Alba Emoting

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What is Alba Emoting?

Emotional Effector Patterns are the origins of this method, and they have  been called the BOS Method, Alba Emoting, Alba Technique, and the Alba Method by different practitioners and associations over the years.

Emotional Effector Patterns are the results of foundational research supporting these methods. They are precise breathing and muscle manipulation patterns learned in gradual developmental exercises that help a person control and regulate emotions.  Each effector pattern has three parts: (1) a breathing pattern, (2) facial expression, and (3) postural attitude. All three parts work together to create one effector pattern, or biological code, that directly stimulates cells and organs. The resulting pattern creates a physical code that opens the door for one particular basic emotion to express throughout the entire body.

The discovery of these patterns helped to create a somatic method for evoking and regulating emotion. The patterns are based on scientific findings, independent of gender or social heritage influences, and result in the expression of basic universal emotions and modes of expression.

The emotional effector patterns were first discovered during research completed in Santiago, Chile at the University of Chile between 1971-1973, where Susana Bloch, a full professor of neurophysiology and her colleague, Guy Santibáñez, worked together in the Medical School’s department of Physiology and the department of Psychology. They also collaborated with Pedro Orthous, professor of Dramatic Art from the Drama department to bring the scientific discoveries of the emotional effector patterns into a physical emotion regulation method they called the BOS Method (using the letters from their last names to create BOS).[1]

[1] Susana Bloch, Pedro Orthous, and Guy Santibanez-H, “Effector Patterns of Basic Emotions: A Psychophysiological Method for Training Actors,” Journal of Social Biological Structure, 10 (January 1987) 1-19.

When taught by a certified instructor, it is a safe, non-psychoanalytic approach to releasing and guiding emotional states.

When attending an emotional effector pattern training, you can…

  • Increase awareness of limiting emotional habits and entangled “mixed” emotions
  • Transform emotion to a neutral state where no emotion is present
  • Learn to turn up or turn down the intensity of your emotions
  • Acquire a body-centered practice that allows you to release emotional energy held in the body
  • Learn to observe the emotions, in one’s self and in others, based on breathing and muscular cues

Emotional effector pattern training is not a form of therapy and does not address life issues or provide counseling. It is a physical technique that focuses entirely on the ability to control your own body as the access to your emotions. The program is taught in a series of short experiential sessions that focus on practice of the technique through  our direct experience in our bodies.  This program is ideal for anyone interested in greater self-awareness, self-expression, or personal transformation. It will also be especially valuable for actors, coaches, therapists, and body-workers.

Susana Bloch Admiring the Sun

Susana Bloch Admiring the Sun


The Sadness Pattern

The Sadness Pattern

How can one willingly evoke emotion?
Emotions are “functional states of the entire organism that imply simultaneously physiological (organic) processes and psychological (mental) processes.”  Susana Bloch found that defining emotions as,

“A complex functional state of the entire organism which implies simultaneously physiological activities, expressive behavior, and an inner experience” and proposes no sequential order to these three levels.   She discovered that in order to evoke the emotion throughout the whole self, one must utilize “three parallel and interconnected levels:  an expressive level (facial and postural), a physiological level (organic) and a subjective level (mental).

Emotional effector patterns are derived from the first two objective and quantifiable levels, expressive and physiological, and allow for the individual to fill in the third and subjective “feelings” level as they achieve an emotional induction.  In support of all people learning Alba Emoting, Dr. Bloch states,

What is an Effector Pattern?

An effector is an agent causing an effect, or a procedure that produces an effect, ie. a nerve ending activating a muscle or a molecule affecting an enzyme activity.  If one applies a series of effector patterns, one might achieve a holistic physiological effect throughout the whole self.

How does Alba Emoting utilize these effector patterns?
Alba Emoting identifies six “basic” emotions from which all others derive. Each of the basic emotions, as well as emotional neutrality, has its own unique, identifiable set of bodily responses (“effector patterns”), which are universal to all humans. By reproducing three aspects of these patterns — breathing, posture, and facial expression — an person can experience and express genuine, organic emotion at will, without the use of memory or images.

After Step Out

After Step Out

Most important, through the use of the seventh pattern, called a “step- out,” a person can leave any emotion just as easily and return to psychophysical neutrality. The ability to return to emotional neutrality creates a solid foundation for safe emotional work, and is therefore central to the Alba Emoting technique. Once learned correctly, the step-out pattern is effective regardless of how an emotional state was initially aroused.

Although Alba Emoting was first developed as a technique for actors, exploration of therapeutic applications in the fields of psychology, coaching, sociology, and other human service vocations is well underway.  

