Hi, Mio Here…
Long time no see, hear, teach…or even type! I hope this note finds you well.
Four years ago I began to experiment with a new approach to teaching the Alexander Technique. I call it Primal Alexander and more and more students and Alexander teachers are learning it to handle stress, habitual excess tension and to improve the way they do things.
Now the News…
A bunch of things have happened since we were last in touch…
- I left New York City…I’m living in Oregon now and I’m loving the fresh air, the mountains, the ocean and the beautiful skies and trees.
- I became a Grandfather…it’s the best!
- I composed the music for two award-winning dance pieces and a musical…
- I had a wonderful time as a Continuous Learning Presenter at the 2015 Alexander Congress in Limerick and I’m looking forward to doing the same at the Chicago Alexander Congress in 2018!
But, I think the biggest change that’s happened since we last spoke is that after almost 40 years teaching the Alexander technique just for the love of it…I’m now teaching full-time and loving it even more…
A couple of quick questions…
Do you remember the first time you experienced that lovely sense of lightness and ease that happens in an Alexander lesson? Do you remember what a surprise it was? I remember my first time some 40+ years later…I remember it like it was yesterday!
It was after my first lesson with Frank Jones. I just about floated back to my dorm room on what seemed like a cloud of effortless energy; experiencing a unique and intoxicating sense of well-being.
But what happened next…when I sat down and started to play,
THAT’s what GOT ME HOOKED…
I Finally Sounded Like a Really Good Drummer!
How about the first time you were in an Alexander class with a bunch of other people watching a teacher work on someone…
When suddenly, for the first time you realized that somehow, just by listening and observing, you were being changed by that lesson?
That happened to me during my first Summer Workshop with Marj. It happened near the end of one of those sweltering afternoon sessions we used to do at the Delta Upsilon House where we all stayed.
Marj was working with a woman who wanted some help with her singing. The woman admitted that she was not much of a singer but loved to sing despite barely being able to carry a tune.
It was hard to listen to at first, but then something amazing began to happen. As Marj worked with her, the woman’s body began to change a lot and that change was reflected in the sound of her voice. So much so that despite the fact that she was still singing way off key…
The sound of her voice was improving my Use just by my listening!
Finally…I’ll bet you remember the fun we all used to have at workshops in Nebraska despite the “serious business” of changing in some pretty significant ways.
I believe that was made possible by the fact that we, as teachers were able to tap into some measure of Marj’s clarity and spirit that lifted our workshops in Nebraska after her passing.
I want to share with you something she said to me during a lesson she gave me while I played the drums. It was just a few words but it’s been a huge influence on my Alexander teaching and on my life in general all these years.
In this lesson, I must have had one of those tense, super serious “trying too hard” expressions that lived on my face back then. Noticing this, Marj said firmly, but with a bit of twinkle in her eye… “You know, Mio…
“This is much too serious to get too serious about!”
Marj had a gift for finding that perfect balance between the depth of the work she was helping us to do and a lightness of spirit that made it fascinating fun.
Luckily, in 2013…I was invited by Jeremy Chance to teach in Japan at a “Barstow-Style” week-long workshop at Gotemba, a former YMCA facility in the foothills of Mt. Fuji. It was a wonderful week that transported me back to Marj’s Summer workshops of the 70s and 80s. We even had a No-Talent Show!
I loved teaching there and met many wonderful teachers and students some of whom expressed an interest in continuing to explore my approach to the Alexander Technique. So, as a way of keeping in touch with those folks, I began experimenting with teaching online.
What started out as a Facebook group soon became a weekly online group class across cultures and timezones.
Fast forward four years and over 1,000 online teaching hours later…I now teach:
- Two advanced studies classes for certified teachers…
- A part-time training class…
- A full-time training class and…
- Lots of one on one lessons.
But here’s the most surprising thing…
The students I’ve been working with online have been learning Alexander Technique faster and more deeply than they ever did with in person lessons and PLUS…they do it conveniently from the comfort of their own homes!
