Recently I’ve been having some Alexander Technique lessons for myself with a wonderful teacher, Ariel Weiss, partly as continuing education, and partly to help me deal with a shoulder injury (more about this coming soon!). During a recent lesson we decided to look at how I was using myself while working at the computer. If you’ve followed my blog for a while, you’ll know that this is something to which I have devoted a lot of thought. I had, however, a bit of an “aha” moment—I could actually use the computer to help my posture!
As I mulled this over for myself afterward, I realized that part of my way of interacting with the computer was to very subtly put myself on guard against, or protect myself from, the poor coordination that so often inflicts computer users. As I’ve stated before, I am well aware that working at the computer itself is not typically the cause of neck strain, shoulder tension, headaches, or RSI, for instance. Rather, these are caused by the way we coordinate ourselves—the amount of excess tension we bring to the task—as we work at the computer. And while this is true, being even slightly “on guard” against slumping or straining can, paradoxically, lead to a little unwanted tension.