AT Congress® Berlin 2022

Search our site

N-O-W letters animated during page loading: O spining, N and W drawing on and off

Event Details

This Workshop-XL has already taken place.

The Dance of Everyday Movement: Dart Procedures and Alexander Technique Integration

Objective: This workshop shares how work with military veteran wheelchair athletes and a mixed ability dance company informed a movement analysis system called Framework for Integration (FMI). FMI includes interwoven lenses from the Alexander Technique (AT), developmental movement (Dart, Bartenieff, Bainbridge-Cohen, etc.), Laban Movement Analysis, and dance. Expert movers in wheelchairs facilitated the authors’ understanding of the use of the pelvis and spine; certain movement patterns were more functional in the chair while others hindered functionality. These collaborations paradoxically clarified the use of the pelvis (often compromised in wheelchairs) as well as confirmed the dynamic nature of the lower spine and its relationship to upper spine health.

Methods: FMI has evolved from a simple model that initially looks at primary and secondary spinal curves as building blocks. The work now includes a sophisticated model where the curves relate to spiraled musculature throughout the body, as well as an integrated model that recognizes the interplay of the curves and spirals and elucidates further “engagements” as well as “resets” from various actions. For example, if we look to see something in front of us, that intent might stimulate overall bodily extension; a change in intent releases extension. An activity that requires strength might use forcible flexion; leaving that activity might naturally release into extension. These simple concepts provide tools to see whether movement intention aligns with movement patterning. Incongruence can be construed as interference; often what we intend does not match how we move—neuromuscular habits interfere.

Results: Guided in small groups, with props (physioballs), light touch, and video feedback, participants will specifically identify inefficient movement patterns in the pelvis’ relationship to the head, neck, spine and limb activity. Once identified, patterns and whole body intention and coordination can be clearly redirected.

Conclusion: Through tools available in the framework, movers take charge of their embodied learning and bring movement choices into conscious awareness. The system’s structure is highly accessible and helps AT teachers work with students on chair and table. We owe a debt of gratitude to our wheelchair collaborators; their capacity for adaptation guided a unique understanding of the pelvis’ and spine’s dynamic relationship in bodies of all abilities.

About Luc Vanier and Elizabeth Johnson

Luc Vanier (MFA, M.AmSAT, RSDE) is a Professor and Founding Director of the School of Dance at the University of Utah, where he spent the last six years synergizing two respected historic Dance departments (Ballet and Modern Dance into a new entity. He received his MFA from the University of Illinois Champaign-Urbana and certified as an Alexander technique (AT) teacher in 2001. In 2011, as an AT training course director, he founded Alexander Technique Milwaukee (ATMKE); in 2016, he later co-founded Salt Lake City Alexander Technique (SLCityAT), where he is the current director.

As a pedagogue and integral researcher, Luc has lectured and presented his research extensively nationally and internationally and his co-authored book “Dance and the Alexander Technique” was published by University of Illinois Press in 2011. It was also translated in Spanish Fall 2021 with Pequeña Hoja Press (Buenos Aires Argentina). In 2012, he founded the Integral Movement Lab, which combines the Alexander Technique and developmental ideas within product and curriculum designs. He co-created Framework for Integration, a movement analysis system anchored in the way babies and animals move that helps all movers make new, healthier movement decisions and encourages more coordinated and integrated bodily use (look for an upcoming book soon).

SLCityAT, with Luc Vanier as Training Course Director, is a dynamic space which provides Alexander Technique Teacher training anchored in the tradition of Alexander and Joan Murray by way of the Carrington lineage. Luc also took four years of lessons with Ellen Hobbs in Cleveland who herself trained with Patrick MacDonald in the 1980s.

The course believes in physicality in the way observing the movement of babies and animals and applying the principles of the Alexander Technique will helps all movers make new, healthier movement decisions and encourages more coordinated and integrated bodily use.

Our varied Salt Lake City teachers, collectively, have decades of experience in all types of dance (ballet, modern dance, tango, pole, etc), developmental movement (Dart Procedures, Laban/Bartenieff, Body Mind Centering), martial arts, yoga and sports.

Luc is an active writer who recently co-authored:
1. The Subtle Dance of Developmental Self-Awareness with New Media Technologies, published with the Presse University du Quebec (PUQ)
2. Ballet aesthetics of trauma, development and functionality, published in the book (Re)Claiming Ballet with Intellect Press.

Luc is convinced of his responsibility to interrogate our physical practices in order to not habitually duplicate racist/sexist perspectives.

Elizabeth Johnson (MFA, M.AmSAT, RSME/T, RYT200) is a performer, choreographer, educator, Laban/Bartenieff Movement Analyst, certified Teacher of the Alexander Technique (AmSAT & ATI), and Registered Yoga Teacher (200hr). She teaches and presents nationally (US) and internationally on dance/movement pedagogies and somatics that center developmental movement, prosocial/trauma informed education, and feminist perspectives. She has co-authored/authored three book chapters featuring applied Alexander Technique and developmental movement and is an Associate Professor in the School of Theatre and Dance at the University of Florida.


See also: Luc Vanier and Elizabeth Johnson – Presenter Detail Page

Friday, 26 August 2022
10:30 h - 13:00 h (10.30am-1.00pm)
Main Building
Floor: 3.OG (3rd floor)
Room: H 3003A

AT Principles and Procedures||Performance/Music/Acting/Voice||Everyday Activities||Sports||Connections to other Modalities/Techniques



Fully Practical