Tag Archives: Pain Relief

Couples Alexander Technique Session for Valentine’s Day

Want a special and unique way to celebrate Valentine’s Day with your loved one?

Image Source: https://onehugaday.files.wordpress.com/2014/02/alive-in-the-fire_sarah-rhoads-2.jpg
Image Source: https://onehugaday.files.wordpress.com/2014/02/alive-in-the-fire_sarah-rhoads-2.jpg

Want to release tight muscles and open up your body to the one you love?

Schedule a Open Your Hearts Couples Session in the Alexander Technique for Valentine’s Day

Feeling stressed, tight and overwhelmed interferes with your
relationships by distracting you with bogged down thoughts and pain. When you and images-1your partner (or dear one) unravel stress and tension in an Alexander Technique session with certified Alexander Technique teacher, Sharon Jakubecy Klehm, you feel light, open, relaxed, and HOT!

The physical release of the chest and muscles across the heart release and you feel vulnerable and connected to others.

Here is what one happy client wrote about her couples sessions:

We heartily recommend Sharon’s couples class (semi-private for friends) Alexander Technique. The information and new way of moving your own body is fantastic enough but seeing the immediate, clearly visible, positive changes in someone you love – your partner in life, family member or best friends – adds a whole other dimension. I literally felt myself more powerful and calm and saw that in my fiance too. He looked so strong, powerful, confident and at peace in his body. (guys, be prepared to get pounced on after class…seeing our men look like that has an effect on us!:)

The physical learning was surpassed by the emotional/spiritual experience for me. When your body is in natural alignment energy flows easier allowing you to meet your day with big support. We both realized the Alexander Technique sessions brought us closer and helped us support each other in ways we wouldn’t have otherwise thought of. We remind each other to ‘bend at the knee’ when we walk and it’s at once helpful, shows we’re thinking of the other, and is our in-joke that we share.

There are many excellent reasons to choose this experience – gaining understanding of your body and how it can move, increasing energy available to you in your life, new perspectives on physical and emotional experiences, deepening your relationship and a new kind of intimacy with your partner.

Sharon is a wonderful, knowledgeable, fun teacher and a fantastic leader for your Alexander Technique adventure! We each did a package on our own then did a package of couples sessions. Clearly we think she’s fabulous ūüôā

Have a great time!

During your Couples Alexander Technique Session, you and your loved one will:

  • Release old painful patterns of tension
  • You both experience Stress Relief and Pain Relief
  • Calm your nervous system so you both feel Relaxed and Open
  • Experience the Joy of breathing free and easy together
  • See each other stand tall with great posture and Embody your Full Powerful Height
  • Shed physical armoring that closes your body off and blocks your intimacy
  • Feel your bodies so you feel sensation
  • Experience true Confidence with each other

The Couples Open Your Hearts Valentine’s Day Special is an hour ¬†of lightness and freedom in the body.

Your Valentine’s Special is only $150 (normally $120 for a single private session.)

Surprise your Valentine with this unique and wonderful Alexander Technique session today!


Is Your Body Screaming “HELP MEEEEEEEE”?

Chronic ongoing pain is of course the most obvious sign.  But there are other not-so-subtle messages your body gives you when it needs more care and attention.  

Anxiety

Dislike of you own body

Sleeplessness
Exhaustion
An Inability to Relax
Fidgetiness
Grouchiness or Short Temper
No Desire to Socialize
No Desire to Get Out of Bed
Can’t Exercise¬†
And more….

The biggest problem I observe is that most people are not listening to the screams or cries for help from their bodies. ¬†They push through, take pain¬†medications, don’t rest, work harder and scream back a their bodies. ¬†¬†

This aggressive approach to the body does not heal pain. ¬†Your kinesthetic sense, aka¬†your body awareness, is a messenger. ¬†If you are in the habit of not listening to your body, you will only become aware of hurting yourself at the end of the day when you are tight, can’t move, and even breathing feels difficult. ¬†

Sooo… What’s the solution, Sharon? (Click on the photo for a video demonstration)¬†

325416_10150523405786909_1139693074_o-2

In every Alexander Technique session, I have my clients spend time in Semi-Supine position (laying on back with knees bent). During this time, my client is learning how to listen to their body, how to quiet and calm the nervous system, anyhow to release muscular tension related to their response to pain.  

