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  • Nikki Robinson 10:18 am on May 14, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: 10k, achilles tendonitis, back, , , itb, , , pain, , plantarfasciitis, road race, running, shin splints, training   

    Keep on Running 

    Hatfield Broad Oak’s annual 10k Road Race and 1 Mile Fun Run are on Bank Holiday Monday on 29th May. This is the 32nd year that the race has been held and it’s one of the most popular 10k races for serious and casual runners alike. It’s open to runners aged 15 and over and approximately 1500 runners take part every year. The 1 Mile Fun Run is for younger runners and their friends and family.

    It is a great event and the participants are in their final weeks of preparation. Preparation is extremely important because it’s estimated that almost 80% of runners worldwide are injured every year. At Holisticare we can help you to be ready for the run (though we won’t be running alongside you in your training runs!) and we can also help your body recover afterwards.

    Runner’s World magazine says that 10k is the UK’s most popular race distance. 10k is about 6.2 miles so it’s great for those who are building up their strength and endurance towards a half marathon or a full marathon but it’s also great for the more casual runner who possibly has less time to commit to training but still wants a reasonable length run as a challenge.

    They recommend that if you’re a first-time 10k runner you should increase your training distance gradually but about ¼ to ½ a mile at a time and UK runner Jo Pavey says to run at your own pace, take rest days and if you’ve got a niggle delay what you’re doing for a day, don’t just push through it. If you’ve got a target to achieve or beat a specific time then US Olympic runner and 10k record holder, Galen Rupp, advises varying your training practice to include runs at target pace, a little slower and a little faster.

    Female runner knee injury and pain.

    Five of the most common ailments and injuries that runners are prone to are:
    • Runner’s knee (patellofemoral pain syndrome – PFPS) – pain slightly above or below the kneecap
    • Achilles tendonitis – pain and swelling on the back of your heel
    • Plantarfasciitis – pain in the heel or underside of your foot
    • Iliotibial band syndrome – a pain-giving injury to the connective tissues – the iliotibial band which is a thick band that begins at the iliac crest in the pelvis, runs down the outer part of the thigh, and crosses the knee to attach into the top part of the shinbone
    • Shin Splints (medial tibial stress syndrome (MTSS) – a cumulative stress disorder, with shins that feel hot and pain along the inner edge of the shin bone even while resting.

    Other injuries common to runners are sprains, pulled muscles, blisters and getting a stitch. Most of these are caused by repeated stress on the bones, muscles and joints as you run on the hard surface of a road or track. Holisticare therapists can help reduce your risk of injury in your training and the race and then bring your body back to comfort after the run. We assess your posture and look at any movements that are restricted by pain or stiffness then use the John F. Barnes Myofascial Release technique to realign your body, soothe pain, release restrictions in the fascia and improve your flexibility and range of movement.

    If you, or someone you know, are planning to join the HBO 10k Road Race, make an appointment with us for before and after the race so that you can keep on running!

     
  • Nikki Robinson 6:24 pm on April 10, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: exercise, , , pain, , spring, warm up   

    Spring is the time of plans and projects 

    Tolstoy wrote that “spring is the time of plans and projects” and once the clocks go back, the sun comes out and Easter is here we, as a nation, head out into the garden to begin the next year of plans and prainbowrojects – and by the time school summer term begins we’re aching and nursing a pulled muscle or a strain. But Holisticare patients need not suffer!

    “Country Living” magazine quotes a survey that shows 69% of UK adults aged over 45 have experienced physical pain from gardening. The British College of Osteopathic Medicine say that their clinics see a huge surge in injuries, strains and sprains in the spring months. They put this down to people not preparing themselves properly for working in the garden. They equate it to an elite athlete taking a break then going straight into competition. So many of us are more sedentary over the winter months and when the days brighten we go all out, don’t pace ourselves properly, mow the lawn, dig the whole allotment, weed all the flower beds, tidy the trees…and end up with a strain or an injury.

    Of the garden equipment we use, the lawnmower is, unsurprisingly, the most dangerous. Second on the list is the flowerpot! Flowerpots are involved in approximately 5300 accidents and injuries a year with strains and sprains from lifting them as a significant factor. Backs, knees and shoulders tend to suffer the most. Think of the motions your body goes through. Backs have to put up with repetitive jarring, pulling, bending and twisting. Prolonged kneeling can aggravate the knees and increase the risk of bursitis (an inflammation of the small fluid filled sacs in your joints) because of the pressure as well as the repetitive strain which causes pain and swelling. Shoulders are the other garden injury hotspot. The shoulder is a complicated structure in order to allow the large range of vertical, horizontal and circular arm movements. This is perfect for lopping branches, trimming hedges and any other job above waist height but if the top bone of the shoulder rubs against the muscles or bursas you’re left with irritation, pain and inflammation. The neck, wrist, hip and elbow joints can also be affected and then of course there are all your muscles.

