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Looking after your mental health

MENTAL HEALTH AWARENESS WEEK 13- 19TH MAY 2019

Mental health in numbers….

1 in 6 adults will have experienced a common mental health disorder in the last week.
Severe mental health illnesss affects about half a million adults in England and these individuals will have a life expectancy of up to 20 years shorter than the general population. (Public Health England).

improving mental health with exercise

Pain can limit a person’s ability to exercise. The loss of exercise as part of a person’s mental wellbeing can be devastating- benefits of exercise include stress relief, positive affect on body image, improved mood, improved sleep and increased confidence.

Come and see our team of experts at Emma James Physio to help diagnose, treat and manage your pain, to get you back to exercising for your mental and physical wellbeing.

lisa

Lisa
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Blog post by Lisa
Senior Physiotherapist
Emma James Physio

 

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Falling off a horse – my road to recovery (Part 2)

In my last post I spoke about my Injuries but today I want to share with you my road to recovery.

I tried many techniques to help speed up my healing process and strengthen my body for example:

The Bowen technique

  • Bowen is a holistic remedial body technique that works on the soft connective tissue (fascia) of the body. Bowen therapy can be used to treat musculoskeletal or related neurological problems including acute sports injuries and chronic or organic conditions. Bowen therapy is performed on the superficial and deep fascia.
  • Bowen Therapy may offer relief from pain, long-term injuries and illnesses, improved health and flexibility, improved sporting performance, relaxation, and emotional and mental well-being

Magnet therapy

magnet-therapy

  • Magnets have been used in alternative medicine for conditions ranging from systemic illnesses to joint pain. Some have proposed using magnets to help heal bone fractures. The idea is that magnets might improve circulation and increase blood flow, and thus the delivery of nutrients, to the fractured bone.
  • General rule to follow is black side of magnet on injury and red on the kidney

 

Floatation Therapy at Emma James Physio


The floatation tank is like a giant Epsom bath, heated to body temperature. It creates an environment similar to the Dead Sea. The are many benefits to a float, here are just a few:

  • Improve heart and circulatory health
  • Stimulate Lymphatic Draining – easing muscle pain
  • Lower blood pressure
  • Relieve stress

 

Physiotherapy

  • Relieving and manipulating the muscles in my back.
  • Stretching exercise specifically for my lower back/lumbar region and my quads and hamstrings which have become very tight due to the tension in my back.

 

Strength and Conditioning

  • Pilates work – building up the muscles in my back and core
  • Lots of body weight exercises and using resistance bands.


It has now been 4 months since my injury and pretty much back to full health. I still focus heavily on building up more core by doing Pilates work and I also stretch loads as I still get stiff down the right side of body and through my lower back. On the positive side I have learnt so much about my body and what I am capable of, I have also learnt my limitations and sometimes it’s ok not to push yourself to 100% max!

pippaThe human body is amazing.

Pippa
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Blog Post by Pippa
FCO Gym Manager & Personal Trainer
Emma James Physio

 

>>> Useful Info:

Falling off a horse – from injury to recovery (part 1)

In October 2018 I was involved in a horse related accident, I was un-taking the horse, the horse pulled back and I got my right hand stuck in the reins and was dragged across the yard. Fortunately, with the force of me falling, my hand came free, but I got trampled on in the process, resulting with me being left in a heap on the floor in pain and winded.

Thankfully being at neighbours they were around to rescue me walk me slowly back to the house give me paracetamol and ibuprofen and to feed me. I was very insistent I wanted to go home and have a shower.

horse-injury2a

My dad came and collected me and took me home, at this point I was in a lot of pain, but I think my body was in shock, so I had no idea the injuries I had incurred.

By the time I had got out the shower my mum had got home and I had no option I was going to hospital. We went straight to Hemel urgent care, and got seen pretty quickly by a doctor.

 

hand1After a quick examination she was convinced I had broken my hand and ribs and was also concerned about my abdomen as I was very tender on the right hand side below my ribs. I was blue lighted in an ambulance across to Watford General were I received a further examination followed by a CT scan and X- Ray. After waiting for a couple of hours I finally got my results. No broken hand but 3 displace fractures of the right transverse process L2, L3 and L4 (lower lumbar), a liver laceration and a displace fracture of my right 9th rib on my back. I spent 2 nights in hospital with my blood pressure and heart rate constantly being monitored and regular blood tests to make sure there was no further internal bleeding from my liver.

I was discharged on the 1st November in the evening after getting my bloods finally checked; making sure I had my pain managed and that I could cough and take a deep breath! As anyone who knows who has broken a rib this is very painful but a necessity to stop fluid build in the lungs. My amazing supportive sister who had sat with me all that day drove me home. I spent 1 week pretty much bed bound, had to change simple things like which side of the bed I got in, I had to use my parents shower as I could not step over the bath in my bathroom, constant baggy clothes, no bra and I had to get help putting on my socks!

