Gravity: new product to help with pain throughout the body.

Just came across a new product to help with pain throughout the body. It is called Gravity and is making big waves in the world of Physical Health around the World.

Read how it works

I am Interested in testing this product, as it offers my clients an opportunity to reduce pain when at home, away from the clinic. It is an inexpensive way to help heal themselves in conjunction with a rehabilitation programme.

I have been playing football, tennis and working as a Physiotherapist. I sustained a whiplash injury in a head on tackle last weekend. My neck has been restricted on the right side with restrictions in right and left rotation, side bend and extension. I get a stiff right Thoracic Spine, from using my right arm, with Physiotherapy work.

Tonight I used Gravity for 30mins. I placed the neck and sacral elements into position. The neck element took a few adjustments to get comfortable. Initially, there was a strong pressure on the mastoid processes. With the adjustments I was able to get a very comfortable fit around my neck. The sacral element was very easy to place and very comfortable. I placed a roll under my knees to maximise relaxation.

I lay on Gravity and closed my eyes. I could feel a light comfortable pressure around the neck and on my sacrum. As I relaxed more I could feel myself drift into a deeper state of relaxation.

After 15 minutes on Gravity the neck element moved slightly as I lay on it. I was consciously relaxed but my muscles were moving my head on the neck element. I am not sure why my muscles either relaxed or contracted, but I continued to relax as much as possible. The movement continued to occur intermittently over the following 15 minutes.

After 25 minutes lying on Gravity I picked up my phone to check the time and check text messages. At this point both elements of Gravity started to feel hard and slightly uncomfortable. I am not sure if it was time on Gravity or not relaxing fully that created the pain.

I got off Gravity and tested my motion. I am normally stiff to right rotation and left side flexion of my Thoracic Spine. As I tested these movements I still felt mild to moderate restriction, but not severe restriction I normally felt. My neck felt stiff at end range, but there was a feeling of unusual comfort with each motion.

I plan to use Gravity 20 minutes in the morning and night. I will report on my findings. I will see what happens over a one week period.main-bluefourth-blue

Week 16: Pelvis and Beginning to tweak

The content this week reinforced the movements of the pelvis on the same axis. The pelvis moves on the same axis and same plane. They create contribute to the load and explode in the Gluteal muscles in gait.  These movements can be palpated  and influenced using FMR. The use of translation and rotation in motion of the pelvis is important to assess in function.

A new series on Tweaking was introduced in the webcasts. This week teaching focussed on subtle, moderate and dramatic tweaks. This information accompanies the Process Flowchart. The degree of tweak can be altered in the TZ, Goal, movement variables, influence variables and complement drivers. This series runs for 10 weeks and leads in Gift Gathering 2 in July.\

Each week there are two webcasts by past GIFT graduates. The topic is the graduates own choice. Usually the  topic is one which inspires the graduate. This week there was an incredible presentation on using GIFT to transform the health of children. In Canada 1 in 3 children has diabetes. The skills we are learning at GIFT can be used educate and teach young children to move again. To have fun and to experience the GIFT of movement. There is resistence to change in Society, but the need for movement based therapy, cannot be highlighted enough by the state of health in our children today. There is a calling to all GIFT graduates to contribute to community, and use the knowledge gained from the course, to reverse this downward spiral of health our children.

It has been a powerful message this week in the webcasts. I am excited about using the Process Flowchart and mastering Tweakology in the next 10 weeks.

