The summer holidays are upon us and like many people Amelia and I will be taking some time off with our families. I am away this weekend Amelia will be covering the Northallerton Clinic on Friday and Saturday. Amelia will also be covering several days when I am away in August. The sessions are all available via the online booking system so get booked in! Just a snippet of the feedback I’ve had about Amelia is below and a guide to making an online booking is at the bottom of this post.
Had been getting progressively worse over 2 weeks with a bad back – saw Amelia and in one session she sorted me out . Very thorough in her assessment, excellent treatment and problem solved.
After successful talks to local runners in Northallerton and Bedale, we have been asked to do a short presentation to Zest Freedom members of the Hambleton leisure centres on injury prevention and rehabilitation. We will discuss some of the causes of injury and also looking at introducing movement exploration in injury rehabilitation. Members should have been emailed an invitation and we hope to see you there. Details of the talks are below:
Ed will be at Northallerton Leisure Centre this Thursday 25th July, 18:00-19:00. Also speaking on the evening will be Alice Bullock on the topic of “Pre & Post Exercise Fuelling”. Amelia will be at Bedale Leisure Centre on Wednesday 28th August, 18:00-18:30.
Just a quick post to let you know that the cost of sessions will be changing with effect from the 1st April 2019. The various costs of sessions can be found here.
Sessions with either Ed or Amelia include:
– Injury examination & assessment.
– Tailored rehabilitation to suit your needs and get you safely back to your chosen sport / activity as soon as possible.
– Bespoke exercise programmes, with video tutorials, and a free app so you can log your sessions.
– Follow up contact once you have finished your treatment / rehab to ensure your recovery is still progressing as planned.
– 12+ years of experience in treating sports injuries and working with athletes.
– Easy, quick online booking, with appointment confirmation and reminders.
– Both Ed and Amelia are members of The Society of Sports Therapists.
Just a quick post to say thank you for all the fantastic support with the new Yarm clinic. The response to “The Yarm Clinic is Open for Business” post on Facebook and Twitter was amazing and really appreciated. We have been busy behind the scenes and all the online booking buttons should have been updated to include the new clinic info.
It’s a great space and clinic room and Ed will be there this Thursday (14th January) so feel free to pop by and say hello (just look for the blue door next to Café Nero on Yarm High Street).
To make an online booking click the images below or call Ed (07837276444) or Josie (07496359697).
I’ve seen it regularly on Twitter and Facebook, where people are announcing a time for change and to get fit again. I’ve also seen several posts about how it’s not necessarily a good time to make a New Years resolution. In reality does it matter whether it is a good time or not? This is the time of year where people are looking forward and want to make changes after the binge eating of the Christmas season.
So with this in mind, I thought that I would post 10 simple pointers, which may help keep you injury free and motivated, if you are someone who is starting exercise after a long break:
1. Take it steady
– Start slow and gradually increase your exercise volume. I regularly see people who have “caught the bug” and don’t want to stop or done way too much too soon. We would would love to see a nice linear progression, but the reality is often much more complex.
– For some people goal setting can be really helpful, but keep it realistic and start with bite sized pieces. You can always adjust them if they are too easy.
3. Listen to your body
– I say this quite often, but it’s your biggest clue to something going wrong. Yes the exercise will be/should be tough, but you should also be recovering in-between sessions, if not you may need to reduce the intensity or take a longer rest.
4. Make a plan, but a flexible plan
– Once you’ve made your goals, make you’re plan. When is your time for exercise going to be? With our busy lives, it can be hard to fit stuff in, so make time for yourself. Having said that I quite often see injuries where people have been unwilling to deviate from their plans, where a rest week/low mileage week might have been all they needed.
5. Exercise with a friend
Ullswater Trail Race
– This can be a fantastic motivator, if you’ve made that commitment to exercise, you’re less likely to skip a session.
7. Measure your progress
– Again this can really help to motivate (can also go the other way if things aren’t going to plan), but think about what you are monitoring. If it’s just weight loss, there are quite often other improvements in fitness before you will see much change in your weight. So do you see a reduction in your Rate of Perceived Exertion (RPE) for a particular exercise, can you do more reps/walk/run/cycle further in a given time?
– I quite often suggest apps such as the “Couch to 5K” running app as a way of gradually increasing running volume. Other apps such as Strava, Endomondo or MapMyRun can also be useful to help monitor progress or log activity.