    Holisticare therapists can help you if you find yourself in pain after gardening. You knew that already so here’s the clever bit! Myofascial Release Treatment can help to prepare your body to be in the best shape it can be before you start! This will help you withstand these extra pressures and if you do still hurt yourself you’ll already have a head start on recovery. If you suffer from conditions such as, or similar to, arthritis, back, neck or muscle pain, or tennis and golfer’s elbow, preparation is particularly important.

    Gardening is exercise so it’s important to warm up. Watch our video on YouTube and let Nikki guide you with safe, gentle stretching techniques so you can reduce your risk of damage and injury. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U6FxnxP4ghc . If you have ideas for other videos that would help you please let us know.

    Now is the time to book yourself in with us to prepare for your plans and projects and put a spring in your step! Call 01279 718331 to make an appointment and remember we are open Monday-Saturday and on Wednesday and Thursday evenings.

     
  • Nikki Robinson 10:57 pm on March 13, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: endometriosis, endometriosis awareness week, gynaecology, help for endometriosis, , international women's day, , pain, period pain, , women's health   

    A Focus on Women’s Health 

    Last Wednesday, 8th March was International Women’s Day, and the week from Friday 3rd to Thursday 9th was Endometriosis Awareness Week so for this blog we are looking at women’s health with a focus on endometriosis.

    The main aims of the awareness week are:

    • to increase awareness and understanding of endometriosis as a debilitating disease
    • to highlight the consequences of living with endometriosis
    • to raise the profile of endometriosis amongst medics, educators, employers, politicians, and society in general
    • to highlight the need for best practice and consistent care for sufferers
    • to enable those affected by endometriosis to make a difference.

    So what is endometriosis? The answer given to this question rather depends on who you ask.

    A family doctor might say it’s a long term chronic condition and its symptoms can vary significantly from none to one, or a combination of, painful, heavy periods,                                                    pain in the abdomen, pelvis or lower back, infertility, fatigue, suppressed immune system, pain during and after sex, bleeding between periods, discomfort when going to the toilet, bleeding from the rectum and blood in the faeces.

    A statistician might tell you that it is a condition that affects around 2 million women in the UK, most of whom are diagnosed between the ages of 25 and 40. It is rare in women who have had their menopause. 1 in 10 women of reproductive age and 176 million women worldwide suffer from it. It’s the 2nd most common gynaecological condition in the UK (http://www.endometriosis.org).

    We asked two women from Bishop’s Stortford who have the disease to describe their experiences. This is what they had to say.

    M said, “Endometriosis isn’t just “period pains”. It’s being sick at work pain, it’s fainting on your commute pain, it’s can’t-leave-the-house pain, so bad it gives you diarrhoea. It’s 14 operations by the time you’re 35. None of it is normal, but how do you know when every woman is different? If you think your periods aren’t quite right, trust your instincts and get help.”
    J said, “There is nothing can help with chronic fatigue, it feels like you spend your days going through a mind fog! Nobody can see what is going on inside so you either spend your bad days putting on an outward smile to hide the pain you are actually suffering or you give in to it & people wonder what you are complaining about. It would be easier if you could outwardly show the mess that you have inside. I dread the symptoms coming back but sadly I know this is inevitable. Contrary to what people think they know, there is no absolute cure.

     

    3D illustration of Hip Skeleton, medical concept.

    I have tried acupuncture, reflexology, mindfulness, detoxed my beauty products & household products & followed an Endo friendly diet to help. I found heat pads & hot baths always helped too. I have had cocktails of pain meds throughout including naproxen (anti inflammatory), codeine & paracetamol (together with laxido to counteract the side effects) & oral morphine for flair ups or exacerbated periods. After surgery I was given physio which helped. I went to A&E on a couple of awful occasions when I could not get on top of the pain & was given a drip & stronger opiates. But this only lasted until sent home again.

    I was not offered the therapies or advice for these on the NHS, only through self research & our local Endometriosis UK support group. Nobody looks at the bigger picture & combines all the therapies together. It has been a frustrating journey! One of the things I have never had is a referral for pain management!”

    A Myofascial Release Therapist will say many of the things written above. At Holisticare our therapists will also advise that no, we can’t cure it but we can help you to manage and reduce your pain, tension and anxiety that comes with this disease enabling you to need fewer drugs. We can teach you methods to continue your treatment at home. If you have surgery we can help you to recover faster. We can liaise with your medical team to increase your circle of care.

