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  • Nikki Robinson 5:39 pm on June 3, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , classes, essex, hertfordshire, herts, , , moving, , physiotherapy, treatment centre   

    Moving 

    This week is all about moving!

    We spent an extremely hot Bank Holiday weekend moving out of the old centre and studio and into the new and we’ve settled quickly into our new home. We’ve had some lovely comments from patients who’ve been to see us this week and we also now know we’re storm-proof after the torrential rain on Friday afternoon!

    There are four treatment rooms instead of the previous three and the studio is in-house instead of “across the way”. The rooms are all being given new names with a link to Sedona in Arizona which has one of the first John F. Barnes Myofascial Release Approach treatment and teaching centres. It is also a place where various American Indian tribes lived, such as the Yavapai and Apache, so the names are symbolic.

    The studio is named Buffalo which symbolises adaptability, strength, stability, provision and blessing. The treatment rooms are called Bear, Eagle, Horse and Wolf.
    Can you guess which treatment room belongs to which therapist from the symbol meanings?
    Bear: protector, courage, physical strength
    Eagle: Nearer to the creator, courage, wisdom, strength, messenger
    Horse: Grounded power of the earth with the whispers of wisdom found in spirit winds
    Wolf: Great warrior, guardian, creator, safety, manifest well-being.
    The door signs are in production so you’ll be able to check if you were right in the next couple of weeks!

    The whole centre is on the ground floor and is fully wheelchair, buggy and walking aid friendly. We have plenty of parking in front and to the side of the building, again fully accessible. We think it feels comfortingly familiar with a fresh, brighter, more spacious atmosphere.

    As before the studio is available for hire and as it’s now contained within our centre it has easier access to the toilet facilities, hot and cold water and is fully accessible.

    We’re sure you’ll like the environment in the new Holisticare Centre so why not book an appointment and let us help you get moving too.

    Diary

    Wednesday 7 and 21 June: Workshop for Horse Riders, Attridges Equestrian Centre, High Roding, CM6 1NQ. Part 1 only £20, both parts £35. Call us on 01279 718331

    Beginning 8th and 9th June: Free Yourself Hour Classes. 6 sessions running weekly on Thursday evenings at 6.45pm and Friday mornings at 10.15am. Learn how to release your mind and body to see instant results and achieve long term benefits. A series of 6 sessions is £120. Call us to book your place.

    IMG_3464Friday 16 June 1pm: There has been some confusion about our closing date for Helping Hands competition. The entries are being collected by the judge at 1pm on Friday 16 June so that is your deadline!

    Holisticare staff are not eligible to enter the competition but we had a go anyway just for fun – what do you think?!
    There’s no limit to how many times you enter as long as you pay a minimum of £1 per entry. Each of the 4 age categories will have a prize winner PLUS there will be an overall winner too. Don’t forget to return your entries to Reception or any Holisticare member of staff.

     

     

    Friday 30 June: Holisticare Quiz Night for St Clare Hospice. Limited table numbers so book now. Teams of up to 8 people. £8 per person. Licensed bar & raffle. Bring your own snacks. Call us on 01279 718331 asap.

     
  • Nikki Robinson 5:29 am on May 26, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: competition, , , , physiotherapy, therapist, workshop   

    A Series of Natural and Spontaneous Changes 

    Lao Tzu, the founder of Taoism, said, “Life is a series of natural and spontaneous changes. Don’t resist them…Let things flow naturally forward in whatever way they like” and we are certainly embracing changes which flow naturally forward here at Holisticare.

    You may have noticed that, sadly, one of our receptionists, Ali Bradby, has left. She had been working with us since February 2016, was a very popular member of the team and has moved on to a change of career and we are very sorry to see her go.

    In rather better news we are all very excited to announce that we will be moving into our new Treatment Centre at the end of this month. If you haven’t been to see us for a while, don’t worry, we are still in the same location but our new centre is bigger and better! All treatments from Tuesday 30 May will be in the new building and there will be sign-posted parking in front of the Centre.

    As we are expanding our centre we are also expanding our therapy team. We have taken on another Myofascial Release practitioner. We asked our new therapist a little bit about herself.

    What made you decide to train as a Myofascial Release Therapist?
    It was amazing seeing the results that were achieved by the therapy – patients coming in with pain or limited movement then leaving with a smile.

