What are your opening hours?
I normally work from 9am Tuesday and Wednesday and finish around 8.30pm. I can sometimes be flexible outside of these times if all my appointment times are taken. For 2021 I have reduced my working days as I share my therapy room with Jake Lemon of Fullmotionfitness.co.uk.
I am new to massage treatments , what can I expect at your appointment?
Firstly I will made you feel comfortable and I will listen to your requirement while taking notes on a consultation form and suggest how I should treat you. For some injuries we will undertake some muscle testing and palpation to determine the problem. You will then be left alone to remove your clothing (this is normally to underwear) and arrange yourself comfortably on the massage table, normally face down covered with a towel ready for the treatment. Once I have washed my hands I will knock on the door to make sure you are ready. Your body will remain discreetly covered to protect your dignity at all times during the treatment. A similar procedure is repeated at the end of the treatment. There will be time at the end of the session for a chat regarding the treatment and advice will be given of aftercare, stretches etc
What should I wear?
It’s entirely up to you. The main thing is that you feel comfortable. You will covered at all times for obvious modesty reasons. For a Sports massage it is more important to wear stretchy underwear on the lower body. I found some of the guys boxers are not stretchy and can be restrictive for hamstring and adductor work. It is likely that jewellery will need to be removed, especially necklaces and long earrings.
How Do I Pay?
Most clients pay by cash or cheque. Some also take my bank details for a direct transfer. I do not have a card facility.
How do I know you are the right person to treat me or should I use an osteopath etc?
This is a good question and it is very confusing when you have an unknown pain to know who to go to. This is in fact getting worse with the increasing variety of treatments available. For example there are chiropractors, osteopaths, sports therapists, remedial therapists, soft tissue therapy, clinical massage, Bowen therapy, Alexander techniques, Rolfers, Structural Integration Therapists, Myofascial release therapists, Aromatherapy, Active fascial release, Reki, Reflexology, Acupuncture, trigger point therapy, Thai massage, Scenar Therapy and the list goes on! Each have their own place with many therapies overlapping and it’s often simply a matter of what therapy works for you. I am always happy to discuss a problem via phone and with my first treatment I can normally diagnose the issue and advise. I am familiar with many types of therapy and, although I only practice and specialise in a few, I can recommend and refer my client to other therapists if I feel others would better serve their needs.
If I have a cold can I still come and see you?
I prefer clients with colds to avoid coming to see me as if I catch it I cannot treat other clients and risk spreading the virus to them. There is no problem with cancelling an appointment if you have a cold etc and certainly no charge.
Are orthotics good for you?
This is a complex question and has many different viewpoints; for some they are great but for others it can make things worse. Before using any orthotics or getting any orthotic made I recommend seeing a body specialist (e.g. sports therapist, chiropractor etc) to ensure the skeletal frame is aligned and the muscles are not tight, especially around the pelvic area that can cause leg length discrepancies.
Am I too old or too young to have a massage?
No, massages work well for the old and young but techniques will vary. I personally have massaged people from 8 to 88 and have full CRB clearance for working with minors (I would normally expect a parent to remain present throughout the treatment).
Why do I keep getting injuries when others do not?
This is an interesting question and there are numerous and complex answers. It’s very beneficial to know which ones can affect you and create strategies for prevention. Factors that increase injuries (this list is not exhaustive) include overuse, repetitive action, lack of warm-ups, lack of pre-stretching exercises, lack of post-stretching excercises, vigorous training, trauma, tight muscles, tight fascia, hyper mobility, age, previous injury, diet, water intake, weather and unsuitable clothing, genetics, muscle fibre type, body shape, length of limbs, gender, sports activities, hobbies, amount of rest periods taken, how the body is maintained/massaged, sleep pattern, etc.
I see you do Kinesiology Taping – is it a gimmick?
No, it is great stuff . I have been using it since the start of 2014. I was also a little reticent to begin with, but my clients and I very much rate the use of taping and in my experience the ‘Rock tape’ is the best (but also the most expensive!).
Should I be quiet during the massage or talk?
For a sports massage it’s great to talk and good for me to get feedback as the treatment progresses. For a relaxing massage it’s probably better for you to just relax and some clients go into a hypnagogic state, but it’s your choice entirely.
I have been told I may feel worse after seeing a sports therapist – is that true?
It is sometimes true. Many of my clients feel tender after seeing me and, for example, their calf muscles can feel worse for a couple of days before they feel a lot better. It’s just part of the healing response and quite normal. Everyone is different so reactions are also different. It is possible to over-treat clients, which I admit I did a number of times in my early years trying to help them. The result is far too tender for a few days afterwards and can be likened to getting sunburn – sometimes you don’t realise you have overdone it until later. Often less is more in one area.
I have had treatments elsewhere that have not worked – how do I know that you can help me?
Actually I don’t but I know I can help many people and some travel over a hour and a half to see me! Some issues take time to heal, for example nerve damage – the treatment may be effective to remove the cause of the damage but the nerves can take ages to fully recover.
Do you treat/remove scar tissue?
Yes frequently as scar tissue reduces flexibility, creates pain and can reduce blood supply to the muscles and joints.
I have never had a massage before and not sure I need one?
I have never met anyone I have not helped with some form of remedial treatment even when they think they are fine and have no problems. Some lucky people do not hold much tension in their bodies but others do due to their posture, work, stress, lack of full movement, previous injury and overuse problems etc. Some people carry tension all over their bodies within muscle and fascia and struggle to relax fully are only aware of one or two areas of tension in their the body until I treat them. It is not uncommon to find many other areas under tension from one injury point.
I feel like I have more energy after my massage, Is this normal?
When muscles of fascia are tight other muscles work harder to counteract them it’s like riding a bike with the brakes binding on the wheels making it harder and so you tire quicker. So to answer your question its a yes after a couple of days after any tenderness has gone.
