What are we doing to keep you safe??

We closed our doors when the country went into lockdown back in March along with many other businesses in order to protect the general public from the pandemic. 
As osteopaths we were never told out-right to close by the government as we are classed as primary healthcare workers and help to reduce the burden on the NHS by seeing patients with musculoskeletal pain and injury. 
To begin with we were told that we could only see ’emergency’ cases but that has now changed. We are now, when appropriate, able to see all patients that are not classed as high risk due to serious underlying health issues, people shielding and of course people who are experiencing symptoms related to Covid-19.

In order to protect our patients we have made a few changes to your experience at the clinic for the time being. Here are some of them :

– In order to see if a face-to-face appointment is appropriate we will ask you a series of questions regarding your current health at point of booking. 

– There will be no waiting area available when you arrive so please come to your appointment as close to the time allocated as possible. 

– There will be 30min gaps between patients to help with social distancing and to allow for cleaning and airing of the clinic room. 

– We will be wearing PPE when treating our patients. We would also ask that you bring a face mask with you.

 – We have removed all non-wipeable materials in the clinic to help with cleaning between patients.

– We will supply hand sanitiser to you on entry and exit of the clinic. 

If you have any questions about these processes please get in touch and I’ll be more that happy to explain further.

Thank you so much for your continued support and I look forward to seeing you as and when you need help.

Laptop Set-up Tips

Is working from home a pain in the neck?? Maybe this will help…

I am sure many of you are now having to work from home, saying goodbye (for now!) to those lovely ergonomically set up desks.
Using laptops, although convenient can lead to issues like neck pain, upper back pain and even headaches originating form the neck. This tends to happen because we spend long amounts of time looking down at the screen.
Have a look at the video below for a couple of tips on how to reduce the likelihood of this happening and possibly reduce symptoms if you’re already suffering. 

Stay well and positive.

Get a Diagnosis!


Having just got off the phone with a friend of mine who is potentially suffering with a disc injury causing weakness in his leg it amazes me that the therapist he’s been seeing hasn’t even considered this as a possibility!

Instead, treatment has been carried out with no diagnosis and no explanation of what may be causing the issue!

This blows my mind!!🤯

We don’t always have the answers. If in doubt we should REFER to get more info and to help get patients better quicker.

In my experience people want to know what’s happening in their bodies. Information is power 💪

If you go and see a healthcare practitioner it is your right to ask questions and that the treatment you receive is justified.

At Four Health we spend time trying to get to the bottom of what is causing an issue, what’s maintaining an issue and what the issue actually is. Please feel free to get in touch with us with any questions.

Why do your Muscles Hurt??

Have you ever wondered WHY you keep getting TIGHT/SORE MUSCLES??
If you have then have a quick read of this!

There are several potential causes of painful muscles that we, as osteopaths are trained for 5 years to help you understand.

Here are some of the common causes:-
1. Overuse
2. Underuse
3. Irritation of the nerve supplying the muscles
4. Postural issues leading to over-reliance on specific muscles or muscle group
5. Guarding/protection of another structure like a joint

If you’d like help understanding your body a little better and have a structured approach to becoming pain-free then please get in contact for more info or to book an assessment.


What is Pain??

What is pain??

Trying to answer questions like – what is pain and why something might hurt can be very useful for the patients we see at the Four Health Osteopathy clinic.

The definition of pain according to the dictionary is – ‘A highly unpleasant physical sensation caused by illness or injury.’

There are two broad categories of pain –

  1. Nociceptive pain – Pain associated with tissue damage
  2. Neuropathic pain – Pain arising from the nervous system

Nociceptive Pain –

This type of pain is what most people are familiar with. Nociceptive pain is caused by the stimulation of nociceptors which are sensory nerve fibres found all over your body due to tissue damage such as muscle strains or tears, impact trauma or broken bones to name but a few.

When you hurt yourself these nerve fibres are stimulated, they send a message through your nervous system to your brain where the information is interpreted. The result of this is a feeling of pain.