    Did you have to do anything to prepare to be an MFR therapist?
    Yes, to be able to access the specialist MFR training I had to obtain a Level 3 Bodywork qualification including Anatomy and Physiology. I chose to complete this on a fast track 13 week course which was hard work but well worth the effort. After gaining that qualification I began the Myofascial Release treatment training.

    What was the training like? Which courses did you do?
    It was amazing. It was everything I thought it might be, and more. I was trained by Ruth Duncan at Myofascial Release UK in Glasgow. Again, the training was intense but extremely enjoyable, not only learning the techniques but having the opportunity to experience what the techniques feel like from a patient’s perspective.
    The courses I studied were Myofascial Release Levels 1, 2 and 3 and Myofascial Release Assessment & Integration.

    What are you most looking forward to about being an MFR practitioner at Holisticare?
    Helping people. I’ve seen the sense of achievement that therapists experience when they see the results that MFR produces. I’m excited about feeling that sense of achievement when I’m making a positive difference to patients’ lives.

    Have you had to move far to join our specialist centre?
    No, I live locally with my husband, daughter and Jack Russell and know Nikki and the Holisticare team very well.

    AliTherapistThat sounds familiar…is that you Ali?
    Of course it is! Having successfully completed my training in Glasgow I’m back at Holisticare and raring to go as a therapist.

    Is there anything else we should have asked you?
    (laughs) When you said you wanted to interview me for the Holisticare blog I thought you were going to ask me what is my favourite food. It’s squid by the way. Being serious though, I’ve really enjoyed my first week as a Holisticare MFR practitioner and look forward to treating many more patients.

    So there you have it, we didn’t lose Ali at all! We’re sure that you will be as thrilled as we are that she is our new therapist.

    Diary
    Saturday 3 June: Essential Skincare & Allergy Relief Workshop 1.30 – 4.30pm Led by Tara Whittle using DoTerra Certified Therapeutic Grade Essential Oils. £25 per person. Limited places so call 07985 751059 or email tara.naturallyattuned@gmail.com to book your space. This workshop will be held in our new Centre.

    Wednesday 7 and 21 June: Workshop for Horse Riders, Attridges Equestrian Centre, High Roding, CM6 1NQ. Part 1 only £20, both parts £35. Call us on 01279 718331

    Friday 16 June: Closing date for Helping Hands competition. If you haven’t joined in yet you still have time to get creative. It’s open to everyone from pre-school age upwards, there’s no limit to how many times you enter as long as you pay a minimum of £1 per entry. Each of the 4 age categories will have a winner PLUS there will be an overall winner too. Return your entries to Reception or any Holisticare member of staff.

    Friday 30 June: Holisticare Quiz Night for St Clare Hospice. Limited table numbers so book now. Teams of up to 8 people. £8 per person. Licensed bar & raffle. Bring your own snacks. Call us on 01279 718331 asap.

     
  • Nikki Robinson 10:18 am on May 14, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: 10k, achilles tendonitis, back, , , itb, , , , physiotherapy, 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 1:45 pm on May 1, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: asthma, , fascia, , , , , physiotherapy, research, restrictions, shortness of breath, , wheezing   

    Breathe In 

    breathingWorld Asthma Day is an annual event organised by the Global Initiative for Asthma to improve awareness and care for sufferers. This year it is on Tuesday 2nd May so this week is an ideal opportunity to tell you that Myofascial Release Treatment could be of benefit if you are affected by asthma.

    Fascia is a tissue throughout the body in a three dimensional web from head to toe. It holds your cells in their place, including muscles, bones, nerves, organs and vessels. It guards against overextension and absorbs tensile and compressive forces. If our fascia is restricted these forces cannot be dispersed. Myofascial release aims to relieve soft tissue and fascial restriction to enable patients to achieve a more normal range of movement.

    What has this got to do with asthma?

    In 1999 a post-graduate student at Oklahoma State University carried out a study on “Physical Therapy Intervention in Childhood Asthma: Myofascial Release Techniques and Massage”, using the gentle, non-invasive John Barnes technique that we use at Holisticare, for her Master of Science Degree.

    Data was gathered from parents about the frequency of their children’s asthmatic episodes and their prescribed medication in the 2 years prior to MFR treatment and in the year post-treatment. A control group received ordinary massage. The Myofascial techniques used were temporal, mandibular, maxillary, hyoid, thoracic inlet and respiratory diaphragm releases.

    The control group did show some improvement after treatment but the Myofascial Release group showed marked improvement. In the year post-treatment 75% of the MFR group showed a reduction in asthmatic episodes and the remaining 25% stayed the same, and most subjects reported a reduction in required medication in either frequency of dose or number of different medications. Although it was quite a small study the results are positive.