GIFT week 5: Looking at AFS and the Calf complex

GIFT week 5 was a week of further development of what AFS represents and the progression of bone and joint motion to the function of the calf complex. 
This week there was a strong emphasis on what makes an AFS exercise an AFS exercise. Specific points were made on drivers,3D motion, unconscious chain reaction, path of least resistance, Authentic movement and uniqueness of environment. I can see each week these concepts are continually emphasised, in various ways, to embed them firmly in our minds. I can see these will create the framework from which we will diagnose, prescribe exercises and tweak exercises. The Litmus test has been described in the DVD series called Chain Reaction. These tests are those points described above.
In the webcasts this week the focus was on the calf complex. What it does and how it works econcentrically. The joint motion was described for the transformation zones of gait. The function of the calf muscles were described at the foot, ankle, and knee levels. It was refreshing to get a true functional understanding of the calf complex. It makes sense that muscle does not work in one plane of motion or is purely a concentric or eccentric muscle contraction. 
The webcasts further expanded on lunge matrices. This week it was description of how Lunge matrices can be used to enhance balance. The key point is balance needs to be trained dynamically and not statically. It can also be trained in 3 planes of motion. I think clients will enjoy how balance training can be so variable. 
Gift is about communication and this week we expanded our sign language learning to include letters  M to R. It is empowering to learn sign language and I hope by week 40 I will be able to sign simple expressions.
The learning this week has taken a step up, and is testing our knowledge, to make decisions on what is happening to joint motion with different tweaks and drivers. The knowledge builds.

Get your Biomechanics assessed early to avoid injuries

There is a difference between osteopaths, chiropractors and physiotherapists. Physiotherapists’ background is often based upon rehabilitation and, in this sense, physiotherapists learn to assess the biomechanics of the joints of the body and then how that movement is coordinated in function. For this reason you see physiotherapists associated with professional sports teams.

Understanding the biomechanics of the body helps to identify the cause of an injury or, if an injury has already occurred, how to rehabilitate a person back to sport. A trainer’s role is to strengthen the body and, in this sense, they will look at how to control movements with specific strengthening exercises. The physiotherapist can complement the trainer by looking at the finer points of joint movement and by integrating other systems of the body, such as neurophysiology, pathology, and the cardiovascular system.

When training for the first time in the gym, or looking to achieve a goal, it helps to have your biomechanics assessed to aid in avoiding injury. An experienced physiotherapist and trainer can work together to protect from potential injuries which can occur if the body already has poor biomechanics. No two people are built the same, and therefore an assessment should be very bespoke. An example of poor biomechanics would be: a person who has a restriction in the ankle joint such that when they do squats, lunges or step-ups this causes a secondary movement in the knee, hip or back – and somewhere pain will start to occur. This is a very simplistic example of how to assess biomechanics, but it illustrates the importance of identifying these problem areas.

Biomechanical issues may not be a problem in the initial stages of training, where the number of repetitions or length of training is low. However, when training distances and intensities increase, these biomechanical issues will start to cause injuries. It is advised that you do not try to work through these injuries, but rather have them assessed, to allow your training to progress smoothly and with minimal chance of injury. The synergy of a physiotherapist and trainer working together is a formidable team in helping to prevent injury –and exists in many professional sporting environments.

Personal Training Series: Coaching your way to a healthy lifestyle

Health is an area in many people’s lives which is neglected. To live a healthy life requires taking action, as with other areas of your life, to get results. There is a wealth of information from professionals and websites offering the know-how to live a healthy life. So why are we not all healthy?

I have found – as with other areas of my life – that you need coaches. Coaches not only motivate you and keep you on track; they also provide you with the most recent information about living a healthy lifestyle. A coach can put a plan in place which is easy to follow, adaptable to your lifestyle, and is measurable over time.

In today’s world, you can approach many different types of professionals to get this help, but I have found that it works best if just one person takes overriding responsibility for you achieving your results. Generally the coach who can help you is the one who lives the life they teach. In health there is a holistic approach and there is a Western medical approach, and I think a combination of the two is needed. The areas that may be included in assessment of your health are: your medical history; your lifestyle habits; your physical training habits; and your mental approach.

I am a physiotherapist and I work closely with personal trainers developing healthy lifestyles for clients. I am able to draw on the help of medical professionals, such as doctors and surgeons, and also holistic professionals, such as Pilates instructors, homeopaths and counsellors. Personal trainers have a wealth of skills which they can use with their clients including lifestyle coaching, physical training, nutrition and exercise goal setting.

This series of blogs is designed to give my perspective, as a physiotherapist and someone who lives a healthy lifestyle, on how you can avoid injury when working with a trainer. The blogs are separated into common scenarios I see as a physiotherapist in my clinic. The aim is to assess those clients we see and to learn more about injury prevention when working with a personal trainer.

In the following weeks there will be 20 blogs which will give a comprehensive outline of how you can work best with a personal trainer and a physiotherapist. Please call or contact us via email with any questions you may have about these blogs.

