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McTimoney Chiropractor in Eastbourne

Hi, I’m a McTimoney chiropractor practicing in Eastbourne.  I often get asked about McTimoney chiropractic.  Some people want to know what the McTimoney Chiropractic technique feels like. Others are interested in my journey to becoming a chiropractor here in Eastbourne, especially as I started my clinical practice life as a graduate sports massage therapist.  This blog is my first attempt to answer some of these questions.  If you are looking for a McTimoney Chiropractor in Eastbourne then I’d love to help.  I’m the only McTimoney chiropractor in our Eastbourne chiropractic clinic and am always happy to answer questions.

Image of Eastbourne Doctor of Chiropractic Carran Lefever to accompany her blog on Mctimoney chiropractor

Carran Lefever

What is Chiropractic? And McTimoney Chiropractic?

Chiropractic is defined by the General Chiropractic Council as: “Chiropractic is a health profession concerned with the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of mechanical disorders of the musculoskeletal system (bones, joints and muscles), and the effects of these disorders on the function of the nervous system and general health.  There is an emphasis on manual treatments including spinal adjustment and other joint and soft-tissue manipulation.

Chiropractors have a specialist interest in neck and back pain but when they assess their patient they take their entire physical, emotional and social wellbeing into account.

Chiropractors use a range of techniques to reduce pain, improve function and increase mobility, with an emphasis on hands-on manipulation of the spine.

They may also offer advice on diet, exercise and lifestyle, and rehabilitation programmes that involve exercises to do in your own time. Some chiropractors may also offer other treatments, such as acupuncture”.  

Recently a chiropractic patient of mine here in Eastbourne asked me “What’s so different about a McTimoney chiropractor?”.  They’d read something about McTimoney Chiropractic in the press and wanted to know more.

I explained that a McTimoney Chiropractor is a chiropractor that has had specialist chiropractic training to use the chiropractic technique called “McTimoney”.  I have discussed the McTimoney chiropractic technique itself later in this blog.

I also explained that the techniques I used on them were actually a combination of diversified chiropractic technique, acupuncture and McTimoney, because I’ve done extensive post-graduate training in a wide range of chiropractic techniques.  One of the benefits of working in such a large and established clinic in Eastbourne is that we share techniques and knowledge with each other.

 McTimoney Chiropractic Technique

There are many chiropractic approaches and techniques used around the world, often named after their originator.  I graduated as a Doctor of Chiropractic from the McTimoney College of Chiropractic.

The chiropractic approach I follow is the McTimoney approach which was developed by the late John McTimoney in 1972.  Check out this link to the biography of John McTimoney.

The McTimoney approach is typified by a whole-body assessment, which uses light force adjustments making it a comfortable technique to receive.  The adjustment demands great sensitivity and skill and is extremely effective.  The purpose of McTimoney chiropractic is to balance and realign your body to help relieve discomfort and pain, it may also help to increase your mobility.

The McTimoney chiropractic technique can be used on people of all ages from the very young, including babies to the elderly, frail and infirm.  The McTimoney technique is a gentle and effective manipulative technique that treats the whole body to maintain and correct the alignment of the spine and allow the nervous system to function at its optimum potential.  Quick, gentle adjustments are used to bring your body back into balance, reducing restrictions, relieving pain and promoting natural healing.  X-rays are not routinely used, and McTimoney chiropractors rely on their finely tuned sense of touch to palpate restrictions in the spine.

 Problems can occur due to a traumatic incident like a car accident or a fall from a horse or they can be the result of the build of tension and stress in the body due to the repetitive activities of daily living.

Activities such as sitting at a computer for prolonged periods, doing lots of driving or carrying young children are all part of many peoples’ daily lives and these are the sort of things that can cause a build-up of tension, pain and stiffness.  Some of these activities may resonate with you!

I have found that people with cervicogenic headaches respond exceptionally well to the McTimoney technique.  People often say that they feel lighter and more flexible after experiencing the McTimoney approach to chiropractic care.  I had a 12-year-old girl who was getting headaches almost every other day and after receiving just one McTimoney treatment her headaches significantly reduced.  After she completed her plan of care she did not experience any headaches at all!  She was very happy when she started her new term at school in September headache free.

