Acorn Health Blog

Sports Massage isn't just for Sports People Part 2Therapies

Posted by Sally-Anne Fri, June 22, 2018 01:59PM

By Laura Kirkman, Professional Sports and Thai Yoga Massage Therapist

How did the receiver of Sports Massage get tight achy muscles in the first place?

All the examples listed below are based on my personal experiences of working with different clients through out my career so far and what I’ve found to be common problem areas with certain roles. I’ve tried to categorise them to cover a lot of different roles and I do apologise if I’ve missed some out.

Desk-based jobs

This covers literally any job that involves sitting at a desk. By sitting down at a desk for the majority of your week, this can put stress on the shoulder and neck muscles from typing, focusing on your screen and most likely slouching. Speaking of typing, in some cases people can even get repetitive strain (tendinitis) in their wrists and forearms. From being in the seated position this can also have a big effect on your thigh muscles and the lower back, as overtime the muscles get use to being in this position and can get gradually shorter and tighter.

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Driving jobs or long driving commutes

Your body is in a similar position to someone doing a desk-based job so you may have similar problem areas but driving will have a bigger impact on your body. It is common when driving manual to utilise parts of your body more than others, which can put extra strain on the muscles that are used more frequently. For example your left leg for the clutch, left hand for gears and not to mention the rotation of the neck when performing manoeuvres.

Intensive manual labour jobs

This includes electricians, plumbers, builders, plasterers, and tillers Etc. These kinds of jobs may seem great because they are rather physical but apart from that a lot of the work can be very repetitive, usually requiring the tradesman to be in awkward positions and spaces for long periods of time which is not the norm for the body. Some of these jobs may require the use of one dominant hand, which will cause an imbalance to the body as one side gets stronger and the other side can get stiff from the lack of use. Also remember some of these tradesman will also have to drive a long way to do a job as well and be affected by long commutes too. The muscle groups that are affected will vary with the trade.

High Stressed Jobs

Do you have lots of deadlines to reach that can sometimes seem inhumanely possible? Or your job is based in a fast paced stressful environment like any of the many roles in the food or retail industry? If you’re not relaxed and happy and feeling stressed in your workplace the majority of the time, your workplace qualifies as a stressful environment. Stress has many numerous negative effects on the body but today we will keep it muscle related. One of the most common areas affected by stress is the neck and shoulders as most people unconsciously hunch and hold their shoulders up causing tight and knotted muscles in the shoulders, which then in turn effects the neck causing it to be tight which can then in some cases lead to tension headaches.

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Health Professionals

Doctors, vets, nurses, hair dressers and groomers alike are sometimes under huge amounts of stress (depending on what your role entails), each day to help and care for others but often in the process they forget to care for themselves. Some of these jobs could involve being on your feet for long periods of time, wearing correct footwear can help a lot but this can still have a big effect on the leg muscles. Some of these roles can involve desk time and probably a lot of it as well with a big workload to take care of which relates back to other examples. Let’s not forgot the roles, which involve moving heavy or non-heavy objects/people/animals even with the health and safety measures to how you do this correctly and it can still definitely have a big toll on all the muscle groups that are used in this actions in the long run.

Post Pregnancy and Parenthood

Whilst your body is going through pregnancy and in the later stages of the baby growing, your body is constantly adapting to the babies weight and size. So your centre of gravity is constantly off balance and can take some time for the body to get back to normality afterwards. The muscles that are greatly affected through all this changes to the female body are the majority of the back and the majority of the leg muscles. As these are the muscles that adapt the most to help the female body be able to carry a baby and still be able to move around, also the back muscles are probably achy from not being able to sleep properly at night time.

Then into parenthood you now have this little precious bundle of joy that requires you as a parent to pick up a lot and to also pick up after them. So your body is now doing all these extra movements that the body is just not use to yet. Well your arms are probably going to be the first thing you notice are now in pain more often, followed closely by the rest of your body and lest not mention the effects that lack of sleep does to us.