Semi-Supine is supportive of a long spine and a balanced body. ¬†This makes learning to listen to your body easier. ¬†Sometimes, just in the act of spending quiet, still, awake time with your own body, pain messages can quiet down and you experience stress relief as well. ¬†Ignoring the “screams” from your body ensures that your body will get “louder” meaning stronger pain sensations and more discomfort.

Alexander Technique offers a kinder and gentler approach to the body.  You learn to move gently and with mindfulness.  You learn to be aware of how you are moving your body and how you are holding painful patterns of tension so that you can release them.  With the gentle hands-on guidance, you learn to soothe yourself and soothe your body.

As you go through your day, take the time to STOP and listen to your body. ¬†Follow your body’s guidance. It is time for a kinder, gentler approach to our bodies. ¬†If this sounds right to you, then sign up¬†for our free video series:

As you go through your day, take the time to STOP and listen to your body. ¬†Follow your body’s guidance. It is time for a kinder, gentler approach to our bodies. ¬†If this sounds right to you, then sign up¬†for our free video series:

Subscribe to receive "5 Ways to Instantly Reduce Stress" our free video series

* indicates required



Email Format


91% of Women Hate Their Bodies

My work in teaching Alexander Technique has given me deep insight into the attitudes that people have towards their bodies. ¬†¬†Throughout sessions, I ask my clients “What are you noticing in your body?” ¬†Inevitably, EVERYONE, men and women, share some sort of negative body image. ¬†

I have worked with people who have scoliosis, vocal issues (like spasmodic disphonia), fibromyalgia, nerve damage, eating disorders, arthritis, anxiety, chronic pain, asthma, depression, and much more. The ONE COMMONALITY is that¬†each f them have¬†a “thing” that evokes shame¬†and embarrassment¬†about their bodies. ¬†This negative body image evoke stress about our bodies¬†which¬†causes¬†tension, impaired breathing and gripping. ¬†

So… when I saw Taryn Brumfitt’s movie trailer titled “EMBRACE,” I nearly flipped and screamed. ¬†I am always guiding my clients to a more loving attitude¬†towards¬†their bodies. ¬†I have also dealt with my own body shame and disgust towards my own body. ¬†In order to shift my own attitude and my clients’, I am sharing this trailer. ¬†

WATCH THE EMBRACE TRAILER NOW 

EMBRACE movie trailer

EMBRACE – Official Trailer: Join Taryn Brumfitt’s global journey to change the way we feel about our bodies.

EMBRACE will premiere at Sydney Film Festival Sunday June 12. Come along and embrace everyBODY: http://bit.ly/1ZCkFY1
‪#‎Ihaveembraced‬

CAST: Ricki Lake, Mia Freedman, Turia Pitt, Stefania Ferrario, Melinda Tankard Reist, The Bearded Dame.

Now is the time to transform how we feel about our bodies!  When you are aware of the negative impact of not cherishing your body just the way it is, you will never want to think a hurtful thought again about your most precious possession.  In Alexander Technique sessions, I encourage a loving, gentle, and kind approach to the body which soothes the nervous system and quiets the stress response.

If you are ready to transform your relationship to your body,  sign up for our free video series below:

Subscribe to receive “5 Ways to Instantly Reduce Stress” our free video series

* indicates required



Email Format


Is Aging Affecting your Walk? Walk like you are young again

Recenlty, a study was published in The Journal of Bodywork and Movement Therapies that compared older Alexander Technique practitioners to other age-matched adults.

 

In summary,

“The Alexander Technique (AT) seeks to eliminate harmful patterns of tension that interfere with the control of posture and movement and in doing so, it may serve as a viable intervention method for increasing gait efficacy in older adults. The purpose of this study was to compare the comfortable pace gait kinematics of older AT practitioners with those of healthy, age-matched controls. Participants were six licensed AT practitioners and seven healthy age-matched controls between the ages of 63 and 75. During the stance phase, AT participants exhibited significantly greater ankle stance range of motion (ROM) and plantar flexion at toe off, as well as lower ROM of the trunk and head compared to controls. During the swing phase, the AT practitioners had significantly increased hip and knee flexion and a trend toward significantly increased dorsiflexion. The findings suggest that the older AT practitioners walked with gait patterns more similar to those found in the literature for younger adults. These promising results highlight the need for further research to assess the AT’s potential role as an intervention method for ameliorating the deleterious changes in gait that occur with aging.”