Interestingly McTimoney chiropractic is often used on animals.  For more than 40 years, those trained in McTimoney animal techniques have been helping horses, dogs, cats and farm animals.  Even more exotic animals have benefited from the technique.  Again, the whole body is assessed and treated to eliminate the cause, and not just the symptoms.

In my experience I find that McTimoney is most helpful with people that do not like or respond well to the traditional chiropractic techniques that may involve audible ‘clicking’, and often the elderly who are nervous about the stronger chiropractic techniques also respond very well, which has made it a particularly popular in my work as a chiropractor in Eastbourne.

To summarise, McTimoney Chiropractic is the use of the specialist McTimoney chiropractic techniques used by a chiropractor.  Sometime those chiropractors who use McTimoney chiropractic restrict themselves to that technique alone.  However, as I mentioned earlier, I prefer to use a wide range of techniques to suit the individual and their needs.  That means I can combine a range of chiropractic techniques with the McTimoney chiropractic technique to get the best possible results.  I also combine acupuncture, some massage/soft tissue release and muscle energy (stretching) techniques to help.  I found that this combination of techniques seems to be particularly helpful to my elderly chiropractic patients here in Eastbourne.

Looking for a McTimoney Chiropractor in Eastbourne?

So, if you’re looking for a McTimoney Chiropractor please come and visit me at Lushington Chiropractic in Eastbourne to find out more.  I have been working in the health care profession as a sports massage therapist and now chiropractor since 2009.  You will find me kind, caring and attentive to your recovery.  As a McTimoney chiropractor, I have a very finely tuned sense of touch, developed over my 5 years of training, which enables me to identify misalignments and restrictions of the vertebrae and other bones in the body.

You’re first chiropractic visit would be a consultation that takes about an hour.  After that I’d explain what we found, how we can help you and discuss what your chiropractic treatment plan would be and answer any questions you may have.

Lushington Chiropractic is Eastbourne’s largest and most award-winning chiropractic clinic.  We are based in Eastbourne’s town centre, with easy parking and accessible rooms.  Our chiropractic clinic is open late and Saturdays.  We have a lovely team of chiropractors serving the people of Eastbourne so if you have any questions do not hesitate to contact me on 01323 722499.

Thanks for reading.


Interesting facts about the bones

There are many interesting facts about the bones but these are a few that I find very interesting and I hope that you do too.

Bones in numbers

  • The adult human has 206 bones in the body.
  • The area with the most bones is the hand and wrist which contains 27 bones. The foot comes a close second with 26 bones.

    Image shows a model skeleton foot containing 26 bones to accompany the blog from Mykel Mason

    There are 26 bones in the foot.

  • Humans have seven cervical (neck) bones, this is the same number as that of a giraffe. The dinosaur diplodocus had 15 cervical bones.
  • In the spine, the most joints at individual segments is in the thoracic spine (mid back). The vertebra here have ten joints, this increase is predominantly due to two ribs attachments on each side.
  • Bone is remarkably strong, pound for pound bone is stronger than steel. A cubic inch of bone, in theory, can take a load of greater than 8600kg. This is just a little less than a monster truck.
  • The smallest bone in the body is the stapes in the inner ear and is about the size of the ‘1’ on a one pence coin. The vibration of this is controlled by the smallest muscle in the body the stapedius.
  • The most commonly broken bone in an adult is the arm which makes up about 50% of broken bones. In children it is the collar bone.

Miscellaneous bone facts

  • The bone in the thigh (the femur) is not only the longest bone in the skeleton it is also the heaviest and strongest.
  • There is only one bone in the body that is not connected to another and that is the hyoid bone. This is a horseshoe shaped bone at the base of the tongue. This aids in tongue movement and swallowing.
  • Tendons connect bone to muscle and ligaments connect bone to bone. Ligaments are present predominantly around the joints to provide stability.
  • As well as allowing movement and protecting the organs and spinal cord the bones also produce red and white blood cells.
  • Cartilage is a fibrous tissue that covers the bone surface and keeps bones from rubbing together.
  • The most mobile joints in the body are the ball and sockets joints which are the shoulders and hips. This allows movement in many different directions.