The main thing to focus on was pain management, I was incredibly lucky with my injuries as we all know horses are a lot stronger than humans and can be unpredictable and no it has not put me off riding!

hand2After 2 weeks of limited movement I started to become more mobile, I was walking more upright and managing to get through the day with only one or two naps and I was sleeping though the night and stopped taking morphine!

By week 3 I was more mobile still, I started cutting back on my painkillers still taking paracetamol, ibuprofen and cut back on the tramadol, to 2 a day as it made me incredibly sleepy. I would take more depending on what I was doing. This included taking walks; I was very pleased to be able to get out walking as I felt as I was a. being more active b. I could get fresh air and clear my mind.
I try to walk at least once a day, making sure it is flat ground and not too far.

In my next post I’ll share with you my techniques for recovery.

pippaPippa
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Blog Post by Pippa
FCO Gym Manager & Personal Trainer
Emma James Physio

 

>>> Useful Info:

Megaboost IV – Vitamin Infusion

IMG_7131A month or so ago I was feeling frazzled.. Rushing about attempting to balance work, kids and home life had left me catching cold after cold, constantly drained, irritable and generally frazzled.

Emma James suggested I try a megaboost vitamin infusion at Champneys. Now, to be honest, the lure of being alone in a room in peace for 45 minutes relaxing on a bed (you can sit if you prefer) for 45 minutes had me signed up! Let alone the benefits of such a vitamin infusion; top restore hydration, replenish vital vitamins and minerals, boost the immune system and deliver a (much needed) energy boost.

The qualified Nurse administering the infusion was lovely and informative and took me through a range of checks, including a health questionnaire and blood pressure measurement. Once I had the all clear, we were all set to go. Inserting the needle into my arm was no more than a sharp scratch- like having blood taken. Then I just relaxed for the time it took for the infusion to be administered and that was it, infusion done.

The benefit of a vitamin infusion over oral vitamins is that the abdomen (where up to 50% of the benefit of the ingested vitamin can be lost) is bypassed so the benefits are greater.

I left Champneys with a spring in my step looking forward to the benefits of the vitamin infusion and signed up for my next one in a few months time. Give it a go!

More information can also be found on our website.

lisa

Lisa
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Blog post by Lisa
Senior Physiotherapist
Emma James Physio

Lower Back Pain – What works best?

Non- Pharmacological (medication) treatment for chronic low back pain- what works best?

A recent pre print article in The Lancet looking at 77 research randomized control trials (which are deemed a high quality of research trial) concluded that best treatments include massage and exercise. A combination is often the most successful approach- massage to reduce pain then exercise to increase movement and strength.
Resistance training in children

It is a common misconception that resistance training stunts growth and is damaging to children.
In fact, research shows that resistance training increases bone strength which decreases the risk of future sports related injuries (Alan Bishop, Director of Sports Performance, Men’s basketball, Uni of Houston)

Resistance training in children must be done under the expert guidance of a trained professional though with an emphasis on technique.

 

Weight bearing exercise in osteoporosis treatment

The addition of weight- bearing exercise (45- 60 minutes 2/ week for 6 months) to medical treatment of osteoporosis increases bone mineral density more than non weight- bearing exercise and significantly improved the quality of life of patients with osteoporosis.
Achilles tendon pain
Often the curse of the runner, especially this time of year as runners increase their distances in training for the Spring Marathons.

The issue is often:

  • Training errors- increasing training distance/ frequency too quickly
  • Weakness in the calf muscles
  • A combination of both

Research suggests that eccentric calf training is more effective than natural history (‘wait and see’/ rest) or traditional physiotherapy (massage, ultrasound, stretching) in improving pain and function.
This programme should always be supervised by a trained physiotherapist

 

More Information:
Chartered Physiotherapy
lisaPaediatric Physiotherapy

I hope that helps shed some light on lower back pain.
Lisa
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Blog post by Lisa
Senior Physiotherapist
Emma James Physio

The benefits of exercise to reduce stress

 

Stress Management and Exercise

We all have those days where we feel stressed.  It can be from various different sources, but one thing is for certain exercise is a great way to help deal with that stress! It can be hard to always find time but making exercise part of your lifestyle/routine makes it easier to incorporate it and then becomes less of a chore.

Exercise is a great method of stress management as it realises endorphins in our body which are ‘happy hormones’ and it can also distract our mind from what ever is stressing us out.

All forms of exercise can help with relieving stress from yoga to running, both very different but can have the same desired effect. Not only is it good for the realise of endorphins but exercise is also great for your overall health and wellbeing.

At Emma James Physio we provide a variety of different classes which could help and motivate you to exercise more. Pilates, spin, circuits and 1-2-1 Personal Training are just a few examples of what we have on offer. Classes are a great way to push yourself as you can bring a friend or make friends, having someone next to you can really help motivate.

  • Pilates is great overall toning and core strength class which can help contribute to other physical activities or everyday posture and mobility.
  • Spin will really get your heart rate up and get a sweat on, a great way to forget what’s on your mind and burn lots of calories.
  • Circuits includes a mixture of toning and cardio exercises giving you a full body work out.
  • 1-2-1 Personal Training is specialised to the individual to help them reach their overall goal including strength & conditioning and cardio moves.

