Chrissie Wellington – Four Times Ironman Champion

“I have been attending Bristol Physiotherapy Clinic since I moved to Bristol in early 2013. The clinic provides an amazing ‘one-stop-shop’ catering to everyone, no matter what their sport or level of athletic ability. The qualified and experienced practitioners are consummate professionals who take a holistic approach to injury prevention and treatment, and their knowledgeable, caring, skilled and individualised approach really is second to none. Regular massage from Chris and physio and acupuncture from Charlie have helped keep me injury free and enabled me to recover from the training I am doing to prepare for all my crazy adventures. It’s amazing that even one session can make a HUGE difference to me, both physically and mentally. I have absolutely no hesitation in recommending Bristol Physiotherapy Clinic to anyone!”

Oli Beckinsale – Professional Mountain Bike Rider

Oli represented Britain at the Olympic Games in 2000, 2004 and 2008, and England at the Commonwealth Games in 2002 and 2006. Currently he rides for Endura, and is recovering from a horrendous injury suffered in Czech back in September. Rich and Chris from Bristol Physiotherapy Clinic have been helping Oli through his recovery and looking at helping him get back to his best form.

Oli commenting on his rehabilitation said: “Its been great having the support of Rich and Chris from Bristol Physiotherapy Clinic, helping me recover from my serious injury as quickly as possible, keeping my hopes of Olympic Qualification alive”.

Tom Wood – Professional Basketball Player

“I have been playing basketball for over four years now, this includes time with the under 16’s England team. However after a short time at this level constant injuries prevented me from taking part and progressing as a player. In 2009 I received an opportunity to play for a basketball team in Spain, after this I was recommended the Bristol therapy clinic.

Over the past few months I have been working closely with Richard Bricknell to help me with any problems that could prevent me from playing. This has been extremely productive, I am making great progress and I am on my way to playing pain free and reaching my full potential. I would not have been able to achieve this is it wasn’t for Richard, I have found him to be extremely knowledgeable, friendly and professional”.

Give up Running & Play Golf?!

“After more-than 10 years of nagging running injuries an Ortho. surgeon friend advised me to give up running and take up golf, injuries are par for the course at our age”. But those injuries are now history as a result of the great training and guidance from Chris at the Running School Bristol. Out on a recent training run I caught up with a lean and fit-looking runner, who said “You have such an easy and efficient style, are you a seasoned runner?” “Old, maybe, but that would be thanks to the Running School” I replied. I’m re-invigorated and able to train again. Amazing!”

Shockwave Therapy Success

“After spending 3 frustrating years dealing with the most annoying injury that on the surface doesn’t look or sound bad I have finally found some relief with Shockwave therapy!

I own SB Fitness,a boxing/ martial arts / strength & conditioning gym and I specialise in coaching boxing which means I constantly train boxers to hit focus mitts….probably the worst profession if you suffer from Golfers elbow as punches have damaged my tendons over the years.

After meeting Chris the Physio I realised all the gadgets/ techniques I had been using weren’t worth it,or I had been using them in the wrong order.

He explained the right approach using shockwave therapy which basically breaks down and damages your muscle tissue and focuses on the root of the problem which is your tendons/ligaments.

Yes it’s very painful at the time…however the next day you feel the benefits.Your body has to rebuild itself because the machine damages you,so with the combined use of the electrical muscle stimulator afterwards Chris explained where I had been going wrong in the past,so we concentrated on strengthening my forearms using eccentric ( slow on the downward phase of lifting something up) and I started to improve as I wasn’t straining my elbow.

I can honestly say I am 80% better now,and more importantly that’s with continuing with training clients,I think if I rested completely I would be cured!

Give it a go,spend some money and it will be worth it I guarantee it,expect to have 5-6 sessions and you will get results and the pain will disappear, Chris will help you with the future to keep strengthening those forearms!”

Running Coaching Experience with Chris Kay

“Just a quick email to thank you for your coaching over the past six months. It’s been a fantastic experience and I’ve learnt so much.

Your coaching methods were easy to follow and understand, I was able to introduce them into my running with no problems. You gave me challenging but achievable targets each time that gave a significant improvement to my running. Best of all, I am now hitting PBs almost every time I’m out on a race, I am injury free and fell good.

I am carrying on the good work you’ve done and bought a BOSU balance trainer. I can now do single leg squats, “running man” warm ups and the one legged exercise touching the exercise ball down at different angles. Of course I’m also using and improving on the run style and form you’ve coached me on.

Can’t wait to see the before and after videos.