First week of Thrive in 30 days

This week has been very interesting. I have read the information provided on the Thrive in 30 day emails. I have watched my eating habits and notices several things.

1. I don’t let myself eat even when I know I should be eating. I get absorbed in my work and make a conscious decisions to work rather than eat and hydrate.

2. I do not have snacks to eat

3. Eating a salad actually kept me full for a very long time but I did have snacks to keep me going and then I ate carbohydrates late at night (pasta)

4. I can eat a lot of fruit

5. I eat large amounts of food at one time

6. I do not have enough variety or raw food in my diet

To learn from these observations the actions I must take are to have snacks to eat. Eat a big salad with protein, have smaller regular meals, drink water. Try to eat lighter at night.

To make this happen I am  prepared to go to the supermarket and have  enough time at lunch time to do so. I can make the decision to put my health over my work when I should be eating food. I can eat raw foods and drink regularly.

In my training for the Etape De Tour I also take multivitamins, antioxidants, Udos oil, mineral salts and I will be looking into Mannatech products.

When I have eater raw food I have more energy and are more alert. The problem is I begin to feel gaunt and lose weight. I need some carbohydrates in my diet and these maybe better eaten during the day. I can also crab load for long rides and alter my diet depending on my training. This is a big learning curve but one I hope to pass onto others and make it a life long change.

Starting the Thrive in 30 days Vega nutritional educational series

Today I have noticed my recovery from my bike training for the Etape du Tour is substandard. I take artificial products like SIS protein powders and eat loads of carbohydrates. I feel tired and lethargic and recover very slowly.

Bredan Brazier is a Vegan Ironman athlete who has designed a range of products and educational videos and books to help the everyday person learn more about eating wholefoods to maximise their health. Some of the benefits include:

  • Decrease body fat
  • Diminish visible signs of aging
  • Boost energy without caffeine or sugar
  • Cultivate mental clarity
  • Enhance mood
  • Eliminate junk-food cravings
  • Improve sleep quality
  • Build a stronger immune system
  • Lower cholesterol
  • Reduce biological age
I like all these benefits and if it can help my recovery in training and sleep I want to know what to do.
You too can start the Thirty day challenge on
The key is to complete the action plan with each lesson. The videos with each lesson is exactly the same as the text in each lesson so watching the video can be faster if you learn this way.
The first lesson action plan is described below:

Take Action:

  • Examine your current diet. Write a list of all the things you eat that you think might be taking away from your energy or aren’t supporting your health and fitness goals.
  • Plan for success as you take action over your 30 day journey to thrive. The changes you make throughout this program will be most effective when you can make them your new habits. The following five habits are the tools that will make it easier to get the most from this program—they’ll help you succeed if you develop and follow them consistently:
  1. Eat throughout the dayeating several small meals helps maintain energy levels, eases digestive strain and spreads nutrients to sustain you all day
  2. Drink a nutritious smoothie each dayyou’ll get whole food nutrition that’s easy on your digestive system and provides lasting energy
  3. Eat a big green salad every daythese are a staple when eating to thrive (you’ll learn why over the next 30 days)
  4. Eat a raw energy bar every daythey’re an easy way to pack nutrition into a convenient, easy to carry form
  5. Eat a substantial, balanced afternoon snackyou’ll get the nutrition you need so you won’t be famished when it comes to your evening meal
Next Lesson Preview:
Stress has a BIG impact on your health! You’ll get an in-depth look at different kinds of stress and empower you to reduce stress’s ill effects with simple dietary choices.

Jenson Buttons meets Lance Armstrong for training and does Olympic distance Triathlon in Hawaii


Jenson Button heads to Hawaii this weekend for his latest triathlon attempt armed with cycling tips from arguably the world’s greatest, Lance Armstrong.

The punishing event that includes swimming, cycling and running is not one for the faint-hearted, least of all in between grands prix.

But that is the exacting schedule Button has chosen to undertake as he competes in the 14th annual Waikoloa Lavaman Olympic distance event on Sunday that includes a 1.5 kilometre swim, 40km bike ride and 10km run.

Button could comfortably have remained in Melbourne after finishing sixth in Sunday’s season-opening race in Australia with McLaren.

Instead, the 31-year-old will jet across the Pacific to take part in the triathlon he feels is perfect preparation for the next race in Malaysia in 11 days’ time, with the levels of humidity similar in Hawaii to what he can expect there.

But it was in Hawaii in January that Button met seven-times Tour de France winner Armstrong by chance prior to the American sending the Briton a message on Twitter asking if he would like to meet.

“We did meet up and went for a couple of rides,” Button told Press Association Sport.

“It was an amazing experience. Anyone who is at the top of their game in a sport, to spend time with them, it’s inspirational.

“It was a great opportunity to learn from someone who has achieved so much.

“It was not only good for my training, but to talk to someone at the top of their game in a sport, to see how much training they put in and their mental attitude.

“A lot of top sports, especially cycling, mentally it’s so tough and sometimes you have to take your brain out, put it to one side and fully focus.

“It was good and hopefully that will come out.”

Button has revealed his cycling exploits especially will continue later this year, although he has refused to divulge details.

“I’ve the opportunity to ride with some of the greats, which is exciting as well,” added Button.

“We do a lot of work with specialist riders, and there are lots of good ones I will get the opportunity to ride with.”

Many would view Button’s triathlon workout this weekend as insane, but he does pride himself on being arguably the fittest driver in F1.

“Physically I am very fit, which in turn helps you mentally knowing you will be 100% on every lap,” said Button.

“It’s something I do particularly work on, but then as a driver you work in every area – nutrition, fitness, mental attitude, engineering, and obviously driving the car.

“But I’m really excited about this weekend. It’s going to be good, and great to do it in the humidity as well.

“It will really put me in the right frame of mind because getting used to the humidity is so important for Malaysia.”

First week of base training: Feeling the pinch and too much socialising

Its been just over a week since I started base training. It is exciting and I am now starting the more concentrated training. I have planned my diary to have time in the middle of the day to train and work later. It definitely makes a difference as the gym is quieter and I get the pool all to myself sometimes.

My body has been feeling good and I have got back into the squats at 70% RPM. My back is good as I had felt a twinge doing the same exercise a couple of weeks ago. I still find getting enough food in is a an issue. When I am treating clients I do not have time to go to the kitchen and cook food let alone stop and have a snack. Most of the time I am on a tight schedule and often running late so finding a way to eat has become important.

I plan to have snacks in my room like fruit, nuts, and anything else that I can eat in one mouthful. An issue are still my braces as I have to clean my teeth each time I eat or eat something that does not get stuck in my teeth. That reminds me I can not eat nuts. I have certainly made it tough on myself.

I have bought a book by Brendan Braziar, a professional Ironman, who competes on a vegan diet and is the creator of Vega products. He is an international speaker on nutrition and sustaining the planet and speaks at world summits. He has power packed recipes I want to make for myself. I find it more fun with other people so plan to contact my friend who is a nutritionist in the training and we will hopefully source the ingredients and make the recipes. I think the ingredients are not common in supermarkets but then again not much of the food in supermarkets has much goodness left  in it.

Last weekend I looked at what I had to do for training and also what I had planned for the weekend. I could see I had a late night organised Friday and Saturday and I had a game of football on Sunday morning and as it happened also Ice skated on sunday night. I am feeling the effects today because I could not train as hard in the gym. Despite really enjoying the football and ice skating I was muscularly sore and therefore could not push as much in the gym. I feel like I need more sleep and tomorrow the training will be effected again. This is a big lesson to learn and I must not play any other sports because it reduces the positive effect from my ironman training. I did not tell Fran I did this on the weekend. He would spit the dummy..he is getting tougher now.

I look at my weeks ahead and realise I must be more organised with my planning to allow rest and recovery from training. I will be the one to suffer in the long run and I am not enjoying being tired. I think there are times when work and life and training can become a challenge and in these times you have to push on and just do what needs to be done.

I have got my swim training from Emile and it is tiring. I showed Fran and he said to keep it comfortable for me as he does not want me to burn out. I will be talking to Emile about the program and as he leaves at the end of November I will get instructions to take me through to the beginning of next year.

