I had been wearing a neck brace after months of physical therapy. PT had not helped the excruciating pain that I suffered in my neck, shoulder and down my right arm from cervical spinal stenosis. I was told that the next treatment would be cortisone injections or surgery. A friend told me to try Alexander Technique before any invasive treatments. Wishing for any relief at that point and not wanting to become dependent on medications, I took her advice.
I did AT with Reinaldo Couto for a year, and it has been a year since I've stopped AT. I have been pain free for over 18 months, and I have not needed any other treatment or pain medication. In addition to the AT sessions, Reinaldo taught me a whole new way of “being”. Your body has to re-learn how to sit, stand, walk, sleep and even a new way of doing chores and holding the steering wheel. I actually feel better presently than prior to the injury; that is because I was also taught to notice how my body carries stress and how to get rid of it immediately.
Like any training, AT does take commitment and practice. I was given “homework” from day one, and Reinaldo knew when I didn't do it (that tells how experienced he is).
I have been highly impressed by Reinaldo's professionalism, experience and expertise in AT and recommend him to anyone who does not want invasive medical procedures for spinal injuries. In fact, one of my children has worked with him as well. I feel blessed to have found Reinaldo (as does my family), as I was not expecting this good of an outcome!
This has, and continues to be, one of the most worthwhile things I have ever done...
Reinaldo Couto’s profound insight into how we use and misuse our bodies has enabled real improvement in my own quality of life. He has squared my shoulders, straightened my back, and helped me find grace and balance in everyday activities. I am forever grateful!
I began Alexander lessons with Reinaldo Couto for a variety of posture and balance issues. During our time of working together I have found him to be a very kind and patient teacher. Our lessons have made such a difference in the way I stand, sit and move. On several occasions when I was injured by slipping on the ice, carrying something too heavy or pulled suddenly by my dog on a leash, Reinaldo has been able to relieve my back and neck pain in a matter of minutes. Because of his extensive knowledge he is able to quickly assess how I am holding my body and lead me through appropriate exercises which greatly decrease the pain and allow rapid healing. I highly recommend Reindalo Couto and the Alexander technique for everyone to learn to move more freely and effectively.
Mr. Reinaldo Couto is a fabulous Alexander teacher who has made a great difference in my life. When I first came to see Reinaldo years ago, I could not stand for more than a few minutes without becoming very fatigued, likely due to weak posture and back muscles. With Reinaldo’s help, this problem has been largely resolved, making it easier at work, social events and while traveling. With other musculoskeletal problems that I have developed over the years, Mr. Couto has presented me with imaginative and helpful Alexander-based techniques that help quite a bit. One of the great things about Reinaldo is that he is very smart and analytical, and so the answers he presents are tailored to each individual, not the “one size fits all” advice that I have frequently encountered with others who try to help one in such matters. In addition, Reinaldo is a very warm person with wonderful stories from his fascinating life and some great jokes! He goes out of his way to be helpful, and has even come to my office and home (for free) to offer advice on how to make for a better physical environment. I should also add that other members of my family have benefitted from Reinaldo’s care, and he is much loved by them. In short, if you are looking for a highly intelligent, warm, fun, and interesting Alexander teacher (and everyone should be!), Reinaldo is your man!
David Markovitz, M.D.
Four years ago I was in fear of the imminent possibility of living life in a wheelchair from curvature of the spine stemming from scoliosis. A friend came to me, saying "I can see the toll pain is taking on your well-being. I have been working with a man who has been my Alexander alignment trainer. He may be able to help you. It won't be a quick fix as the process is subtle. Come with me...and try it."
From the initial session...and there have been many...my body has become more upright, more confident...and my life more whole. Thank you, Reinaldo, for your deep understanding and knowledge of the body, your friendship, and your healing touch on my life.
After three spine surgeries and years of chronic, intermittent back pain, I began seeing Reinaldo upon the recommendation of my primary care physician. That was over 10 years ago. During these years I have become pain free and fully functional despite the aging that comes with being in my late 60s. The Alexander Techniques involves re-learning to use one's body during everyday movements like standing, sitting, and lying down. The skills that Reinaldo possesses are indeed remarkable. He is perceptive, thoughtful, fully cognizant of human anatomy and mechanics, and gentle in everything he does. I began seeing him once or twice weekly and have gradually advance to bi-weekly visits. However, I still find the sessions with Reinaldo to be helpful every time. As a practicing obstetrician-gynecologist, I have referred many patients and friends to him with great success. If you would like to learn to use your body more comfortably, minimize injuries and fatigue, and look and feel better, I highly recommend that you spend some time with Reinaldo. You will not regret it!