This new approach to teaching the Alexander Technique…
- is systematic, progressive and easy to learn…
- motivates students and empowers them in their learning…
- creates a vibrant community online where help each other and it…
- facilitates faster learning and more independence because there’s…
The idea that you can actually learn FASTER AND MORE DEEPLY when you don’t receive “hands-on” may seem a bit counter-intuitive but the truth is…
THAT’S EXACTLY HOW ALEXANDER DID IT!
The Alexander Technique was created by Alexander solely through Imagination, experimentation and observation. In the beginning, “hands-on” was not part of either his learning or his teaching process.
In fact, for the first 17 years of his own work as a teacher, Alexander did not use his hands. He taught his students using verbal directions and guided them towards the kind of self-observation he had used to teach himself. Hands-on guidance came later as a way of trying to shortcut the process.
However, although “hands-on” is a powerful way to transmit information and which seems to jumpstart the learning process, in the long run, it has side-effects that ultimately impede students ability to do it for themselves which causes many to quit studying A.T. before they really “get it”.
My classes are rooted in what I call the “original” Alexander Technique. That is…the kind of original experimentation Alexander did as described in “Evolution of a Technique”. I teach people how to experiment similar to the way Alexander did himself. But now, more than a century later we have the benefit of the discoveries made by the great teachers that followed in Alexander’s footsteps so…
- We can do it without mirrors…
- Without “directions”…
- By simply “sticking to principle” and asking…
3 Easy Questions is my version of what Marjory Barstow called “Constructive Thinking” and Alexander termed: Constructive Conscious Control.
It’s a simple a way of using the part of your mind you can directly control to start a process within your nervous system that lessens unnecessary tension and naturally gives rise to more ease, power and flexibility.
By asking three key questions while directing your attention towards the places of relative ease in your body, you can bypass your habitual responses, release unnecessary tension and improve how you do any activity.
3 Easy Questions offers us the same benefits we experience with the usual ways of applying the Alexander Technique But…what makes it unique is that…
You Learn How To Do it For Yourself…Immediately!
The students, trainees and teachers I’ve been teaching online are learning to apply Alexander’s discoveries…Faster…More Deeply and…With a much clearer understanding of how it all works because…
They Are Doing It For Themselves from Day One!
I’ve developed a curriculum that takes you step-by-step through a process similar to what Alexander himself went through to make his discoveries. You learn how to…
- Recognize sooner when you’re using excess tension…
- Know exactly what to do to relieve that tension…
- Improve any activity you apply this to…
- Share what you are learning with others…
Our Weekly lessons are supplemented by home study activities made up of explorations we call Études.
Traditionally, an étude is a short study used in classical music pedagogy that helps you to develop your musicality and your instrumental technique.
Our études are short exercises you do at home to develop your learning skills. You can think of them as simple ways to practice using your body the way a musician develops his or her skills on an instrument.
Spending a few minutes each day with these quick studies guides you gently towards being easier and more expressive because, as in music, the quality of your performance in any activity depends directly upon…
The Quality of Your Use
Marjorie Barstow 1983
For Me,Teaching Online…
These last four years, without being able to my hands, forced me to carefully re-examine how I understood and applied Alexander’s Discoveries.
When I Thought About What Originally Attracted Me…
To Alexander’s work, I realized I had always been fascinated that his discoveries hand grown out of his “self-experiments”. That he was able to solve his vocal problems simply by observing the effect different ways of thinking had on his body.
So I revisited “The Use of the Self”…
and I “went to school” on “EVOLUTION OF A TECHNIQUE”. Very soon I realized just how much my approach to the Alexander Technique was shaped by that chapter.
The intelligence, spirit and sheer determination…
that Alexander applied to his research inspired me to take what I had learned from his writings and combine it with things Frank and Marj taught me to see if there was an effective way for me to teach online.
More and more…
in my personal work as well as in my teaching, I’m finding that the key to consistent and ongoing positive change is constant self-experimentation.
