State Registered Osteopath in Derby
Sports Massage Teacher (ProActive Training)
Corporate osteopathy within the rail industry
Before discovering the benefits of Osteopathy, he was a keen martial artist and was fascinated by the role that exercise and stretching played in injury prevention and rehabilitation. He trained as a Sports Injuries and Spinal Manipulation Therapist prior to the completion of the five-year degree in Osteopathy. Alex has practiced yoga for eight years, and now practises Hatha Yoga four times a week as well as Pilates.
In June Alex commenced teaching the ITEC Diploma in Sports Massage to final year Sports Science and Physiotherapy students for ProActive Training. This course provides these final year therapists with the additional hands-on experience using manual therapy for sports injuries and pre/post event preparation.
During his studies at the College of Osteopaths, Alex built up his own Derby Physical Therapy Practice that continues to grow, with a full-time dedicated city centre clinic. Alex uses active resisted muscle testing, biomechanical postural assessment, Orthopaedic provocation tests and gentle tissue palpation as his diagnostic screen. Alex works with patients from all backgrounds and addresses many different pain presentations although he has a particular interest in helping people with chronic pain.
All osteopaths must maintain their yearly registration which means recording all training and continuing professional development (CPD). This year Alex attended the NSpine Osteopaths day at the QMC for lectures and discussion on subjects including: Cauda Equina Syndrome, spinal tumors and Adolescent Idiopathic Scoliosis. Most recently Alex attended a two day course with prof Laurie Hartman on manipulation,
Alex is registered with the General Osteopathic Council and is a member of the British Osteopathic Association.
How can Osteopathy help you?
Osteopathy uses hands-on treatments including: massage, mobilisation, stretching, soft tissue release and joint manipulations.
Massage is the manipulation of your body's surface and deep layers of soft tissues. Effective massage treats firstly areas that are causing you discomfort and secondly supports your whole body. In this way massage can have different goals, for example enhancing circulation, reducing pain, relaxation or sports preparation.
Massage has powerful effects upon on all of your body's tissues, but most important is the way massage enhances circulation and the movement of fluid in and around your bodily tissues.
The smallest unit of life is the cell. Each of your cells does a vital job, be it building hormones or gobbling-up waste materials. Your well-being then, depends on each cell being supplied with the energy and raw materials it requires to carry out its role. Without suitable circulation the cells in your body will suffer starvation of energy and raw materials. A cell is like a tiny factory, it will produce waste products like lactic acid or free radicals, even when the supply of raw materials slows or stops. This means that waste products accumulate in your tissues, which can then lead to toxicity and discomfort. Massage then, limits this toxic build-up, while treating your body's tight muscles that allowed toxicity to occur in the first place.
Mobilisation is a movement ideally in a harmonic rocking motion where your body's tissues and joints receive a very gentle rhythmic passive movement that can help elongate shortened tissues, encourage the imbibition of synovial fluid into joint and create a passive fluid pump. Mobilisations also have a moderating affect upon your body's sympathetic nervous system. Sympathetic nerves gear your body up for fight or flight and prepare certain glands, organs and smooth muscles for this action. Mobilisations can reduce the firing of these nerves allowing the parasympathetic nerves to predominate. Parasympathetic nerves moderate the body's rest and digest functions. Thus if your fight and flight nerves are over-firing, the rest and digest function of the body will be reduced. This can lead to malabsorption of nutrients, constipation, anxiety and restlessness.
Soft Tissue Release (STR) The technique involves applying precise force during a specific stretch performed in multiple planes of movement. The aim is to appeal to the autonomic nervous system in a way that leads to spontaneous release of the injured muscle, thus regaining the original resting length of that muscle. The result: fast and permanent reorganization of scar tissue, the targeted muscle(s) return to the proper resting length, muscle imbalances are corrected, associated pain is decreased or eliminated altogether, and muscle performance is improved. Results are often obtained quickly and permanently.
Contract Relax stretching activates the target muscle fibres when we ask you to contract the muscle, and then we ask you to relax and exhale. As you change from contracting to relaxing neurologically an opportunity occurs where passively the contracted muscle fibres can be drawn apart. Gymnasts and martial artists use this mechanism which they term PNF. In this way tight muscles can be relaxed without the need to sit in a painful positions waiting for the muscle to give.
Joint Manipulations are particularly useful at neurologically relaxing joints that feel achy or in-bind. Your joint is placed in a position where it is nearly locked up, and a short thrust of energy placed through it. Often a popping or cracking can be heard. This technique activates a receptor in the muscle's tendon which then creates a reflex arc to the spinal cord, and back down the motor nerve to re-set the muscle's tone.
These approaches aim to improve the inherent motion of the body, that jobs, driving, diet, hobbies, age and stress limit.
Discover how you can recover from injuries faster, relieve your pain and aid your body's recovery from injuries. We specialise in applying sports massage, facilitated stretching, harmonic articulation, inhibition and long and short lever joint-release techniques to ease your aches and sprains, so that you can quickly return to your normal life.
