In conversation with Chris, Wide Receiver with the Heriot-Watt American Football Team and Aga, Santosa Sanctuary therapist.
You've recently finished a three-month treatment programme with Aga, AB Holistic Therapies. What was the main focus of the treatment programme for you?
Addressing and managing various injuries, aches and pains I had picked up from training prior to lockdown. They had built up over time and not having access to the gym for long periods didn't help.
I had a nasty knee injury (a lateral ligament sprain), which resulted in a fair amount of swelling. Aga was able to manage that while shortening what would have been an even longer recovery time. I also had consistent back and other leg issues which Aga was able to manage. Her treatments allowed me to still make progress with my training while managing the pain and recovery process.
Describe a typical treatment session?
Each session lasts for an hour and we would start with 'any new aches or pains, Chris?' - there usually were! Treatments were on a massage table and wearing comfy gym gear.
The treatments are always very relaxing, a real plus, however, there are points that are almost painful, but that is due to the nature of my aches and pains! Aga made a point to say you should never be in major pain, although there were definitely points when addressing muscle related issues, that were tender.
Has it helped your game, training or performance in a specific way?
Absolutely. It has reduced my recovery time drastically. The day after a treatment I feel pain-free, which two days after a match was never the case previously. It also benefits my sleep. The night after a session I sleep so much better, which as someone who has struggled with disturbed sleep patterns during the last eighteen months is such a huge help.
2019-2020 was a great season for you. How did it feel to be awarded offensive player of the year and team MVP?
It was great, a nice bit of validation for all the hours of training. Although, American Football is a team sport. Without everyone else on the team doing their job well, I wouldn't have been nearly as successful.
Lockdown stole the 2020-21 season, what are your targets for this season?
Aga, can you explain the science behind the different therapies and why it is so helpful to sport recovery and improving performance?
Chris's treatments are KCR (Kinetic Chain Release) followed by MFR (Myofascial Release) and take 60 minutes.
KCR with some MFR is a perfect combination for Chris as KCR gently realigns the body, whilst MFR helps release soft tissues. Both result in less pain, better flexibility and increased blood and lymph flow.
How do both therapies work?
KCR is a simple yet effective system of medically recognised and approved gentle mobilisations and stretches. Developed by Scottish Physiotherapist Hugh Gilbert, KCR supports the body in returning to physical balance quickly and easily. When the body is in balance, we have more energy, feel better and regenerate faster. This type of therapy frequently provides a high degree of relief and in many cases complete resolution, to the pain and discomfort caused by some medical conditions. Sessions take place on a treatment table and clients are fully clothed at all times.
MFR Fascia is a three-dimensional web of connective tissue that extends throughout our bodies, surrounding organs and muscle fibres. Physical or emotional trauma can make us tense up and cause our fascia to constrict, creating pain that may be long-standing and difficult to treat. Tests such as MRI or CAT scans don’t show fascial constrictions.
If these constrictions are not released properly, the fascia remains tight, causing discomfort or pain, and may ultimately affect our health by constricting the flow of blood, nutrients and waste throughout our bodies.
MFR is a remarkable way of working with the body to relieve chronic and acute pain and deep-seated tension. It is a specialised physical and manual therapy used for the effective treatment and rehabilitation of soft tissue and fascial aches, pains, tensions and restrictions.
Supporting the Heriot-Watt American Football Team
As part of Santosa's team sponsorship, you are offering a 'player's and coach' treatment package for the Heriot-Watt American Football Team. What are the details and how can players get in touch with you?
- Initial Try-out Treatment with Consultation discounted to £40
- Six-week treatment programme discounted to £35/treatment
Interested in working with Aga to improve your game? Email her: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Find out more about the Heriot-Watt American Football Team and how you can get involved: