Q) What lead you to become a sports therapist?
A) I have been a runner since the age of 11 and in that time have had various little niggles and injuries and have always been fascinated by the effect that massage had on fixing these injuries. I found that I could feel much better and be able to handle a lot more training when getting regular massages. My life revolves around sport and so I always knew I wanted my job to relate to sport in some capacity. This led me to study Sports Therapy, and from the moment I began learning I knew that it was what I wanted my career to be.
Q) What do you like about being a sports therapist?
I love to help people, and usually when someone comes to see me it is because pain is intervening with their life and happiness. To be able to help them get back to their normal life is greatly satisfying. I also love the variety, as everybody is different and responds to treatments in different ways, so my work is all about finding the best way to get my client back to full health as quickly as possible.
Q) What does a ‘healthy lifestyle’ mean to you?
A) A healthy lifestyle is a very different to each person. I believe it is about trying to ensure you make healthy choices around 70-80% of the time. Trying to always be strict and never eating junk food or drinking alcoholic drinks for example is not realistic for most people as it could lead to them being miserable and then going completely the opposite way! As they say, ‘a little bit of what you fancy does you the world of good’ It’s all about balance, trying to be active a couple times a week, eating a varied diet and making sure that you get up and move about throughout the day are all more realistic ways of being healthy. It is also more likely to be sustainable. A healthy life is an enjoyed life.
Q) What are three facts about the benefits of a healthy lifestyle?
- Improves your mood – studies have found that exercise and eating well lead people to feel much happier about themselves.
- Gives you more energy – the more active you are the less lethargic you are likely to be, doing exercise and eating a good breakfast will lead you to be a lot more productive throughout the rest of the day!
- Reduces risk of injury – eating well and keeping active lowers the risk of injuries, as a lot of injuries come from muscles being shortened and weak from being sedentary for long periods of time. By eating well and trying to do regular exercise you will improve muscle and bone health.
Q) What is your number 1 hobby?
A) My life revolves around my running, I train 2-3 times per day, 6 days a week and love every minute of it (minus some winter mornings when the weather makes me love it a bit less!). I regularly compete around the country and abroad from distances of 3km up to Half Marathon’s.
Q) How does your hobby relate to your work?
A) I have learnt a lot about my body through running, as well as spending time with a number of athletes competing at the highest level. This has helped me to understand personally how best we can take care of bodies even when we are putting a lot of stress on them (whether this be work related stress or the stress that comes with high levels of training.) This means that I understand how important it can be to get back to full fitness when you have any sort of injury. I also understand that any specific muscle tightness can have ramifications throughout the rest of the body and can cause other problems if not treated. When I am treating clients I make sure my assessment is very thorough, to help get to the root of each problem rather than just treating the symptom, increasing the likelihood that injuries do not recur.
Q) What sort of clients do you like to work with?
Coming from a sports backgrounds I especially like to work with those that do a bit of sports themselves, as I know how frustrating it can be when you can’t do the sport you love due to injury etc. I am very passionate and motivated by being able to help people get back to full fitness.
Q) What are three ways you can support those clients?
A) I have done a lot of research into what it takes to get the body to its best possible condition, so three ways I can support those clients are: –
- Find areas of weakness and show the client stretches and strengthening exercises to ensure injuries don’t come back.
- Giving nutritional advice – as I have worked with some of the top sports nutritionists and so know how best to fuel and recover from exercise.
- Help clients with self-massage techniques so that they can have a few tools to use themselves at home to help with any minor niggles and injuries.
Q) What does your typical treatment comprise of?
A) typical treatment consists of an initial assessment to work out where the origin of the problem is. I will then work on the area and surrounding areas with a number of different techniques, including Soft Tissue Release, Muscle Energy Techniques, Myofascial Release and work into the deep tissues to release tension. I will then re-assess and advise on stretches etc. to do before the next treatment.
Q) How often would you expect to see someone on average and how many treatments?
A) It depends on the severity of the injury of course, but on average once a week to begin with, I would expect to see some improvement usually by about the third session, followed by every 2 weeks once the problem has settled down to ensure the client does not get any compensation injury (where following an injury the opposite side of the body from the side that was injured overcompensates to take the strain from the injured side), so usually between 5 and 10 treatments depending on how bad the problem is. Most muscle, tendon, ligament or bone injuries heal in 8-10 weeks after that, it’s usually about the training!
Q) What do you want to develop next in your journey as a therapist?
A) I have recently begun a course on Myofascial Release, this is a technique of working with Fascia (connective tissue that covers the whole body inside and out and connects everything together) as it is very effective in treating a number of conditions such as chronic back/pelvis pain, plantar fasciitis, muscles spasms and headaches to name a few. It is a treatment that will positively affect the whole body rather regardless of where you are actually treating and I am really excited to continue learning about the different ways it can help clients.
Get started with specific treatment and advice to achieve your running goals. Ross works with a wide range sports related issues finding solutions to help meet the stresses and strains of an active life.
To book an appointment with Ross call our Goswell Rd clinic on 0207 490 4042.