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Sports People in all your glorious forms

Even though this is an article looking at certain roles that aren’t sport but there is also an equal amount of sports people that would probably benefit from a sports massage. Sports people; regular gym goers, joggers/runners, all types of contact sport, football, swimming, hiking, cycling, semi pro to pro athletes and any other sports. Whatever your status sometimes help is required to help you perform better, shorter recovery time or to help with an injury. Sports Massage can help pre and post event to help your muscles warm up or to assist with cooling down. Through sports massage I can help identify areas that you need to work on more, either by stretching or strengthening techniques. As each sports person in their own field uses very different muscle groups to one another I cannot provide an example of which muscle areas are affected the most.

So what do we need to think about...

Most of the modern lifestyles don’t allow the time for you to truly look after yourself and to connect with your body. Sports Massage can help to release the built up tension and to help you feel happier and healthier. Maybe enough to motivate you to going to that gym or yoga class you always wanted to try, start going on regular walks in nature. No matter what you do in life always try to look after your body as you only have one and it's best to take care of it.

Sports Massage isn't just for Sports People Part 1Therapies

Posted by Sally-Anne Fri, June 22, 2018 01:15PM

By Laura Kirkman, Professional Sports and Thai Yoga Massage Therapist

Sports massage consists of a range of techniques that are proven to be really effective for alleviating any postural imbalances or to help particular muscles that get stiff and achy and are not performing as well. A postural imbalance can happen from a number of reasons but it generally means a particular group of muscles are being overused or underused and it causes a knock on effect to other muscle groups, as they will have to work harder to compensate for the imbalance. When you have been out of your natural posture for a while it can gradually start to affect you, you could start to feel pain and discomfort in area’s that are usually fine.

So as a Sports Masseuse my main aims are to effectively get the muscles back into a good working order by massage and personalised after care, so that you are back in alignment with your natural posture and feel pain free again. Depending on the state of your muscles, further treatments could be required to get the best possible results for your body. This will include discussing a treatment plan that suits you the best with how frequently you can have treatments and roughly how long you would like to receive them. At the end of each session I will go through stretching and strengthening exercises that can help maintain the effects of the treatment. I cannot stress enough how much of a difference actually doing the exercises can help with your overall treatment!

It could mean a shorter treatment plan if you continue these exercises and if you really implement them into your lifestyle anyway that you can. You will always be feeling better and experiencing less pain than before, you will also have the knowledge to effectively manage your own pain. I will also be much happier to see you in the future as well for any further top-up treatments.

Common professions that would benefit from a Sports Massage include (but are not exclusive to..)
* Desk-based jobs
* Driving jobs or long-driving commutes
* Intensive manual labour jobs
* High-stress jobs
* Health Professionals (Drs, Vets, Therapists etc...)
* Parenthood

I will be covering each one in a little more detail on my next blog (part 2) if any relate to you - please click on and have a read. Finally I just want to say that Sports Massage can help to release the built up tension within your body and it's my job as a Sports Masseuse to help with that process so that you can feel happier and healthier.

Is your Base Chakra out of balance…? Ten ways to find out…Therapies

Posted by Sally-Anne Fri, April 13, 2018 11:47AM

By Anne Marie Allen Reflexologist, Reiki Practitioner & Massage Therapist

From the previous blog we know the base chakra is about the basic survival such as security, health, safety, food, warmth but how can you tell if you’re out of balance…?

Here are seven ways to tell if your base chakra is out of balance:

1. You have hoarding or overeating tendancies.

2. You never feel like you have enough food, money, sex or material possessions often feeling worried about things such as money and work.

3. You often feel restless, you may find it hard to stick to things such as the same job for very long drifting from one thing to another.

4. You often experience feelings of insecurity, anxiety and feeling frightened.

5. You find it hard to let go and trust.

6. You can often find yourself being quite negative and critical either towards yourself or others.

7. You suffer from pain/discomfort in the legs, knees, spine or sciatica. You may have varicose veins.

8. You may have experienced depression or suffer from low moods.

9. Issues concerning bowel problems, constipation frequent need to use the bathroom, impotence can be indicators of your root chakra being out of balance.

