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Headaches? How Do The Physio Group Clinic’s Treat Headaches

chronic headaches, sports injury, physiotherapy

 

At The Physio Group Clinic we are seeing an increased number of clients suffering from chronic headaches.

There are many different types of headache such as : tension, migraine, cluster, vascular and hormone induced; these will be managed from a medical perspective.

Within our scope of practice it is the CERVICOGENIC headache that we can assess and treat effectively.

A cervicogenic headache is one that starts in the neck and refers up to the head. The upper neck contains joints, muscles, ligaments and nerves which if irritated can cause the headache.

The cause varies from poor posture to repetitive activities such as lifting and carrying. Significant use of phones, laptops and computers in poor positions also increases the load on your upper neck. Whiplash injuries are also common aggravating factors.

A true cervicogenic headache will always originate from the neck either during or after an activity And presents as a dull ache which spreads up the back of the head towards the temple, usually affecting one side rather than both.

headachesOn our physical examination we expect to find:

– reduction of normal cervical movement

– tenderness and or headache referral on pressing the upper neck joints

– muscular trigger points around the upper neck which refer to the head

– poor posture often with a rounded back and a poking chin.

 

Once  we at The Physio Group Clinic feel the headache is of cervical origin our treatment consists of:

-soft tissue massage to release the muscles

-joint mobilisation or manipulation to improve joint mobility

-postural and mobility exercises

-advice on computer set up etc

-acupuncture

-postural taping if needed

 

A course of treatment yields high success rates for the true CERVICOGENIC headache so feel free to enquire whether Physiotherapy at The Physio Group Clinic can help you!!

 

PILATES – AT THE PHYSIO GROUP CLINIC

 PILATES

Pilates is an exercise based therapy which is designed to strengthen, elongate and restore the body’s muscular Skelton system into balance.

The origins of pilates stem from early part of 1900 from its inventor ‘Joseph Pilates’ who as a child had been very frail but developed a technique of physical fitness using experiences from classical Roman to body building to martial arts.

He developed his own approach to exercise and body conditioning which gained popularity as athletes found it the best way to recover from injuries and prevent recurrence.

Over the years it has been developed and from the 1970’s on has become increasingly popular with the public.

WHAT IS PILATES?

It is a gentle, non-aerobic exercise method designed to strengthen weak muscles, lengthen tight muscles and improve general posture. The aim is for a properly balanced body which results in improved joint mobility, firm musculature and a good natural posture. It is a very specific form of exercise which is safe and controlled as well as low impact and works on the principle of ‘gain with no pain’.

WHO CAN BENEFIT FROM PILATES?

Anyone can benefit from Pilates as it is a very gentle form of exercise. Traditionally the classes tend to be female dominated and there is still a tendency for Pilates to be avoided by men, however top premiership footballer Steven Gerrard is joining the growing list of sportsmen who are extending their career through incorporating it into their regime  so we encourage everyone to the class.

 

Although if attending for a specific ailment or injury it is best to inform the teacher prior to starting the class to ensure they can tailor certain exercises to specific needs.

WHAT EXERCISES DO I DO?

Pilates is a complete exercise method developed by its founder Joseph Pilates over the course of a lifetime dedicated to improving physical and mental health. Pilates focuses on building your body’s core strength and improving your posture through a series of low repetition low impact stretching and conditioning exercises.

By core strength, we are talking about your back, abdominal and pelvic muscles. Through pilates, you will be able to develop these muscles without adding bulk, increasing your flexibility and agility and at the same time toning your stomach and thigh muscles.

Pilates goes far beyond your core muscles however and not only provides a complete body workout (you will be working muscles you didn’t even know you had!), but also helps you develop an awareness of how your body works, helping your mind and body to work in harmony.

THE EIGHT PRINCIPLES OF PILATES

Pilates is based on eight principles:

  1. Relaxation
  2. Alignment
  3. Control
  4. Precision
  5. Routine
  6. Breathing
  7. Centring
  8. Flowing movement

Should you wish to find out anymore about the benefits of pilates do not hesitate to contact our main office on 02830269733

ACHILLES HEEL

achilles tendon, achilles heel, sports injuryAchilles Heel!

The term Achilles heel derives from Greek mythology when a great warrior Achilles was dipped in water as a baby which was supposed to make him invincible, unfortunately as his mother dipped him in, she held him by the heel Which wasn’t washed over. This became his weak spot and ultimately led to his downfall.

Unfortunately for most runners and triathletes who suffer from Achilles pain the duration can also be EPIC!

It is one of the most common weak spots in the body for overuse injuries and will usually be classified as one of 3 diagnosis’s

– Achilles tendonosis : this involves degeneration and some inflammation of the tendon itself. Its shape changes from that of a thin pencil like shape to an overall thickening along the tendon.

– Achilles paratendonitis : the paratendon is a sheath that encloses the tendon and should provide protection and allow fluid movement of the tendon. Unfortunately symptoms of inflammation and swelling can develop between the tendon and the sheath this can cause scar tissue and reduces the tendon mobility.

– A combination of the 2 above.

Very often with this the key to recovery is not just physiotherapy assessment and treatment but also evaluating the causes of it. These may include:

Biomechanical faults ( usually over-pronation)
Overtraining
Poor footwear ( digging into heel)
Direct injury or previous unresolved injury
Changes of running surface
Tight and or weak calf muscles

Commonly when athletes self diagnose and treat they get stuck into copious amounts of eccentric exercises ( heel drops with a gorilla on their back) and can often aggravate the complaint.

That is not to say eccentrics are not appropriate, just they need to be added to a rehabilitation program when appropriate i.e. when the basic calf mobility and strength is returning and the tight calf muscles have been released. Along with specific soft tissue treatment to the tendon.

Occasionally these injuries require a full podiatry assessment and orthotic prescription and if they fail to recover an ultrasound scan via a radiologist who may administer high volume saline injections to break up scar tissue between the para-tendon and the tendon.

Bridging Exercise

A common exercise prescribed by our therapists as well as in our Pilates class is: The Bridge.

The Bridge is an excellent stability exercise. This means that one of your goals is to keep your pelvis very still during the exercise. This exercise strengthens the gluteals and the lower abdominals promoting core stability.

It’s a safe exercise for those with a weak or injured back which starts at a low level but can be progressed as control allows into a high level stability exercise.

Foam Rolling – What are you trying to achieve?

Foam Roller Exercise - The Physio GroupAfter our Perfect Squat article the natural follow on is to mention the foam roller.

In recent times this has become as important a piece of equipment to athletes as running shoes or football boots.

But how do you use it? What are you trying to achieve? And what should you be feeling??

Read this interesting article below as it hits most of the key points!!

http://dailyburn.com/life/fitness/common-foam-rolling-mistakes/