Technique as psycho-physical education. Depending on the abilities of participants we will work with the balance board, juggling, or acrobatics.

About Wolfgang Weiser

Wolfgang Weiser, Alexander Technique teacher

Wolfgang trained as an AT teacher in England and Germany between 1993 and 1997 and has subsequently been working in Sweden in schools as an Alexander teacher. He also holds a bachelor's in education teaching at the upper secondary school on Gotland movement, theater and circus.

Wolfgang has taught Alexander Technique at the Theatre University in Stockholm and Gotland, working with dancers and musicians all over Sweden, including those in the Dance and Theatre Festival in Gothenburg, Sweden.

Prior experience includes working as a performer, actor, dancer and juggler since 1984. New in his work is a little science project on "sustainable movement in learning situation" as well as a residence project on the Island of Gotland called "INTENT", where he is giving residential ABC-courses with Trisha Hemmingway.

Course Details

Dates: Tuesday 19th - Thursday 21st February 2013
Times: 10.00 am – 4.00 pm each day
Venue: The Alexander Training College, Moycullen, Co. Galway
Cost: €195 for three days or €75 for one day
Suitable for: Everyone
To Book: Please contact Richard Brennan on 091 555800 or email

Open Week at the Training College in Galway, 5th - 7th March (Free)

Informal group at Alexander Technique Training Centre, Galway, Ireland

If you have ever considered doing further training in the Alexander Technique, either for you own personal interest, or with a view to becoming a teacher of the Alexander Technique, then you may be interested in the Open Week at the college. During this week people can come to the college for a day or a week and join in on the sessions.

This week is completely free to those who have never been to the college before, and half price (€95) to those who have visited before.

It is open to all those who have already had some lessons or who have been to an introductory workshop. Please see for more information about the training.

To book a place please call 091 555800 or email

Last call for the Alexander Technique Teachers' International Convention, March 2013!

Ancient celtic spiral, Newgrange, Ireland

The Alexander Technique Centre is holding a seven day Convention for Alexander teachers from Friday 22nd to Friday 29th March, at Emmaus Retreat Centre, Dublin, Ireland. Many teachers of the Alexander Technique will participate in a gathering to deepen their understanding and advance their teaching and communication skills to empower them to take the Alexander technique forward into the future without losing the essence of the Work.

So far 56 teachers and final year AT students have booked to attend, from the following countries: Ireland (North and South), UK, Scotland, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Hungary, Norway, Finland, Australia, USA and South America. There are only a few places left at Emmaus for accommodation, but it's possible also to stay nearby and attend the convention.

This meeting offers the worldwide community of Alexander teachers the opportunity to enjoy the work of seven unique teachers of the Alexander Technique as well as to engage in sharing their own knowledge with colleagues from around the globe.

"People do not decide their futures. They decide their habits and their habits decide their futures."
— F M Alexander

The structure of this week-long convention includes daily workshops, open-minded discussions, work exchanges and networking opportunities which will foster a sense of community, sharing, laughter and integration of learning.

The Emmaus Retreat Centre is an intimate setting only a ten-minute taxi-ride away from Dublin International Airport. It rests in beautiful rural grounds, offering quiet tree-lined pathways, landscaped gardens and a river walk. The Centre is 15 minutes away by car from the historic City of Dublin and 30 minutes from the Megalithic site of Newgrange. We look forward to seeing you there!

Workshop leaders include Giora Pinkas, Vivien Mackie, Glenna Batson, Bob Britton, Lyn Charlsen Klein, John Baron and Richard Brennan.

To book or to find out more please go to

Training Course News


There is one place available on the Alexander Technique Training Course, starting in January 2013, and there will be two places starting in April 2013. You can apply anytime.

Visiting the Training Course

Informal group at Alexander Technique Training Centre, Galway, Ireland

Although primarily the Training Course is for those who wish to train to become Alexander Technique teachers, we do welcome those who wish to visit for a day, a week or even a whole term to improve their own understanding of the Technique. Anyone who is thinking of training to be a teacher is welcome to visit during the Open Week or any other week by arrangement. For further information see or contact the Centre on 091 555800.

TERM DATES FOR Spring and Summer 2013

Spring term 2013

Start and end of term: Tuesday 8th January – Thursday 14th March
Mid-term break: 10 - 17 February
Visiting teachers: Azize Sterling (UK) and Wolfgang Weiser (Sweden)

Summer term 2013

Start and end of term: Tuesday 9th April – Thursday 20th June
Mid-term break: 19th – 26th May
Visiting teachers: Anne Johnson (USA)

Course hours: Tues 2.30–6.30pm, Weds 9.30am–4pm, Thurs 9.30am–1.30pm, Fri 9.30–11am
Please note: Visiting teacher weeks hours are 10am – 4pm.

For full details please visit:

New CD from Past Student

Cover of CD At Home in my Body

Congratulations to Father Pádraig Ó Fátharta, a past student of ATC Galway who now regularly helps with the training course, who has recently produced an inspiring new CD entitled At Home in my Body. This is the first in a series to help us reconnect to ourselves and to introduce us to a bodily and imaginative process which throws fresh light on familiar traditional Christian themes. The CD is spoken word, lasts for one hour, and is available in Irish and in English. It costs €10 plus postage & packing.

More details at

Live Music at the Training Course

The recent Christmas party at the training course spontaneously gave birth to a Ceílí band and a quartet in a single night! Here is the Ceílí band's début:

.. and the very first performance of the quartet!

A big thank you to all our wonderful musicians for making the party one to remember!

Three New Books from Visiting Teachers

In the last few months three different Alexander Teachers who have taught in Ireland recently have brought out 3 new books:

We hope all three books are very successful.

Call for Book Reviews

Reviews are all-important these days with the popularity of online bookshops. People like to know more about a book before buying. If you have read one of Richard Brennan's books and have enjoyed it, we'd really appreciate you sending your review to Amazon etc. If you enjoy reading about the Alexander Technique, like to post reviews and don't have a particular book, we can supply titles to newsletter subscribers in Kindle, ePub or paperback editions free of charge. If you are interested please contact Richard by calling 091 555800 or emailing

Short Courses with Richard Brennan

Richard Brennan, director of Alexander Technique Centre, Galway, Ireland

Forthcoming Introductory and Intermediate short courses led by Richard Brennan are given below. Please note that you are also welcome to visit the college for intermediate training.

For booking information and further details, please visit our short courses page.

Alexander Technique Centre, Kirkullen Lodge, Tooreeny, Moycullen, Co Galway
9th January - 6th February 2013
Join us at the Alexander Technique Training Course - 5 mornings

Emmaus Centre, Lissenhall, Swords, Co Dublin
9th - 10th March 2013
Change Your Posture, Change Your Life - Weekend Workshop

Emmaus Centre, Lissenhall, Swords, Co Dublin
15th - 19th April 2013
Alexander Technique Immersion - Residential Five Day Course

Lavistown House, Centre for Creative Living, Lavistown, Kilkenny
14th September 2013
The Alexander Technique - One Day Introductory Workshop

| Tel: + 353 (0)91 555800 | Email:
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