8. Diet and exercise go hand in hand
– After the excess of Christmas, this is important to recognise, but I’m not suggesting you need to jump on the newest fad diet out there. Look at what you eat and be honest with yourself, make small changes first and then build on these improvements.
9. Don’t put too much pressure on yourself
– Enjoy it! Find an exercise that you love to do and getting fit becomes so much more enjoyable. It should still be hard work though!
10. Keep it simple
– All of the above is so much easier if you keep it simple, find your way to exercising and fitness. I am a firm believer that there is a form of exercise out there for everyone, you just have to find yours.
On a final note: If you already have a niggle or injury which you feel is holding you back or even preventing you from exercising, get it checked out. At Ed Pratt Sports Therapy we can work with you to help prevent injuries, as well as treating current problems, with the aim of getting you back doing the exercise/sport you love.
Let me know what you think of the above tips and if you have any to add, which you think others will find useful add them to the comments box below.
This is a brief post predominently about the Nordic Hamstring Exercise, which can be used as part of a preventative programme for hamstring injuries. It should not be used in isolation and as in all preventative programmes the sport involved, level of participation and physiological/psychosocial requirements must be accounted for.
Hamstring injuries can be a significant problem in sports involving rapid changes in pace/direction, with between 12-16% occurrence in English and Australia professional football (Peterson and Holmich, 2005). Recurrence rates are also high (12-63%), with the first month after return to play (RTP) being the highest risk period (Brukner et al., 2014).
So not only is the rehabilitation of hamstring injuries important, but the prevention of further hamstring injuries at RTP, especially in the first month. To understand how to prevent injury we need to understand the risk factors for that injury. Peterson and Holmich (2005) nicely distinguish between the different risk factors by sub-grouping them in to non-modifiable and modifiable. The main risk factors for hamstring injury are:
In terms of preventing hamstring injuries, eccentric exercises (muscle is working as it is lengthening) have received a lot of attention over the last few years (Mjølsnes et al., 2004; Small et al.; 2009 and Brooks et al., 2006) and more recently the Nordic Hamstring Exercise. Mjølsnes et al. (2004) compared Nordic hamstrings with a concentric leg curl strengthening programme and found that greater gains were achieved with the Nordic hamstrings and also a greater improvement in the hamstrings:quadriceps strength ratio compared to the hamstring curl exercise. Subjects in this group were healthy individuals with either no history of hamstring injury or “fully recovered” from previous injury.
Nordic Hamstring Exercise
The Nordic Hamstring Exercise is performed by anchoring the lower legs and slowly leaning forward from a tall kneeling position. The individual tries to control their lean until they reach a “tipping point” when they use their arms (not face!) to break their fall. See the video below for a demonstration:
Nordic Hamstring Video:
The training protocol used in the Mjølsnes et al. study was over a 10 week period and is reproduced below:
Reproduced from Mjølsnes et al. (2004)
Points To Note
– The subjects in this study had no current injuries.
– The Nordic hamstring exercise is a high effort level exercise to perform.
– It can be great as part of a rehabilitation programme, but should only be used as advised by a suitably experienced and qualified therapist/trainer.
– A suitable warm-up should be performed prior to performing the exercise.
– The Nordic hamstring exercise should be used as part of a comprehensive rehabilitation/preventative programme and not in isolation.
Thanks for reading, get in touch if you have any questions.
Brooks, J.H.M., Fuller, C.W., Kemp, S.P.T. and Reddin, D.B. (2006) Incidence, Risk, and Prevention of Hamstring Muscle Injuries in Professional Rugby Union. American Journal of Sports Medicine, 34:8, 1297-1306.
Brukner, P., Nealon, A., Morgan, C., Burgess, D. and Dunn, A. (2014) Recurrent hamstring muscle injury: applying the limited evidence in the professional football setting with a seven-point programme. British journal of Sports Medicine 48:11 929-938.
Mjølsnes, R., Arnason, A., Østhagen, T., Roasted, T. and Baar, R. (2004) A 10-week randomised trial comparing eccentric vs concentric hamstring strength training in well trained soccer players. Scandinavian Journal of Sports Medicine, 14:, 311-317.
Petersen, J. and Holmich, P. (2005) Evidence based prevention of hamstring injuries in sport. British Journal of Sports Medicine, 39:6, 319-323.
Small, K; McNaughton, L; Greig, M and Lovell, R. (2009) Effect of timing of eccentric hamstring strengthening exercises during soccer training: implications for muscle fatiguability. Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, 23:4, 1077-1083.