That’s what really distinguishes…
the work that F.M., Frank and Marj did…They never stopped experimenting! Frank was always trying something new and every Summer, without exception, Marj was teaching differently and the new teaching was better.
Over the past four years…
in my own experimenting I’ve found that not only is teaching the Alexander Technique online possible but that…
If you provide students with…
the proper tools, timely guidance and simple ways to experiment on their own and then give them the chance to keep sharing what they’re learning in a group of people doing the same…
If you value the way the Alexander Technique helps make your life easier and you’re curious about how deeply, enjoyably and fast
you might learn the Technique online…
Come Join Us...Beginning:
June 15th or 18th
Primal Alexander is a unique, self-teaching method for Alexander students. It will take you step-by-step from problem to improvement to solution as you learn the nuts and bolts of how to improve the way you do virtually anything. It’s a basic training course for everyone from absolute beginners to seasoned certified Alexander teachers. It’s an easy to learn, intuitive method that will give you all the tools you need to improve and continue improving.
In Module 1, The ABCs of Ease you’ll learn a system of “Études” (studies) that we’ll do together in class and then you’ll do at home. The Études give you a means whereby you can turn down the volume of unnecessary tension and relieve the stress of unwanted habits. The Études are easy to understand, fun to do and require very little time to complete.
From the first class you’ll be developing Powerful Tools that put you in complete control of your own steady, day by day improvement. You’ll be able to identify and eliminate habits and lessen the stress that always seems to make everything more difficult. Additionally, as you find yourself doing things much more easily, you’ll be able to share what you’re learning with others…greatly extending the benefits of your getting more of what you truly want.
Here’s The Schedule:
8-9:30 PM…East Coast Time
- June 15
- June 22
- June 29
- July 6
- July 13
- July 20
1-2:30 PM…East Coast Time
- June 18
- June 25
- July 2
- July 9
5. July 16
6. July 23
So…Let’s take a look at…
Week 1: It’s A Problem Solving Technique
First and foremost, the Alexander Technique is a problem solving technique. The way Alexander went about solving his vocal problems has been called, by Nobel Prize winner, Nikolaas Tinbergen, “One of the true epics of medical research.” In this introductory lesson we’ll begin to explore how to move from the awareness of a specific problem to an evolving and expanding universal solution.
- The healing power of problems
- Alexander’s Technique
- What is Primal Alexander?
- How we got here
- The power of attention
Week 2: The Primary Concern
In general, we evaluate the results of our activities solely according their impact on the world outside of us. We’re usually unaware that way we are choosing to do things now will make it more difficult to do things in the future. The Primary Concern is a simple way of understanding how observe the changes in the world without losing yourself in it.
- Expanding the frame of your awareness
- The power of ease
- Explorations, Experiments and Études
- Leave yourself alone!
- What happens to me when I ______________?
Week 3: Self-Science
Alexander, through logic, invention and unwavering persistence was able to “jump over his own knees”. That is…through intelligence, perseverance and patience he was able to break free of his old habitual thinking and develop a solution his vocal problems. By experimenting in the laboratory of his own mind and body, Alexander used his specific difficulties as a springboard to discovering what has proven to be a universal cure! And can follow in his footsteps.
- ”A little bit of nothing”
- Just one body
- Just Yes or No
- Three Easy Questions
- Four Stages of Change
Week 4: Do or do not, there is no try!
Master Yoda was really on to something! He would have loved Alexander’s inhibition. You can only try what you already know. So…if you’re looking to do something in a new way…STOP TRYING! Your nervous system is teaching you non-stop. You just need to stop knowing and start learning.
- Your “Inner Sensei”
- Stop making sense
- Stop thinking straight
- Learn-How beats Know-how every time!
- Questions instead of directions
Week 5: How To Jump Over Your Own Knees
Breaking habits is hard to do! Our nervous system is so adaptable that whatever we do over and over eventually comes to feel “right” even if it can ultimately be harmful to us. That makes our habits virtually invisible to us because we gravitate towards the safety of what’s familiar. It’s not our fault. It’s part of our survival wiring!
