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Self-help Tips for Upper Crossed Syndrome?

Upper Cross Syndrome can occur in all types of people as it results from a poor posture. It is very common in people who spend long days in front of a desk with a hunched back.

There are some simple things you can do at home that can help reduce Upper Cross Syndrome from occurring.

What Does Upper Cross Syndrome Look Like?

The signs to look for are, a forward head position, rounded shoulders and neck, protracted shoulder blades (scapula) and winging of the shoulder blades.

Man facing right with rounded shoulders and a forward head position. All signs of Upper Cross Syndrome.

Visual of signs of Upper Cross Syndrome

What Happens to the muscles with Upper Cross Syndrome?

The muscles at the front (Pectoralis Major/Minor) and around the back of the neck (Upper Trapezius/ Levator Scapula) shorten in a content contraction. These are called facilitated muscles.

The muscles at the middle back (Middle/Lower Trapezius, Rhomboid Major/Minor) lengthen. This are called inhibited muscles.

We need to get the facilitated muscles to lengthen/stretch.

We need to get the inhibited muscles to re activate and contract to its normal range.

For more information on upper cross syndrome see my blog ‘how can sports massage help upper cross syndrome?’ .

What Can You Do To Help Upper Cross Syndrome?

There are three things you need to remember.

  1. Activate – Get muscle moving properly
  2. Posture – Think about how you stand/sit
  3. Strengthen – Get the muscles stronger

Activate

Don’t stay too long at your desk. Those with desk jobs are most at risk as they spend a lot of the time hunched over a computer screen.

Some offices are helping this by introducing stand up desks.

Try taking small breaks away from your desk, walking around; any sort of activity will help activate your muscles.

This also applies to those who work with their arms in front of them all the time. E.g. labourers, electricians etc.

Posture

Working on your posture is key; you do not want to maintain a rounded shoulder. Always think tall and imagine you are pressing a pencil between your shoulder blades.

You can try raising your computer screen so that it is eye level to reduce hunching over. You can do this by placing books under the monitor.

Look at your chair. You can put a cushion at the lumbar spine (small of the back). This will help prevent slouching.

Woman working at desk with a raised monitor to help reduce Upper Cross Syndrome.

Raised monitor when working at desk to help reduce Upper Cross Syndrome.

Man facing right with retracted shoulders and a neutral head position. Good posture.

Visual demonstration of good posture.

Strengthen

By doing some basic strength exercises you can help realign your muscles and improve your posture at the same time.

These are a few exercises you can do to help activate the inhibited muscles (in-between shoulder blades). A foam mat or soft surface is needed.

Front Raise Thumb up

This exercise for activating the rhomboids is called Front Raise Thumb up.

  1. You start by lying on your front head down.
  2. You place your arm above your head with thumbs up towards the ceiling.
  3. Then you raise your arms off the floor keeping your elbows straight.
  4. Squeeze your shoulder blades together.
  5. Hold for 15 Seconds then rest for 30 Seconds (dependant on ability)
  6. Repeat 3 times.
    Man lying on front head down with arms out stretched above head contracting rhomboid muscles. Far away view.

    Visual demonstration of Front Raise Thumb Up exercise for Upper Cross Syndrome.

    Man lying on front head down with arms out stretched above head contracting rhomboid muscles. Close view.

    Close visual demonstration of Front Raise Thumb Up exercise for Upper Cross Syndrome.

External Rotation

This exercise for activating the rhomboids is called External rotation.

  1. Start by lying on your side with knees slightly bent and head resting on arm on floor.
  2. Hold the other arm in front of you extended, resting on the floor.
  3. Then slowly externally rotate (lift up) into the air to be in line with the shoulder, Keeping the arm straight.
  4. Pull the shoulder blades together. Hold at the top for 8 seconds then move slowly back down to the floor.
  5. Repeat 5 times on each arm.
  6. Can progress by adding small weight (Dumbbells or a can of soup)
    : Man lying on side with knees slightly bent and head resting on arm on floor with the opposite arm held in front straight resting on the floor.

    Visual demonstration of External Rotation exercise for Upper Cross Syndrome (arm down)

    Man lying on side with knees slightly bent and head resting on arm on floor with the opposite arm straight in air in line with shoulder.