Again, many thanks. I will not hesitate to recommend you to anyone who wants to improve their running and will return latter to see how my style has kept/improved and for a VO2 Max test, Richard.”

New Personal Best

“I just wanted to say another thank you for the advice and assistance you gave me. I ended up having a good track season this year with a PB of 4.16 for 1500m and 16.20 for 5,000m. I also just did the Leeds Abbey Dash 10k at the weekend and came home in 33.04. I was massively pleased with this time and actually really enjoyed the run (unlike the Bristol 10k which I just found v painful!). I’m currently training for Bath Half and a couple of ultra marathons in the spring – I have brought forward the long term plan of getting into ultra trail running and am quite excited about the prospect (although I am not quite done with the road yet – I still have quite a few more aims to tick off!)”.

Changing Technique Was The Answer

“As a relatively fit 55 year old I decided to run the Bristol 10k. I expanded my normal gym training to include one run a week and gradually worked towards the 10k distance. I found the increase running activity led to extreme leg fatigue in my hamstrings and although I managed the 10k I ended up at the osteopath fearing the conclusion would be I was just to old. To my surprise the diagnosis was poor running technique and to my surprise there was a place in Bristol where you could learn to run “The running school” based in Redland. This is where I met Chris Kay who introduced me to world of biomechanics, cadence , foot strike , circular leg motion, etc. A little apprehensive that I would be able to make any significant adjustments to my running I embarked on a 6 lesson course. Gradually Chris with his creative communication of the concepts, always with several suggestions if I didn’t get it first time, reconstructed my running technique. Six months later I run further, faster and with more confidence than at any other time in my life with little or no leg fatigue”.ally

Patella Tendinopathy Success

“I had been to see many physios about an on-going running problem, causing me bad knee pain and leaving me out of action for months at a time. Chris was the only person that examined to me thoroughly, diagnosed what the problem was and knew how to treat it. He explained things in a language that I could understand and gave me simple steps to treat the problem. His knowledge of running technique has allowed me to change the way I run and have now been pain free for 5 months and running better than I ever have – he has fixed me! And also a pleasure to see and made things fun – not always easy when having a painful sports massage! Thanks Chris!”

Marathon Success

“I just wanted to say a massive thank you to the physios for the ultrasound on my foot and reassuring me that I would be able to get through the marathon despite the missed training! The race yesterday was fantastic, perfect conditions and the people of Brighton were incredible supporters. I’m very very happy to say that I smashed my sub 4 aim and came in at 3.45.42. Ran negative splits all the way as I felt pretty good at mile 18 so decided to speed up- clearly an enforced 6 week taper works! Thanks to all of you for all your help, I am one very happy runner. (Although I can’t really walk today!)”. Amy

24 Hour Runner, PB and No Knee Pain

“Running, everyone knows how to do that. It is as simple as putting one foot in front of another, breathing as and when required and looking where you are going. In many respects this will serve as running, this will get you from one place to another quicker than walking. However, running efficiently, correctly and economically is a completely different ball game. For those people who want to become quicker runners, avoid those typical injuries or run for longer periods of time. Even the slightest of differences to your running style, technique and gait will be integral in allowing you to do this.

The Running School has been founded with the intention of teaching, developing or perfecting the way that people run. I went to Chris Kay at the running school as what I would consider a competitive runner. I have been running since the age of 16, originally as a way of keeping fit to play football (now I avoid playing football in order to avoid injuring myself for running!) but have since taken part in numerous races or events ranging from 5km to 100 miles.

The reason I went to Chris was because although I have run fairly regularly for the last nine years I have certainly never been taught. Running is generally a skill that is developed over time, some people have good habits, it comes naturally to them and they both enjoy and excel in it. Many people have bad habits, it can be a struggle both physically and mentally and is a challenge from the outset. I would pitch myself somewhere between these two camps, but it goes without saying any runner from a complete novice through to Olympian can always benefit from a fresh opinion, correct advice and a little bit of motivation and support.

Prior to my initial assessment, I went through what my goals and aims are with Chris, unlike the majority of runners my primary goal is not to get quicker and break PBs, instead my A goal is a 24 hour race in July, with the intention of going for 24 hours my brief for Chris was to make me a more effective runner, avoiding the areas that typically suffer following long distances and to make me as economic as possible.