Yours in health,

Mykel Mason, your Eastbourne chiropractor

An Eastbourne Chiropractor’s advice for muscle spasm in the lower back

Muscle spasm is one of the things that I most commonly see lots of conditions can have associated muscle spasm. As a specialist in muscle joint and trapped nerve type problems it is my job to ask, ‘why is this muscle in spasm’. Often people will think that the muscle spasm itself is the root cause, and yes this may be causing a lot of the pain but the real question is ‘why is this muscle in spasm?’ If you address the underlying issue, then the muscle spasm will not need to be there.

Photo demonstrates a man from behind with the upper part of the back and ribcage moving over to the right in relation to the low back and pelvis. This is to accompany the blog from Eastbourne Chiropractor Mykel Mason on muscle spasm.

Muscle spasm caused by injury to the low back can cause what is called an antalgic posture where the body adopts the most comfortable position.

Causes of muscle spasm in the low back

There are many different causes of muscle spasm. Take for example muscle spasm in the low back. This can be caused by a ligament sprain in one of the small ligaments around the joints in the spine. This can be caused by many things but the most common reason I find is bending and twisting whilst lifting. Another cause of muscle spasm in the low back could be damage to the disc in the lower lumbar spine. This damage could be a slipped disc. In this instance the body contracts certain muscles to prevent the body going into the positions that aggravate the disc. This is what we call an antalgic posture. An antalgic posture with muscle spasm can also be caused by inflammation in the joints of the low back. All of these problems can cause the same sort of muscle spasm but all have different associated healing times.

Treatment of muscle spasm

The treatment for muscle spasm all depends on the cause. Understanding what is causing the muscle spasm is the most important thing. With acute muscle spasm, anything less than 72 hours I’d say, ice is a very effective tool. No matter what the underlying cause ice helps to relax inflammation and therefore can ease muscle spasm by easing the underlying cause. When using an ice pack, you want to apply it for ten minutes, take it off for twenty, and apply it for another ten. Make sure that you do not apply the ice pack directly to the skin as this can cause an ice burn, ensure you wrap it up first.

Many other things can help including massage, chiropractic, physiotherapy, osteopathy, exercise, medication and rest. To know what is best, is to identify the root cause which means being assessed by a specialist such as a chiropractor, who is a specialist in muscle, joint and trapped nerve type problems.

What should I do if my back goes into spasm

If your back was to go into spasm the first thing to do will be to get some ice on it. Do as said above with regards to how and repeat often is key in those early stages. Try to keep moving, as long as it is not too painful, and rest too. Regular little walks and regular little rests.

The most important thing, especially if you have had episodes like this in the past, is to get it checked out properly. This is to find out what the best plan going forwards is and if there is anything that can be done to prevent this kind of problem in the future.

If you have muscle spasm and have any questions then feel free to ring Lushington Chiropractic in Eastbourne on 01323 722499.

Yours in health,

Mykel Mason, your Eastbourne chiropractor.


An Eastbourne Chiropractor’s tips for prevention of migraines

For me prevention is always better than cure. Here I will cover some things that my patients have found effective in preventing their migraines, therefore reducing the frequency and severity of these attacks.

What is a migraine

Migraines have been identified as a neurological condition as they effect the bodies brain chemistry. They are also a lot more common than we originally thought. There are many different sub varieties of migraine and many have still not been classified. They are typically described as recurrent headaches lasting 4-72 hours and are often accompanied by nausea/vomiting, sensitivity to light and sound, or an aura with hand or arm numbness or visual changes.

Predisposition to migraine

There are a few factors that have been associated with the presence of migraines and therefore sometimes management of these can help to prevent them. These include: stress; depression or anxiety; menstrual period; menopause; head or neck trauma. As a chiropractor, I have seen many people presenting to me with migraines and it is very common for them to have one or more of these factors so key to my care, is giving advice about managing these issues.

Migraine triggers

Migraines are often set off by certain things and these can be common amongst many different people. Common triggers are: altered sleep patterns; stress; foods such as chocolate, cheese, caffeine and alcohol; strong smells; bright lights; dehydration; and strenuous exercise. The best way to identify your triggers is to keep a migraine diary recording what time of day, how severe out of ten, how long it lasted, and if you had any associated effects such as sensitivity to light/sound, nausea etc. This can sometimes help to identify possible triggers. It is important not to just try and focus in triggers though as they can be hard to identify.

