At the age of 25, I had been in constant debilitating pain for 15 years. The ‘best years of my life’ have been filled with pain, and I have lived a life that you would not associate with a teenager or a young adult. I was unable to get out of bed some days, and standing up for more than an hour would be completely exhausting for me. I was trapped, had no medical justification, and had no idea what to do with myself at all.
I had my first physio session when I was about 11 years old, as my back was constantly hurting. After the 30-minute walk home from school I would be in agony. It varied from day to day depending on what I was doing, but it affected me severely in every walk of life. I had pain not only in the upper back but also in many other areas of the body. This physiotherapist was the first in a series of countless different types of therapists who appeared to know exactly what was wrong and what to do about it, and stated this very confidently. This meant that I was being told different things by different people, and this conflicting information that mainstream medicine was giving me meant that I eventually had to take matters into my own hands.
When I was 19, I moved to Leeds to study jazz piano. This was a dream come true, and I was already playing professionally at this point too. However I knew I couldn’t possibly physically do it, and sure enough I dropped out after 3 months of studying, because I couldn’t sit at a piano for more than 10 minutes without being in absolute agony. This meant that my whole life, everything that I ever wanted and who I was personally, came crashing down, and so began the next 5 years of experimenting with different types of therapies. If only I had met James at this point.Read More
I won’t go into detail about what has happened over the past few years because the extent of my journey has been so long that I will only be able to describe the tip of the iceberg here. If you are suffering yourself don’t hesitate to contact me, as I know one of the hardest parts of being in constant pain is other people not understanding.
So to cut a very long story very short, after having spent thousands of pounds in alternative therapies as well as seeing various NHS specialists, in February I decided to look into myofascial release. To put things into perspective, that particular week this was the 4th appointment I had. I was also seeing a ‘muscle tester’ (one of various types of psychotherapists I have consulted to explore the possible psychosomatic origins of my pain), a Bowen technique practitioner, and a private rheumatologist. The latter diagnosed me on the spot with ‘benign joint hypermobility syndrome’, and said the only way for me to manage my pain was to be on muscle relaxants for the rest of my life. These are the drugs they prescribe to epileptics to help with their seizures. Many other people would trust these words to be the end of their journey, but from my own experience of conflicting information I remained sceptical, especially since he had invested less than 15 minutes of his time telling me this, barely even looked at my body, and all for a reasonable £200.
After having emailed an enquiry to Physology, I received a phone call from Claire. For the first time in my life, I heard someone on the phone who seemed genuinely interested in my problem and eager to help. She spoke to me about various other people James had worked on, and specifically about how fascia could be affecting my particular problem of scoliosis, using the example of another client who appeared to have this spinal deformity when it turned out that it was just the fascia that needed releasing. We spoke for a while about various other clients such as another musician who had had to stop playing, and I became really excited to meet her and James for a free consultation. During this meeting, they explained in detail the concept of fascia and how it would be affecting me, and this idea of keeping me well informed ran throughout my subsequent treatment with James.
We agreed to start treatment in a few weeks once James’ schedule freed up. A few days later however, my lower back went into an extreme spasm and I was bedridden. I couldn’t do anything, and was in bed with frozen peas and taking lots of painkillers. I emailed Claire again on the off chance that they might be able to squeeze me in, and she quickly called me back and seemed very concerned on the phone, and booked me in with Matthew the following morning. After being barely able to move for 2 days, Matthew completely released it and later on that day I was able to easily drive for 3 hours!
One of the big differences about my sessions with James is how in tune he is to my body, how he listens to exactly how things feel so that he can understand the true nature of the problem. One of the problems with losing motivation to recover is not understanding, and this was the first time it all seemed to make sense. He explained that a full overhaul of my body was needed. Whereas before people had worked on different things, he said we needed to ‘release, realign and retrain’, which took a lot of work on both our parts.
To go into further detail about the ‘retraining’ aspect, one of the biggest issues was that I was so tense and blocked up that any core exercises therapists had given me in the past were impossible; I simply couldn’t access or activate the right muscles. Once the first step was taken care of, I could then start relearning how to use my body like a baby who is learning to walk. As my core has become stronger, my upper back pain has become less and less, to the point where I am now working regularly as a musician again.
The main message I would therefore give to sufferers of chronic pain is to not stop searching. Just because one person says there is no solution to your pain doesn’t mean they are 100% right. If James can do the astronomical task of completely resetting my body from scratch, I know that he can help you too.
On sunday I ran my first 10K race in sweltering july sunshine. This may not seem like the most unique or arduous challenge until you consider the context in which it was run. In august 2012 my husband had to pick me up from office because my back had gone into excruciating spasm. A few days later I hobbled into james's treatment room for the first time. He treated me and I was in extreme pain but at the end my back felt better. I continue treatment and within a few sessions I had regained complete mobility.
During the sessions james talked confidently about getting me running - hanging onto his kind but directive words I took the first few tentative steps towards regular exercise. I also followed his recommended diet plan and saw remarkable results in 3 months. At this point I was still only running 5k but was determined to do a sponsored 10k in aid of leeds children's hospitals who saved our son's life when he was born 12 weeks early.Read More
James reassured and pushed me to keep going - although by this point I no longer needed treatment, we kept in touch on facebook. I can honestly say that his treatment has been an answer to a long prayer and a release from pain after years of suffering. He was the first medical professional I met not to recommend surgery and who also encouraged regular exercise. He believed in me and I would encourage any new prospective clients to trust him and believe in a pain free future.
