Alex Spray and David Webster
State Registered Osteopaths in Derby
Sports Massage Teaching (ProActive Training Ltd)
Corporate Osteopathy Lloyd's Register Rail
Equine & Canine Osteopathy
Visceral and Cranial Osteopathy
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 nine years, and now practises Hatha Yoga five times a week. Alex is starting yoga teacher training in October with Bahia Yoga of Nottingham.
In June Alex is booked again for teaching the ITEC Diploma in Sports Massage to final year Loughborough University Sports Science and Physiotherapy students. 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, bio-mechanical 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).
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 affects 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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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, soft tissue release (STR), inhibition, Cranial Osteopathy and long and short lever joint-release techniques to ease your aches, pains 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 similar in that both place great emphasis upon the correct functioning of the whole body as a unit, but also remarkably different in the approaches used to manipulate the body. 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. Mixer chiropractors 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.
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.
In The News
What Is Chondromalacia Patellae? (PF)
The majority of clients that present to the clinic with anterior knee pain over the coming year will more often than not have a patellofemoral (PF) problem.
It may be a slight bit of biomechanical mal-alignment that has stirred up the knee cap - this is the good, or they may have started to wear the cartilage on the under surface of the knee cap and as a result it has softened - chondromalacia – this is the less good. They may even have worn a hole into the knee cap cartilage and they now have a chondral defect, or worse still an osteochondral defect - the downright ugly.
These problems affect runners, cross fitters, group exercise enthusiasts (Les Mill`s PUMP classes!), and simple recreational walkers who spend a lot of time on hills and stairs.
The bio-mechanical irritations and the chondromalacia versions can be managed conservatively with a combination of local treatment modalities and correcting the bio-mechanical faults. The more serious chondral/osteochondral defects often need some surgical intervention as often the pathology is too advanced to respond to conservative treatment alone. Chris Mallac
Understanding the exact mechanical contributions of the knee cap in relation to the femur is critical for the therapist to effectively manage these problems.
At the local (PF) level, the fault is usually a malposition of the patella in the femoral trochlear groove. Often the knee cap is being pulled too far laterally and superiorly in the groove, creating an uneven contact situation between the knee cap and the great leg bone. The (PF) compression force during loaded knee flexion (squats, lunges etc.) is no longer optimal and usually a smaller portion of the patella cartilage is taking all the load. This wears the cartilage down and creates pain and pathology. This is most noticeable as the knee flexes to 30 degrees and onwards as it is this knee flexion angle where the knee cap enters the femoral Trochlear groove.