If you already know you want to buy the course, let me save you the scroll: it costs $250 plus your local sales tax, or $150 if you have a low income. If you want to find out more, read on!
Existing students: you can access the course and community here.
Between stimulus and response there is a space. In that space is our power to choose our response. In our response lies our growth and our freedom.
Alexander Technique is an embodied, real-world mindfulness practice that doesn’t involve sitting on a cushion. It can help you notice, expand and play within that space between stimulus and response.
This is valuable because the entire scope of human experience can be enhanced by being able to make new choices in response to things that happen in your internal and external worlds.
Alexander Technique gives you conscious control over your awareness and from there more agency in any aspect of your life, whether it’s how you move, how you think, how you perform, how you speak, how you relate to others or how you relate to yourself.
You know the experience of beginners' luck, where you're feeling playful, not trying hard to do well, and your body just does the thing perfectly? That's what practicing Alexander Technique can give you.
If you're an athlete or performer, you'll be familiar with the experience of performance anxiety, or 'choking'. Under pressure you overthink, try too hard and get in your own way. Your performance suffers.
The way out is not to try even harder, but to notice and stop doing all the things that are interfering with your natural abilities.
Alexander Technique gets you back in the zone, consciously and consistently.
You will get immediate access to two things: the core course and one Power Up on speaking and social skills.
Power ups are deep dives into specific applications of Alexander Technique, and more will be coming with time.
The core Fundamentals of Alexander Technique course introduces the key concepts in an experiential way.
It's about four to five hours' of self-paced text, audio and video content split into the following sections:
Alexander Technique is a powerful way to change the way you come across with people across many contexts.
You can learn to create a stronger connection, develop greater stage presence when you give presentations and easily access your own ideas while you speak.
With practice, you can learn to open up an innate and confident playfulness that will spread through everything you say.
The course includes a 'power up', with more than an hour of extra videos, specifically on speaking and social skills:
Here's a lesson from the power-up to give you a taste:
The course is self-paced and I'm giving every student lifetime access to all upgrades.
I intend to improve the course for years to come as my own understanding of Alexander Technique improves and I become better at teaching in this format.
I'll also be adding more power-ups with time, all of which will be available to all existing students. Power-ups will include such topics as movement, creativity and spirituality.
Look, I get it, this thing is a bit weird.
There's a good chance you've already poked around this website and are still asking "but what actually is this Alexander Technique thing, really?"
So if you're on the fence, don't worry: I will be happy to refund you within 30 days if it turns out that what you get is just not what you expected.
I'm confident that once you start exploring the materials, you'll get it. Nearly 800 people have bought the course and no one has asked for a refund because they didn't like it.
If you've heard of Alexander Technique, you may be aware that it is usually taught in person and through touch. I want to update the assumption that this is the only, or indeed the best, way to learn.
Over 2020 and 2021 I developed and tested this online course to convey many of the core principles. To my knowledge, this course is the only one of its kind to exist.
So far nearly 1400 students have joined, and many of them have reported exactly the kind of effects that I would expect them to report after a series of in-person lessons.
There's a quiet yet active community where you can ask questions and read others' experiences. No pressure to participate if you don't want to though.
A student was kind enough to write about his experience with the course and implementing the ideas. You can read that here.
(Note: 'inhibition' is a bit of Alexander Technique jargon that means roughly 'the skill of not responding habitually to a stimulus'.)
Why isn't it a cohort-based course? I hear those are all the rage.
Bearing in mind that I have taken many cohort-based courses and have been an alumni mentor/supporter for two of the big ones (Write of Passage and the Part Time YouTuber Academy) here are two main reasons.
First, Alexander Technique involves exploring profound changes in your experience of yourself and the world as you go about your life. This is not something that can be rushed or crammed and it doesn't happen at the same pace for everyone. I suspect that a cohort would add a kind of 'get the most from the course as possible' pressure that would actively interfere with the learning process.
Second, because running cohorts requires a huge investment of time and admin, which requires hiring support staff, which in turn means pushing the price of the course way up. That's not the game I want to or even can play right now.
