I found closing the practice at the beginning of lock down, a little sad, and a little strange as  mentioned in a previous Blog.

I thought I would catch up on books, pertaining to work, the surprise was I enjoyed the quiet space to be still, and to reflect on my practice as a therapist.

I did enjoy the space more than I thought I would. For the first time in years a started to read a story book, more often known as novels . However the word novel doesn’t work for me really, books are stories, a view into someone else’s imagination. Their story can captivate us, and we are in for the ride the book will take us on.

I have been reading Robin Hobbs, ‘The Farseer Trilogy’, the hero of our story isn’t really a hero, he’s a change maker, a catalyst. So he makes mistakes, intends to be successful, and best of all wakes up dragons!. However he has had his pain, sorrow, and disappointments. At one point he sinks all of his awful memoirs into the dragon leaving him free not to feel the pain!, However this leads to him not living his life fully. Fast forward to 3 books later, ( yes I know your thinking how many has she read ) There’s a point when he gets the chance to take back all his sorrow and painful memories . Only when he feels his life in the the fullness of all emotions, sorrow, pain and joy can he move forward and claim soul filling happiness.

We often talk of feeling and owning the whole of our lives when treating those folks who have long term pain states, or helping a sports person investigate what’s stopping them from regaining fitness or solving an injury that just won’t clear up.

The books also lead me to reflect on now, this moment in time. There is no doubt these are truly challenging times, challenging our spirit, soul, practice and asking what is truly important to us. I make sure I own how I feel each day, riding the emotions either good, happy , sad or frustrating. I ask myself what can I do to lift a sad moment without impacting others.

I remember how truly grateful I am for the life I live, the people that are there with me, my family and friends, and the fact that I am able to facilitate and support the people who want to make change for themselves.

We were so pleased when we could once more open the practice. However I won’t lie, Ros and I have found it physically challenging on our body’s working/treating in full ppe. However,  we wouldn’t change a thing, and have been genuinely thrilled to be back treating once more.

The ‘Masks’ are keeping us all very safe and sound. I do find myself ‘mouth breathing’, finding it a struggle breathing ‘in through the nose out through the mouth’, so my poor diaphragms end up feeling left out and tight, leading to headaches, a little jaw pain , and a rather achy thoracic spine ( the bit between your shoulder blades )

I now do have a little routine at the end of each day, so I feel a little restored. So I thought I would share a little something that I have found really helpful.

A breathing routine.

  • Side lying on cushion and pillows with the arm reaching over head, allow the ribs to open, deep breath, both sides
  • Then moving prone ( tummy down) over the cushions, breathing in the back ribs, opening muscles that feel tight at the end of my day
  • Then supine, ( over the cushions, chest and tummy to the ceiling ) with head supported on a cushion if needed, breathing into lower ribs, and imaging my organs saying thank you and relaxing.

This leaves me feeling open and relaxed, ready for my next day!!

Give it a try, let me know how you get on.

P.S thought I would share a wild garlic picture because it just makes me smile

Susan Bennett FLCSP (Phys)

Sue qualified in Remedial Massage in 1991 at the Northern Institute of Massage gaining a solid foundation on which to build her bodywork skills. Since 1991, Sue has continued her education to include a vast range of soft tissue techniques, giving her a great knowledge of anatomy and physiology, acquiring the title of physiotherapist in 2004. Sue also gained her Higher Grade Diploma in Manipulative Therapy in 2002.

After being in practice for a number of years, Sue wanted to expand her knowledge and find a soft-tissue technique which would enhance her treatments and create greater precision in clinic. She found this by travelling to the US in order to train under leading chiropractor Tom Hendrickson in San Francisco for 7 years.

In 2009 became the UK’s first qualified Hendrickson Method® therapist and is an ambassador for the Hendrickson Method® in the UK. Sue continues to undertake mentoring from Dr Tom Hendrickson in Berkeley, CA.

Committed to continually developing her knowledge and skills, most recently Sue completed a 10 month series in 2018 in Myofascial Anatomy & Movement for Pilates & Yoga teachers with Gary Carter of Natural Bodies.

Sue has also completed training with the Nuero Orthopedic Institute to further her understanding of pain and its mechanisms. She has undertaken the following workshops: Explain Pain, Mobilisation of the Nervous System and Graded Motor Imagery.

Sue is also a teacher and trainer of physiotherapy; she writes and delivers various workshops for physiotherapy and massage therapists throughout the UK, Ireland and Canada, and is PTLLS trained. She is also a neuro-linguistic programming (NLP) practitioner.

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