The technique was developed by Frederick Mathias Alexander (1869-1955). He was an Australian actor who experienced voice problems. He noticed that he was tightening his neck, an action which put pressure on his larynx, thus causing him to lose his voice.
He developed an approach to co-ordination and movement, which not only cured his voice problems but also improved his general health.
Alexander developed his technique to encourage and maintain this balance through conscious attention and control: a technique which has become applicable to a wide range of problems
Gradually, as others noticed improved health and performance, he began to show his technique to those who came to him for help. From about 1894 onward, he had flourishing practices in Melbourne, and later in Sydney, until this teaching became his main occupation.
Up to the 1930s, Alexander taught his technique to pupils solely as a means of their helping themselves. A few of his keenest pupils gradually became assistants and teachers in their own right by apprenticeship.
In 1931, Alexander opened a formal teacher training course, so that an entire group of students could learn the skills needed to teach the Technique to others. He kept his three-year training courses running until his death at the age of 86.
That the Alexander Technique has endured, and that there are now over 2500 teachers throughout the world, is indicative of its scope beyond the problems or talent of one charismatic person.
The Technique is founded on principles and skills which can apply to anyone.