What is Osteopathy?
Osteopathy is a drug-free, non-invasive, manual therapy that focuses on total body health by treating and strengthening the musculo-skeletal framework, which includes the joints, muscles, tendons, ligaments and the spine. Its aim is to positively affect the body's nervous, circulatory and lymphatic systems. Osteopathy considers the wider impact context of the patient including their medical history, medication interactions, diet, occupational and hobby stressors.
How is Osteopathy different from Chiropractic therapy?
Osteopathy and Chiropractic Therapy have shared techniques like joint manipulation, trigger point therapy and exercise prescription. Principally the two methods are remarkably different. A chiropractor will encourage health by focusing primarily on the health and correct alignment of your spine, where after adjustment the spinal nerves can correctly function allowing your body to work properly. (Chiropractors are now divided into two political camps, the Mixers and the Straights, where the purest "Straights" believe and treat non musculoskeletal conditions like Asthma and Colic. Mixers mix and use many different therapies as well as vertebral adjustments.) It is interesting to read Dr Simon Singh and Dr Edzard Ernst's book "Trick or Treatment" regarding the evidence to back-up the straight chiropractors attempting to treat non musculo-skeletal diseases! Osteopaths just find areas of your body that are restricted and encourage correct movement in those tissues. Chiropractors tend not to use soft tissue techniques like massage, typically they treat more often but allow less time per session, giving between ten and twenty five minutes per session, whereas osteopaths typically treat from between twenty and thirty five minutes.
DerbyOsteopath.org.uk allows forty minutes per session, giving us time to see how you have progressed, and enough time to properly address the cause of your pain. Typically soft tissue techniques like massage are used 60% of the time.
Osteopathy is a unique holistic (whole person) approach to health care. Osteopaths do not only concentrate on treating the problematic area, but use manual techniques to affect all the systems of the body in order to provide overall good health and well-being. Osteopathy is a government-regulated profession that has been validated as safe and effective by the NHS and the National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE). Osteopathy uses the western medical model as its frame of reference, which means that osteopathy views health from the same perspective as orthodox western medicine, but philosophically pays greater attention to the whole person rather than the individual’s component tissues.
What Happens on the Initial Visit?
A full medical case history will be taken followed by an examination during which you may be asked to perform a few simple movements. Some clothing may need to be removed so that the area can be examined and treated. Based upon the findings of your case history you will asked to perform active movements, for instance you might be asked to bend your knee or hip. Then the osteopath will perform certain passive movements. Active movements tend to implicate muscle pain whereas passive movements tend to implicate connective and ligamentus. Where you might complain of a clicking or snapping hip the osteopath would perform special tests to identify the cause of the pain, perhaps arthritic, labral, musculotendinous and joint. To implicate a labral tear your hip would be placed into extreme flexion and internal rotation.
Additionally the osteopath will use their highly developed sense of touch to palpate and assess areas of tenderness, strain, restriction or weakness within your body.
After examination the osteopath will discuss their findings with you and advise whether osteopathic treatment is suitable.
Osteopaths usually start any treatment by releasing and relaxing muscles and stretching stiff joints, using gentle massage techniques, rhythmic joint movements and muscle release techniques. The osteopath may also carry out manipulation using short, quick movements to spinal joints. The treatment may be a bit uncomfortable at times as painful areas are being treated but the osteopath will work within your level of tolerance.
The initial visit lasts up to an hour. Further treatments last up to forty minutes, and on average between 2 and 6 sessions are required.
On The Clipboard This Week:
Alex is booked to instruct ITEC Sports Massage Diploma at Loughborough Uni Campus, 23rd - 29th June 2014. This intensive 7 day course is aimed at physiotherapists, sports science students and strength and conditioning coaches whom want to develop their skill base into physical therapy. ProActive Training Ltd run the programme.
This week Alex commenced a six day, one day per month, study of Cranial Osteopathy, culminating upon completion with registration at The Sutherland Institute.
As the practice continues to grow, new and returning clients have placed the appointment diary under pressure to book in treatments. As a result of this fantastic expansion an Osteopath Mr David Webster BSc (Hons) has joined the practice. David studied osteopathy for five years at the College of Osteopaths at Keele University, as did Alex. David has further developed his skills with further studies into Cranial Osteopathy and Animal Osteopathy.
Corporate Osteopathy Last Wednesday I introduced the subject of Work Place Injuries to a local engineering design business. This went well and I will be working three times a year on-site treating the employees as part of the business' Wellness programme.
Knee ache can slow people down or stop them running or riding their bike. Knee on the inside of the knee can be caused by so many issues, including medial quad weakness or in-balance, cartilage damage, ligament sprain and Plica pain. The Plica is a fold of the knee lining which can become pinched in-between the bottom of the Femur and the knee cap.