    Visual demonstration of External Rotation exercise for Upper Cross Syndrome (arm up)

Scapulae Retractions

This exercise for activating the rhomboids is called Scapulae Retractions.

  1. You start by lying on your front with your head down.
  2. Place arms straight out to the sides at 90 degrees resting on the floor.
  3. Squeezing your shoulder blades together to activate the rhomboids and raise your arms up.
  4. Hold for 10 Seconds then rest for 20 Seconds (dependant on ability)
  5. Repeat 3 times.
    Man lying on front head down arms straight at the sides at 90 degrees resting on the floor.

    Visual demonstration of Scapulae Retractions exercise for Upper Cross Syndrome (arms down)

    Man lying on front head down arms straight at the sides with rhomboids activated arms raised.

    Visual demonstration of Scapulae Retractions exercise for Upper Cross Syndrome (arms raised)

Self-Massage At Home:

If you are suffering with neck or back pain at home after a long day at work, you can do something to help ease these symptoms alongside these exercises.

Self-massage is a way for you to deactivate trigger points (knots) or stretch out the muscles from home.

If you have a tennis ball or massage ball you can hold this against your neck/back muscles and roll.

Target the sore spots and hold it on them until the pain dulls or for 20 seconds.

The pain should never go over 7/10.

A woman’s back and neck, holding a blue massage ball to neck. Targeting trigger points.

Self-massage with massage ball to ease Upper Cross Syndrome.

Pectoralis Stretches

You can also try some pectoralis stretches, using a door frame.

Lean your arm against the surface about 90 degrees at shoulder and at elbow. Push against until you feel the stretch. Hold for 30 seconds then come off, relax. Repeat 3 times.

Keep it up!

To prevent or correct upper cross syndrome, it is like any form of training. You have to keep these things going, if you want results. Maintain these self-help tips and you will see amazing outcomes.

The chiropractors and massage therapists here at Lushington Chiropractic in Eastbourne can offer lots of self help tips and posture exercises, please take a look at some of the other blogs you’ll find here and have a look at our website.

Thanks for reading.

Lizzie

 

 

 

 

 

 

How Can Sports Massage Help Upper Cross Syndrome?

Upper Cross Syndrome is a condition that results from poor posture and inactivity. Sports massage is a brilliant way to help reduce the aches and pains that are associated with people who spend long hours in front of a desk.

Working in Eastbourne at Lushington Chiropractic I have come across many people unknowingly suffering from upper cross syndrome. They suffer with upper back pain, mainly between their shoulder blades. This is more noticeable after a long day at work in front of a desk or at a computer.

Image shows man who is suffering from upper cross syndrome

Upper Cross Syndrome

What is Upper Cross Syndrome?

It is a result of poor sitting positions adopted by people when working at desks for prolonged periods of time. Unfortunately for many the requirements of most jobs involve many hours in the same stationary posture resulting in the upper body slowly becoming hunched. This causes facilitated muscles (tightened muscles) and inhibited muscles (lengthened and weakened muscles).

The result:

  • Forward head
  • Increased rounding of the neck and hunching of the upper back
  • Rounded shoulders (Elevated and protracted shoulder blades)
  • winging of the shoulder blades (scapula), where the shoulder blades come away from the rib-cage

Facilitated Muscles:

Facilitated muscles are shortened, as they’re in constant contraction, reducing movement.

  • Upper Trapezius (tops of the shoulders)
  • Levator Scapula (top of the upper back)
  • Pectoralis Major/Minor (front of the chest)

Inhibited Muscles

Inhibited muscles lengthen as they’ve lost activation and cannot fully contract.

  • The Deep Cervical Flexors (front of the neck)
  • Middle/Lower Trapezius (middle of the back)
  • Rhomboid Major/Minor (between shoulder blades)

This imbalance creates joint dysfunction in the neck, the spine and the shoulders.

Image shows lady sitting in front of a laptop computer who has a poor sitting position which could cause upper cross syndrome

Poor sitting position could be the cause of tight or weak muscles.

Upper Cross Syndrome is seen in Swimming

As a swimmer for Eastbourne swimming club, I have trained and competed with some amazing athletes. Not many people know that in swimming Upper Cross Syndrome is very common.

In swimmers, due to the upper body power needed, there is often a tightening in the pectoral muscles. This causes a rounded shoulder frame.

