Marjorie Barstow


American Master of the Alexander Technique

Author Quotes

Marj: "Why aren't you moving?" Pupil: "I thought about not stopping my head." Marj: "There's that negative thought--that's why you stiffened. That's why I let you talk--you give yourselves away."

Thinking and moving are the same thing--don't wait for perfection.

Your sensory mechanism becomes more and more reliable but you trust your thinking first.

How we get ourselves into this mess I don't know; but this is a way to get out.

Maybe he was pulling his head back a little--but he got a little improvement.

Up is not a position.

You've got so many "nots" you'll never undo yourself!

I am not making a mechanical person out of them: I want my students to know what I am doing; know how they experience it; talk it over with them.

My job is to help make you sensitive. What you do with your sensitivity is your own business.

What are you waiting for? You're setting your head and waiting to get a right position.

I don't know why you are pushing there? You've got some kind of idea--let's see what your idea is.

Nothing will move if you don't engage their mind.

When I help her she relies on her feeling, because then her feelings are freedom and ease.

I don't let you take all that time before you start because you're trying to feel you're right and that's end-gaining.

Once the pupil sees it for himself, he can make the change without any trouble.

When you don't feel some stiffening or pressure, you don't know what to do.

I don't want you to have a picture--I want you to know you're doing it.

Our voices are talking to your thinking apparatus; our hands are talking to your sense of feeling.

When you give up--doesn't that mean you were looking for a position?

All you want is a little bit of nothing--but the trouble with all you people is that you all want something. And that something is your habit.

I don't work on the table. I think the Alexander Technique is about movement. I like to work with my pupils in their daily activities... I don't believe in giving lessons in silence because I want to know what my pupils are thinking. I am not making a mechanical person out of them: I want my student to know what I'm doing; know how they experience it; talk it over with them.

People love complicated things--but this is so simple, people think it's hard.

You are all trying to do something, and that something is your habit. All I want is to show you is a little bit of nothing.

All you'll get is the absence of what you had.

I wonder what would happen if, ever so delicately, you let your whole head move ever so slightly away from your body and immediately let your whole body follow?

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American Master of the Alexander Technique