In our group sessions this term we have been following the theme of Going Deeper – we have looked in more depth at hands and feet and arms – and now we will focus in more depth on the very part of us that focuses best – on the eyes. It was a surprise to me, in my training as an Alexander technique teacher, that I could look gently, without unnecessary effort, without, as it were, going out and grabbing the world, visually. I could let it come to me, I could soften my gaze, I could widen it and take more pleasure in what the world has to show me.
So, this week, in Whaley Bridge, in Fallowfield and in Macclesfield we will think about how we use our eyes. We will consider panoramic vision – our use of our peripheral vision – and explore how it changes our experience of movement and of stillness. We may play games that explore walking and our use of our eyes. We will consider, in particular, the importance of the eyes when we bend down or sit down and how they co-ordinate our movements.
In their book, Movement, Awareness and Creativity, Bartal and Ne’eman write, ‘The human being’s most versatile contact with space is through the visual system, which is the most far-reaching and instantaneous form of perception. So co-ordination between the body and the rest of the world is mainly achieved through sight. Therefore it is essential to co-ordinate body and eye movements.’ (1975:12)