- Why it’s so hard to change
- What you do…does you!
- You can’t know a thing by an instrument that’s wrong.
- What you notice is what you get
- The dance of non-doing
Week 6: Learning to Teach / Teaching to Learn
Part of the magic of studying the Alexander Technique online is how easy it is to share your learning with others. You’re part of a community with no geographical boundaries. In this concluding module we’ll explore how learning, by its very nature, is teaching and I’ll also show you how to share what you’ve been learning so far with your family and your friends.
- Tribal Alexander
- Viral Alexander
- The Doctrine of Magnanimous Selfishness
- Giving is Receiving
- Now what?
SO…If you’re interested
in having some
COME JOIN US!
Not to Worry!
Class usually looks more like…
To see what my students have to say about the class…
Just flip the pix…
Mio’s on-line class has really helped my confidence grow in the ‘Hands-Off’ area of AT teaching, which is incredibly helpful to me in group scenarios, and for on-line teaching, both of which I use in my teaching practice.
It’s also offered me more ways of being able to layer light and joyful qualities to the way I teach Alexander’s Technique. I like to make it fun as much as possible! My perspective has certainly widened and it’s been a lot of fun!
The class is a pleasure every time, and my learning has grown exponentially! I’m delighted and I always look forward to the next week.
Mio is a fun and engaging teacher. He is excellent at really applying the Alexander technique while he teaches a group. He won’t let you get away with half thinking in activity. The constructive changes are instant and lasting that’s what I find most important and stimulating while learning with him.
Working with Mio for the last year or so, I’ve enjoyed experiencing the ease, simplicity and intelligence of my body’s natural coordination. This class gets to the core of Alexander’s thinking process rather than the procedural techniques he passed on. I have been studying A.T. for the past 12 years now and Mio’s approach is simply the most direct, clear and global one I’ve come across.
One of the most interesting things for me about our online class is how supported I feel. Our group is very consistent and to see everyone’s changing from week to week is very powerful and affirming.
Having others witness your challenges and your growth reinforces the benefit of using these ideas in your life. While I’ve only met these people online, through our shared experiments and improvement, I’ve come to count them as my friends.
I’ve worked with Mio off and on for over 30 years now. He creates an open environment where the most important thing is to learn by experimenting. It becomes impossible to fail because anything that moves you even a bit closer to the truth is success!
I very much appreciate working with Mio. He’s supportive, easy going and clear in his teaching. I feel at ease and comfortable in his classes and find his methodology and exercises playful and empowering. Working with Mio helps me to continue to learn and grow. I’m so happy I found him!
When I began attending classes, Mio’s emphasis on self-observation and wondering about ease began to spill over into my daily life in very practical ways. My understanding of the Technique became much clearer – to the point that one of the most stressful years of my life also became one of the best, as I learned how to infuse a sense of Ease into any experience.
Over recent months, I have watched my technique transform and my musical expression deepen with unimaginable ease, and Mio has empowered me with tools to continue doing this for myself. I am now comfortable calling myself a “violinist” again, and I know this is only the beginning – which I find extremely exciting!
Since working with Mio my way of understanding AT has gotten so much deeper. I feel a lot calmer these days and I can see things more as they really are. I’m much less judgmental and I’m beginning to understand just what “Non-Endgaining” really means! My self-confidence has grown a lot, and no matter what happens, I’m able to deal with things much more constructively.
In our classes we experience an incredibly warm and tender atmosphere which in my experience is very rare. Mio is great at teaching without ever making you feel like you’re wrong. We freely share our experiences and what we’re learning and that makes our personal changes even more powerful. There is truth here.
What can I say about Mio? Well, for starters, no single person has had a more profound effect on my physical well being. Meeting him was the beginning of a long period of being pain free. And not pain free in the sense that someone healed me…but pain free in the sense that I now have ‘control’ over my own well being.
What Mio teaches is that A.T. is something you both do for yourself and allow to happen. I’ve spent most of the last decade trying to forget everything I ever learned, from yoga directions to Alexander’s classic directions…All you have to do is Notice the Ease…It’s so much more effective and simple!