    It is thought that by releasing the tightened fascial system the pressure on the lungs, autonomic nervous system, or the cranial nerves supplying the pulmonary system is reduced, thereby reducing the symptoms of asthma.

    While Myofascial Release is not a cure for asthma it may help you breathe more easily. Call us for an appointment on 01279 718331.

    Reminders

    Our Helping Hands Competition in aid of St Clare Hospice is up and running and is open to all age groups from pre-school upwards.
    We are now taking booking for teams (of up to 8 people) for our Quiz Night on Friday 30 June and raffle tickets are also now on sale.
    If you would like to enter the competition, book a team, buy raffle tickets or donate a raffle prize please get in touch on 01279 718331 or talk to any of the Holisticare Team who will be happy to help.

     
  • Nikki Robinson 9:10 pm on April 17, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: emotions, fight or flight, , how to relax, , overwhelm, physiotherapy, , relaxation, stress   

    Calm in the chaos 

    Stress has always been a part of human existence and modern life is no different. The causes of stress and how we manage it are, however, distinctly contrasting. We can face stressful events at work, for example work overload, redundancy and retirement. Family life throws more stress at us, such as being a carer, having a baby, moving house, becoming ill, getting divorced, losing someone we love and having financial issues. While we can’t change what is causing you stress we, at Holisticare, can help your body manage the effects better.

    How our symptoms of stress manifest themselves is unique to every individual but commonly there is a combination of emotional, mental and physical symptoms. Emotionally you may feel agitated, moody, overwhelmed or out of control. You may find relaxing difficult or feel bad about yourself and rely more on negative habits such as drinking too much or using drugs or cigarettes. Mentally it might be harder for you to make decisions, you worry constantly with your thoughts racing and you may slip into depression and anxiety. Physically your body will be shouting at you to take notice with headaches, low energy, aches, pains and tense muscles, possibly with diarrhoea, constipation or nausea, excess sweating, clenching jaw and grinding teeth and the frightening chest pain and rapid heartbeat of a panic attack.

    There is something which can help though. Myofascial Release treatment can help alleviate all these symptoms by gently loosening up the tension. The psoas is an extremely important muscle in the body. It is the only muscle which connects the top half of your body to the bottom – the spine to the legs. It’s important for posture and movement and is known as the “fight or flight muscle” sunsetbecause when you are under stress it contracts and tightens setting your body ready to tackle the perceived threat.

    While some stress can be positive and helps to keep you alert and ready to avoid danger it becomes negative when you face continuous challenges without relief or relaxation between the challenges. The psoas, and other parts of your body, store up this tension and you get the symptoms listed above.

    Our therapists can gently work through the layers and layers of fascial restriction created by constant stress, allowing your body to release and relax, to loosen and feel lighter in a warm, safe and comfortable environment.

    Let Holisticare be your oasis of calm in the chaos of daily life. Book an appointment and allow us to help you soften and unwind, reducing the effects of stress and letting your body know you’re listening.

    Call 01279 718331 and visit our website http://www.holisticare.co.uk

     
  • Nikki Robinson 10:57 pm on March 13, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: endometriosis, endometriosis awareness week, gynaecology, help for endometriosis, , international women's day, , , period pain, physiotherapy, 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, , physiotherapy, 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 5:00 pm on February 9, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , physiotherapy, , , , ,   

    Update from Mrs R 

    PURPLE_2LINEMrs R’s Knee Replacement Journey

    Mrs R had her left knee replaced on December 17th 2015 . She is received at least 1 hour of Myofascial Release treatment every day at Holisticare for 5 weeks.

    This is an update of her progress in her own words:

    Day after Mrs R’s follow-up appointment with the surgeon:

    “Just to say I am back at home. Had a good nights sleep, no paracetamol last night or today so far.

    Went to see the surgeon who did my operation today, and I think he was really surprised at my progress. He did not say in so many words, but I think his face said it all. He said the walking was excellent, and the bending and straightening of my leg were also excellent. I am to keep doing what I am doing, and he will see me in 1 years time.

    So I will say good-bye for now and I will update this Blog in 12 months time. One last big THANK YOU to Nikki & Sally. 

    MRS.R

    Call us on 01279 718331 to book your treatment.

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

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

    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: , , , , , , , , , , , physiotherapy, , , , ,   

    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.

     
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