My initial assessment, was a relatively quick but not pain free experience. I had been suffering from a knee injury for a number of weeks, which I had been running through as much as possible but it had been affecting my mileage and mood. Chris checked that I was fit enough to be observed on the treadmill of which I was and he filmed me from a variety of different angles at differing speeds and inclines. We then went through what he had observed. It was evident I was running inefficiently, I was putting far to much stress on my knees, especially the problem knee and this was also attributing to the shin pain that I nearly always have to varying degrees. Chris showed examples and clips quickly making something that so many people have little understanding of seem simple, it wouldn’t take drastic changes to put things right but I did require tweaking in quite a few areas and all of this combined would.

Things needed to change, and change they would. Over the course of the first few sessions Chris introduced the adjustments that needed to be made. Originally they were all over exaggerated so that I could really feel the difference and effect of each change of movement, although originally unusual and often difficult to adjust to. The regular tips, pointers and help given by Chris meant that I soon began to feel more comfortable with the new style.

Since one assessment session and three training sessions with Chris, all carried out on the treadmill I have been hugely impressed with my progress. Firstly, I have shaken off the knee problem that was becoming an increasingly big hindrance before visiting the Running School. Although my goals haven’t been for speed I have broken both my 10km and 5km PB’s and even won my first ever competitive race. My weekly mileage is now consistently higher than it has been for a couple of years and I feel that I have been given the tools in which to hopefully continue this trend going forward. Chris has also helped me introduce the new style of running into my slower speed runs which will be the ultimate aim going forward and will hopefully allow for me to run for longer periods of time with less effort and less stress being placed on my body.

I would recommend any runner to go and visit The Running School. For those who are complete novices it will allow you to start on the right foot, build your running gradually and with the support and advice that Chris and his team offer. Alternatively to those who have run for years and regularly compete, there are always adjustments that can be made to finely tune or in some cases completely overhaul the way that you run and positively effect your running future”.

Injury Free & Increasing Speed

“Having been running to keep fit for the last 5 years and during the last two years being prone to injury and having to pull out of races such as The Bristol Half and pulling out of a Team Relay event at The London Triathlon in 2011 having a very bad hamstring injury and again through a broken bone in my right foot in 2010, when Mags Donovan recommended The Running School in Bristol and being taught how to run properly and avoid injury. What did I have to lose!!! Now I know absolutely nothing to lose and everything to gain!!!

I wish I had done it sooner, if someone had said to me I can teach to you run properly 5 years ago I would have done it without hesitation knowing what I know now. I went to see Chris for a consultation back in February 2012 and have not looked back. Session one was daunting having to try and run out of your own comfort zone and technique knowing that they way you were running was not right. Session 2 better, session 3 even better, going away from the hour with Chris and taking on board everything he told me the exercises to do, technique, you have to listen and take the information away and do them away from the one hour session, otherwise what is the point of being there if you don’t practice what is being shown/taught to you, what a difference it has made to my running capabilities!!! I have done everything Chris has told me to do away from the sessions and took on board what was said and I am more than aware now of how I run and technique, no niggles, no pain, no injuries – amazing. Session 4,5, and 6 being pushed past what I consider to be my boundaries which I have always been afraid of pushing too hard thinking I may injure myself again but no, all about self belief as well that you can do it, but it helps to be pushed as well, out of your comfort zone and know that really yes I can do this.

Watching the video of session 1 and session 6, oh my, what a difference!!!!!! Looking at session was I felt embarrassed at the way I was running and I can see now why I was prone to injuries, I almost looked like a pathetic runner in my eyes and then session 6 was a major transformation. I hasten to add that I have signed up for 6 more sessions to improve my speed now as I was not confident in running fast and always said that I was built for comfort and not speed but now I know I can run faster as it has been proved in the first 6 sessions, so onwards and upwards and let’s hope I can achieve my personal best in the Bristol 10k on May 20th. Keeping all those tips, hints and exercises that Chris has taught me always in the forefront of my mind as I feel now I have been conditioned to do things properly and correctly in my style of running.

If anyone has any doubts about joining The Running School then don’t – it is so very worth it.” Donna

After Just Two Sessions

“Thanks for the Running Handbook, it looks very interesting and I can’t wait to sit down and go through it to pick up more tips to improve my running.

I am really enjoying the sessions, thank you, and am noticing the benefits already which, frankly, is totally unexpected – I really thought it would take much longer to see any improvements but once again, last night, during a 10mile run, I found myself ‘flying’ on a 2 mile stretch of the Portway and it was almost effortless. All my running friends were uffing and puffing and I was not! Amazing, so thank you for the great advice. See you tomorrow. Kind Regards”

Physio Saves the Day

Make an appointment for Monday and I’ll strap your leg with some Kinesio tape to see if it helps in any way”. Those were the words Richard Bricknell said to me when he overheard me telling a friend I was considering not competing in my first ever marathon because of constant knee pain whilst running.

