Help Me, Help You - Stretches Clients Can Use For Maximum Relief
Let's face it, if you're lucky, you may see a client once a week for an hour - one hour out of 168 hours. That’s not a lot of time to help a client shift patterns of tension and discomfort. So, clients who are willing to do things to help themselves when they’re not on your table, are worth their weight in gold.
I love when a client asks me "Is there anything I can do when I'm not here, to help myself get relief?" because it means I’ll be able to be that much more effective in the work we do together.
One of my favorite ways for clients to help themselves when they’re away from the table is to pay attention to their movement habits. Stretching can be a great way to support this.
Stretching areas of tension helps to bring focus to an area of their body to which they may be disconnected. It helps them develop their body awareness, just like when we work on their areas of tension.
How many times have you heard, “Wow, I didn’t realize that muscle was so sore (or tight) until you started working there!”? It’s the same thing with stretching... “Wow, I didn’t realize how tight my hamstrings were, until I tried to stretch them."
When your client becomes aware of an area with tension, they then have greater ability to mindfully decrease the tension, as well as to explore habits that create that tension in the first place.
But in order to do that, your client has to know how to stretch effectively.
They have to know how to move the attachment points of a muscle away from each other, in a way that doesn’t bypass the very tension they need to become aware of.
You think all you need to do to stretch your quads is grab your foot and pull your heel towards your glutes? Think again.
People are masters at unintentionally cheating stretches and then wonder why they’re not seeing results.
When my client Betsy* came to see me for shoulder pain that had been plaguing her for 2 years, she couldn’t put her hands on her head to wash her hair without feeling pain. In addition to the craniosacral work I did with her, I showed her a few simple neck and shoulder stretches she could perform, in order to help herself at home. She learned where her boundaries were and how to judge whether or not she was doing an effective stretch.
This gave her something valuable she could work on at home to help interrupt her pain cycle and increase her shoulder range of motion. Within a few sessions, she was able to wash her hair without pain for the first time in 2 years.
Are you ready to learn how to help your clients reap the benefits that stretching can offer, avoiding common cheats? Deepen your knowledge, and join me for the webinar: 6 Important Stretches Your Clients Are (Most Likely) Doing Wrong.
*name changed to protect client confidentiality
Lisa offers a variety of online courses designed to help people improve their alignment and movement at http://www.lisallc.com/online-courses/