THE FELDENKRAIS TECHNIQUE FOR PAIN AND POSTURE…

Feldenkrais Therapy is an educational programme that enhances the communication between your body and your brain. It accentuates personal awareness of your body’s mobility patterns and uses movement and structural training. The movements are slow and gentle, and the focus is on correcting posture.

Through slow repetition of movements, you “unlearn” inefficient habitual movement patterns which are causing strain to certain areas of your body. It is similar to the Alexander Technique, in the sense that it is a learned method, rather than a therapy which involves manipulation of the muscles or bones.

It is named after its originator, Moshe Feldenkrais (1904-1984), an engineer and physicist as well as a Judo teacher. The benefits of this therapy include relief from tension and muscular pain, easier breathing, greater relaxation, improved performance in sport, dance music and drama and increased vitality.

By heightening our awareness of our movement, breathing and posture, the Feldenkrais Therapy will bring us closer to realising our full potential. Bringing this into our lives means we learn to move more freely, with greater ease, flexibility and grace.

It has been said that the method can permanently improve our posture, balance and coordination, to help people in pain have a more comfortable life. Feldenkrais UK are

are celebrating an International Feldenkrais Week in May. They say ‘
By heightening our awareness of our movement, breathing and posture, the Feldenkrais Method®brings us closer to realising our full human potential. Bringing this into our lives, we learn to move more freely, with greater ease, flexibility and grace. The Method can permanently improve our posture, balance and coordination, awakening our innate capacity for life-long vitality and continuing self-development.

You can also find a teacher and a class through the Feldenkrais UK website.

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M.E. MYALGIC ENCEPHALOMYELITIS AWARENESS WEEK 6th-12th MAY. 2019…

ME Awareness Week will run from 6th to 12th May 2019 with many activities focused on ME Awareness Day itself (Sunday 12th May). The focus of the ME Association’s awareness campaign for 2019 will be the Real M.E.

Promoting REAL stories and photos from REAL people, telling the world about the REAL disease that is M.E!  We’ll be sharing many of the hundreds of photographs and stories that you have sent to us, showing how this cruel disease can vary so much in intensity and severity both from person to person and even from one minute to the next for each person affected.

ME Association fundraisers are busy working up their madcap ideas for how they will Go BLUE in 2019.

Why BLUE?  Because blue is the internationally accepted and recognised colour of M.E. Awareness. How you GO BLUE is entirely up to you… How far you go BLUE is also entirely up to you. Just do all you can to colour in this cruel invisible illness….

Here are some ideas from ME Association -BLUE faces, BLUE hair, BLUE nails, BLUE themed raffle, BLUE profile photographs on social media, BLUE tongues, BLUE balloons tied to garden gates, Bake sales, plant sales, tea parties, supermarket and shopping centre collections, walks, concerts, orienteering, fun days… of perhaps a virtual BLUE Sunday.

People with M.E. disappear from society and can easily be forgotten and overlooked. Our mission for ME Awareness Week is to rectify that with our Real M.E. campaign. With your help.

Please share REAL stories and images far and wide between 6th and 12th May.

Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (M.E.) is a long-term (chronic) fluctuating illness that affects many parts of the body, more commonly the nervous and immune systems. It may be diagnosed as Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS).

What is M.E.?

Symptoms vary from person to person but can include:
Physical and mental exhaustion (fatigue), which feels very different from ordinary tiredness
Post-exertional malaise: this means that any physical or mental activity can bring on an increase in symptoms, but not straight away
Intense muscle or joint pain
Inability to speak or concentrate
Extreme flu-like symptoms
Sleep disturbance
Dizziness and/or nausea
Hyper-sensitivity to light and sound.

Many people still believe that M.E. is all in the mind. This is simply untrue. Research has found potential biomarkers (physical evidence) for M.E. but much more research needs to be done to confirm the cause (or causes) and a cure.

Why should you care?

M.E. can affect anyone. It doesn’t care how old or young you are, or where you come from. People of any age, including children, can get M.E. It currently affects 1 in 250 people in the UK alone.

Some manage to struggle on with their lives. Others spend most of their time bedbound or housebound, unable to perform basic functions unaided.

One of the biggest frustrations expressed by people with M.E. is that family, friends, the media and even doctors often don’t believe their illness is real, or fail to understand just how debilitating it is. With your help, they can change this.