Nociceptive pain characteristics typically change with movement, load and position.

Neuropathic Pain –

This type of pain is caused by damage or disease to the nervous system itself. This can be due to trapped nerves, spinal cord damage, nutritional deficiencies or conditions such as diabetes, MS and strokes.

The symptoms that are common with neuropathic pain are – pins and needles, burning or coldness, numbness and itching.

Why do You Need to Feel Pain??

Simply put, you need to feel pain in order to protect yourself. Let’s say you over reach for something whilst gardening and strain a muscle in your back. Pain acts as your bodies alarm signal to let you know you’ve done something that’s compromised a muscle and caused damage. Pain may continue after the initial incident to give your body time to heal by reducing movement, it may cause you to temporarily stop what you’re doing and it serves to remind you to be careful with certain movements.

How can an Osteopath help??

The majority of patients will come to see us because they’re in pain. Helping people understand why they’re in pain, diagnosing the cause and ascertaining whether it is nociceptive, neuropathic or a combination of the two will help us form the most appropriate plan to help get you back to normality. Knowing what type of pain you’re suffering from also directs what type of treatment is appropriate to help you recover as quickly as possible.

Top Tip

As pain can be acting as your bodies alarm signal telling you that something isn’t quite right be careful when returning to the same level of activity pre-injury too quickly! The damaged tissues may still be vulnerable even if the pain has gone.


The question, ‘what is pain?’ is a very complex one. If you have any questions or would like more info please get in touch by email at – info@fourhealth.co.uk or give us a call on – 07932 022503.

Running Running and More Running!

Let’s talk RUNNING!!

What a week it’s been so far! Busy with patients, reaching out to local businesses to collaborate with and now writing a new blog!

I was on a home visit in Teddington and thought I’d pop into Sweat Shop on Broad Street. (www.sweatshop.com) They are running specialists. I had a great chat with Nico, one of the guys there about what they do and how they do it. They have a good understanding of gait for all you runners, a good selection of shoes and of custom moulded insoles. I love interacting with local companies like this, it gives me confidence to send patients their way when people ask for recommendations.

I’ve worked with runners a lot in the last few years of varying standards from people who just like a short jog a couple of times a week to ultra-marathon runners. I was very privileged to support a guy through his training for the Marathon Des Sables not that long ago. Having access to treadmills at the clinic in Cobham is fantastic when analysing gait and offers a true insight into your running technique.

The next blog post will be about what to do if your back goes into spasm as it seems people aren’t too sure.

In the meantime, a take home tip for runners – If you’re a road runner don’t always take the same route. Mix up which side of the road/pavement you run on and this way you reduce the risk of the camber of the surface potentially causing you issues and pain!!

Catch up soon


Shoulder Pain??!

Do you get Shoulder Pain?? If yes maybe this will help –

Last weekend I went off to my old university (BSO) which is now called The University College of Osteopathy to do a course based on FAR techniques in regards to shoulder pain and particularly thoracic outlet syndrome. Thoracic outlet syndrome is a group of disorders that occur when blood vessels or nerves in the space between your collarbone and your first rib are compressed. This can lead to pain in your shoulders and neck and numbness in your fingers.

FAR or Functional Active Release technique is a way of releasing tight and shortened muscle using a combination of your movements and pressures exerted by an osteopath or manual therapist. Having had shoulder pain probably from playing too much squash I can say with confidence that the technique works wonders after one of my fellow osteopaths used me as a guinea pig! One session and the difference was huge!!
If you have shoulder pain or for that matter any tight or painful muscles please get in contact for a chat and to find out how we can help you.

The PT & The Osteopath

New  Collaboration – The PT & The Osteopath

Freddie (lead trainer of The 225 Club) and I are debuting our new collaboration, The PT & The Osteopath. What does this mean, you may ask! Well, here it is…

As an osteopath I see patients with all types of muscle and joint pain, some related to sporting injuries some just seem to start for no good reason. Current research is firmly of the opinion that a combination of treatment and strengthening is more effective than treatment on its own. At the Four Health clinic we give our patients exercise programs to follow in conjunction with treatment which can be very useful, however for some they may need and want more!