Here is my swim training:

Warm-up           6x100m (4L) on 2min/100m f/c then choice, check stroke count on even lengths in f/c and maintain it

Sprint Set          8x25m     ½ length no breathing focus on technique and ½ length full 10 sec rest

Main Set           2x200m (8L)  Pull with pullbuoy & OR paddles on 4min OR 30sec rest

                        1x400m (16L) Swim on 7min30 OR 30 sec rest

                        2x200m (8L) Pull with pullbuoy & OR paddles on 4min OR 30 sec rest

                        1x800m (32L) Continuous, focusing on 1 technique point each 100m (ie leg kick, , rotation, bi-lateral breathing, catch, arm recovery)

Sprint Set          8x25m ½ length no breathing focus on technique and ½ length full 10 sec rest

Cool Down Set   1x100m (4L) Easy f/c swim mixed with some kicking on back

Health phase of training prescribed by nutritionist and swim training schedule.

Been trying to eat 6 x day as my nutritionist recommended. I went and bought a rice cooker and a slow cooker in an attempt to save time and eat quality food. I made sushi on the weekend and made the rice too Gelatinous but still ate it and my friends enjoyed it. Last night used the slow cooker for 8 hours. This morning ate it for breakfast and it taste great. Had Chicken with vegetables in a chicken stock.

Eating six times a day and drinking 3 litres of water a day does require organisation and having the food available in the kitchen at work. I have Two 1,5 litre bottles of water with lemon juice in them sitting in the fridge. I have have snacks like rice cakes and rye crackers with bananas for snacks and now I must get good carbohydrates and protein to eat as main meals. The trick is having variety and also having food which is fast and easy to prepare. I find I get hungry after 8pm and do feel like eating carbs after 3pm. I think I have not got the balance right in food yet to stop the hunger feelings.

I will try eating more carbohydrates in the morning and for lunch and then try protein and salads in the afternoon and dinner. If I do more exercise like yesterday I find I am hungry in which case I am eating as I feel my body needs it.

Sleep is an issue for me as I am in a habit of going to bed late. This is especially true when I am out with friends. If I have a late night out it upsets my sleep cycle for the beginning of the week and with work it takes time to recover. I am have got my Anti oxidant juice Monavie, Udos oil and multivitamins to take each morning and now I must organise my sleep.

I do have opportunities to go to sleep early but I mentally want to do more things and go to bed later. I am going to buy a new Tempur Mattress because my current mattress is hard to lie on and I find I wake up with a sore shoulder. I hope this will help me sleep deeper and longer. I have cleared my diary of social activities from now to xmas so I can put events in that I feel fit with my sleep cycle.

I can cope better at work and with life if I get adequate sleep. I am fed up waking exhausted in the morning and not enjoying the day. This Ironman has made me make positive changes in my life that I would not have done otherwise.

My training schedule has evolved. I have have swim sessions to fit in after the assessment from Emile. The schedule will look like this

1 Hour Technique Sessions:

1 – Identifying drag, focus on kicking, rotation, breathing & streamlining (200m)
2 – Review 1 and focus on arm recovery (400m, 1min rest between 200s)
3 – Review 2 and focus on timing of stroke (600m, 1min rest between 200s)
4 – Review 3 and focus on catch (800m, 1m rest between 200s)
5 – Review 4 and focus on underwater pathways (wetsuit optional) (1,000m, 1m /200m)
6 – Review 5 and prepare for race condition swimming; sighting, drafting, positioning, starts and finishes, vascular shunting (wetsuit optional)

Fran has me increasing my weights. I have developed a clicking on my right knee cap with deep squats. It can happen sometimes and not others and I think it is my biomechanics as I squat. When I feel the movement is awkward the clicking occurs. The strength training has made  big difference to my bike strength and I am enjoying the hard workouts. I can push more but I am making sure I keep good technique with all the exercises.

Fran and I have decided on doing a UK half Ironman and also doing a training camp in Provence, France. I will book these and we are putting the calendar together nicely. I have been invited to train with Debbie Shaw, winner of  age group  Forestman this year once I get some mileage in the legs. I want to connect with more triathletes and build a great network of friends.