This is just a quick post relating to a recent client, who had been advised not to do any more rowing following a back injury. Even without going into detail about the history of their injury, I find this advice unhelpful, catastrophising and discouraging. There may be extreme circumstances where an individual has to stop doing a particular sport due to an injury, but by encouraging rather than discouraging movement, activity and exercise the end result is often more pain free movement and improved function. So often I hear from patients what they can’t do and are not supposed to do and a lot of the time I think it would be better if, as therapists, we asked them what they can do and what they would like to do and worked with that.
By helping people change their perceptions of their pain and the movements that are coupled with that pain we can help people to improve quality of life and increase their levels of activity.
The spring marathon season is just around the corner and those planning running a marathon should really be starting to think about your training and preparation. Yes it seems like its ages away, but as the saying goes “it soon comes round” (is that even a saying? I’m not too sure). Now is the ideal time to take stock of your training and look at making any changes you deem useful.
One aspect you may want to look at is the way you run. The vast majority of us learn to run not long after we learn to walk and from that point on think very little about how we run and why it might be important in terms of both performance and injury prevention. There is an emerging body of evidence that would suggest modification of an individuals running technique (gait re-training) and cadence can help in the treatment and rehabilitation of injuries. There are certain injuries, which appear to correlate with a particular running style or pattern, for example cross-over gait could, possibly be linked with ITB syndrome. A study of 15 runners, by Meardon et al. (2012) found an increase in ITB strain rate as step width decreased (Reference). By looking at the whole body it is possible to look for patterns of movement, which may effect running style or performance, for example the action of the arms and amount of rotation in the upper body correlates with the leg swing and counter rotation in the lower body and vice versa.
Some aspects of an individuals running form can be picked up just by watching them run, whereas other are more subtle, happen quicker and therefore difficult to pick up with the naked eye. This is where video gait analysis comes in. Here I do not mean the knee down, focussing on the foot landing, gait analysis you get in sports shops. I am talking about a whole body top-to-toe video analysis that looks at not only what happens at the feet, but also the knees, hips and upper body. It is only by looking at the whole body that you can get a true reflection of an individuals running style and therefore make adjustments to suit them as an individual.
However, to go back to my previous point about marathon training, if you are going to make adjustments to your running, it takes time for the new movement patterns to develop and to break old habits. Running drills and cues need to be accompanied by the correct strength and conditioning exercises and mobility work, which again need to be developed for the individual. The autumn winter seasons are the perfect time to start looking at your running style and making any changes required.
It is not about pigeon holing you into a category, it is about finding the right style of running for you!
If you would like further information about video gait analysis service provided at Ed Pratt Sports Therapy, please click here.
The title of this post was a question I asked to year 9 pupils at Hurworth School last week, when doing a presentation on the importance of exercise and promoting exercise as part of a healthy lifestyle. After the usual answer of “Because you’re being paid” and the follow up questions of “Do you have a nice car sir?”. I explained that I did not mean the question in a philosophical sense and was not looking for the meaning of life, but rather why was I there talking to them instead of at work in the clinic earning money? The answer for me was simple, it is something I’ve believed since before I started my Sports Therapy degree, from when I taught swimming and was a gym instructor. I was there because I love sport and being active. I feel very privileged to have had a very active upbringing, always encouraged to be out doing exercise from swimming to rugby and walking with the family. The benefits I have received from this upbringing have not only provided me with good health, but given me skills to help me in my business and social lives as well. The health benefits of exercise are demonstrated brilliantly by Dr Mike Evans in the video below. Those of you who have followed the blog/Facebook page for a while, will know that I have posted this video before, however I think its message is so important that I have no qualms about posting it again. I had a great week visiting the Hurworth and Applegarth schools for National School Sports Week, the response from the students was great and we had some interesting discussions about why we exercise and what happens to our bodies during exercise and injury
When you get injured you can choose to leave it and hope it gets better; visit your GP and possibly get a referral or pay to be assessed and treated privately. Whichever option you choose there is a cost involved either of time, emotion or money. That cost can have a direct effect on you and your injury.
By making an appointment to be seen privtely you may get peice of mind and a plan of action for injury, thereofer reducing the emotional cost. The following course of treatment should reduce the amount of time you spend out of action, therefore reducing the time costs. There is of course still the financial costs and these need to weighed against the other benefits of piece of mind, reduced frustration, faster access to treatment and a swifter recovery.
Interesting blog by Astre Sports Therapy about the difference between sports therapists and physiotherapists. Main points: different training and there are great physiotherapists and sports therapists out there, so get recommendations!