    Please go to the Women’s Health section of our website http://www.holisticare.co.uk to see which other women’s health conditions we can help with or call us on 01279 718331.

     
  • Nikki Robinson 9:09 am on February 26, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: help, , nobrainer, pain, , treatment   

    It’s a no brainer! 

    Monday 27 February is No Brainer Day! You’re probably as surprised as we were to find this exists but it’s true! This “holidate” was created by Adrienne Sioux Koopersmith (self-professed Premier Eventologist of America), through Washington DC’s Insight Magazine in August 1995. The special unofficial working holiday has apparently been increasing in popularity since then.

    There are conflicting theories about the origin of “no brainer”. Some say it originated sometime between 1975 and 1980 in engineering jargon in America. However, Carl Grubert used it in a cartoon in 1959! It certainly became more popular during the 1990s and 2000s.

    The term is used to describe a problem or question that allegedly has a very easy solution, requiring little effort or thought. So how easy does a no brainer have to be to qualify? Well, in a study at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, neuroscientists found that the human brain can process images that have been flashed in front of the person for just 13 milliseconds. A no brainer is faster than that and is a decision or choice that is so easy that it requires no thinking at all!

    What, then, is the purpose of No Brainer Day?

    HeadIt is to remind us all that most things are simple and many of life’s daily problems have obvious and easy solutions. It allows us to stop over analysing things, second-guessing ourselves and to take it easy. Don’t sweat the small stuff! If you’ve got things to do which require analysis and heavy thinking, No Brainer Day isn’t the day to do them. Give your brain a mini vacation instead, it’s the brain’s special day for a rest.

    Take the day to relax and just be happy about its existence. If you absolutely can’t leave tricky problems for another day then that choice, in itself, is a no brainer celebration! See how easy it is?!

     

    At Holisticare we can make celebrating No Brainer Day even easier for you. How? Now that really IS a no brainer – book yourself a Myofascial Release Treatment appointment of course! Let us gently alleviate your pain, stiffness, anxiety, headaches and more in our calm, soothing environment. Jacina, Ali and Al look forward to your calls to book you in.

     
  • Nikki Robinson 10:25 am on February 6, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , , , , , pain, , , , , , ,   

    Mrs R’s Knee Replacement Journey – day 35 

    PURPLE_2LINEMrs R’s Knee Replacement Journey

    Mrs R had her left knee replaced 49 days ago. She is receiving at least 1 hour of Myofascial Release treatment every day at Holisticare for a few weeks.

    This is a record of her journey in her own words:

    Day after Mrs R’s thirty fourth treatment:

    “Did not sleep too well last night. No pain just slightly out of my routine so could not get off to sleep. I can now sleep on either side to sleep with no pain. Did my 1 mile this morning.

    I will be going home on Sunday – this will be after 36 days of intensive therapy from Nikki and 5 or 6 extra from Sally. I cannot believe how much I have progressed in the 7 weeks from the operation. In the beginning I never thought I was doing too good, but what I realized after about 3 weeks was that I was so much further forward than a lot of other people.

    The booklet the hospital gave me about the operation and after effects of the operation, says that between 6 and 12 weeks I might be climbing the stairs in a ‘normal’ way and I also might be walking 1/2 mile – 1 mile and maybe without my stick. Ha ha!

    So I really feel pretty pleased with my progress. I am seeing the surgeon on Monday so will do one last blog to let you know what he thinks. I’d like to think he will say that the MFR has really helped me to progress so quickly.”

    The video below shows Mrs R exercising on the pedals today.

    Please come back to tomorrow to see how Mrs R is progressing with her Myofascial Release treatment.

    Call us on 01279 718331 to book your treatment.

    We are open  Monday to Saturday, and till late on Tuesdays.

     
  • Nikki Robinson 9:21 pm on February 5, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , , , , , , pain, , , , , ,   

    Mrs R’s Knee Replacement Journey – day 34 

    PURPLE_2LINEMrs R’s Knee Replacement Journey

    Mrs R had her left knee replaced 48 days ago. She is receiving at least 1 hour of Myofascial Release treatment every day at Holisticare for a few weeks.

    This is a record of her journey in her own words:

    Day after Mrs R’s thirty third treatment:

    “No paracetamol last night but slept really well. Had another treatment from Sally on my thigh, knee and down to my ankle. Walked 1/2 mile this morning and 1/2 mile this afternoon.

    My knee has been quite sore today, so took 2 paracetamol about 3pm and they seemed to have calmed my knee down.

    Nikki has been measuring how far my knee bends every day, and I am pleased to say that it reached 105 degrees tonight. It was only bending to 50 degrees when I arrived, so I am very happy with the progress it has made.

