The Alexander Technique for Back Pain
You are not alone
Persistent back pain is one of the most confounding ailments to strike modern society. It's been estimated that 70 to 85 percent of Americans will experience back pain at some time in their lives. Each year we spend a staggering $50 billion to treat back pain and that's in the U.S. alone.
Back pain is also the most frequent cause of activity limitation in people under 45. And I should know.
As a 34-year old, I was struck with crippling back pain originating from herniated discs in my lumbar spine - causing sciatica in both legs and preventing my ability to walk more than a few steps. The Alexander Technique was the very last treatment option I considered. In retrospect, it should have been the first. [Learn About Lessons]
Most cases of back pain are not caused by serious condition
According to the American Chiropractic Association, most cases of back pain are mechanical and are not caused by inflammatory arthritis, infection, fracture or cancer. In other words, most cases of back pain are preventable once you understand how to improve the manner in which you initiate movement.
In the pursuit of relief from pain, most back pain sufferers usually try one or more of the following treatment modalities:
How can the Alexander Technique benefit someone with Back Pain?
The Alexander Technique is a unique and largely unknown whole-self approach to reeducating individuals in the correct use of their coordination and postural reflexes. The benefits of studying its principles include but are not limited to:
Links and Resources:
[Johns Hopkins:] The Alexander Technique: An Alternative Therapy for Chronic Back Pain
[American Chiropractic Association:] Back Pain Facts (PDF)
[British Medical Journal:] Randomized controlled trial of Alexander Technique lessons, exercise, and massage for chronic and recurrent back pain
[Oprah.com:] A Dramatic Cure for Back Pain
[National Public Radio:] Alexander Technique: A Balm for Back Pain?
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Back Pain Relief
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Through learning The Alexander Technique with Tuck, I can often release myself from back pain just by thinking my directions.”
-Stephanie "Butterfly" Ray