 

 

#FIBROMYALGIA AWARENESS DAY 12TH MAY 2018, EVENTS…

Help us to promote Fibromyalgia Awareness Day on 12th May 2018 in any way you can. Some Fibro groups have created unique ways to help promote awareness.

To mark Fibro Awareness Day the Flare Group meet at the Blackpool Tower for their annual Global Light up the Night where the Tower will once again light up in purple with a blue heart to represent both FM and Me.If you would like to get involved, visit or donate to any of their events or fundraisers please contact them by clicking here, you can also message them through their social network pages and groups.blackpool

 

Fibro and Chronic Pain Support Group promote the awareness day on a Facebook page which is an online event only so you can attend from the comfort of your home or work! Fibromyalgia (FMS) & ME/CFS Awareness Day for May 12th of each year, but will be recognized by us all year round. It isn’t just one day that we want awareness, it’s every day because every day we deal with chronic pain. We attend at the comfort of our home and work. We will be able to share together support, love, care and information. Fibro and Chronic Pain Support – Page Link: https://www.facebook.com/FibroandChronicPainSupport – International May 12th Light Up the Night Challenge
https://youtu.be/O4Bzevj6WGA

Fibrodaze also has the above and others on their list of Fibro Awareness online events

Fibromyalgia Action UK have an events page with a list of awareness events and have a Campaign Pack to help you organise your own event. It’s still not to late to sort one out. Their campaign pack is designed to help you share the message among your community about fibromyalgia and the significant impact that the condition has on their lives of those living with the condition, as well as family and friends of those affected. There is a range of materials available to download and print from the Fibromyalgia Action UK website, that you can use to promote your activity or to encourage people to talk about fibromyalgia.

May 12th International Awareness Day – Since 1992, they have been raising awareness for May 12th!  Each year landmarks and private homes around the world are lit with our colours on  May 12th. May 12th has been designated as International Awareness Day for Chronic Immunological and Neurological Diseases (CIND) since 1992. The CIND illnesses include Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (ME), Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS), Fibromyalgia (FM), Gulf War Syndrome (GWS) and Multiple Chemical Sensitivity (MCS).May 12th was chosen as it is the birthday of Florence Nightingale. She was believed to have suffered from ME/CFS. In 2010, a write-up was done to give a history of May 12th. Their Facebook page has events and lots of info on Fibro and other conditions.

National Fibromyalgia and Chronic Pain Association are based in America and also support May 12th’s awareness day and have a map with links to events happening in the US.

Together Walks is another US charity that has been set up to raise funds for research and help people connect for May 12th Fibromyalgia Awareness Day.*  More than 700 live champions and thousands of online champions have joined Together Walks. Click here to register for live and virtual 2018 Together Walks as well as to create and join walk teams.  The Hub is an all-new website designed to help people create a fundraising event for fibromyalgia research and then promote it.

A few other events in the UK include –

Fibro Warriors Fibromyalgia Awareness Day Meal on Saturday 12th May, in Tameside.

Fibromyalgia Awareness is having a May Ball at Friern Manor on Saturday 12th May, in Brentwood.

Fibro PaIN is hosting a production of Invisible – One Woman’s Fight with Fibromyalgia -a play by CLM Productions and starring Charlie Maxx & Angie Walker about one woman’s fibromyalgia journey, on Saturday 12th May, in Renfrewshire.

If you have an event that has not been mentioned in this post please feel free to add to the comment section.

SAD – SEASONAL AFFECTIVE DISORDER and WALKING…

 

At this time of year, one in eight of us can suffer from winter blues and one in 50 of us suffer from SAD through lack of sunlight.

Symptoms of SAD include fatigue and depression.

It’s the sunlight that tells your brain to produce serotonin, which is needed to boost our mood and energy. Lack of it as autumn turns to winter causes an increase in the production of melatonin (which makes us sleepy) and a reduction in serotonin is what can cause depression.

One of the most obvious ways to treat SAD is to get outside in the daylight for at least 20 minutes a day but you can also invest in a lightbox. Light therapy is the most effective way of decreasing the symptoms. Also, it is believed that eating foods rich in an amino acid called tryptophan increase the amount of serotonin in the brain.

