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By West Norwood Therapies Team, Apr 15 2019 01:35PM

WNT founder and manager Jennie Duck shares how we decided on a beautiful new studio floor and the teamwork that made it happen


I always hated laminate flooring. It had been suggested that it would be a good alternative to our carpet a couple of years back as we were starting to offer more classes as well as treatments and I pretty much flatly refused. We ended up going with a foam interim - sounds awful but actually worked well for classes and looked quite good. But it was a faff for treatments since it needed protective mats and not the most durable option in the long term so back to the drawing board...


Then I discovered laminate can be nice!!! Who knew??! In fact it can be really lovely - like the oak effect that we went for as pictured here.


So it was all hands on deck to get the room cleared out and then reconstituted with minimal disruption to the clinic and classes. Our team in action - I stayed 400miles away in Scotland and kept in tune with progress. My husband travelled down to put the flooring in - a mammoth job over a long weekend with 4am starts and late nights. Thank goodness he loves me enough to see it through, as old-man-like he was on arrival home with sore knees from kneeling and a tired body.


Again I give my thanks that the team at WNT is so much a team and the comaraderie and engagment is there to make decisions together (once I open my mind to the options of course ;-) and carry out work to make things happen.


Everyone is happy with the look and the first round of students have enjoyed classes on it so we are excited and optimistic that it is a great new chapter for us in our life as a yoga, tai chi, qigong and (soon) Feldenkrais studio as well as a clinic for treatments.





By West Norwood Therapies Team, Mar 8 2019 09:46AM

WNT founder Jennie Duck reflects on what it means to her to work with the Wonderful Women of WNT and how the tone of the team helps nurture the culture of the clinic and studio.


I hadn’t intended for West Norwood Therapies to become a formidable team of women. Formidable yes, but not only women. We have had a couple of men in the mix over the years, but as we head towards our 5th birthday this October we are 12 (wonderful) women.


And as International Women’s Day arrives I’m reflecting on what that means to me and find it is making me very grateful to have this gang around me.


Support

Support is a core value of WNT so any practitioner who flourishes in the team is a good example of support. Everyone has a sense that our emotional, physical and mental wellbeing matter and have an impact on how business goes. I attribute this to more of a female way of approaching life, but it must be boosted also by our vocations as therapists and teachers! Either way, supporting one another through challenging times helps us be stronger as a team.


Nourishment

Our monthly meetings are a precious time of coming together and we leave feeling nourished. It can be a time for sharing, for peer or business support, and sometimes just a time to connect with other women in a similar role who are all rather lovely, caring and funny :-)


Capability

These women are amazing! Everyone is pulled in different directions with varying commitments and pressures and everyone not only copes but flourishes. Our loyal band of clients, students and patients can testify to the level of professionalism and skill each practitioner brings to WNT and its an important core of what we offer – a high standard of client care.


Inspiration

We all bring something different to the table at WNT and this helps us practice with integrity and to be constantly evolving and learning in our professional environment. We inspire each other but we also let each other inspire us, an important distinction in strong team work.


Fun

Living in Scotland now it’s hard to socialise with the team as much, but I still call in for team meetings and come down for meetings and social events a few times a year and it’s always fun! There is a light heartedness that can be found in sincerity which I believe nurtures compassion and integrity – again these are integral to the values and goals of WNT.


All of this is especially important because the environment we create and nurture as a team sets the tone for our clinic and studio. We reflect on our values regularly and are conscious to practice with integrity in a very down to earth, human and warm way.


I love the team at WNT and I am proud to be part of this gang of Wonderful Women :-)








By West Norwood Therapies Team, Feb 6 2019 11:00AM

Our tai chi and qigong teacher Hannah Horsfall shares how she found her way to being a tai chi and qigong teacher and then to West Norwood Therapies


This is my first blog for West Norwood Therapies, in fact my first blog ever! A dream way to begin my journey into social media!


Finding myself thinking what in the imensity of the subject of tai chi and qigong can I focus on I decided on this first blog to say a little about my own journey and the benefits I have personally experienced through my practise of both tai chi and qigong.


My initial contact with tai chi and qigong was through a one day CPD workshop for health professionals in 2004 which left me loving it but very cautious about going away and teaching others from a certificated one day course!


A couple of years later, after the birth of my second child, understanding that running around after two under fives is not really exercise, I attended a tai chi class. I could hardly walk after the first session but after a brief time practising felt the benefits in more ways than I expected and my comittment to training began in earnest!


My teacher training was a few years off but even quite early on I felt that the tai chi and the qigong was somehow bringing me back to, and developing further, previous levels of physical energy, flexability, strength and stamina but also mentally I felt I was developing increased grounding, clarity and spaciousness in my daily life.


I have taught locally and further afield since 2010, and am delighted at the seridipitous way that joining West Norwood Therapy team came about. A chance visit by their – our! – Acupuncturist Philippa, to my Thursday class in the Rosendale Allotments. This coincided with the team looking to expand thier repitoire of classes and my loving thier core values of “serving the local community together with high quality health and wellbeing care.”


I feel honoured to be part of the team!


So, along with the personal, there is so much exciting research happening, bringing western medical health science together with the vast and ancient knowledge of both Tai Chi and Qigong that I hope to explore in future blogs!




