An economic evaluation of Alexander technique

This is a follow-up to an earlier study of chronic and recurrent back pain by researchers from the University of Bristol in the UK.

First, the details.

  • 579 patients with chronic or recurrent low back pain were recruited.
  • Comparisons were made among normal care (control), massage, and 6 or 24 lessons in the Alexander technique.
  • Half of each group was randomly assigned to exercise plus behavioral counselling from a nurse.
  • Costs to the NHS and to participants were compared.

And, the results.

  • Cost effectiveness analysis of single therapies showed that exercise offered best value.
  • For two-stage therapy, 6 lessons in Alexander technique combined with exercise was the best value.

The bottom line?
The authors concluded, “A combination of 6 lessons in Alexander technique followed by exercise was the most effective and cost effective option.” tells us that Alexander technique is a method to improve ease and freedom of movement, coordination, support and balance. “It is not a series of treatments or exercises, but rather a reeducation of the mind and body to change (movement) habits in our everyday activities.”

1/22/09 20:46 JR

Hi, I’m JR

John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at, a complementary and alternative medicine website.