I did the run in 1 hour 6 and as I crossed the finishing line, my son high fived me. I ran to the finish fighting back tears as I considered the long journey I have been on. Next I will be training for the half marathon - I will let you know how it goes!
I went to Claire as a last resort I'd tried everything else, had lots of different scans and treatments but nothing seemed to work.
I'm so glad I did, I went with pain all over from my finger tips all down my back and into my legs. Claire reassured me from the start it was something that could be helped.
She explained everything in so much detail from the start, but more than that she understood my pain and what coping with that pain was doing to my everyday life. After my first treatment I noticed a difference, my body was able to move in a way it hadn't for a long time.Read More
I cannot urge people enough to give this treatment a go if you are in any kind of pain you really don't have to be anymore this treatment gives you the release to able to help yourself.
Claire was fantastic throughout my treatment with help, advice and tips which went above and beyond.
I visited Claire at Physology in Hull as I had been experiencing lower back pain and prolonged head aches. During my first session with Claire she was able to explain what was wrong with me and why I was getting headaches and back pain.
I had an anterior tilt to my pelvis which I was unaware of. I was shocked and felt relieved that I had finally found the cause of my pain and had it explained to me.
Undergoing sessions with Claire, I went through a full physology treatment plan which Claire informed me was the best treatment for my pelvis to become corrected. She went on to explain that due to my muscles in my back becoming tight, this was why I was experiencing such severe headaches. I had been to the doctors three times due to my headaches but even they could never give me a clear reason as to why I was experiencing them.Read More
After 5 sessions I am now pain free in my lower back, my pelvis has been corrected and my headaches have greatly improved.
Claire was very professional throughout my treatment, guiding me through and explaining all processes and techniques. She always answered all of my questions and I felt at ease with her, trusting her professional judgement
Thank you Claire for all of your help!
Musicians and injuries go hand in hand, but they don’t have to.
Sixteen years ago I was an enthusiastic and ambitious teenager studying piano and cello at the Royal Northern College of Music Junior School with a potentially great career ahead of me as a performer. Unfortunately that all changed when I developed a wrist injury whilst recording a cd.
At first I was diagnosed as having repetitive strain injury in the form of damaged ligaments and ganglions. The medical world treated me as best they could with physio in the form of exercises, ultrasound and electric pulses to the joint, painkillers, metal splints to hold the wrist in place, and eventually, an operation. Frustratingly for them and me, nothing they did made any difference. I was still in pain, and could not hold my bow to play.
In an attempt to stay positive and change direction to one more suited to my ever-deteriorating body, I searched for a new career. From this point on my body got steadily worse, and I ended up with slipped discs, sciatica and chronic pain. I often had to use a walking stick to get around, and I was on high doses of tramadol, diazepam and ibuprofen which I took every day for around 6 years to mask the pain.
I was very lucky to meet a wonderful consultant who diagnosed me with Hypermobility Syndrome and worked with me over a number of years to strengthen and rehabilitate my joints. He got me to a point where I was strong enough to walk without sticks and was well enough to come off all my painkillers, but despite all this progress, I still suffered from sciatica, awful build-ups of tension (and therefore pain) in my shoulders and neck - which often caused migraines – and my right arm was still too tense and sore to play the cello for more than a few minutes at a time.
Then I met James…
James looked at and worked on my body holistically. Something no-one else had done before. He spent time analysing my posture, looking for the sources of my problems, explaining to me how they are all linked, then gradually working on releasing the fascia in every single part of me.
After each session I felt like a weight had been lifted from my body. It felt like I had gained ‘space’ in my joints and limbs where there used to just be tension, pain and stiffness. As my posture naturally corrected itself as a result the fascia release, I felt light, strong, and ‘grounded’.
I could talk forever about the changes I have seen in myself since James’ treatment but I won’t right now. The most important three things are:
All musicians know how easy it is to injure yourself from over-playing, posture, and poor technique. I cannot recommend James and his style of treatment highly enough to all of you. Go get yourselves fixed so you can enjoy playing like you should be able to.
I have been very skeptical about coming for treatment with James as I have had a 'injured' knee that swelled up and was painful when I ran any distance over half a mile, also I have suffered with lower back pain for nearly ten years as a result of a training injury through lifting weights; with my knee and my back the way they were It got so bad I stopped jogging. I then had a serious car accident and through that added further damage to the knee and snapped my other knee cap as well as many other injuries.
After seeing James for just ONE session my back has felt better than it has in nearly ten years!! This may seem a wild claim, but I can assure you I'm not on commission! Haha.
After 3 more sessions my knee is at a point where I have been running daily and have even played a little football! (which I have not been able to for years!) I am also back in the gym weight training and boxing training.
This guy is awesome and really knows his stuff. He takes time to understand your problem and explain to you what he does and how it will cure your problem.
Oh and He even 'fixed' my shoulder, when I mentioned it in passing (that always gives me pain when weight training and has done for many many years) in ONE session!
Again some of these claims may seem ridiculous, they would to me If I was reading it! However after seeing numerous physio's and a specialist at Bupa and only feeling slightly better for the pain to return in a couple of weeks or so and then to get the results I did after seeing James Tyrell-Nestor for just a couple of sessions, and the change it has made not just to my training but sleeping and everyday life, you would be saying the same thing!
All I can say is if you know me you know I would not recommend just anyone for anything and if you don't know me and you have any ailment whether it be back, hip, knee, leg, ankle etc etc go and see James, listen to what he has to say and try him out, you have nothing to loose and everything to gain. Awesome!