Freddie has a wealth of experience as a personal trainer with particular interest in post injury rehabilitation. He regularly sees clients that find they are being slowed down by an injury or restriction in their muscles and tissues and need help from someone like an osteopath in conjunction with their training.

Freddie and I will be offering various packages which combine our expertise and give you a collaborative approach to either help you improve what you’ve already got or help you get over an injury that’s holding you back.

All sessions will be held at The 225 Club, Cobham. Please call 01932 590030 for info and bookings.

Watch this space for more info on upcoming offers and packages.

Aches and pains and Vitamin D……Don’t be in the dark!


In case you haven’t noticed it’s winter! Other than the cold weather, which some like and some don’t, we find ourselves with an issue that is less obvious, and that’s a lack of sunlight.

Many of us get up nice and early in the morning (when it’s still dark), commute to work using various forms of transport, sit in an office all day and then head home, in the dark! Some of us may not see the sunlight for more than a few minutes if at all on an average day.

Why could this be a problem?

One major result of a lack of sunlight can be a vitamin D deficiency. Vitamin D is very important to us as it helps with the absorption of calcium, iron, zinc and magnesium in our guts. Unfortunately the types of vitamin D we require aren’t found in abundance in foods and are only really created by our skin being exposed to UVB rays from the sun.

In our Cobham clinic we see patients through out winter who may present with signs of vitamin D deficiency and not realise it. These signs include; tiredness, general aches and pains, more frequent infections and in severe cases bone pain and difficulty getting around.

As osteopaths we offer our patients longer appointment times than your GP may be able to. This gives us the opportunity to ask more questions that may make us suspicious of a vitamin deficiency. It’s common for people to assume physical pain or discomfort is only linked to musculoskeletal issues.

Although osteopaths can’t directly treat vitamin D deficiencies we can offer advice regarding lifestyle and exercise and also when necessary refer you back to your GP for further investigation. Vitamin deficiencies are normally diagnosed with a simple blood test.

Please get in contact with us at Four Health Osteopathy via email – info@fourhealth.co.uk or give us a call on 07932 022503 for more info and advice.

Prepare For a Half Marathon

Running 13.1 miles may seem like a daunting challenge especially if you’re new to running but fear not, laying down some good foundations when preparing for it can give you the confidence you need.

To begin with here are some tips to get you going

  • Make sure you have a good pair of running shoes. At Four Health Osteopathy we can help advise you on the sort of shoe to look for that is appropriate for your feet.
  • Make sure you warm up properly before your runs. 5mins of walking building up to a brisk walk before you start running is a good way to approach it.
  • If you can, try and have a rest day between your running days. This is very important for recovery and to allow your muscles and tissues time to repair properly before the next run.
  • You should be running about 3 times per week to get things started. These don’t have to be long runs, maybe about 30mins each.
  • At the weekend consider doing a slightly longer run than you do during the week. Aim for about 3miles to start with and gradually build on this as you go adding around 1.5 miles every 2 weeks. On alternate weekends go back to the 3mile run.
  • Plan to take about 15 weeks to prepare for a half marathon doing your longest run 2 weeks before the race.

As your body adapts to running in some cases for the first time you may find things hurt! There are lots of conditions associated with running. These include Achilles tendonitis, plantar fasciitis, shin splints and ankle and knee pain to name but a few. Don’t ignore pain! Come and speak to us at Four Health Osteopathy for advice. We can help to diagnose the issue properly and suggest ways of adapting your training.

Treatment like osteopathy and sports massage we offer at Four Health can help to reduce the chance of injury during training. With semi regular sessions we can pick up on any asymmetries or imbalances in your body and help correct them before they potentially become injuries that stop you from running. In many cases prevention is much better than cure!