If left unseen to, this can cause the swimmer problems during training sessions and also competitions, often leaving the swimmer unable to train. One week out of the pool for a swimmer takes two weeks to get back to the original standard.

This can be costly for competitors.

The Dangers of Upper Cross Syndrome

If you’ve got upper cross syndrome you’re at more risk of developing neck, back and shoulder pain or injury.

When you’ve got upper cross syndrome there’s more pressure on your neck joints and strain on the muscles around your shoulders and upper back. These get achy, sore and can even result in early wear and tear.

In upper crossed posture your shoulder blades may “wing” (stick out), which can pinch or catch on the tendons around your shoulder. This pinching can result in shoulder pain and injury (e.g. tendinopathy).

Image shows man with 'winged shoulder blades'. In upper crossed posture your shoulder blades may “wing” (stick out),

Winging of the scapula

 

How Can Sports Massage Help?

Sports Massage can be a brilliant tool to help reduce upper cross syndrome as it can target the individual muscles being affected.

For those “tightened muscles” such as the Upper Trapezius, Levator Scapulae, Pectoralis Major/Minor, massage can help stretch and relax the muscle back into their natural condition. We can also advise on relevant exercises and stretches to help improve things faster.

For the “inhibited muscles” massage can help reactivate and stimulate them back into working order.

Since working at Lushington Chiropractic in Eastbourne I have found immediate results. Massage can have a visual improvement after the first session.

It is important to work on your posture as the muscles will start going back into their old bad upper cross posture.

Image shows lady sitting correctly whilst working on her laptop. It is important to work on your posture as the muscles will start going back into their old bad upper cross posture.

It is important to work on your posture as the muscles will start going back into their old bad upper cross posture.

What Next?

For upper cross syndrome it is important to work on strengthening those inhibited muscles as soon as possible. For Advice on how to do so look out for my next blog, Self-Help Tips For Upper Cross Syndrome.

This will explore easy ways to help correct your posture in day to day activities, including when at work. It will also take you through some easy activation exercises.

Look forward to seeing you next time,

Lizzie your Eastbourne sports massage therapist

 

Get to Know Lizzie Wright

Getting to Know Lizzie

Hello I’m Lizzie Wright the newest member of the Lushington Chiropractic Sports Massage Team  – It wasn’t until I went to university that I understood that sports massage is not just useful to competitive sports people but is beneficial to everyone.

How did I find out about Sports Massage?

As a competitive swimmer I surprisingly didn’t have too much experience of sports massage and it was not until I went to university that it was fully introduced to me. It was my swimming ability that put me on the sporting spectrum and I quickly became very interested in the science that existed within competitive sport especially on how the body functions when exposed to the huge demands placed upon it during demanding training sessions and competitions. This interest ultimately led me to study Sport Conditioning, Rehabilitation and Massage at Cardiff Metropolitan University, where after three years of dedicated study I left with a first class (Hon) degree and full accreditation in massage. I was extremely fortunate to have had the opportunity to work closely with the Welsh Triathlon and a full range of high quality sporting athletes.

Image shows Lizzie Wright and colleagues

Lizzie Wright at the London Marathon

I also thoroughly enjoyed massaging at the London marathon, the Cardiff half marathon and several British University College Sports (BUCS) national swimming competitions. I honestly thought I would not embrace sports massage as I was aware that some scepticism existed when I was competing. However through the positive impact I witnessed with the work I undertook at university it soon became one of my favourite modules along with rehabilitation. I am fascinated and amazed by how the body works, understanding  the effects that some everyday actions can have, and learning what observations and tests can be performed to accurately calculate what injury has taken place and as a sports massage therapist help and treat them (truly interesting and very rewarding).

What I love about Eastbourne:

Image shows Eastbourne seafront to accompany the blog getting to know Lizzie Wright o

Eastbourne Seafront

I consider myself lucky to grow up here in Eastbourne as I consider it to be a wonderful seaside town surrounded by beautiful countryside including the stunning South Downs. As a child I was always in the sea and whilst I learned to respect the sea I never fully understood the fears that were common in some of my peers linked to water: the fear of the ocean (the unknown) and being out of your depth. I remember being irritated if I could touch the floor as the sea always represented freedom and space and remains one of my favourite places to be.

What made me want to swim?