Active migraine prevention

As well as being aware of your possible triggers there are a few active things that you can do that have been shown to help prevent migraines in many people. Chiropractic treatment has been recommended for prevention of migraine and I have seen the effectiveness of this in my own patients even in the instance of those that are only present during the menstrual period. This is believed to be due to addressing underlying issues around the head and neck potentially linked to previous trauma causing an underlying dysfunction. Acupuncture has also been recommended for prevention of migraines and a piercing in the ear, based on acupuncture points, has been effective in some people and again some of my own patients have found this useful. This piercing is through the Daith in the ear (shown in the photo).

Image highlights the area of the piercing to help prevent migraines to accompany the blog by Eastbourne Chiropractor Mykel Mason on migraine

Image highlights the area of the piercing to help prevent migraines.

Adopting good posture can also take unnecessary pressure off the muscles around the head, neck and shoulders; and sunglasses help to prevent squinting and aggravating tension in the facial muscles.

For more different types of headaches go to this site: http://www.headaches.org/2008/12/11/the-complete-headache-chart/

Yours in health,

Mykel Mason, your Eastbourne chiropractor.

Interesting facts about the nerves

The Nerves

The nervous system is basically the body’s electrical wiring with electrical signals being sent to and from the brain. The nervous system is made up of two parts which are the central nervous system (the brain and spinal cord) and the peripheral nervous system (everything else). The peripheral nervous systems job is to connect the central nervous system with the rest of the body therefore allowing our brain to send and receive signals.

There are many interesting facts about the nerves but these are a few that I find very interesting and I hope that you do too. Next time you are visiting us here in Eastbourne ask your chiropractor to show you the nerve chart.

Image shows Eastbourne Chiropractor Mykel Mason looking at a nerve chart to accompany the blog he has written about interesting facts about the nerves.

Eastbourne Chiropractor Mykel Mason explains about the nervous system.

Nerve facts in numbers

  1. There are more nerve cells in the human body than the number of stars in the Milky Way.
  2. 100 billion neurones make up the human brain and if these were to be lined up would measure 600 miles long.
  3. In a foetus, neurones grow at 250,000 neurones per minute.
  4. 5 million neurones make up the spinal cord with the cluster of nerves at the base being the most sensitive.
  5. To connect the central nervous system to the rest of the body there are 43 different pairs of nerves. 12 pairs come out from the brain (protected by the skull) and the other 31 from the spinal cord (protected by the spine).
  6. Messages sent to the brain can travel as fast as 180 miles per hour.
  7. During the course of its first year a baby’s brain will grow to almost three times the size at birth.
  8. Because of the shape of the brain the total surface area is about 25,000 square centimetres.
  9. The brain of a man, on average, weighs around 100g more than that of a woman.
  10. The brain of a fully-grown adult is approximately three times as heavy as that of a newborn baby however, after the age of 20, we lose 1g in weight every year.

Miscellaneous Nerve facts

  1. Due to an area at the top of the neck the left side of the brain controls the right side of the body and the right side of the brain the left side of the body.
  2. The brain and spinal cord begin to develop in a foetus three weeks after conception.
  3. Most of the brain, at any given point, is inactive and resting with only 4% of the cells active at any moment in time.
  4. It has been estimated that 12% of people dream in black and white. This is believed to be due to watching black and white television as most of these people are over 55.
  5. When blind people dream, whether they dream in picture is down to whether they could see when they were born or were born blind. If they were born blind dreams would typically consist of different senses such as sound, smell, taste and touch.

The study of the nervous system is called neuroscience. Nerves can be very sensitive and are susceptible to physical injury and injury through disease. This can lead to severe pain, tingling, numbness and weakness. One of the most common injuries to nerves occurs to the sciatic nerve and this is often accompanied by severe pain down the back of the leg with tingling and numbness in the foot and often weakness also. This kind of injury generally only effects one side and can be due to a multitude of things. One of the most common is a disc injury in the lower spine (slipped disc).

Look out for my next blog on interesting facts about bones.