10. Problems moving forward in life and/or feeling stuck in a rut.

These are just some of the ways a base chakra imbalance can show itself - the good news is there are so many ways to balance this chakra, throughout April I will be posting daily on my Natural Touch Facebook Page different ways that you can help to balance your base chakra. A balanced base chakra will leave you feeling safe, comfortable, abundant and secure, feeling able to live in the present with passion while moving forward in life.

Developing Your Inner Guidance SystemWorkshops & Classes

Posted by Sally-Anne Fri, April 06, 2018 03:16PM

By Sally-Anne Marler Creative Awakening Coach, Intuitive & Energy Healer

We all have the ability to tap into a part of ourselves that is wise, supportive, knowledgeable, loving, creative, expansive, all knowing and in tune with our higher good and life purpose. The problem is, we don't develop this connection and end up rationalising, assuming, second guessing, doing what is expected and taking action based on what we think we should do. As Einstein so rightly points out, we're forgetting the beautiful gift that lives inside each of us.
Blog imageI've spent a long time, working on and developing the connection to my inner guidance and wanted to share a few things that I've discovered in doing this.

1. Your inner guidance can show up in many guises. It can be presented to you as a 'hunch' or gut feeling. This is probably the most common form and widely experienced sensation. We've all had this feeling at one time in our lives - maybe there's many times that you can think of but we fail to trust this source and shrug it off, only to find out later we should have gone with our gut!
2. It's a whisper - not a loud voice in your head. It's gentle, loving and kind. How many times do you have thoughts that feel quite harsh and self-critical? This is the ego, trying it's best to keep you safe based on your past experiences by ANY MEANS NECESSARY. Your ego isn't as you might assume - it's true nature isn't based on negativity. It's what we develop as part of our personalities, as part of our survival kit growing up, our behaviours, defences, coping strategies - all of that is ego. It's connected to survival and doesn't care about how you survive, often leaving you feeling frustrated, restricted, untrusting and without much faith or hope. When you start to quieten your mind, however you might do this - with music or meditation or practicing mindfulness - listen out for the quiet whisper and ignore the loud thoughts telling you the latest you can't, you mustn't - don't try or trust...etc, etc.
3. It's connected to something bigger. We hear more and more about working with the universe and the universal laws that are always at play. The law of attraction is a common one that suggests like attracts like for example. People talk about guardian angels and spirit guides, the divine, then there are Gods. Different ones for different religions that support people's beliefs in something bigger or a 'higher source'. The point is that we are part of something bigger - regardless of our beliefs or lack of them. Once we learn how to tap into this 'higher source' which we can do through our 'higher self' a lot of light bulbs start flashing - well they did for me! It's like being given a bird's eye view over your whole life and the ability to objectively review it to make the necessary changes you want and need to move forwards with confidence and meaning. Don't get me wrong, it's not an easy process and you can't 'short cut' what you need to face, heal or learn once you embark on this inner journey but I can guarantee you, it's worth it!

There are many ways to develop your inner guidance and work with it. I developed mine through creativity and expression, metaphor, using oracle cards, meditation, creative visualisation, reflective practice, recognising syncronicities, numerology, astrology, dream interpretations and so on. I'm running a beginners guide workshop to help others connect to their inner guidance system as I feel we need to start honouring the gift not the servant and everyone should have the ability and confidence to tap into their inner guidance to help and support them along the way. If you'd like to book your place please book here to do so - this is running at an early-brid offer of £32 if you book before 7th July. I also offer 1:1 coaching if you're interested in embarking on an inner journey - my coaching program is called Brilliantly Shine and start from £55 for an introductory session & welcome gift. Perfect if you feel you're an empath, struggling to connect to meaning or purpose, have regular feelings of sadness, anxiety or depression or just wanting to learn more about yourself, increase confidence and self-awareness.