By West Norwood Therapies Team, Nov 21 2018 09:00AM

Sports massage therapist Tessa Glover shares the second in her series of blogs about her brave adventure towards the Windrush Aquathon 2019 - Go Tessa!!


The beautiful summer has come and gone and I have to admit I have not been swimming as much as I planned to. I had hoped to swim 2-3 times per week before starting on the Windrush Beginners Swimming course but this did not happen. I was fortunate to have a trip to Italy in October but unfortunate in that I am not a member of this yacht club in Civitavecchia (Porto Turistico Riva Di Traiano) and had to just gaze admiringly at the pool from the terrace.


In reality I had only managed 3 or 4 swims in the two months before the first lesson and was totally unprepared. I felt out of my depth (pun intended) as 11 or 12 30-something males and only 3 women (plus me at the age of 50+) gathered on the side of the pool.


The lads set off like a shoal of hungry piranha while I splashed about like an aimless flounder. Thankfully the coaches, Audrey* and Becky*, were great and very patient with me. After seeing how much I struggled just trying to do a few lengths without stopping, Audrey suggested I wore my fins (flippers) all the time which helped me to keep up with the others in my lane.


The lesson concentrated on breathing and was incredibly informative. I had no idea that you could relax and breathe out under water at the same time but as the hour ticked on I came to learn that when you’re tired, breathing bilaterally without swallowing water is impossible so by the end I felt as if I’d drunk about 2 litres. At one point my heart felt as if it was about to beat out of my chest or was I about to have a heart attack? (Alarmingly, it occurred to me, I am at the age where that sort of thing could potentially happen).


I was shocked at how difficult it was to do so many lengths in one hour and came away from the lesson feeling incredibly despondent. I even asked if I should bother to come to the next session but Becky encouraged me to continue. I asked if she would give me some much needed 1-2-1 lessons and thankfully she agreed. She obviously loves a challenge!


The following week I had two lessons with Becky. She was fantastic. She broke down each element of the breathing. I used the bubble bubble breathe technique but she noticed that I turn my head too far out of the water and gasped for breath rather than rotating my whole body from the hips and turning my head quickly to the side to breathe. So she suggested Bubble Bubble Stretch, this way I was reminded to reach out my arm even further forward as I took my breath.


At this point I was exhausted and getting out of breath very quickly. Firstly because I am aerobically unfit and secondly because Becky noticed that I was breathing from my chest rather than from the diaphragm, meaning I was running out of air quicker and, as a result, panicking. We had a break from the swimming and she suggested that I practice some ‘sink downs’ to help me relax. Sink downs involve trying to expel as much air from your lungs as possible as you sink down to sit on the bottom of the pool. If you keep too much air in your lungs while doing the front crawl, your chest may be too buoyant which will make you swim at an angle with your legs sinking down. I found it almost impossible to stay under and kept bobbing to the surface again. With practice it’s getting better and Becky suggested I look at these Swim Smooth forum posts on the subject.


http://www.swimsmoothforum.com/viewtopic.php?t=2961


As for body positioning, she showed me how to torpedo off from the wall using my feet to start off. This makes sure your body stay long in the water for a good 5 metres before beginning your strokes and encourages you to stay that way for the duration of the length.


The evening of my second lesson, I sat in the car outside the swimming pool wondering why I had come back. I almost persuaded myself to go home but I remembered my promise to my colleague to do the Aquathlon and dragged myself into the changing room.


Their were fewer people this week and it seemed a lot calmer. I didn’t try to keep up with everyone else so didn’t get as out of breath. I kept my flippers on and concentrated on the drills. More breathing, head positioning and swimming on our sides this week. I felt a little better about my lack of ability!


10 minutes before the third lesson and again I was hesitant to go in. This week for some reason was even worse than the first lesson. My breathing was even shallower, I got out of breath during every length. To my horror, Audrey posted a video up of the session and there I was shaking my head and not doing crawl at all. I felt miserable looking at it.


This morning I arrived in the changing room to find I’d brought the bag containing items for the charity shop instead of my swimming stuff! I made myself go home and get the right back and do my swim. There’s dedication for you. As well as breathing, I practised swimming on my side with my head resting on my arm for body positioning improvement, sink downs and even did a few lengths without stopping… wonders will never cease.


Thursdays’s 1-2-1 lesson with Becky we worked on ‘sculling’. I always assumed sculling meant using cupped hands to empty water out of a sinking boat. However, there are many definitions but this one is the closest.


(of an aquatic animal) propel itself with fins or flippers.”the limbs were modified into efficient paddles, perfectly adapted for sculling through the water”


We worked on getting a feel for the water with the hands, cupping and moving in and out as if stroking a cat’s head back and forth (or turning on taps). We then moved on to shoulder, elbow and wrist position in combination with the cupping.


Finally here was something I could manage! All those years of being a cat owner have paid off….


Next time: the last two Windrush lessons and my first attempt at a Parkrun after 6 years…


*Rebecca Goodwin https://windrushtri.co.uk/coaches/ Twitter: @beckykyky


*Audrey Livingston http://www.alphafitness.me.uk/audrey.html




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