From a young age swimming was a large part of my life and has played a significant part in the person I have become. The facts as to how I first became interested in swimming are unusual as it was from a computer game which my older brothers used to play that inspired me. I was only three years of age and I wanted to be just like “Lara Croft” who was the main character and who did a lot of swimming during the game. So when I went to nursery school which included access to a swimming pool; I took off my armbands and started swimming breaststroke underwater.

Image shows Lizzie Wright preparing to swim for Eastbourne Swimming Club

Lizzie Wright preparing to swim for Eastbourne Swimming Club

 

Image shows Lizzie Wright swimming for Eastbourne Swimming Club

Lizzie Wright swimming for Eastbourne Swimming Club

I was subsequently introduced to Eastbourne swimming club, where I became Girls Captain when I was 13 and remained the captain for the next 8 years, until I left for university. I swam at numerous county and regional competitions and was selected twice to represent the South of England at the ESSA national schools competition held in Liverpool. When I went to university I was chosen to be part of the performance squad which meant I represented my university at the BUCS championships, held twice a year in Sheffield at the International sports centre. 2018 will be the first year that I would have not competed, which is a little strange. Competition was not my true motivation for swimming, it is simply that I love the water. I do like and enjoy training which is just as well as at one point I was training up to 20 hours a week at the same time as balancing my college education and social life.

Swim Teaching:

My involvement in swimming has changed over the past year to become more involved in teaching and training the next generation of young swimmers. I have become a qualified level two swim teacher and I now also work for a small swim school in Eastbourne called Eastbourne Otters, as well as volunteering three times a week to teach for Eastbourne Swimming Club. From teaching I have learned observations and problem solving skills as well as the importance of knowing every swimmers name (because it’s so important to them). Some of the very young beginners have a fear of water and it is such a sense of satisfaction when after a while, I see their confidence and swimming skills grow, which is an important life skill but it often also leads and introduces them to sport.

Working at Lushington Chiropractic:

I am very much looking forward to working at Lushington Chiropractic. Everyone is very welcoming and have high professional standards where their main goal is to help and educate as many people they can to ensure their well being and health. What I find remarkable is the way multi disciplines work together to truly help the individual client. Lushington Chiropractic is a place of excellence with a friendly atmosphere located in the heart of Eastbourne town.

 

Foam Roller Friday – Myofascial release ITB

Introducing my new top tip series “Foam Roller Fridays”.

From time to time I will be posting videos on how best to use a foam roller for myofascial release. Foam rolling is a form of myofascial release that can be used by oneself.

Image shows Sports Massage Therapist Oly Ody outside of Lushington Chiropractic in Eastbourne

Sports Massage Therapist at Lushington Chiropractic Oly Ody

Fascia

Fascia is a huge continuous system made up of elastin and collagen that covers and interweaves through muscle, bone, nerves and blood vessels. In a healthy state the fascia is a wavy formation of tissue and is pliable. There are various factors that can impact on the state of fascia such as physical trauma caused by accidents, poor posture, repetitive stress, surgery and inflammation. Tightness in fascia can also be dependent emotional stress and wellness too.

Restrictions or tightness in fascia exerts pressure on the system that cause pain and tension related headaches from a wellness perspective and restricted movement and instability from a performance perspective. Myofascial release aims to remove the restrictions in the body’s fascia that are causing dysfunction or pain.

My first video covers the Iliotibial band or the ITB.

This is a commonly tight piece of connective tissue that can cause a variety of knee and hip pain and dysfunction. The ITB originates at the iliac tubercle portion of the iliac crest and inserts to the lateral condyle of the tibia – basically saying it attaches from the pelvis down the outside of the thigh to the outside of the knee. Tightness in the ITB can also restrict certain movement patterns inhibiting performance and increasing risk of injury.

The ITB is often very painful to release and generally has numerous points along the band that create tightness. When foam rolling the ITB people tend to lay directly onto the band. Personally I find that 1) that is extremely painful causing greater tension within the fascia limiting the point of the exercise and 2) with the thigh/quadriceps there are a lot of crossover points where fascia tends to bind creating stiffness. By putting direct pressure onto the ITB I find that it can lead to it sticking to the tissues beneath creating more stiffness.

As shown in the video my techniques apply pressure from below and above the ITB creating a stretch on the tissue and a lifting pull on the band freeing it from the tissues beneath. My technique also allows for easy pressure management so you can hold each trigger point to the right level to allow it to release rather than tighten further.

