Getting Out of the Car

I’ve been thinking a lot about getting out of my car just lately.  No special reason, just a great lesson that stayed with me.  We stuck to the usual Alexander process, we reasoned out what you need to do, we went away and experimented, and chatted about it some more the next week.  It actually turned out to be a surprisingly complex activity.

So here are my thoughts (not my answers, please note).  The basics are simple.  Open door.   Put feet on floor.  Straighten legs.  Job done.   But… the order and degree changes.

You see, it all depends(*).

Do you go for the:-
HEAD NOD (family saloon, nice high roof, barely need to lower your head)
or the
BIG LEAN (sports car, low roof, need to curl your head and torso right over)

Combined with the:-
HALF TWIZZLE  (most models, rotate 45 degrees in your seat, put just one foot out)
or the
LADY DIANA (short skirts and hip replacements, rotate the full 90 degrees and put both feet out together)

Then there’s the:-
STRAIGHT UP (lean forward from the hips and straighten the legs, just like getting out of an ordinary chair)
versus the
SNAKE CHARMER (parked too close to open the door properly, so you have to slither out sideways)

Not forgetting the:-
HANDS-FREE (can pull on the door frame for extra lift)
or the
HANDS-FULL (quick getaway holding handbag, satnav, umbrella etc)

Or do you have a manoeuvre of your own?

One final note.  Whichever you choose, they all work better if you pay attention to the relationship of your head to your body, while you’re choosing and while you’re doing.

(*)My car, regrettably, looks like neither of these photos.

CNHC and ITM registered Alexander Technique teacher.

Tagged with: , , , ,
Posted in asking questions, everyday life, experiment
4 comments on “Getting Out of the Car
  1. Geetha.d says:

    Hi karen,
    you explained with a different flavour about the same alexander directions.
    Thanks for this.

    a begginer who completed just 1 month of alexander technique practise, is better than compared to years of experienced alexander student.

    But the begginner works based on FEELING. he believs feeling but not alexander’s preventive reasonings.

    But the experienced student sure, not believes feeling but believes the reasonings.
    But, the fundamental alexander preventive directions are constant both for a beginner and experienced.

    I think,the humans are preventing their body parts from the earth gravitation.

    Our aim is prevention of wrong thing to happen, if not looking forward to happen.
    Our aim is not end-gain.
    Our aim is not doing the right thing. But preventing the wrong thing to happen.

    I think, getting out from a car can be done many ways as long as the body can be prevented from damage.

    Shall you give me some reasonings, what happens when we ‘lifting the chest’ while getting out from a car chair?
    So that, the reasonings helps me.

  2. Geetha.d says:

    Hi karen,
    iam very unhappy.
    Since, you not answered to my question, i.e

    what is lifting the chest, that alexander used this phrase in use of the self book?
    I Hope, you will help me by answering this question….

    • Hi Geetha,
      Sorry you are feeling neglected. I have quite a lot of your questions waiting for replies, I am working through them when I can.

      When Alexander talks in Use of The Self about ‘lift the chest’, he relates it to the other actions he describes as ‘harmful tendencies’. In other words, it is a A Bad Thing. It is part of the unnecessary muscle tension he is employing when he recites, along with a whole list of other specific actions that also come under the heading of unnecessary, and almost certainly harmful.

      We don’t know bone by bone, or muscle by muscles, what he was doing. In a sense, it doesn’t matter, just as the detail of what we ourselves are doing doesn’t matter. The important part is to work towards stopping it, and reasoning out the actions that will achieve our ends.
      Hope this helps

  3. Geetha.d says:

    Thanks karen,
    for your answer.
    It is is very difficult what Fm was doing bone by bone and muscle by muscle to understand.

    The reasoning order for achieving our ends, is different for different people.

    Hope, every body gets understanding FM.

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