How often should I come for a massage?
This depends on a number of factors e.g. your injury, posture, stress levels, work, training intensity and current state of your today and age.
I have all frequency of clients, some like to come once a week and others come as and when, depends how they are and if they think they need it, this normally happens after a few sessions to sort their initial problem. I have others who come on a monthly basis for maintenance, It is what suits you, your lifestyle and budget.
How long will it take to fix me?
This depends on a number of factors e.g. your injury, how long you have had this injury / pain, posture, stress levels, work, training intensity and current state of your today and age.
I have helped some people in one or two sessions before, for others it takes 4 or more sessions, others need on-going work to keep the discomfort to a manageable level due to some of the factors above.
Do Hot Stones really work?
For most parts of the body I would say yes. The heat from the stones naturally relax you and your muscles making it easier to work deeper and quicker getting better results. Also the heat causes vasodilation of the blood capillaries flushing out waste products and providing more nutrients to the area. The hot stones do feel really nice and helps to smooth any tender areas after deeper work.
Do you do a ‘whole body’ massage in an hour?
Yes and no. I have massaged the whole body in an hour but this is just a quick holistic massage and not very deep and not sports or remedial. So yes it’s feasible so often you find areas of tension that need working on and there would not be enough time to work these and still do the whole body.
How did I get this Injury?
I do get this question very often and the possible causes are endless but very important to understand. A recent example I had was from a guy with neck pain and he asked me the same question. Jokingly I asked him “have you been head banging at a rock party”? – After a laugh and some silence he came back to me saying he had been unusually doing a lot of welding recently and when using the head mask he had been repeatedly nodding down into place while holding the welding rod and metal. I could never have known that unless I had been continuously watching him at work. But this is very important to consider what is causing the symptoms so we can come up with strategies to reduce the problem. Others overuse causes have been ‘crossing legs’ ‘reading at night’ ‘feeling the cold and hunching shoulders’, ‘carrying a lap-top bag’ ‘front crawl swimming’, ‘wrong shoes’, ‘wallet in back pocket’, ‘overuse of ride-on lawn mower’, ‘standing posture’, ‘Axe kicks’, ‘job stress’, poor posture, etc etc
Will a Sports Massage hurt?
Some muscle adhesions and scar tissue can be awkward to remove and can be a little painful during the treatment and tender for a couple of days after, during the healing process. We assess pain level on awkward knotty areas during the session and can easily reduce pressure or try different techniques. The gain from the sports massage is that you will feel a lot more comfortable – ‘looser’ and more flexible – a few days after, and with less chance of a major injury. It’s just like a good service on a car – There’s less chance of a breakdown!
I have heard the term ‘Healing Crisis’. What does this mean?
This is not a frequently asked question but it is a very good question rarely highlighted on massage therapist web sites. There is a lot of information on the web but put simply a ‘healing crisis’ can occur when the body tries to eliminate toxins at a faster rate than they can be disposed of. (Note: Most websites now call it the ‘healing response’ or ‘healing reaction’ as there is a shift away from the term ‘crisis’). Toxins are often stored in muscle and fat tissue and during manipulation by massage, these toxins are squeezed out into the lymphatic system and into the bloodstream. This means the body is going through the process of cleaning itself of impurities but some people suffer temporary symptoms after a massage such as:- tiredness, headaches, frequent urination, changed sleep patterns etc. I have personally only suffered any negative reactions only once in a 15 year period of of massages and this was partly by own fault as I did not drink enough water after a long massage session and I had some alcohol this together made me feel if I had real hangover the next morning.
What time should I arrive for a 10am appointment?
Please arrive at the appointment time of 10am or up to 5 minutes before.
Do you use oil or waxes?
I use both and have a variety for the client to choose from. I use beautifully blended essential oils which have many benefits for the skin and body (and they smell great too!).
Are there any conditions that would prevent me from having a massage?
Yes. Thrombosis and infectious diseases are some of the more obvious ones. Some conditions may require medical permission before commencing a massage treatment, or there may be a local contra-indication eg raised varicose veins. This will be covered during the consultation or checked before you make an appointment.
Do you have the right qualifications?
I have an ITEC & BTEC (NVQ Level 4) in Holistic Massage and a BTEC (NVQ level 5) in Sports Massage. I trained at Essentials for Health (one of the top Massage schools in London). My Hot Stones Fusion training was through the Jing Institute of Advanced Massage Training. This course is regarded as one of the most comprehensive Hot Stones courses in the UK. I am also trained in Thai Foot and Hand Massage and Soft Tissue Release so I can really infuse the massage to the ultimate level.
How do I choose which massage therapist is right for me?
The process of choosing a therapist can be bewildering. There are many factors to consider such as location, cost, training and qualifications. But their experience and passion for the profession is also very important as is their ability to meet your requirements. I do not treat anyone I do not think I can help. I firmly believe that the client must find a therapist who will resonate with them to give them the best possible treatment for their known needs and will strive to exceed their expectations. The combination of my experience, level of training and passion make me an accomplished practitioner in the Hot Stones, Sports & Holistic Massage.
How long should I book for?
For the first two sessions it is best to allow for an hour. For further treatments I will automatically book you in for an hour with hot stones unless you tell me otherwise. Some clients do ask for just a 30 minute spot treatment while others find their massage therapy time goes very quickly and a 1 hour 30 minute appointment gives more time for an effective treatment of multiple areas.
Do you coach or mentor other therapists?
I have coached and provided advice to other therapists a number of times. Some have shadowed me for a day while I work; others come for treatment themselves or provide bodies for both of us to work and learn on. I now have a wealth of skills and knowledge and I do not intend to work full time after 2021 so I am happy to help others trying to work in this profession.