Science of Human Functioning  
- Special Lectures

Amy Likar    Gitte D. Fjordbo    Rachel Zahn   Michael Gleeson

We will have 4 special lectures on the Science of Human Functioning with 4 of our renown colleagues who have been chosen for their clarity and deep knowledge of how humans stand and move. They are Gitte Fjordbo, Mike Gleeson, Rachel Zahn and Amy Likar.

These lectures will happen in the Main Congress Hall from 17:15 to 18:15 on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday.

Amy Likar — Body Mapping and the Alexander Technique

Amy LikarMonday 8 August, from 17:15 to 18:15 in Main Congress Hall

Body Mapping and the practical application of anatomy to functional movement has brought many people to the study of Alexander Technique. This lecture will present practical information about weight delivery and balance and how inquiry into structure, function and size can aid and assist us as teachers of the Alexander Technique when working with students.


Entire Presentation (Powerpoint PPTX 10.52 MB)
Workshop Slides: The Arm Structure (Powerpoint PPT 9.44 MB)

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Gitte D. Fjordbo —
When conscious control is NOT an option.. & the "right thing" does NOT do itself.

Gitte FjordboTuesday 9 August, from 17:15 to 18:15 in Main Congress Hall

How does a compromised nervous-system influence the development of our habitual patterns of use of ourselves. How will it impact our possibility of learning the Alexander technique and vice versa: How will the Alexander technique impact our compromised nervous-system?!

Gitte will also be giving an afternoon workshop to further explore, and experience through practical work, the contents of the above lecture. There will be time for questions and comments coming out of the Lecture.
That workshop is titled “Essential Presence in Touch(TM) – allowing a Space of De-rotation”.
Click here to see details

About Gitte D. Fjordbo

Gitte D. Fjordbo's interdisciplinary background and training is traditional as well as complimentary. She began her personal and professional journey in the field of Rehabilitation at the age of 18 following a serious car accident. She received her MA degree from the University of Copenhagen (1982-94) with a double major in Audiologopedics and the Alexander Technique, the first of its kind in the world. She wrote two theses for this: "On the Development of Habit – from the viewpoint of the Alexander Technique and early neuromotor patterns of development" and "Why w e have to Crawl... - On Human Development; motor and communicative skills – aberrations and inter-connections". She was certified as a teacher of the Technique from the Constructive Teaching Centre, London, in 1992. She has worked in the field of Transpersonal Psychology since 1989, extensively with transpersonal psychologist, Ruth White, with whom she is currently writing a book. The field of Energy Medicine has been an interest and a part of her work for many years. Gitte is a trained and well-practised Neuro-developmental Therapist (ad modum INPP, Chester, the U.K.) and a practitioner of Johansen Individualized Auditory Stimulation (JIAS). She is certified as a Philosophical Counsellor from the Philosophical Counselling Institute, B.C., Canada and a certified Practitioner of Somatic Experiencing (shock-trauma-therapy).

Gifted with many insights into the field of human potential, Gitte's work is expansive. In true transpersonal style hers is an approach of 'and-and-and...' – rather than 'and-or..'. She currently lives in Denmark with her lovely companion and playmate, the yellow Labrador, Molly.

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Rachel Zahn - The Embodied Mind

Rachel ZahnThursday 11 August, from 17:15 to 18:15 in Main Congress Hall

Rachel will present an innovative model for an experiment consisting of 5-10 AT teachers and a "hand-picked" group of 10 leading edge neuroscientists, philosophers of mind, psychologists, and robotic engineers who explore the "Embodied Mind".

This initial experiment has been sponsored and partially funded by the CREA Laboratory at Ecole Polytechnique (the 'MIT' of France) and is planned for a weekend in late Fall. The goal of this experiment is to introduce the group to the particularly subtle methods of training AT teachers, and to invite them to have the actual hands-on experience. The group will explore the principles underlying the definitions of AT teaching using their own theoretical, methodological, and experiential perspectives. Such an exchange will open the AT to a professional dialogue pivotal to supporting the AT's future in the world at large.


Presentation Slides (PDF 2.37 MB)

About Rachel Zahn
Rachel Zahn graduated from the American Center for the Alexander Technique (ACAT) in 1969, assisted Judith Leibowitz at the Juilliard School of Music in New York, and joined the ACAT faculty from 1972–1981. During the 1970s she collaborated and trained with psychologists, developing a unique interdisciplinary approach to the psychophysical process of ‘high performance’ in actors, musicians, athletes, and original thinkers. She was mentored by the American anthropologist Margaret Mead who gave her the responsibility to continue applying Mead’s model of global cooperation to practical use. This task motivated her to embark on two doctorates: The relationship between global thinking and intercultural communication (Union Institute, USA) and Psychophysical Congruence and the Mind-Body Problem (Université Paris 1, Sorbonne-Pantheon and CREA, l’École Polytechnique). She is currently introducing the Alexander Technique to cognitive scientists and developing an introductory course in cognitive science for Alexander teachers. She conducts seminars internationally.

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Michael Gleeson — Postural Orientation

Mike GleesonFriday 12 August, from 17:15 to 18:15 in Main Congress Hall

This presentation will look at the interaction of the inputs from the proprioceptive, vestibular, and visual systems in the development of upright postural orientation. It will also consider how the Alexander Technique can optimize our ability to maintain good orientation as we age. Michael Gleeson has a background in Physiotherapy and the Alexander Technique, and a special interest in the dynamics of postural orientation. He is currently doing a Research Degree through the School of Public Health at Sydney University looking at whether the Alexander Technique can improve balance and mobility in older adults with vision impairments.


Presentation Notes (PDF 4.86 MB)

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