I have witnessed so many of my clients who older and wiser, completely change how they walk, sit, stand, and move through life.  Before they took, Alexander Technique lessons, they walked with their head forward of their spine, their chest compressed, and their leg joints stiffened.

Alexander Technique lessons give you the “tools” to unravel old patterns of tension and movement that have you walk like you are much older. ¬†Aging does not have to be a sentence to hunching over and stiffening your body. ¬†My clients have freed up their breathing, relieved back pain, and opened up their posture. ¬†All of which has impacted their confidence.

 

Walking like a young person doesn’t require a fountain of youth. ¬†It requires mindfulness, awareness, and training.

Why Do We Hate Our Bellies?

When I work with my clients, one of my first intentions is for them to FEEL their bodies, in other words, for them to have body awareness. ¬†Inevitably, every person whether man or woman, when I ask them what do they notice, report to me “I notice I need to lose weight” or “I notice my stomach is pooching out.” ¬†The thin people say it. ¬†They not-so-thin people say it. ¬†Our cultures dislike and rejection of our bellies is epidemic. ¬†Our body image is distorted.

(Check out the LOVE YOUR BODY workshop for Self Care and Self Love during the month of February)

Even in myself I notice a constant awareness of needing to lose weight. ¬†I notice myself in the mirror and see my belly which makes me feel wrong. ¬†So many of my clients also believe that they are not supposed to have a belly. ¬†They believe that something is wrong with their bodies because they do not have washboard flat abdomens. ¬†I knew I grew up with a constant nagging of ¬†“I’m fat, I’m fat, I’m too fat!”

10700122_10152434585901909_1562784334328733918_o

The result of this obsession with rejecting our bodies is that many people suck in their gut, harden the abdominal muscles, hold their breath, shrink their posture AND pull their spines out of alignment.

They are stressing themselves out!

Our bellies are a vital part of our whole SELF.  Within the belly contains the digestive tract and reproductive organs.  In many ancient modalities, the belly contains our spiritual center, our truth, our intuition.  For women, our miraculous ability to create life and bear children is within our bellies.  In terms of chakras, our belly houses the second chakra which relates to our relationships, sexuality, and our passion for life.

 

Why would we want this seat of passion and creativity to smaller or flatter? ¬†Somewhere we as a culture have learned to deny our bodies and especially our bellies. ¬†Many people I see in Alexander Technique sessions, carry themselves in a way that smashes the belly, making digesting and breathing difficult. ¬†They often don’t want to feel the presence of the belly. ¬†But BOY, when they do, there is a rush of emotion and feeling. ¬†Breath moves the belly and they feel sensations, movement in the digestive tract that is at first frightening, and then, liberating. ¬†Anger, power, fear, freedom all feelings that are visceral. ¬†And then, confidence.

1271117_10152425325266909_2478777812554374482_o

We deserve our bellies.  We deserve to feel the power, the confidence and the joy that our bellies give us.  The power to bear children.  The power to trust our gut instinct.  The power to take up space in this world.  The power to breath fully and to breathe down into our truth.

Freeing our bellies grounds us on our feet.  We center ourselves through the difficulties life brings.  Letting your belly take up space gives you wholeness and self acceptance.  In order to experience the richness of life, we can honor and cherish the gift of our bodies and our bellies.

Your body is not a burden.  Your belly is not a curse.  Your body has miraculous abilities to heal, to experience life, and to relate to our fellow human beings.  Your belly is big and breathable.  Your belly is precious.  I invite you to love your belly, honor your belly, and to embrace your belly.  Let yourself feel your belly.

If you are ready to embrace your body, then join me for the LOVE YOUR BODY workshop, February 1, 8, 15, & 22 at 7pm in Los Feliz.

