Friday, 28 November 2008

Vitamin B and Nerve Health

I've been suffering a little bit recently with some low back pain and some transient parasthesia in my hands and feet, so thought I'd visit my local osteopath for a treatment and some advice.

Numerous tests and treatments later I'm feeling much more loose and relaxed but the pins and needles are still a bit of a mystery so he's recommended taking some B vitamins to improve the health of my nerves. I've started taking B Complex every day now but have done a little bit of research into exactly what I'm taking. The 2 B Vitamins of particular interest are B12 (Cyanocobalamin) and B6 (Pyridoxine).

B12 is necessary for processing carbohydrates, proteins and fats is found in all the blood cells. It is also essential for the maintenance of the nerve sheaths. It is stored in the liver and is absorbed through the small intestine in normal function but deficiency can occur when the body is unable to absorb the vitamin - a condition called pernicious anaemia. This is characterised by muscle weakness, peripheral neuropathy, fatigue, digestive abnormalities such as diarrhoea, constipation, jaundice and many other symptoms.

B12 is found in liver, meat, egg yolk, poultry and milk.

B6, also known as pyridoxal phosphate or pyridoxamine is found in liver, organ meats, brown rice, fish, butter, whole grain cereals, soy beans and many other foods. Again it is required to breakdown carbohydrate, fats and proteins but is also used for erythropoesis (red blood cell production). Deficiency is rare due to the abundance of the vitamin in various foods but can be found in alcoholics and presents itself with skin disorders, neuropathy, confusion, poor coordination and insomnia.

From the sounds of this, B12 deficiency sounds like a more likely diagnosis, so I'll keep taking the vitamins and see what happens... watch this space!

Monday, 24 November 2008

Where's my site gone?

So, I had a few hosting issues last week and as a result my site was down for a few days. It seems that the Googlebots tried to visit my site during this period as has dropped out of the rankings for my search terms in Google.

The site is very much live and kicking so just in case you were wondering why I'm not at the top for "nottingham massage" or 'sports massage in nottingham", don't worry, it'll hopefully be back up there soon!


Saturday, 22 November 2008

Christmas is coming very soon..!

I'll be posting very soon about my Christmas appointments and when the last sesion for 2008 will be but I thought I'd write a quick blog post about Christmas gift ideas that are out there with a health or fitness emphasis.

One thing that i've been seriously considering is the Wii Fit which is set to be one of the hottest presents this year. I've been thinking about getting a Nintendo Wii or a while but am not sure that I'd time for using it, with my studies and training etc but the Wii Fit could be the answer. This blurs the line between game and fitness and could be an effective alternative to the traditional gym. Plus, a few guys at work have the Mario Kart + Wii Wheel which they play online so I could join in that too!

I must admit that I'm not sure what other games are out there but I think I'd probably stick to these ones anyway... except perhaps a snowboarding game... or two!!

Thursday, 20 November 2008

How to choose a massage school

Although I'm studying to be an osteopath at the moment, I'm still very interested in remedial / sports massage as a therapy and really do believe that it works. As such, I'm always on the lookout for new developments in the massage field and came across this massage school website which gives all kind of advice about what to expect from a massage therapy career.

The trouble with massage is that there is little or no regulation from practitioners or each massage therapist school. My advice would be if you are serious about learning massage, do some local research and talk to successful therapists about which schools are worth training it. It's also important to make sure that your chosen school teaches a version of massage that you are happy with. For example, if you are looking for sports massage but attend the successful local massage school which in reality focusses on aromatherapy or beauty work, you will ultimately be disappointed. So be careful.

That said, massage is an extremely rewarding career and one that I would strongly recommend. But do your research, find a good school, research your local therapists and then start your study. A little preparation goes a long way!

Monday, 17 November 2008

Whiplash Injury Claims Rise

According to the BBC website, the number of whiplash claims been made to personal injury solicitor businesses has rapidly increased to around 1200 per day. This is generating business worth £2bn for these solicitors and is costing the NHS and estimated £8bn per year.

