Michael Protzel began Alexander Technique lessons in 1980 at age 30. He came to lessons with chronic back pain, the culmination of a lifetime of 'body' problems - a severely swollen left knee requiring drainage at age nine, an inflamed right hip joint requiring hospitalization at age 17, recurring back spasms beginning at age fifteen, a blown-out knee requiring reconstructive surgery at age twenty. Serious vertebral disc problems in 20s and 30s.
After two years of private lessons, he entered a four year teacher-training program directed by Tom Lemens, who was trained by Patrick Macdonald. He was certified in 1986 by STAT and in 1987 by NASTAT (now AmSAT). He developed NASTAT News into a journal on the Alexander Technique, serving as Editor from 1989-1996. He was Chair of AmSAT's Professional Conduct Committee 2001-2009.
Michael is involved in other long-term self-observation processes in addition to the Alexander Technique, including psychoanalysis, Tai Chi/Qigong, Carl Stough's Breathing Coordination, and the study of jazz guitar. In the mid-1990s, Michael worked with Alexander Technique teacher Ed Bouchard and his AT student, University of Chicago measurement guru Ben Wright, on Kinesthetic Ventures, Informed by the Work of F.M. Alexander, Stanislavski, Peirce & Freud (MESA Press, 1997). This book explores the languages of art, psychology, philosophy and cognitive science to describe the Alexander Technique lesson experience.
In addition to teaching the use of the self, Michael is President and CEO of Gann Law Books, Inc., one of the few remaining small, independent law publishers in the United States. Gann specializes in publishing high-end, state-specific legal treatises, for use by attorneys and judges, that comprehensively analyze the law in a particular field of legal practice.