Yours in health,

Mykel Mason, your Eastbourne chiropractor

Part 2 An interview with James Revell, Clinic Director at Lushington Chiropractic Clinic in Eastbourne.

Continuing from last time, here is part 2 of the interview with James Revell, Doctor of Chiropractic and Clinical Director of Lushington Chiropractic in Eastbourne. If you missed part 1 you can read it here.

Once graduated, whereabouts did you go to and work?

Having grown up on the coast in Sussex near Eastbourne, it was always natural for me to work in the south. I looked at chiropractic clinics, osteopaths and even multi-disciplinary clinics for physiotherapists across the south of England.

One of the chiropractors I was most inspired by was a “chiropractor neurologist”. He specialised in neurological (nervous system) conditions understanding and treating them using chiropractic neurology. 

I spent eighteen months working with him in West Sussex, as well as other clinics before branching out towards Eastbourne to open a chiropractic clinic at the Horder Centre, which at the time was known as the Apollo Centre.

Image shows James Revell, Clinic Director at Lushington Chiropractic Clinic in Eastbourne, outside of the clinic.

James Revell, Clinic Director at Lushington Chiropractic Clinic in Eastbourne

How long were you there at the Horder centre in Eastbourne?

I worked at the Horder (Apollo) Centre for three years. During that time, I used to commute to Eastbourne from Brighton. After a little persuasion, my wife agreed to move to Eastbourne so we could open up our own chiropractic clinic.

Was Lushington Road your first choice to open a chiropractic clinic?

Initially we looked at the potential of opening up a chiropractic clinic in Seaford, or Hailsham, but favoured Meads High Street in Eastbourne in the end. However, when 30 Lushington Road came on the market we fell in love with it. It is a big building with great potential to convert into the kind of warm welcoming chiropractic clinic that fitted our vision.

What do you really enjoy about being a chiropractor here in Eastbourne?

Something I really enjoy about being a chiropractor is helping people and making a difference. Eastbourne has already got a lovely community feel – there’s lots going on, especially for us as we are bringing up our young family. I find it really rewarding as a chiropractor to be able to contribute to the community; not only helping individuals, but joining in with local charity events and even running some ourselves.

I like to be able to help people and to feel that I have made a difference, so in a town like Eastbourne, you really can make a difference, rather than some of the larger towns and cities.

I also really like Eastbourne’s location next to the sea, the Downs and, when you need it, there is easy access to London and Brighton.

You’ve been working as a chiropractor in Eastbourne for over a decade – how many more years have you got left in you?

My role as a chiropractor has grown, just as our clinic has grown too. I really enjoy working with people and still run clinics on a weekly basis myself. However, I do have to balance that now with managing the clinic overall as well.

I have got no immediate plans to retire and hope to continue practicing as a chiropractor in Eastbourne for at least another twenty years.

Why did you decide to have other therapists alongside chiropractors working with you?

I think it is important that a patient’s treatment is tailored personally to them. By having a team of practitioners who are experts in their own individual fields, the patient can get the best possible treatment personally tuned to meet their individual needs. That’s why I insist on meeting with all the massage therapists every week to discuss cases with them.

Eastbourne Chiropractors James Revell and Mykel Mason. Shown wearing red glasses at a recent conference.

Eastbourne Chiropractors James Revell and Mykel Mason.

Lushington is the largest chiropractic and multi-disciplinary clinic in Eastbourne – in fact, we are one of the largest clinics in East Sussex! We have a team of over twenty covering sports massage, medical acupuncture, Chinese acupuncture, nutrition therapists, podiatrists, psychologists and counsellors. I think for a little clinic here in Eastbourne we are doing rather well, but what I am most proud about is the genuine collaborative atmosphere that puts the patient first.

That’s great James, keep doing the hard work and thank you for agreeing to be interviewed!


Am I hypermobile?

Am I hypermobile is a question I get asked regularly as it is actually really quite common.

As a chiropractor, here in Eastbourne, I generally see people with hypomobile joints but we do see people with hypermobile joints also and we just need to change the type of treatment for those people.

Hypermobility vs hypomobility

Hypermobility is where a joint or multiple joints in the body move more than they are designed to.

