What Skills are We Teaching and Learning in AT? – A Scientific Perspective
Sunday March 31st at the Spanish AGM
For Spanish Teachers Only
Contact: APTAE Spanish AT society
Note: For teachers who want to supplement the AGM material, the workshop on April 1+2 in Terrassa Spain will build this content further.
Is Alexander technique a skill? If so, what kind of skill is it? Typically we say that we teach people to inhibit and direct. But these words don’t mean much to the outside world, let alone the scientific world, especially when we use outdated scientific models to explain them. Even within our own community we get stuck when describing to each other what we are doing.
In this workshop we aim to clarify Alexander technique skills using modern concepts from neuroscience, motor control, and biomechanics. We will address such questions as “what is a skill?”, “how are skills measured?”, “how can inhibition and direction be described in terms of modern neuroscience?”
To answer these questions we challenge some current misconceptions in the Alexander technique world and offer a clear framework for the AT. We explore this topic via recent research articles, relevant scientific concepts, hands-on activities, and discussion. In this way the material is presented in a lively, accessible way. Participants will leave with a clearer more rigorous way to communicate with students, other teachers, doctors, and physical therapists. This material may even affect the way you teach.
We have been giving these workshops for almost three years now, live and via webinars in Ireland, Spain, England, Israel, the Netherlands, Brazil, Argentina, Mexico, Australia and both coasts of the USA. Our initial goal was to communicate rigorous science about the Alexander Technique in ways that are accessible and fun. The workshops have since grown into a broader dialogue about how to think objectively, scientifically and professionally about what we do.
No science background is required. We are used to working with all levels of scientific experience.
Dr. Johnson is a PhD. physicist and a practicing STAT/NeVLAT certified teacher of the Alexander technique with 15 years of research experience and 8 years of AT teaching experience. He has 40 peer reviewed publications and over 2000 citations. Dr. Cacciatore is a PhD. Neuroscientist and STAT certified teacher, author of many peer reviewed scientific articles on Alexander technique, with 20 years of research experience.
This is a lecture format with frequent breakout activities and discussions. Dr. Johnson will present live while Dr. Cacciatore will join by video link via internet (skype for example). As long as there is decent internet connection and a projector available, we can take care of the rest of the technical details.