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An Afternoon in West Wales

 

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These two pieces, one by a teacher and one by a pupil, give an excellent idea of what the Friends of the Alexander Technique has to offer to the Alexander Community.

 

On a weekend in August we held our first AT Friends get-together in Pembrokeshire. This was thanks to Ian Cross (AT teacher) and his wife Cheryl who suggested and hosted the event. It was not a big affair: roughly 12 people, half pupils and half teachers. Our setting was a lovely sloping garden and we worked on the lawn in amongst the trees and with the sound of the brook at the bottom of the garden babbling in the background.

 

As a result of the teacher-pupil ratio we were able to give a lot of individual attention and, I think, all the pupils managed to experience hands on with more than one teacher and work with someone they didnít know.  I enjoyed the afternoon very much. It was a chance to meet, work and chat with new people. It was also very refreshing to work out in nature.

 

As for the pupils, I think they all found it hugely beneficial. They enjoyed meeting and chatting with others about the Technique and experiencing different ways of working whilst recognising that the essence was the same. Being a very rural area, generally people would have to travel far to book a lesson with another teacher (some travel far anyway to get to their nearest teacher).

 

After the work came the tea! Cheryl had done us proud and a few of us had also bought cakes to share. This was a time to discuss experiences and generally socialise which rounded off the afternoon very nicely.

 

The event will, I hope, be the first of many.

 

Penny Spawforth

 

 

I was delighted with the invitation to the AT meeting, delighted and a bit apprehensive as the only person I knew was my teacher Penny.  Past experience of meeting up with seasoned practitioners in any kind of discipline had prepared me for anything!  Most of which was more negative than positive.  I should have known better in this instance.

 

The welcome was warm and I immediately felt at home in Ian and Cheryl's house.  It was a beautiful warm summer's day and we spent the afternoon in a delightful garden, the apple and pear trees were splendid. Not only was nature at it's best but we also had the company of the family's pet dog who at regular intervals came and sniffed curiously at each one of us.

 

We began with short introductions.  I was one of six students present and there were six teachers so we students were very pampered.  I have often wondered what it would be like to have a lesson from another teacher and my wish came true.  I walked a lot from one fruiting tree to another under the guidance of John and Philippa and it was such a good experience.  Although they were both different to my teacher I still recognised that the basics were identical.  I also liked watching the others having a lesson.

 

The whole afternoon had a sense of purpose to it, there was no time wasting, no pressure either, I liked the reassuring sense of calm from the the AT teachers.

 

The rain sent us into the house for shelter.  We were then treated to a lovely tea, I must confess that I needed it by then; must have worked hard!

 

I knew from the very first lesson that the Alexander Technique suited me, I suppose it suits the way my brain works and I came away that afternoon with this thought definitely reinforced. I enjoyed it immensely and would like more of the same!

 

Gwenda Jones -pupil

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