Hypomobility is where joints move less than you’d expect and are relatively stiff. Hypermobility can be due to previous injury, overstretching, congenital anomalies or specific conditions that effect the connective tissue (A protein present in muscles and ligaments).

  • Previous injury that causes hypermobility would typically be a dislocation, with the shoulder being the most commonly effected area. This damages the ligaments and stability in the shoulder is lost and further dislocation can then happen.
  • Overstretching can cause slight hypermobility in the case where someone is already flexible and stretches too regularly that it pushes the joints past the natural amount. This is often commonly associated with a lack of exercise and potentially previous injury or congenital anomalies.
  • Congenital anomalies are slight alterations in the structure that we are born with. In the case of hypermobility this is alterations in the bone structure around the joint such as a shallow joint socket such as the hip. This then allows extra movement within the joint.
  • Conditions that effect the connective tissue can cause the ligaments and muscles to have more give naturally therefore not stabilising the joint quite as well and providing excessive movement.

Beighton hypermobility scale

There is a simple scale which you can calculate yourself at home to tell if you have gross hypermobility. At the end, you will have a score out of nine. To give you an idea, I am not hypermobile at all and scored 0/9. The Beighton score is calculated as follows:

  1. You score one point for bending forwards with your legs straight and being able to touch the palm of your hand on the floor.
  2. One point is scored for each side if your elbow bends backwards passed straight.
  3. One point is scored for each side if your knee bends backwards passed straight.
  4. One point is scored for each side if you can touch your thumb to your forearm.
  5. One point is scored for each side if when you bend your little finger back it goes passed 90 degrees.

If your Beighton score is four or more then it is likely that you have joint hypermobility.

Image shows Mykel Mason, doctor of chiropractic at Lushington Chiropractic in Eastbourne, bending forwards with his legs straight and he is unable to touch the ground at all. therefore not hypermobile.

Eastbourne chiropractor Mykel Mason demonstrates how he is clearly not hypermobile!

For more information, you can visit the hypermobility syndromes association’s website.

Here at Lushington Chiropractic in Eastbourne we put your interests first. Our mission is to provide a warm, welcoming clinic which consistently delivers the best possible customer care, expert diagnosis and personalised healthcare. Everything about your care will be personally tailored to your needs.

Yours in health,

Mykel Mason your Eastbourne chiropractor.

Different types of headache

Headaches are incredibly common.

Many people don’t realise that there are different types of headache. Here I will discuss here five common types of headache.

Tension headache

Tension headaches are the most common type of headache and are often described as a tight band around the head. It can also be described as a pressure over the temples and/or the back of the head and neck. Experts believe that this may be due to contraction of head and neck muscles and some research has suggested posture could be associated.

Cluster headaches

These are headaches that tend to appear in groups or cycles and are most commonly severe. These are commonly affecting one side of the head and can be accompanied by a runny nose or watery eye. Unlike with migraines, people suffering with a cluster headache are unlikely to lie down and generally struggle to get comfortable.

Sinus headaches

These are normally associated with a sinus infection which causes sinus inflammation. Pain is generally at the front of the head and face and often are worsened when leaning forwards.

Rebound headaches

Have you ever looked at the side effects of paracetamol and noticed that one of the side effects is a headache? This is what a rebound headache is. Overuse is generally the trigger. There are a few theories as to why this happens but the best thing is to not take these medications too much. I have often seen people in the clinic and that are frightened to leave the house if they do not have paracetamol in their bag and this is an unhealthy way to live.

Follow this link to a BBC article on this.

Image shows Doctor of Chiropractic at Lushington Chiropractic in Eastbourne holding his brow with his eyes. In his blog he talks about different types of headache

Eastbourne Doctor of Chiropractic Mykel Mason talks about headaches.

Migraine headaches

These are a lot more common than we originally thought. There are also many different sub types of migraines many of which are still being classified. These are described as recurrent headaches lasting 4-72 hours and are often accompanied by nausea/vomiting, sensitivity to light and sound, or an aura with hand or arm numbness or visual changes.

Migraines have been identified as a neurological condition as they affect the bodies brain chemistry.

To see more about different types of headaches have a look at the National Headache Foundation website.

Yours in health,

Mykel Mason, your Eastbourne chiropractor.