I do plan to develop structures to help with motivation and peer learning, but it's more likely to be a model of self-paced course + community + distributed self-assembled learning groups + ad hoc 'office hours' and workshops.
I heard that Alexander Technique is about posture. Is that right and will this course give me better posture?
Unfortunately, if you read around on Alexander Technique, and even if you go and see a teacher, you might reasonably get the impression that it's about how to stand up and sit down more easily.
It's not fundamentally about posture. It's about how you do everything that you do, it's about how you are in the world. What I'm teaching here is more like the the first principles upon which other areas, like posture, can be developed.
That said, while I don't talk about posture much in the course, plenty of people have reported postural and movement improvements as a consequence of applying the skills I teach in the course. So it's quite possible that your posture will improve, but don't expect any 'posture improvement exercises'.
I will later develop modules on movement, but I will never position Alexander Technique as 'a posture thing'.
What's your background, Michael?
Most relevant here, I'm an Alexander Technique teacher certified by Alexander Technique International. I trained with Peter Nobes for three years at the South Bank Alexander Technique Centre in London.
My background is unusual for an Alexander Technique teacher, though. I spent ten years working in low carbon energy system innovation, which included designing innovation projects for National Grid Electricity System Operator and advising energy and water network clients from within KPMG's Infrastructure Advisory Group.
My worldview and teaching styles are influenced by this mix of experiences and I think the course is the better for it.
I can't and won't promise the results below, but I'll gently place in your awareness the fact that some people experience them.
Got a dm yesterday saying “I’m not here to ask anything from you, I’ve just started playing with Alexander technique and I feel *so* good I’d think I was on drugs if I didn’t know better, and I just needed to tell someone who would understand”— Nick Cammarata (@nickcammarata) February 13, 2021
I rec @m_ashcroft’s his newsletter! https://t.co/J0ocd5gBka
I’m a late straggler into @MavenHQ accelerator cohort 4 and normally I would be really stressed about it bc I don't want to let anyone down 🥺— Christin Chong, PhD 🪅 Journals + Meditates at 3PM (@Christintweets) January 12, 2022
but I swear @m_ashcroft ‘s Alexander Technique class has helped me stay chill, which NEVER happens. What is this sorcery?! 🧙♂️
2nd this.— Alex Kennedy (@kenakennedy) March 31, 2022
Think of it like memetic magic beans of reality hacking knowledge you can't get anywhere else.
This shit would cost at least 5 cows in story land. https://t.co/6f8yJnrekd
One of the best online courses I’ve ever bought! I usually wait until the end of a course to start applying what I’m learning, but on this one I was eagerly pausing videos to play around with what I was learning. 10/10 would expand my awareness again— dirceu (@dirceu) January 27, 2022
Signed up for this course. I’m only through the first section, but I highly recommend it. Michael’s onto something— pendertif (@pendertif) August 3, 2021
This is my first time trying any worry mindfulness practice. He has an incredibly eloquent, playful style that takes my skepticisms in stride https://t.co/HoaDI8vzGa
It is superb. Taking a touch based practice and extending it virtually while maintaining intimacy is a real feat. Hats off to Michael, I am very grateful. Can be done fast or slow, as long as you do the exercises and learn to add your own.— Richard Kurth (@dickkurth) December 30, 2021
Would absolutely recommend Michael's course. He leads you through some really profound concepts with real thoughtfulness and care. I'm certain you'd get something out of it.— Dan Lowe (@Orgone1) December 29, 2021
I'm still at the very beginning of it but it's definitely amazing: It's very well made, clear, easy and fun to follow, and I think about it a lot throughout the day, in ways that indeed make everything 'better'.— Tangrenin (@Tangrenin) January 27, 2022
I'm recommending it already to my friends.
Strong recommend. Had a big impact on me. Unbelievably good value.— Alex (@alexsanders224) January 27, 2022
The focus on awareness over attention feels counter to a lot of the mindfulness teachings I've had before.— Le Big Mac (@_le_big_mac_) June 18, 2022
But instantly easier to grasp, more relaxing, less forced.
I loved this course, worth doing if you’re at all into the stuff I’ve been tweeting lately https://t.co/2kZg8kvYij— Dan Shipper (@danshipper) June 19, 2022