Try this technique before and after sport/training to maximise your movement potential or if you are suffering from any knee or hip related pain or discomfort try foam rolling your ITB daily to see if that relieves your symptoms.

Watch my video on myofascial release here

You can check out further hints and tips from the Massage Therapists and Chiropractors at Lushington Chiropractic by checking out our online chiropractic blog Backblog.

Look out for my next blog in February when I will be covering Latissimus Dorsi commonly known as “the lats”.

Oly

A Day in the Life of the Lushington Massage Therapists

Ever wondered what a typical Tuesday is like for your massage therapist?

Although each day varies, we thought it would be really nice to share with you what the massage therapists day was like on a typical Tuesday in November.

Lushington Chiropractic’s massage therapist Andy Swan gets ready to start his day by setting up the room.

7:00 am

Arrive at Lushington Chiropractic Clinic in Eastbourne ready for a busy Tuesday morning as massage therapist. I grab my files for the day and begin by setting up the room for my first guest.

Lushington Chiropractic's massage therapist Andy Swan gets ready to start his day by setting up the room.

Lushington Chiropractic’s massage therapist Andy Swan gets ready to start his day by setting up the room.

7:40am

First guest of the day an inspiring older lady with some ongoing neck and lower back pain. It is a real privilege to be able to help people who walk in with pain and discomfort but with a treatment plan and a little bit of work the results can be outstanding. After her massage she walks out straighter and taller and I am left thinking I hope I am as capable and able when I get to that age.

What is really exciting about working here at Lushington is the sheer variety of conditions and ailments that we deal with on a daily basis. Everything from general aches and pains to osteoarthritis of various joints to general stress relief from day to day stress and overwhelm.

Next guest an older gentleman with arthritis in his hip. He has regular massage as maintenance and management for his hip pain. This would involve some deep tissue massage along with some stretching protocols using the Active Isolated Stretching Method. These are  great take home techniques which really help keep the musculoskeletal system moving and opening in between regular massage sessions.

10:30am

Midmorning neck pain, shoulders arthritic pain and now some general maintenance massage, many guests have found that regular massage after the initial condition or ailment has been resolved keeps everything working and functioning better and also helps take care of any other underlying issues.

It can be really inspiring seeing the get up and go that our guests have and how committed they can be with their treatment plans.

It must be one of the best feelings to be able to help people and to see their continued improvement day to day.

Busy but exciting morning working with all these various conditions it never gets boring here as there is so much variety.

1:10pm

Close of shift for this Tuesday morning time to change the couch covers and prep the room for the next practitioner and then off to our weekly team meeting.

Andy Swan

Next we hear from Oly Ody who is working the afternoon shift.

13:10

After a busy morning Personal Training at the Brighton University Gym in Meads, Eastbourne, I have just arrived in the town centre to Lushington Chiropractic, to start my shift as massage therapist. The chiropractic and massage team always meet on Tuesdays to discuss our guests and their treatment plans.

I enjoy working with the chiropractors in this multi-disciplinary way because it helps everyone to focus the attention on the guest and exactly what they need – rather than just doing the treatment you’re good at and not suggesting someone else who may be better able to help with a particular condition or problem. I think this ensures that our guests get the best possible care from both chiropractic and massage treatment modalities, plus any rehab exercises we’re working on.

Image shows Lushington Massage Therapist Oly Ody's room set up

Lushington Massage Therapist Oly Ody has set up his room for the day.

Once I’d seen all of the chiropractors and discussed cases I set up my massage room for my first massage of the day.

16:20

A quick 10-minute break between massages, I have seen 3 people already for massage and rehabilitation exercises. Everyone is doing very well with their treatment.

The first two massage patients were new to me last week. They are a husband and wife who booked in for a double massage each. The double massages (1 hour 30 minutes are getting more popular than ever. Some people use them for relaxing massages others, like to have a firm deep tissue sports massage. They were both happy with how their sports massage treatments are coming on. They chose to see me because of the link with the chiropractors and the reputation of the clinic in the local area.

Myofascial release tool

With the last massage I used a unique metal tool, it is known as a myofascial release tool and the practice is referred to as “IASTM” (instrument assisted soft tissue mobilisation) and/or “Graston Technique” which the chiropractors will be more familiar with, both methods are similar in terms of technique and results.