After completing the Wales half marathon in June my husband and I decided to enter the Liverpool Marathon which would take place on 9 October.

Training was going well until middle July when, during a 56 mile cycle challenge, I experienced pain in my left knee which did not go away, even after resting it for a few weeks. My personal trainer, Chris Barker (MyLife Personal Training), identified the injury as Iliotibial band syndrome (IT band). Numerous stretching exercises and massages were done in the ensuing months in an attempt to loosen my IT band. My running schedule had become erratic as one day I would be able to run 8 miles with little or no pain, the next day I would barely be able to run 2 miles. As I had an entry for the Bristol half marathon in September I was keen to run in it. I somehow managed to finish the half marathon even though I experienced knee pain after 4 miles. I limped my way round and finished, in my view, in a respectable 2hr1min. My knee pain persisted well after the event and consequently my running schedule went to pot. I did not run for two weeks. This got me worried as the Liverpool marathon was only two weeks away.

The day before Richard overheard my conversation I had struggled to run 4 miles because of my knee pain. There was only a week left to the marathon start date. Richard explained that the Kinesio tape was a new technology used to treat orthopaedic, neuromuscular, neurological and medical conditions. It was designed to facilitate the body’s natural healing process whilst allowing support and stability to muscles and joints. It sounded good and the promise of a short term fix got my attention as I was really keen to run a marathon this year. Richard taped my left leg, from above my hip all the way down to below my knee. My leg looked quite colourful, with the blue and pink tape strategically positioned. I went for a run that night and ran 6 miles with no pain. I felt optimistic.

I had my leg re-taped on the Friday before the marathon as we were travelling from Bristol to Liverpool on the Saturday. Although I knew I was fairly fit, I had not run more than 13 miles in training. I did not know how far I could run before my knee would give in. The marathon started and although I was feeling tired by 13 miles my knee was holding out. The first time I experienced constant knee pain was at 21 miles. I was pleased that my knee had held out for so long. The remaining 5 miles were painful but I knew I could finish. I shuffled along the last 5 miles but still managed to finish in a time of 4hrs41mins. I was exhausted and in pain, struggling to walk but thanking the Kinesio tape all the way. I am without a doubt that the Kinesio tape supported and stabilised my IT band, enabling me to run further before experiencing discomfort. Consequently, on the basis of my experience of Kinesio tape, I would recommend it as a short term option to anyone who sustains an injury shortly prior to a big event. A big thank you to Richard and his team”.

ITB Pain Gone in 4 Sessions (After 6 Months of Pain Previously)

“Having spent 6 months undergoing physiotherapy to help my ITB syndrome, I was still getting that classic ITB related knee pain when running and was completely frustrated. My physiotherapist knew there was a technique issue but didn’t know how to correct it – out of ideas that more physio could help with, she knew of the running school in Bristol and recommended I give it a try.

From video analysis, everything about my technique (whether good or bad!) was explained to me, it made complete sense as to why I got this pain and moreover, why changing the way I was running could help. Chris taught me not only how to improve the way I was running but also gave me strengthening exercises to back this up – a handbook was sent to me which contained information about nutrition, hydration, warm up exercises and so on – a great holistic approach to better running.

After 4 sessions with Chris, my ITB pain has disappeared and although it did take some getting used to, the new technique is now feeling natural. Another benefit is I am now running at a 9 minute mile pace (previously 10 minutes was more my thing!)

I cannot emphasize highly enough the benefits I have seen from my course and I’m looking forward to smashing my PB in the Bath Half 2012. It’s seriously worth doing – even if I hadn’t gone in with knee pain, I would still have gained so much as my improved technique has really picked up my pace and I feel much more confident about my running. I’m sure I shall be back to learn more”.

Pain Free Marathon Success

“I just thought I’d let you know that I got round Bath in 1.43 yesterday. To be honest I was a little disappointed at the finish as I’d been on for a 1.38 and felt great over the first 10 miles, then my world fell apart.

However, I’m still trying to make myself understand that it’s 4 minutes faster than my previous PB which I set over 12 years ago.

More importantly I couldn’t run 2.5 miles 7 months ago and consequently I owe you a massive thank you for helping get me back on the road. I love being able to run again and I couldn’t before you fixed me.

Now it’s onwards for a couple of triathlons in May and June and then perhaps another half later in the year.”