I hope in this life everyone has a chance to work with him. Thanks, Mio!
Before taking online lessons, I thought there might be a lot of things that could not be conveyed online. The opposite is true. You regain your natural coordination learning online and you learn how to do it yourself.
Mio’s teaching is very specific and easy to understand. He respects what a student says but clarifies our misunderstandings . In general , I feel calmer and not so distracted by the things going on around me. I feel gratitude, joy and even sadness more clearly.
Learning in a group class, what I found most valuable was realizing I’m not alone. That made me feel very safe. I now share my experiences with others with confidence. I used to think A.T. was just a tool for doing things better. Now I realize that it’s more about learning how to “be” as a human being.
Before Mio’s class I couldn’t imagine learning A.T. online.To me, A.T. was about how I moved my body. With online lessons I’ve found that the key is my thinking. By experimenting and observing I can improve myself by myself and the speed of change is amazing!
I can take a lesson anywhere even in a hotel room on business. I’m much more relaxed and can express my emotions more easily around people. I used to get stressed by demanding too much of myself and had a vague sense of anxiety about my future. Now, thanks to the class, I’m feeling that as I get older my future will be bright, it will be fun and it will always be full of new wonders.
Click here for more student comments…
My thinking about the Alexander Technique has changed since taking this class. Originally, I thought A.T. was some form of left-brained body work from the West. But Mio’s work is similar to Zen and meditation. That’s why this approach is very interesting to me.
I started learning AT because I suffered from tiredness, fatigue and stiff shoulders. I’ve come to understand that my fatigue was not only physical. It was also caused by how I reacted to events (stimuli) in my daily life.
We are learning a systematic way to stop trying to over-control things consciously. Instead we consciously choose to allow our inner intelligence to do it’s job and the result is that we naturally do things better.
I waste much less energy now. I’ve also stopped “trying” to improve. Instead, I’m experiencing a slow, but steady transformation deep within myself that’s totally different from the temporary improvements you get from things like massage. It is great fun!
I truly love music and I’ve always deeply wanted to be a good pianist. But I have terrible stage fright and I’ve always messed up right at the most critical moments. In Mio’s work you do experiments using your body, like F.M Alexander did. If you keep doing this work on yourself you just continue to improve but sometimes without realizing it.
Mio never says NO to the student’s way of doing things. At the same time, he observes us very precisely and gives us the appropriate guidance. Working with him these past two years I have come to trust that by applying his “3 Easy Questions” I am now learning how to play music exactly the way I want.
I was surprised by Mio’s ability to observe, his playfulness and his willingness to share his knowledge through his experiences. His teaching is simple but profound; based on our experimenting on ourselves in activity. When it comes to the homework, although I am quite lazy and do it only a little…it still works!
My mental flexibility is growing, I’ve stopped suppressing my emotions so much and that has reduced my excess tension and unnecessary worries. The class is always fun and he’s always encouraging us to explore further. The process of learning A.T. has finally become much more simple and powerful.
I originally came to class because I wanted to know the best way to use my body when I sing. I had read about A.T. in the newspaper, had some in person lessons and then I started to learn from Mio. My singing has definitely improved.
Also, my shoulders have gotten easier. I’ve become more flexible mentally. I find that I don’t obsess about things so much and I’m starting to appreciate the good things about me more.
In school I never really enjoyed doing homework, but I have fun doing Mio’s homework. I think people should join us and try our class without pre-judging it. There may be something of value for you here.
Kana Nakayama Mamiko Asatani
I’ve been suffering from body stiffness and chronic throbbing pain. I also have terrible stage fright. My hands tremble. I can’t speak. My goes blank. I’ve tried Zazen, Yoga, Qigong, acupuncture u0026amp; moxibustion but the symptoms always came back.
Through meditation I discovered my tendency towards perfectionism, attachment and judgement. I’ve struggled with overcoming those tendencies but that struggling just made them worse. In Mio’s classes I’m learning how to improve without over trying and now my troubles are melting away like ice.