The fascial release tool I have is called the MT2Blade and looks like something that should be in a Bruce Lee film! And although it can leave behind some red markings from where the underlying scar tissue/adhesions have been released the treatment itself is a lot less painful than many other typical sports massage techniques and the results are amazing.

Image shows Massage Therapist Oly Ody's Myofascial Release Tool

Massage Therapist Oly Ody’s Myofascial Release Tool

The patient I used it on is in his 60’s, and has suffered with a stiff neck for years. I’ve seen him for a few massage treatments already but today we advance to the fascial release tool. Because of the preparation massage work we’d done it just took me a few minutes to release the tension and help ease some of the scar tissue. He could move his neck better straight away.

When he came in his neck was very stiff, but once we’d finished he could move much more easily and told me that “he is going to audition for the next exorcist movie with how much he can turn his head around!”

Now back to work for a couple more massages and a back rehab session – a new referral from James Revell Doctor of Chiropractic & Clinic Director. I’m seeing a thirty-year-old man for some rehab exercises to help strengthen his low back after a suspected disc injury through over training at the gym.

19:10

All done at the chiropractors now, just seen my last massage patient of the day – it’s been a busy day but it’s still not over for me yet!

Once I have tidied up the massage room ready for whoever is in first thing tomorrow I’m back up to the Brighton University Gym (Eastbourne Campus) in Meads, to take a Kettlebell Class from 8-9pm.

Kettlebells are a great tool for building strength and function as well as being quite aerobic too. Many of the exercises I use in the class involve recruiting lots of major muscles creating a nice oxygen debt which stresses the cardiovascular system as a result. I use kettlebells a lot in my personal training sessions too because of the benefits and variety they provide.

It’s been a long and busy day for me. I love keeping busy though and to be honest the results with people are so motivating. I look back and think the funniest bit was the “exorcist” remark from my patient who (used to have) a stiff neck. Another happy patient!

You can read more about us by following our online chiropractoc blog Backblog

Why I became a Sports Massage Therapist.

My reasons for becoming a sports massage therapist, the perfect choice.

Becoming a Sports Massage Therapist at Lushington Chiropractic perfectly complimented my existing Personal Training business. The nature of my business is helping people achieve their goals – whether it is losing weight, building muscle or rehabbing an injury so what better way to add to my repertoire being able to help people relieve pain, reduce stress and generally feel great!

Dr Revell the clinic principal here at Lushington Chiropractic trains with me and we discussed the possibility of me joining the clinic as a Sports Massage Therapist and after many discussions here I am!

It’s been great here so far.

Meeting amazing new guests and helping them on their own health journey and achieving their goals is really satisfying.  As for me personally since working at the clinic I’ve benefited and progressed as a therapist, being able to constantly converse with such a highly qualified and professional team is hugely important to growing within a profession.

Image of Oly Ody Sports Massage Therapist outside of Lushington Chiropractic in Eastbourne

Oly Ody Sports Massage Therapist

Injury rehabilitation.

I have looked to specialise more in injury rehabilitation as it combines both my PT and massage knowledge and have been taking CPD courses to further my knowledge around this area so I can provide the best possible service to all of my guests and clients.

Often there are times when I have PT clients booked in at the gym and someone has slept funny or had a stressful day at work I can mix the nature of the session to a more recovery and treatment based session with trigger point work and assisted stretching for example so they can get the most out of their time with me.

My clients know that I am the best person to see if they aren’t feeling 100% or have a niggle of some sort because they know they will leave feeling better than when they walk in the door. Being able to do that for people is great and makes me very pleased with my career choice and progression.

Thanks for reading, I hope to see you soon!

Oly

Why I choose the LSSM London School of Sports and Remedial Massage course!

In November 2013 I gained my level 3 Active IQ in Soft Tissue Therapy

I knew this was an area that I wanted to continue to further my knowledge and build a worthwhile career. After many hours of studying and contemplating my next move, I sought advice from a dear friend Jess who was already working professionally in a massage and clinical environment at Lushington Chiropractic. She advised me to gain some hands-on experience within a clinical practice. So here is where the story unfolds.