    Please come back to tomorrow to see how Mrs R is progressing with her Myofascial Release treatment.

    Call us on 01279 718331 to book your treatment.

    We are open  Monday to Saturday, and till late on Tuesdays.

     
  • Nikki Robinson 5:49 pm on February 4, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , , , , , pain, , , , ,   

    Mrs R’s Knee Replacement Journey – day 33 

    PURPLE_2LINEMrs R’s Knee Replacement Journey

    Mrs R had her left knee replaced 47 days ago. She is receiving at least 1 hour of Myofascial Release treatment every day at Holisticare for a few weeks.

    This is a record of her journey in her own words:

    Day after Mrs R’s thirty second treatment:

    “No paracetamol at all last night or all day today, still slept really well.

    Did my 1 mile walk again today, still no stick. Just uncomfortable after walk, so did exercises and stretches to help get rid of pain.

    Another treatment from Nikki tonight, just working on the outside of my knee and scar also now. Still feeling quite tired in the afternoon even though I am sleeping really well at night.”

    Please come back to tomorrow to see how Mrs R is progressing with her Myofascial Release treatment.

    Call us on 01279 718331 to book your treatment.

    We are open  Monday to Saturday, and till late on Tuesdays.

     
  • Nikki Robinson 7:42 pm on February 3, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , , , , pain, , , , , ,   

    Mrs R’s Knee Replacement Journey – day 32 

    PURPLE_2LINEMrs R’s Knee Replacement Journey

    Mrs R had her left knee replaced 46 days ago. She is receiving at least 1 hour of Myofascial Release treatment every day at Holisticare for a few weeks.

    This is a record of her journey in her own words:

    Day after Mrs R’s thirty first treatment:

    Mrs R's knee Feb 2nd

    Mrs R’s knee Feb 2nd

    “Not such a good night’s sleep last night, no pain as such just could not get comfortable. Finished up taking 2 paracetamol at 4.30am then slept till 8am.

    Did my 1 mile walk after breakfast, no stick and it still takes me about 40 minutes.

    Another treatment from Nikki – my knee feels much better now, just my buttock still a little painful. But overall feeling much better.”

    Please come back to tomorrow to see how Mrs R is progressing with her Myofascial Release treatment.

    Call us on 01279 718331 to book your treatment.

    We are open  Monday to Saturday, and till late on Tuesdays.

     
  • Nikki Robinson 7:27 pm on February 2, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , , , , , pain, , , , ,   

    Mrs R’s Knee Replacement Journey – day 31 

    PURPLE_2LINEMrs R’s Knee Replacement Journey

    Mrs R had her left knee replaced 45 days ago. She is receiving at least 1 hour of Myofascial Release treatment every day at Holisticare for a few weeks.

    This is a record of her journey in her own words:

    Day after Mrs R’s thirtieth treatment:

    “Slept well yet again. Knee was quite stiff and uncomfortable this morning. Nikki had worked on the actual scar tissue last night so I think that could have caused the pain. Even though it was uncomfortable, I still did my 1 mile walk without a stick, as I don’t want to miss a day if I can help it.

    I have done up and down the stairs 3 times today and also exercises and stretches. I had another treatment off Nikki this afternoon and the knee felt much better. I am still struggling to bend the knee as far as it will go – the pain seems to be at the outside of the knee.”

    Please come back to tomorrow to see how Mrs R is progressing with her Myofascial Release treatment.

    Call us on 01279 718331 to book your treatment.

    We are open  Monday to Saturday, and till late on Tuesdays.

     
  • Nikki Robinson 9:07 pm on February 1, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , , , , , , pain, , , , ,   

    Mrs R’s Knee Replacement Journey – day 30 

    PURPLE_2LINEMrs R’s Knee Replacement Journey

    Mrs R had her left knee replaced 44 days ago. She is receiving at least 1 hour of Myofascial Release treatment every day at Holisticare for a few weeks.

    This is a record of her journey in her own words:

    Day after Mrs R’s twenty ninth treatment:

    “Sleeping really well at the moment. Went to watch my grandson play rugby today – stood for 2 hours, no stick and quite a long walk from the car park to the pitch and back again.

    Went for a walk after lunch, not quite a mile today. Another treatment from Nikki; she is now working on scar tissue which is more painful than any other treatment so far. It is painful but not unbearable, so I hope I am not complaining too much. Up and down stairs one time today.”

    Please come back to tomorrow to see how Mrs R is progressing with her Myofascial Release treatment.

    Call us on 01279 718331 to book your treatment.

    We are open  Monday to Saturday, and till late on Tuesdays.

     
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