I’m feeling a peace of mind and body much more often and very little fatigue. My stage fright is decreasing and even when it arises I don’t obsess about it and put myself down for having it. I use A.T. as a tool to deal with those kind of things now. I feel a deep sense of trust, ease and appreciation for the inner intelligence that can guide me through those difficulties.
In the beginning I was very doubtful about there being a machine between me and the teacher, But from the first lesson, I felt a lot of changes in my body. I was surprised.They were the same kind of changes I’ve felt when working a Reiki teacher or a martial arts teacher in person.
Mio’s homework is unique and wonderful! Without it, I wouldn’t be learning so much. I’m discovering the importance, deep meaning and difficulty of being here right now. In life, you experience so many unexpected things which are beyond your control. It’s a great help to know how to respond more effectively and to have more choices.
Choose a Plan!
(6 Classes +)
Access to Class Audio+Video
1 Private Mini Lesson
(6 Classes + +)
Access to Class Audio+Video
2 Private Mini Lessons
Access to my 800+ hour video lesson library
when you think
about the benefits
more often in your
- decreased unnecessary tension
- less wear and tear on joints
- Improved flexibility
- better focus
- relaxed self-confidence
- improved balance
- easier breathing
- healthier responses to discomfort
- generally enhanced self-care
- better strategies for stressful events
- increased unconscious awareness
- enhanced clarity of thinking
- reduced anxiety
- increased open-mindedness
- less negative striving
- better ability to direct your attention
- delayed stress burnout
- improved self-teaching efficacy
- greater positive influence
- general anxiety reduction
- repetitive stress prevention
- sharper focus and attention
- improved decision-making
- increased emotional intelligence
- enhanced self-awareness
- reduced reactivity
And then factor in the
advantages of being part of
an online group class
taught by a teacher
with almost 40 years
of teaching experience…
- much less expensive than privates
- saves travel time and money
- take class away from home
- homework keeps you engaged
- big improvements between classes
- learn quickly to do it on your own
- you learn faster and more deeply
- the power of communal learning
- no danger of teacher dependence
- responsibility leads to confidence
- what you learn you can share
- a community of learners
- movement emotion connection
- change is under your control
- knowing the mechanism of change
- meet people from all over the world
- learn faster in a group
- video and audio of each lesson
- develop strong ties with classmates
- fun workshop atmosphere
just make sense for you…
to at least check out…
Here’s an offer that’s …
Hard 2 Refuse …
1 and 2
of the Course
If you are not
you’ve been learning in
I’m really looking forward to working with you and helping you explore Alexander’s amazing discoveries in your day to day activities. I’m sure you’ll make some pretty amazing changes!
Four years ago, when I first started teaching over the internet regularly, I was pretty confident I would be able to help people without being in the room and without using my hands.
My credo with regard to teaching has always been: “Change their thinking and their body will follow”, so teaching over the internet without “hands-on”didn’t seem like too big a leap for me.
But the thing that has absolutely blown my mind is how much more powerful teaching without hands on can be when it’s part of a structured framework of études, explorations, and experiments that students do at home.
Plus you’ll save money over than private lessons and have the convenience of learning without leaving home. Saving you both money and time.
If you had a chance to read some of the testimonials, you got a sense of the depth of change that people have been experiencing; especially feeling of empowered by being able to see themselves from a new more useful perspective.
Simply, it’s powerfully fun being in control of your own improvement and then being able to share your discoveries and excitement each week with a group of your peers.
However, I know how hard it is to get a complete picture of the personal value of something like this course from just a few words on a web page. That’s why I really encourage you try the class risk free for two weeks and experience it for yourself.
To that end, I’d like to offer you a $50 discount on the Favorite and Best plans If you sign up for class today before the clock below reaches 00 00 00 00 You’ll love the course. But space is limited. Don’t miss out!
Thank you so much for your interest. I hope to see you soon online or elsewhere. If you have any questions about the course or just want to say hi, you can reach me by clicking here.
is Usually $397