I had been advised by Jess to write to James Revell at Lushington Chiropractic clinic in Eastbourne, asking him if I could do some voluntary shadow shifts with Jess as my mentor. He agreed of which I was delighted, I spent a few hours a week shadowing Jess with her clients, learning from her and developing new skills to add to my own ways of working.

After many months of shadowing Jess, she advised me to enrol with the London School of Sports and Remedial Massage

Jess had completed the course herself and couldn’t speak highly enough of this course. I then did my research and went online and had a little look at what the course involves. I liked what I had seen and thought the course structure was brilliant and liked the fact that it was a year of studying. Also, I realised soon after it was seen as one of the most recognisable qualifications to have in the clinical environment. So for me it was a winner and I booked on without hesitation.

The LSSM is a year’s course gaining a level 5 diploma in Sports and Remedial massage.

At the time it was based in two locations, one being London-Regents College and also in Southampton. I selected to study at Regents College in London. The course structure is spread out over the year, one weekend a month, in this time having lectures and practical hands on tuition. This course is not for the faint hearted- it takes over your life!

The LSSM course is made up of three practical exams, four paper based assignments, and 100 logged hours of practical massage throughout the year, there was also a theory paper and practical exam at the end of the course. The tutors are highly qualified and experienced professionals with a wide range of knowledge, some have their own practices as well. It was a pleasure to learn from them, each weekend I would learn something new to apply to my work that I found so beneficial.

LSSM trained massage therapist Kirsty Ellis

LSSM trained massage therapist Kirsty Ellis

I would definitely recommend anyone starting out a career in massage to seriously get booked onto The London School of Sports and Remedial Massage Course. I learnt a lot, made some lifelong friends and most importantly gained confidence in my own level of ability. This is an incredibly rewarding job and I love it. Thank you to the LSSM team and also the people that have helped me along my amazing journey to get where I am today.

If you would like to know more about my work, please visit Lushington Chiropractic clinic.

Many thanks

Kirsty Ellis LSSM Dip, MISRM

Journey into Remedial Massage

How I became a remedial massage therapist in Eastbourne

A career in IT Management doesn’t really seem to be an obvious route to becoming a Sports Massage Therapist but sometimes a change is a great way of improving your life.

I loved working in IT. It constantly presented me with change and challenges, which kept me on my toes. But eventually I realised that it was taking a toll on me both in strange working hours and the stress of having sometimes hundreds of people waiting for me to fix a problem.  Having left a job I loved in London, because the stress and time involved in commuting was unsustainable, I moved into IT locally in the NHS. The reduction in commuting time (4 hours per day had become 40 minutes) left me with some valuable free time, which I wanted to put to good use.

I started helping out at a local running club in an “admin” role.

Being around a running club soon led to pleas to help out in league meetings as they were short of women competitors. So I soon started throwing javelins, shot puts and hammers and then into some relay running. Having done little sport since leaving school this took a bit of a toll on the body! I was recommended to see a sports massage therapist who had recently graduated from the London School of Sports Massage (L.S.S.M).  The first treatment really helped my sore shoulders and back and I booked in for regular “maintenance” treatments.

I got hooked!

When my running club took up triathlon (Swim/Bike/Run) around this time, I thought why not? (Not being able to swim anything other than slow breaststroke was perhaps one reason!) Soon, I had learned to swim front crawl and also to ride a racing bike and to run further and with continuing massage treatments entered my first race.

Some friends wanted to qualify to race in New Zealand in 2003 and I was persuaded to give it a go as well. I went to New Zealand as part of the GB Team  and then onto many other races around the world in wonderful places such as Hawaii, Vancouver etc. as part of the wonderful GB Age Group family.

Having taken some UK Athletics and British Triathlon coaching qualifications

I was constantly being asked about ways of combating and fixing injuries and so looked into doing a sports massage course myself. I did a weekend taster course at the L.S.S.M and was instantly hooked by the benefits massage can bring.  I enrolled on the Level 5 Diploma in Remedial and Sports Massage Therapy course (now Soft Tissue Therapist Dip).  Having qualified I took the offer of redundancy during one of the many NHS reorganisations and went into Remedial and Sports Massage as my “day” job.

Six  years on, over three of these practising remedial massage therapy at Lushington Chiropractic Clinic in Eastbourne,

I am still in awe of the help and changes I can bring about using various massage, stretching and related techniques both to sports people and to others whose jobs and day to day living causes them stress, pain and injury. Rehabilitation from injury is also part of the work and is very rewarding as it’s always a pleasure to see people return to an activity that they have had to give up.

