Posts Tagged ‘Stress Management’

Autogenic Training – an Introduction for Performing Artists

Monday, September 13th, 2010

Autogenic Training (also called Autogenic Therapy) is a relaxation technique that can help improve stress management and increase wellbeing. Individuals learn the technique over a course of (usually 8 – 10) classes. It is a complementary therapy that is sometimes used in conjunction with conventional medical treatment for a variety of health problems, especially where stress is involved.

At our clinics, BAPAM doctors give medical advice to many performers with musculoskeletal injuries (temporarily) preventing their ability to pursue their careers/education. In addition to the physical problem, there is a psychological impact. Being injured is stressful! AT is one way of reducing the stress and tension which can exacerbate the effects of physical injury.

AT can be particularly useful for all forms of anxiety, including performance anxiety (stage fright), and panic attacks. The relaxed state induced by autogenic exercises restores regular heartbeats, normal breathing patterns, and increases concentration clarity and alertness. People report feeling more confident and energised.

Tammy Mindell, an Autogenic Therapist listed on BAPAM’s directory of practitioners, says, ‘a semi-professional singer learnt AT for other stress related issues. As an unexpected bonus, she found her singing greatly improved. She became less anxious about good performance, allowing herself to be good enough. The results meant that rather than over breathing and pushing the sound, I could relax and allow and enjoy a much easier and better quality performance’.

In some cases, advanced autogenic techniques may be used as a form of psychotherapy.

Useful links:

The British Autogenic Society is the professional and regulatory body for Autogenic Therapists in the UK. Their web site contains a wealth of further information about autogenic training.

Autogenic Therapists on the BAPAM Directory of Practitioners:

Tammy Mindel: www.autogenictraininglondon.co.uk
Giovanna Reitano: www.musarteandmore.com
Catalina Botello: www.autogenic-therapy.net

If you are worried about a medical problem, including anxiety or another psychological problem, you should consult your GP. If you are a performing artist and the problem is work-related you may also seek advice from a BAPAM GP at one of our free clinics.