Regular exercise can increase self-confidence, it can relax you, and it can lower the symptoms associated with mild depression and anxiety. Exercise can also improve your sleep, which is often disrupted by stress, depression and anxiety. All of these exercise benefits can ease your stress levels and give you a sense of command over your body and your life.

The most important thing is to find something you enjoy doing as you are more likely to stick to it and fit it into your busy day to day schedule.
Stress Awareness Month ( 1st-30th April 2019)

pippaPippa
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Blog Post by Pippa
FCO Gym Manager & Personal Trainer
Emma James Physio

Don’t be scared of eating good fats…..

Good fat is found in foods like:

  • Seeds
  • Avocados
  • Seafood
  • Oils
  • Meat
  • Fish
  • Nuts

Why you ask?

  1. Good fat helps you from overeating because it tells your brain to stop eating
  2. Fat slows the rate at which sugar hits your bloodstream, and this allows your blood sugar levels to remain steady
  3. Most importantly, keeping your hunger and cravings at bay

More information & health advice:

kerry-gym-managerHappy, healthy eating Buddies!
Kerry
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Kerry
Personal Trainer & Group Gym Manager

Fighting the Fear

We all have fear, I have fear daily about many things. The question is do we let our fear paralyse us or do we harness its energy and let it drive us forward.

There are so many reasons to be fearful. Fear of failure, fear of injury, fear of embarrassment, fear of poor decisions. However, nothing changes if nothing changes, often I’m fearful going into new situations or even when I meet a new patient for the first time, what I am asking is what do we do with that fear.

A prime example has been skiing this week with my children. I haven’t skied for ten years as I have been either having IVF, or pregnant or bringing up small children.

I’m heavier than I was, I’m more tired and there was a degree of doubt as to whether I would be able to do the black runs as before. I did however do what I always do and grabbed a metaphorical straw, sucked up the fear and did it anyway.
My daughters on the other hand have no concept of fear and like bullets they shot down the slope tucked in tight, with varying degrees of control.

My best friend on the other hand was also new to skiing and being naturally extremely athletic and strong surely she would take to it like a duck to water?
However this was not the case, her biggest barrier to success was her FEAR, fear of falling, fear of heights, fear of getting it wrong.

We all have our demons and we are all scared everyday, my advice would be f*** it and move on.

You are going to be scared, however the choice is yours, be fearful and do it anyway, or be fearful and allow this sense to paralyse you and halt your progress.
The choice of course is always yours.

I would highly recommend the book below .
Feel the Fear and Do it Anyway (Quick Reads 2017) Paperback – 2 Feb 2017
by Susan Jeffers (Author)

emma-james-2014Emma
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Blog Post by Emma
MD, Owner & Senior Clinical Director
Emma James Physio

 

Women over 40 getting into triathlons

Swim Bike Run, the three phases which make up a triathlon. Did you know the fastest growing segment of triathlons is people aged over 40 participating?

Why should you do one?

New challenge, keep fit, be competitive, enjoyment, get your body moving, lose weight, activate your mind, variation on workouts, learn something new!! There are so many different reasons to do a triathlon. Whatever the reason it is, it’s personal to you.
Triathlons have become a fast-growing popular sport, with more events popping up all over the country. Many of these events are held at iconic venues such as Eaton Dorney, Blenheim Palace, Woburn house, Windsor, London Excel and many more. It doesn’t matter what age you are or what ability you possess, everyone gets to compete at the same place.

As you get you older your body starts changing, bone and muscle mass starts to decrease. We store fat more easily and every woman goes through menopause eventually. These years are vital for women to change up eating habits and exercise regime in order to stay healthy, fit and strong. Regular exercise like training for a triathlon can help counterbalance these aging processes.

Aches and pains increase as you get older. This can be due to lack of flexibility and lack of motion. Doing triathlons will help massively increase flexibility and joint movement/motion. So when it comes to triathlon, the flexibility training aspect and the movement of swimming, biking, and running can significantly help reduce some of those aches and pains.

Starting off training can be daunting but there is no time like the present. You need to start from the bottom and work your way up like a pyramid. Start by going for walks, do body weight exercises, swimming gently, getting on the exercise bike. As you become fitter and stronger you can gradually increase your duration, pace and time of training. By having three phases to work at, makes training far more interesting which can help maintain a healthy mind and body.

There are lot of clubs on hand, which will accept all abilities; check out: https://www.britishtriathlon.org/

A great first-time triathlon which is just for women is the Women’s Only Shock Absorber Triathlon which is held at Eaton Dorney. There are several distances you can part take in and they are all segmented out into age category.

If you need any help putting a training programme together, tips on nutrition, a Personal Training session to help strengthen your body for the different phases or even a running, swimming or cycling buddy please call the office to get booked in!!

pippa

Blog Post by Pippa
FCO Gym Manager & Personal Trainer
Emma James Physio

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