P is for Pelvic Floor

Your pelvic floor is a hammock or sling of muscles found in the base of your pelvis. Our pelvic floor supports the bowel, bladder and in women, the uterus, all the while, playing a role in supporting the spine. The combined forces of the pelvic floor muscles form a supporting mechanism for the pelvic viscera from below – imagine interlocked fingers cradling a bowl. This hammock of muscles also interacts with the diaphragm when the abdominal pressure inside changes – as happens when we breathe. Breathing can be affected by a weak pelvic floor, possibly contributing to dysfunctional breathing patterns. We … Continue reading

Y is for…YMCA

The YMCA have been around for a long time (it was founded in 1844). Their strapline is “Helping Young People Build a Future“. I don’t know what your experience of ‘The Y’ is, but I’ve always associated them with activities, some sort of movement in the form of sport or physical activity. My first introduction to them was well over 20 years ago at the local aerobic classes I went to. Later on, in central London, I saw a sports massage therapist who rented a room in their Tottenham Court Road centre. The main thing that I took from the … Continue reading

N is for Nerves

Nerves are responsible for transmitting information from the various parts of the body (what we feel as sensations, for example heat or pain) to the brain, in order for an appropriate action to occur. For example, if you hold a very hot object there are signals sent towards your brain to warn you of the potential danger. The reaction might be that you’ll retract your hand to prevent it from being burnt. With this type of reaction the signal may not actually reach the brain, instead automatic responses deal with the situation very quickly – the system is designed this … Continue reading

A is for Adductors

An interesting muscle group that doesn’t really get the attention in a lot of massages – and they should. Found on the inside of your upper leg, they are involved mainly in 2 actions, adduction – pulling your leg toward the midline, and also extension – pulling your leg backwards. (not all of them do this, but bear with me as this isn’t meant to be a physiological tour de force, just an introduction). There are 5 adductors, Pectinius, Adductor Brevis, Adductor Longus, Adductor Magnus and Gracilis. They all start on the lower area of the pelvis and attach in … Continue reading

By request – Recovery Techniques

So. I ache. I was out flipping tyres and throwing medicine balls around yesterday, and although I warmed down a bit, I didn’t really do any recovery – hence, I ache. Generally at the end of a session it’s common to think that you can’t be bothered to do a cool down, or you don’t have time – you shoot off and do something else, and it’s not until the next day that you curse yourself for a fool as you wander around the house trying to make a coffee with what feels like battery acid coursing around your veins. … Continue reading