How to do a Proper Squat

Squats are really excellent exercises to train the core muscles and to get the whole of the lower body working together. The problem with the squat is technique is incredibly important.  The number of times I have seen people squatting incorrectly in the gym is ridiculous. As a result, I have written this blog to teach you how to do a proper squat without weight and you can then add weight afterwards. It is important to do this first without weight as you can then perfect the technique. If a weight is too heavy, your body compensates and therefore you lose the technique.

A Proper Squat

The most effective squat is defined by two components:

  1. Keeping the back straight
  2. Not allowing your knees to go over your toes.

These two work hand-in-hand to work the muscles in the correct way.

Image shows Mykel demonstrating how to perform a good squat with his back arched and his lower leg perpendicular to the ground.

Eastbourne Doctor of Chiropractic Dr Mykel Mason demonstrating a good squat technique.

To do a proper squat it will feel like you are going to sit down, and this is a good way to imagine it. Your weight will drop backwards and therefore the upper part of your body will come forwards to counteract the weight distribution. Everyone has a different depth of squat. This all depends on your flexibility, not your strength. Your hamstrings will dictate how low you can go.  When you are at your limit you will feel a pulling in the hamstrings. If you go too far, this will then cause your low back to start to curve in the opposite direction because the buttocks are being pulled under.

Common Squat Mistakes

The most common mistakes that happen are the knees going over the toes and the low back rounding. This is common because people are trying to go too low, or lift too heavy a weight.  Due to this the body compensates and these are the areas that suffer. What can also happen is that when you go too low the tightness in the back of the legs causes your heels to come up. This will only happen if the knees are going over the toes though.

Image shows Mykel Mason demonstrating a poor squat technique with his back rounded, knees going forward over his toes and heels off the ground.

Image shows Eastbourne Chiropractor Mykel Mason demonstrating a poor squat technique with his back rounded, knees going forward over his toes and heels off the ground.

Why is Squat Technique So Important?

Squat technique is so important to train the body correctly and to prevent injury. When you are lifting a heavy weight if the technique is incorrect, the rounding in your back can lead to injury as this puts extra pressure on the small muscles within the spine, the ligaments holding the spine together and the disc. Consequently, in my clinical experience I have seen many injuries that have stemmed from poor squat form.  Good technique can actually help to strengthen the low back and leg muscles and therefore help to prevent injury.

This can be used as an effective strengthening exercise and I regularly give this to my patients to help to strengthen the core and to help lifting and bending technique.

I hope this has been helpful, and if you have any further questions please feel free to give me a call at Lushington Chiropractic clinic in Eastbourne on: 01323 722499.

Yours, in health

Mykel Mason
Your Eastbourne Chiropractor

An Eastbourne Chiropractor’s Wellness Tips

I’m the Clinic Director here at Lushington Chiropractic Clinic in Eastbourne. As such I’ve had the opportunity to work with some excellent chiropractors, sports massage therapists and other practitioners over the years. Within the team we often share knowledge, ideas and research or techniques we’ve specialised in. I’ve learnt a lot from my chiropractic colleagues and in this blog, I’m sharing some Wellness Tips I’ve picked up from one of our chiropractors.

Picture showing Eastbourne Chiropractor James Revell Doctor of Chiropractic, LRCC, MSc (Chiropractic Sciences), BSc (Chiropractic Sciences) with a large glass of water next to his chiropractic notes

Your Eastbourne Chiropractor keeps himself well watered

These Wellness Tips were originally created by one of our lovely associate chiropractors Caroline Mulliner, when she lived in Eastbourne. They were so good I wanted to share them on a blog, not only for our local community but for anyone who’s looking for some practical advice to keep themselves and their spines a little healthier.

Caroline was a very popular chiropractor with us. In 2016 she moved to practice abroad. I’d like to thank Caroline for her time with us and these fantastic wellness tips:

Image of Caroline Mulliner Doctor of Chiropractic at Lushington Road, Eastbourne. Caroline shares her tips on office wellness with us.

Caroline Mulliner shares her Wellness Tips with us

A large majority of guests visit Lushington for bad back pain, quite often there has been an incident which has triggered these events, although many guests struggle with ways of best looking after their backs. Most of us find it easy to forget to look after ourselves properly. Lots of us take more care of our teeth than our spine.