Australian research found that taking vitamin D supplements for only five days in late winter improved the mood of people with SAD. It can also prevent osteoporosis, support immunity and regulate weight. Of course, the best way to get Vitamin D is through the effects of sunlight on bare skin. Amazingly they say that Vitamin D lasts for 60 days in the body so if you’ve been away for your annual holiday in the summer, it will mean your levels should be fine until November.

Other sources of Vitamin D can be found in oily fish and eggs, cheese and poultry.

Research also suggests that eating carb-rich foods helps the brain take up tryptophan. You can also find supplements and The Food Agency recommends taking 10mcg a day.

Walking for health encourages people to get active by arranging health walks up and down the Country for all levels of fitness.

Walking will improve stamina, help keep weight gain at bay and reduce your risk of major diseases. 20 minutes of walking can burn up 100 calories.

It is also beneficial for SAD sufferers who feel low and lethargic due to the lack of sunlight in the winter months.

Walking for life was set up in 2000 and now has over 600 local schemes with 66,000 regular walkers nationwide. Over one Christmas period, walking for life registered their 100,000th walker onto their database.

 

DOCTOR IN THE HOUSE EPISODE 4 ON FIBROMYALGIA…

I wrote a few weeks ago about the ‘Doctor in the House’ episode which was about chronic pain and fibromyalgia which I finally managed to catch up with on BBC Iplayer last night.

For anybody who doesn’t know what this program is all about, it’s a documentary and in each episode a family invites a GP (Dr Chatterjee) into their home to investigate every aspect of their lives. They’re worried about their health, and they’re hoping he can solve their problems.

In Episode four Nicola has been diagnosed with ten different conditions, including fibromyalgia, ME, sciatica and depression. Her pain and exhaustion have led her to become reliant on painkillers and she struggles to get through the day. Can Dr Chatterjee help Nicola find the cause of her problems and improve her health so that she can enjoy life again with her three young sons?

In each episode there are two families involved and the second family is a lady suffering from stress and severe exhaustion and is at risk of developing life-threatening type 2 diabetes. As a single mother, she works two jobs as a car saleswoman and a nightclub bouncer whilst juggling the demands of her two young sons. Rangan must find a way to completely overhaul her lifestyle, including her diet, sleeping habits and work-life balance.

Although they are two completely different problems some of the symptoms overlap, in particular the problems with sleep. One of the first things Rangan suggested to the single mother was to buy some clip on blue light filter glasses which she was told to wear in bed at night when using her phone or watching tv. The blue light blockers are in a clip on flip up style stay on glasses and covers sight areas without blurring or changing hues with deeper Amber color. These glasses filter out the blue light from the tv, computer and phone that disrupts natural sleep cycles. As a chronic sleep sufferer myself, I was keen to give this a try but I didn’t need to buy them as my Kindle Fire had an option to change my screen colour at night to filter out the blue light. I applied the filter and I definitely had a better nights sleep.

Nicola wanted to sleep all the time and instead of feeling great after a walk she just wanted to lie down. This, in particular resonated with me as I am exactly the same. The Doctor felt that some of her sleep problems were due to her diet and they had to remove all junk or processed foods to see if that would help. Nicola went from bad to worse and at one stage told the Doctor she needed a break from him following her progress.

The Doctor was really upset about this but then went back a few weeks later with an idea of taking Nicola to a ‘Mindfulness Class’. According to the NHS Professor Mark Williams, former director of the Oxford Mindfulness Centre, says that mindfulness means knowing directly what is going on inside and outside ourselves, moment by moment.

“Most of us have issues that we find hard to let go and mindfulness can help us deal with them more productively.” “Awareness of this kind also helps us notice signs of stress or anxiety earlier and helps us deal with them better.” Nicola wasn’t sure at first but then found it quite amazing and started using it regularly at home. Nicola was also told that they had found out from some of her blood tests that she definitely had a gut problem which was contributing to her overall health.

At the end of the program I could see the incredible results he had made with the single mum but I felt that Nicola although in a lot less pain, still had a number of health conditions to sort out.

Fibromyalgia sufferers are well to aware that we have a multitude of symptoms and problems so it can be difficult to know what to take, medication wise,  but one thing that is clear is our main problem is pain and fatigue and there are not many treatments be it medication or otherwise that can sort this out for us. It is more a case of learning to cope with flare-ups and bad days.