Daniel G. McMurtrie, MD
OSTEOPOROSIS AND ARTHRITIS
I started seeing Reinaldo Cuoto because I wanted to prevent for myself what I saw happen with my mother in her older years; physical deterioration, and a significant loss of height from osteoporosis and arthritis. I have been extremely happy with the results. Although I was able to see positive gains quickly, I am still having regular appointments with Reinaldo eight years later, and I learn something new each time. Alexander Technique involves no manipulation of the spine or difficult exercises. It is a gentle process of increasing body awareness and unlearning bad habits that develop over the years. Reinaldo is incredibly insightful and observant, and individualizes his program for each person based on his keen perception of what is going on with him or her. He is quick to explain the anatomy and body mechanics upon which his techniques are based, and finds a way to convey his advice in a straightforward manner. I highly recommend Reinaldo for evaluation and management of pain, orthopedic conditions and overall improvement of one’s posture and body use.
Madelyn McMurtrie, MSN, RN, CPNP
Pediatric Nurse Practitioner
Good posture and proper use of your back are important for staying active and pain free. As a dressage rider, my back needs to be strong, aligned and functional. Reinaldo has been extremely helpful in helping me maintain my back and posture. I am also a cognitive scientist, and the Alexander Technique takes advantage of the learning system of the muscles and joints that is non-verbal, making it a great complement to other activities. I recommend the Alexander Technique for everyone, and Reinaldo is a very skilled and knowledgeable practitioner.
Jennifer Glass, Ph.D.
POST- HEART SURGERY
We are parents of a son with postural issues due to open heart surgery he received at the age of 3. As our son grew, carried a heavy backpack to school and played video games, we watched with dismay as his body changed and he rarely appeared to stand up straight. Our attempts to assist him in correcting this, including medical specialists and physical therapy, were unsuccessful. We were aware if he was not engaged in rectifying his postural issues, it would not happen. Additionally, we were concerned about his future and health problems that seemed unavoidable if he did not address this. We were fortunate to encounter Reinaldo Couto, an expert in the Alexander Technique. Our son began seeing Reinaldo in 2011 (?) and to our delight and amazement, he began to appear taller and straighter. We witnessed him become self-aware of his body position and make minor corrections on an almost unconscious level. Our son became more self-confident and self-assured. We are eternally grateful for Reinaldo's expertise and patience in working with our son. Together they achieved what we thought was impossible. From our overflowing hearts, thank you Reinaldo.
Tony and Pam Z.
I had been taking Alexander Technique lessons for a few years from Reinaldo Couto. I have a sedentary job, and I tend to cave in at my shoulders. I have learned to sit more upright, and have noticed a lot of additional benefits from thaking the lessons. I feel more energetic (and have better focus) when I sit properly, and I have increased the shoulder width on my jacket by three sizes, with no gain in weight. I highly recommend Reinaldo as a teacher due to his gentle manner, very patient style, and knowledge and application of the Alexander Technique.
POST- HIP REPLACEMENT
I first started working with Mr. Couto a few years ago for low back pain and disability following a total hip replacement. I have found his approach to be careful thoughtful, and extrememly helpful. The Alexander Technique has been found to be an effective treatment for low back pain and disability and for me it has been useful for maintenance of my function, allowed me to resume my exercise regimen, and it's been a terrific adjunct to physical and massage therapies when they are needed. I have no hesitation when I recommend his services.
Jonathan A Sugar, MD
About ten years ago, as I was nearing 60, I realized that the scoliosis I had since a teenager was getting noticeably worse…more curvature and more discomfort. The specialist I went to see recommended immediate surgery that would basically fuse some of my vertebrae with no guarantee of pain free movement but lots of possible negative outcomes. A friend told me about Reinaldo Couto and the Alexander Technique. Although my x-rays showed a serious double curvature of my spine Reinaldo was willing to work with me. We both understood that the process would be slow and that my spine would never be perfect. 45-minute sessions were scheduled twice a week for a few years which helped keep me from losing ground. Now, although I still have scoliosis, the bone structure has changed noticeably. I stand straighter and more evenly. Movement is free and without pain. I am able to take better care of myself when I overdo and much more conscious of what I need to do to remain comfortable. I am a work in progress and I am thankful and proud of the changes that Reinaldo has been so persistent and careful to create and I look forward to continuing our work together.
LOWER BACK PAIN
I was sitting in my chiropractors office dealing with my lower back pain. Lucky for me, someone suggested I go see Reinaldo who does Alexander Technique. That was four years ago. I have seen him almost every week since. His mostly non-verbal teaching has, and continues to, nurture an awareness of natural movement that I didn't even know existed. That awareness has become a part of my daily life. Reinaldo is a great teacher.
Today, I golf several times a week, lift my grandson, and move with an increasing natural poise in everything I do from exercising to sitting as I continue to receive lessons. This has, and continues to be, one of the most worthwhile things I have ever done.