Keeping healthy and active is great but take care to avoid these common pitfalls. The more abuse you put your body through the more wear and tear can build up.

Remember, there’s no such thing as a replacement spine, so look after it today to protect yourself for tomorrow.

 Wellness tips to look after yourself at home:

  • NEVER bend forward during the first hour of the day – it puts your back more at risk of injury.
  • Find a way to de-stress. Fatigue and stress lowers our pain threshold, making any aches and pains feel worse. When this is the case we’re less likely to do the things that are good for us like sit properly, drink water (not coffee) and do our stretches etc.
  • Caroline loved cooking and found that it helped her to unwind. She often juiced and made healthy meals but occasionally enjoyed an unhealthy treat, too!  As yourself what is your relaxation and unwinding trick? Find the best way to switch off and then try to make time to indulge in that activity. Have you tried cycling, baking, an exercise class, walking etc? If not, why not give them a go.
  • Get sweaty and exercise for at least 20 mins a day, 3 times a week. Find an activity or sport you enjoy; this helps to make it less of a chore and more for enjoyment. Regular exercise is great – find something you’re going to stick with.
  • Remember to evenly distribute bags when carrying them. Laptops and those large heavy handbags are the worst offenders. Almost everyone seems to have them hung over their shoulder on a long strap. A back-pack with two straps is best.

 Office wellness tips:

As we all work more and more around technology, it has never been more important to think of ways we can make our workplaces a healthier environment.

So, start making some small changes to your routine and build a better workplace. Not only will you feel better at the end of the day, you will hopefully start to feel better about your whole job. Here are some easy to change tips and advice which can help your body function better whilst being at work.

 Office chair

If you are sitting for long periods of time it makes sense that an old basic office chair isn’t doing you any favours. This is because it allows you to slump and lose the natural S shape protective curve in your spine. The best thing to do is invest in a quality chair with good lumbar support, or buy an extra lumbar support pillow to force that curve into your low back. The cheapest and simplest option is to roll up a towel and put that behind your back around the area of your trouser waist line.

Image shows Eastbourne Chiropractor Mykel Mason demonstrating a slumping position at his desk, with his shoulders rounding forwards. Follow our wellness tips to avoid this.

Don’t slump at your desk, follow our Wellness Tips

 Standing desk

Standing desks have become very popular and it makes sense. It isn’t healthy to sit all day; we’re not made for this! It also can become a little uncomfortable standing all day as well.  Regular interchanges between sitting and standing is not just beneficial to our physical health, standing has a great effect on your tone of voice when on the phone as well as promoting creativity.

Image shows Eastbourne Chiropractor Mykel Mason standing at work which is one of our wellness tips

Try standing at work

 Regular breaks

This is an obvious one but you do need a break from the screen, even for just a minute or two. Set a subtle alarm for every 30 minutes, when you hear it, just stretch, stand up, make a cup of tea, or go visit a colleague. Anything just to be away from the screen and your desk for just 5 minutes whilst getting your body moving. The best thing to do is pop outside and get some fresh air every couple of hours, this helps to rest your eyes, refocus your mind and de-stress. Cigarette breaks don’t count!

 Computer screen height

This is something that we chiropractors in Eastbourne see regularly. You want your computer screen to be at the same height as your eyes. It’s cheap to buy a couple of blocks to build it up or simply use some big heavy books to rest it on. If your neck is in a straighter position you are more likely to use the muscles around your neck and shoulder girdle appropriately, so less likely to suffer with neck, shoulder pain and/ or headaches.

 Ergonomic mouse

Another common work place injury is RSI (Repetitive Strain Injury) from constantly using the mouse and typing all day. A good way to get around this is to evaluate your desk area, make sure your mouse, keypad and computer screen are all in alignment. Another thing to think about is an ergonomic mouse, these slightly change the position of your hand creating less stress through the area.

I hope you’ve enjoyed these simple but effective tips from Caroline Mulliner.

Remember that simply reading them won’t help – you need to get start following this chiropractic advice. If you need advice specifically on back pain, then please visit my own  website for further help and advice.

Thanks for sharing these with us Caroline.