Continuing Professional Development Courses (C.P.D) in areas such as myofascial release and medical acupuncture (dry needling), kinesio taping have added to my skills and so to my ability to help people. Remedial/ Sports Massage is a truly rewarding thing to do and I also meet a wide range of interesting people

Remedial Massage Therapist Sue Hudson outside of Lushington Chiropractic in Eastbourne

Remedial Massage Therapist Sue Hudson

Sue

 

Massage therapy in Eastbourne: Lushington Chiropractic case study, Norman

Case study: massage therapy in Eastbourne

Norman is a regular visitor to Lushington chiropractic in order to help him remain active. As an osteoarthritis sufferer who was experiencing difficulty walking due to a swollen knee, he was referred to Andy Swan, one of Lushington’s massage therapists in Eastbourne to help improve Norman’s knee health so that he could move and walk comfortably once more.

After an initial assessment of the lower body it was found that the calves, hamstrings, glutes and Tensor Fasciae Latae (TFA – a muscle located in the thigh) were all very tight. This was making it difficult and tiresome for Norman to walk.

With a series of therapeutic massage treatments beginning with once a week, various massage techniques were used to help ease the stiffness in these muscles and then to help maintain his mobility. Unfortunately, due to the nature of osteoarthritis the knee will remain a problem. But with regular maintenance massage it is now possible to retain his mobility and ease of movement instead of a continual deterioration.

 

Typical massage therapy in Eastbourne

A typical therapeutic massage session would involve some warming/loosening strokes with some effleurage – a form of massage involving a repeated circular stroking movement made with the palm of the hand.

Depending on the tissue pliability, Andy may use some N.M.T (Neuromuscular technique) which consists of alternating levels of concentrated pressure on the areas of muscle spasm. The massage therapy pressure is usually applied with the fingers, knuckles, or elbow, or STR (soft tissue release). This involves the Andy using manual pressure on a muscle to create a temporary false attachment point and then taking the muscle into a pain-free stretch to untangle the muscle fibres to help ease stiffened tissue.

Andy says:

“We genuinely care about our patients and improving their quality of life. We have an extremely professional and dedicated team who deliver the highest service and have over 80 years expertise between them.  We have both female and male sports massage therapists.”

Looking for massage therapy in Eastbourne? Why not get in touch with the team on 01323 722499.

 

Therapeutic Massage at Lushington Chiropractic – Case Study Danny

Therapeutic massage Case Study – Danny

Danny is a young man of 16 who sought help for a shoulder injury at Lushington Chiropractic in Eastbourne. With the help of masseuse Andy Swan he was able to recover from shoulder surgery and get his body back to full health. Here’s an outline of his therapeutic massage treatment.

On Danny’s first visit, Andy took a medical history and found out that Danny had recently had shoulder surgery and was struggling with range of motion and strength in his right shoulder. There were also stabilisation issues with his shoulder. During the initial assessment, Andy established that Danny was a very active teenager playing handball, football, and cricket among other sports. Unfortunately since surgery he had not been able to participate as much.

Initially his external and internal rotation were lacking with some muscular atrophy. Muscle atrophy is when muscles waste away, often due to a lack of physical activity. This can happen when a disease or injury makes it difficult or impossible for you to move an arm or leg due to inactivity.

During the first therapeutic massage treatment Andy identified restrictions through the rotator cuff muscles and he used a combination of soft tissue release and massage to restore function and mobility in the shoulder girdle. Soft tissue release involves the therapist using manual pressure on a muscle to create a temporary false attachment point and then taking the muscle into a pain-free stretch to untangle the muscle fibres. This therapy helped Danny to make a 40% improvement in the internal/external rotation and also a feeling of loosening through the shoulder complex.

Danny’s treatment continued through eight sessions and by the last session he had nearly achieved a complete recovery. He is now active in various sports and very happy at being able to fully participate again.

If you have any questions about therapeutic massage therapy why not give us a call at Lushington chiropractic

 

Why choose Lushington Chiropractic for therapeutic massage

Award Winning Chiropractic Treatment.  Local, Affordable and Effective.  Friendly, Professional Team. With 10 years of proven service to over 8,000 local people.

Call today on  01323 722499