The following describes our thoughts on the qualities we are looking for when qualifying students.
Our qualification criteria
We find that three years of training is the minimum necessary to train as a teacher. However, qualification is not dependent, or automatic, on attending a minimum number of hours. Qualification is dependent on a number of factors.
The Alexander Technique is process, a means to an end. Qualification is therefore not dependent on having achieved any specific “ends” but on an understanding and a practice of the means-whereby employed in the Alexander Technique
In order to be able to teach, students need to have experienced the principles of the Technique at work in themselves. These include, but are not limited to, that use affects functioning, the influence of use on sensory appreciation, the importance of the primary control for balance, the use of inhibition and direction as a means for change, and the inherent autonomy in the practice of the Technique.
As a corollary it is necessary to have experienced psycho-physical changes, not transitory, but as a natural, organic process of individual growth and development over a period of years. It is necessary to have a wide variety of experience of the different changes the Technique brings about – both mental and physical. It is necessary to differentiate between those changes which are brought about by the Technique and changes brought about by other factors, and this again takes time.
To qualify, the student also needs to have experienced, for successive weeks in their training, the stamina for a continuous level of good use and functioning requisite for the hands-on skills in which the student can observe another person’s use while simultaneously looking after themselves in the process of moving. The student needs also to have experienced the process-oriented nature of the Technique and so how to learn from practice, including learning from teaching.