What should I keep in mind as I learn Alba Emoting?
The Alba Emoting training process can be broken down into three stages. Most people will have progressed to the second stage by the end of beginning training; the third stage develops independently with application and practice.

Patterns are produced to their greatest intensity, with attention only to technical precision. The appearance of the emotion is stereotypical, oversized, and usually ingenuine.

Accurate technical production of the effector patterns induces a genuine experience of emotion in the actor (this may or may not involve the emergence of memories and/or images). The patterns merge with the organic experience and subtly individuate without losing their basic integrity; the appearance, and experience, of the emotion becomes genuine.

A person is able to engage the physiological experience and expression of emotion with or without corresponding subjective experience: i.e., the person can choose whether, and how much, to engage personal associations. The person can, at will, control intensity of emotion, move from one emotion to another, and blend emotions to create truthful interaction.

As technical ease increases, expression of organic emotion flows freely from concentration on circumstances, interaction with other individuals, etc. — with no need for conscious use of the patterns. The person can also choose to make conscious adjustments to change, clarify, intensify, or sustain an emotional state.

Alba Emoting Certification Levels Explained


About certification: Certification in Alba Emoting is at no level automatic; levels are conferred not according to hours spent in training, but by the individual’s skill development and maturity as determined by an appropriately certified trainer. The purpose of certifications in Alba Emoting is to protect the integrity of the work and to insure quality of experience and transmission of knowledge for students, practitioners, and teachers. Adherence to the privileges and limitations of each Certification Level (CL) must be accepted and followed by all practitioners as a point of honor.


International certification in the study and practice of the Alba Emoting method distinguishes 6 Certification Levels (CL):

CL1      Introduction level

CL2      Basic level

CL3      Scholar level

CL4      Professional level

CL5      Academic level

CL6      Master level

Only people certified in levels CL4, CL5 (and, of course, CL6) are authorized to independently train people, giving Alba Emoting established certification below their level.

Each level is linked to one of the following specializations:


A          Universal teacher, includes all the following specializations.

B          Teacher specialized in Psychology

C          Teacher specialized in Performing Arts

D          Teacher specialized in Organizational Development / Business

E          Teacher specialized in Education

F          Teacher specialized in Medical, Paramedical and health professions.


Introduction Level (CL 1)

Required teacher: CL6, CL5, CL4, and supervised CL3.

Objectives: Familiarity with some of the six effector patterns and Step-Out.

Requirements: none.

Authorized use: Self-use only.

Basic Level (CL2)

Required teacher: CL6, CL5, and supervised CL4.

Objectives: mastery of the six effector patterns, Step-Out, sufficient to self-correct, and to accurately observe them in others.

Requirements: CL1

Authorized use: self- use only.

Scholar Level (CL3)

Required teacher: CL6, CL5, and CL4 only training in their own specialization area. Certification can only come from CL6 and CL5.

Objectives: Mastery of the six effector patterns and Step-Out sufficient to be capable to reproduce them at will; work with Alba Emoting in the applicant’s specialization area; to go deeper in the scientific study of emotions; and to start the training as Alba Emoting teacher.

Requirements: CL1, CL2

– work as an assistant in, at least, 2 CL1/CL2 workshops

– training meetings

– physical training

– writing an article or a testimony about a specific issue related to Alba Emoting use

– final approval only comes after the applicant leads a CL1 workshop under a C5 teacher supervision.

Authorized use: training CL1 and CL2 in the applicant’s specialization area; personal and professional use of the method.

VERY IMPORTANT FOR PERFORMERS: This level may sometimes be given as a non-teaching, just practitioner certification, called CL3P.

Professional Level (CL4)

Required teacher: CL5, with previous authorization from Susana Bloch.

Objectives: Mastery of the six effector patterns and Step-Out sufficient to holistic professional use of the method and training others.

Requirements: CL3

Authorized Use: Professional use of the Alba Emoting method.

Academic Level (CL5)

Required teacher: Only Susana Bloch and Pedro Sándor or their replacement when they retire.

Objectives: to train Alba Emoting teachers, diffuse the method internationally and hopefully write articles, papers or books.

Requirements: CL 4

Authorized Use: professional use, and teacher training.

 Master Level (CL6)

 Prof. Susana Bloch and Pedro Sándor are the only Master Level Teachers in Alba Emoting until they retire. When that happens, Alba Emoting Ltda., by majority of votes from its Council, will give this CL6 to the most relevant person in the world with certification CL5.

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