Today we’d like to introduce you to Robbin Marcus.
Robbin, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
My first career was working as an elementary music educator. A lot of the time I was in a great deal of back and neck pain, which was exacerbated by leaning over small children all day long and playing the piano. I carried my head far forward of my body adding 10 pounds of pressure for every inch. After years of chiropractors, massage, and just trying to “get fixed”, a physical therapist finally told me that if I didn’t do something, I’d be bent over “like a pretzel” by the time I was 50. I had heard about Alexander Technique while in graduate school, so it seemed like the right time to finally check it out. I learned that the Alexander Technique is an educational method designed to help anyone in need of greater ease and comfort in their daily activities, and that certainly applied to me. I am not exaggerating when I tell you that learning Alexander Technique changed my life. I increased my awareness of the ways I use my body every day, learned to be more mindful, more graceful, and began to realize that I always have choices in my life about how I want to be in the world. After years of study, I decided to take the three-year training to become an Alexander teacher. I’ve been teaching now for almost 12 years, and I love my studio in Decatur!
Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
Going into business for myself was something I was completely unprepared to do! I had to become a self-taught marketer, accountant, and administrative assistant. I think the hardest things for me were assuming the role of small business owner, as well as finding the right place for my work, which also includes teaching piano lessons to people of all ages. I am blessed to have my studio at Decatur Healing Arts, which suits my work perfectly.
For a long time I traveled to people’s homes to teach, which was difficult, and took a lot of teaching time out of my day. I also rented hourly space at Decatur Healing Arts for several years, which worked well for me as my business was slowly building. It took about 7 years for me to be able to create the space I was longing for, and have the clientele to support my being there.
Alright – so let’s talk business. Tell us about Alexander Technique of Decatur GA – what should we know?
In teaching Alexander Technique, I work with people from every walk of life – musicians of course, a lot of actors from our growing film and stage community, but also people who are unsteady on their feet due to illness or age, people who sit at computers all day and have sore necks and shoulders, or people who simply want to learn to be more grounded, present and attentive in their daily lives. Alexander Technique is well known by people in the arts, since the founder, FM Alexander, was an actor, so my natural clientele comes from the arts. I feel, however that anyone wanting to make changes can benefit from giving the Technique a try.
In working with me, students receive some gentle hands-on guidance to re-discover their natural grace of movement, poise and ease. Over time, when students practice at home, they learn to do this for themselves and it becomes their new habit. I suggest that students begin with 8 lessons, each an hour per week. After that, we work together to determine how (or if) to continue. Many people find that 8 lessons are enough to get them well started, and they then drop in occasionally for advice or a refresher.
I am happy that I have become known for my gentleness, my sense of humor in teaching, and my openness to meeting people “where they are” on their journeys through life. I teach both private lessons and classes, and my classes fill rapidly now. Classes are an affordable option for those just wanting to try out the Alexander Technique, and many class students go on to become private students once their class is over.
I am honored to be recommended frequently to others (most of my students come through word of mouth) and also to have worked with many prominent actors and media personalities in town. I am frequently hired to do workshops for acting and music classes at our local universities, and I love working with college students!
Alexander Technique is a very unique offering in the Atlanta area. There are only a handful of teachers here. And it’s been an educational process to get awareness of what I do out there in the Atlanta area.
Any shoutouts? Who else deserves credit in this story – who has played a meaningful role?
Working at Decatur Healing Arts is wonderful, because I have the support of an entire team of wellness professionals. The owner of DHA, Susan Johnson, had a vision of a one-stop wellness shop for the Decatur area. She has brought it to life by assembling a team of people who do everything from varying types of massage, to yoga, to acupuncture, to Reiki, to sound healing, Tai Chi, and my Alexander Technique – there is so much to choose from in individual sessions and classes! Our team supports each other by personally trying each other’s services, so we can recommend specific practitioners to our clients with actual knowledge of a colleague’s skills. Many of my students have come to me via my colleagues, and that support is invaluable.
- One-hour individual Alexander Technique lesson, $80
- Half-hour individual Alexander Technique lesson, $45
- Alexander Technique classes (4 weeks of classes included) $65
- Address: Alexander Technique of Decatur
627-H East College Ave
Decatur, GA 30030