How to Drive in LA Traffic Without Pain and Stress

Just before CARmageddon in Los Angeles in 2011, I was interviewed at the NPR studios to help listeners with traffic-related stress. Taking care of yourself while driving helps you stay calm, focused and at-ease during any crazy traffic jams you find yourself in.  Check out the link to the NPR story by Mandalit Del Barco that aired the Friday before the 405 was to be closed for an entire weekend:  http://www.npr.org/2011/07/14/137838936/i-405s-closure-will-be-a-nightmare-for-l-a-drivers

 

Fortunately, CArmageddon was not the disaster the city officials thought it would be.  However, on your way to that important meeting or audition, you still get stuck in bumper-to-bumper traffic with people who are in to much of a hurry and without any patience.  You get stressed out, agitated, and your back starts to kill you.

 

“Grrrrrr!  What are all of these people doing on the road?  Where could they possibly be going at this hour?  What does that guy think he is doing?  He is driving like a lunatic!  I have been driving for 30 minutes and have only gone 8 miles! “

 

Driving is a necessary evil in Los Angeles.  Every day, the mean travel time to work for Angelenos is just about 30 minutes.  Both ways is an hour.  Add on driving to the kids’ school, to the bank, the grocery store, and maybe even a trip to the gym and Angelenos are spending close to 2 hours in the car.  While driving, many of my students complain about hip and lower back pain, neck stiffness, frustration, stress, and downright exasperation.     During their lesson, we look at how they are using themselves while they are driving and how they can undo the destructive tension that makes this everyday activity so unpleasant and painful.

 

Betsy Salkind is a comedian and writer in LA (www.BetsySalkind.com).  In one of her very first lessons, we went out to her car and investigated what she was doing that made her neck ache and her head explode.  While she was driving, Betsy was slouching forward, collapsing her ribcage and spine.  This position required her neck muscles to contract pulling the weight of her head back and down.  She was forward of the structural support of her pelvis, so her hip joints were compressed.  Her neck hurt.  Her shoulders hurt.  Her hips hurt.

 

It is possible to drive without compression and strain.  For Betsy, we arranged her position in the car seat so that she let her head, neck, and back release back and up away from the steering wheel.  The back of her head was supported by the headrest, which needed to be adjusted so that it didn’t tilt forward.  With her head supported by her spine, which was now long, her neck muscles were no longer straining to hold her head up.  Her ribcage had room to move with her breath.  **Here is an amazing little secret weapon that will help you to eliminate tension while driving** She held the steering wheel with the pinky side of her hand which helped her to stay supported by her back.

 

Now when she is driving Betsy doesn’t want to slouch because it makes the experience so much more stressful.  She sits tall, doesn’t hold her breath, and lets her pelvis and back support her entire body.

 

By making these simple choices for yourself, you too can drive in LA traffic without pain and stress.

If you have been stressed and in pain while driving, try these tips and leave a comment.  You can also share this article with colleagues and loved-ones who suffer when they drive.

Bone Deep Strength

I share this video with all of my clients.  Seeing the impact of your slouch on your internal organs can elicit a strong desire to pay attention to how you sit, how you stand, how you move and how you breathe.

It’s much easier than you think. ¬†Most people around the New Year decide to do something about their posture which typically includes a forced “Sit Up Straight” regimen along with painstaking exercise. ¬†The typical assumption is that good posture is a lot of work.

My clients come for a first session in the Alexander Technique and are shocked when they have an experience of their bodies that is light, open, tall, and strong. ¬†They gain “Bone Deep Strength.” ¬†A sense of strength that requires a release of effort in the neck muscles, the chest muscles, the abdominal muscles, and leg muscles¬†so that the bones can provide structural support for a free moving body.

Watch “Bone Deep Strength” and then keep reading.

 

Gaining Bone Deep Strength and the freedom that comes with it starts with awareness, an awareness of when you hold your breath, when you slouch, and the effort or heaviness that comes with those habits.  With that awareness, you have the ability to make new choices with your body.  You have the ability to think differently about your body.  You have the power own your full height and utilize your Bone Deep Strength!