The major cause of whiplash is car accidents where the patient's car is hit from behind by another driver. This causes a rapid backwards bending of the neck immediately followed by a rapid forward bending which can damage the muscles and ligaments of the neck and cervical spine. In particular it is the anterior longitudinal ligament which is affected. This long ligament attaches to the anterior vertebral bodies and intervertebral discs along the entire length of the spine.

The most effective way to protect yourself form the potential of this kind of injury is to adjust the headrest of your car to the corrent height whenever you drive your car and amke sure that you drive a safe distance behind the vehicle in front. To quote Edmund King of the AA:
Drivers can avoid inflicting whiplash on themselves and others by keeping a safe distance - at least two seconds - from the vehicle ahead.
If you have had a car accident where your vehicle was hit by another driver, who is at fault and has caused you injury, my advice would be to call a whiplash claim specialist such as Recover! who are based in the East Midlands. Their website is

Whether this increase in whiplash claims is a result of more car accidents or simply more litigation and compensation, is open to debate. My feeling is that it is a result of more awareness of how to make a road accident claim rather than an increase in accidents themselves...!

Thursday, 13 November 2008

National Association of Massage and Manipulative Therapists

Just a quick note to say that I'm now a registered member of the NAMMT (National Association of Massage and Manipulative Therapists).

This is in place of the register owned and maintained by the Midlands School of Massage, who have adopted the NAMMT as their official partner.

To find out more about this group and how to become a member, visit their website: .

Thursday, 6 November 2008

What to Expect From Sports Massage

More and more, athletes of varying degrees of skill and intensity are turning to sports massage as part of their training regimen. Sports massage has rapidly become an integral part of many professional athletes’ training routines and has many benefits for those engaged in active lifestyles. What can be expected when you decide to make sports massage part of your training regimen? Read on for the answers to some of your sports massage-related queries.

Needs Assessment
If you decide to make regular sports massage part of your training regimen, you will first need to meet with a therapist to discuss your needs and history. Expect to give a full account of what your training regimen entails. It is important to be as thorough as possible during this initial phase, as sports massage differs from traditional or full-body massage in several ways.
Full body massage involves working on all of the muscle groups in your body, with additional time spent on problem areas and working out knots resulting from pent up stress or tension. Sports massage focuses on specific muscle groups related to the activities you participate in.
Therefore, if you are a cyclist, your therapist will most certainly spend time on your legs rather than neck and shoulders. Working on isolating the muscle groups directly affected by your training is going to be your massage therapist’s number one goal. Naturally, if you are experiencing pain in other areas, he or she will help correct that as well. Your movement and the way you work out may need to be examined and pointers may need to be given regarding your specific movements to minimize future pain, instability, or injury.

Treatment of Specific Muscle Groups
Once your treatment program has been established, expect your sports massages to be directly related to the muscle groups you use the most. Focusing on these muscle groups will help you during the recovery and rebuilding stages after you tear down muscles during your workout. It is going to be very helpful indeed for these muscles to be worked through thoroughly, as this will increase blood flow, reduce pain, and ultimately help you to heal faster after strenuous workouts.

Benefits of Sports Massage
After incorporating massage into your training regimen, you will begin to notice many different things happening within your body. You will be less likely to get injured during routine training. You will experience less down time during the recovery phase after workouts. You will feel more flexible and have more mobility as a result. All of these benefits are likely if you incorporate sports massage regularly during your training.

This post was contributed by Kelly Kilpatrick, who writes on the subject of massage therapists. She invites your feedback at kellykilpatrick24 at gmail dot com

Monday, 3 November 2008

Muscle a day #1: Adductor Pollicis

As a way of revising muscles, I'm going to add a post here every day, or however often I can, to highlight a particular muscle relevant to my studies. The first on which came to the fore yesterday whilst working on the hand is...

Adductor Pollicis
This muscle is found on the palmar aspect of the hand and adducts the thumb. It has two heads: transverse and oblique.

Oblique head: slips from capitate, bases or 2nd and 3rd metacarpals, intercarpal ligaments and sheath of tenson of flexor carpi radialis.

Transverse head: lower 2/3 of plamar 3rd metacarpal

Insertion: ulnar side of the base of the proximal phalanx of the thumb

Deep branch of ulnar nerve

The radial artery passes between the two heads, travelling from the back of the hand into the palm, where it forms the deep palmar arch