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Types of Lipids.

The form of fat in the bloodstream is lipids. When you have blood lipid profile tested, your blood is drawn and the levels of lipoproteins and cholesterol are measured.


Fat is not water soluble, meaning that it does not dissolve in water. Blood is mainly water, and it is the major transportation highway in the body. For fat to travel effectively in the blood, which is necessary, it must be wrapped up and packaged for the trip. Lipoproteins enter the scene here. A lipoprotein is a combination of a fat and protein, and its main function is to transport fat in the blood. Fat adheres to other fat molecules if they come in contact with each other, so a lipoprotein is essentially a protein envelop for the fat to keep it separate from other fats. There are two main types of lipoproteins. Read More

Armstrong’s Model of Delayed-Onset Muscle Soreness (DOMS)

On the basis of an extensive literature review, Armstrong (1984) proposed the following model of the development of DOMS:

– The structural proteins in muscle cells and connective tissue are disrupted by high mechanical forces produced during exercise, especially eccentric exercise.

– Structural damage to the sarcolemma alters the permeability of the cell membrane, allowing a net influx of calcium from the interstitial space. Abnormally high levels of calcium inhibit cellular respiration, therby lessening the cells ability to produce ATP for active removal of calcium from the cell. Read More

The Lymphatic System.

The lymphatic system is closely interlinked with the cardiovascular system; in fact it is often referred to as the ‘secondary circulatory system’ because it is such a vital part.

In essence, the lymphatic system is the filtration and overflow component of the cardiovascular system.

It is essential for the maintenance of blood viscosity and vascular homeostasis, as well as for fluid filtration which helps to prevent infection of the blood and tissues.

The functions of the lymphatic system include: Read More

The history and development of massage

The Oxford English Dictionary defines massage as: ‘the rubbing and kneading of muscles and joints of the body with the hands, especially to relieve tension or pain’.

The word ‘massage’ seems to originate from the late nineteenth century French word ‘masser’ which meant ‘to knead’, and this term is thought to derive from the Portuguese word ‘ammassar’ (knead) or ‘massa’ (dough).

The actual practise of massage is much older than the mode terminology. Hippocrates (often thought to be the ‘father of medicine’) was an advocate of massage as early as the fourth century BC, and referenced to massage (using alternative terms) have been found across the world in many cultures, some even before Hippocrates. Read More

How sports massage complements other therapies and treatments

There are a range of therapies and treatments that are complemented by sports massage.

These therapies include:

– Physiotherapy

– Chiropractic treatment

– Osteopathy

– Occupational therapy

– Podiatry

– Counselling

– Physical therapy

– Other complementary and natural therapies (e.g. aromatherapy, hypnotherapy, yoga therapy, naturopathy, reflexology). Read More

The effects of sports massage

Sports massage elicits a number of effects which can be categorised as physical, psychological, physiological and neurological.

Physical effects

A physical effect can be defined as a mechanical change that happens to a structure being massaged. Physical effects are likely to occur to more external structures of the body where massage is directly applied. Read More

The stages of soft tissue repair described.

Healing is a complex process without which the body would be unable to survive.

A Sports Massage Therapist (SMT) needs to appreciate the processes involved in soft tissue repair since all treatment and post-care advice must be appropriate to the phase of injury and competence level of the professional.

The healing process is common to all tissue types and can be divided into three stages.

The process of soft tissue repair:

Stage 1 – Acute stage/The inflammatory phase (The first 3-7 days post-injury). Read More

Common causes, signs and symptoms of soft tissue dysfunction described

In order to create effective and efficient movement, it is essential that the soft tissues are functioning properly.

Any impairment of the soft tissues, including muscles, tendons, ligaments and cartilage, will directly affect the quality and efficiency of movement.

Impairment of soft tissue is mainly caused by two factors which are dysfunction and injury.

At level 3, a sports massage therapist must understand that their role is to treat dysfunctional tissue to reduce the likelihood of injury occurrence. Injury recognition is a key part of a Level 3 SMT’s role, but only so that they can refer a client to a more qualified professional where necessary. Diagnosis and treatment of injury is not appropriate at this level. Only an acute or chronic injury has been treated by an appropriately qualified professional, a level 3 SMT may be called upon to treat the ongoing dysfunction, again to reduce the likelihood of any future injury occurrence. Read More

The rotator cuff explained

Beneath the larger muscles of the shoulder joint is a smaller, more subtle arrangement of muscles types.

Each one of these originates from the scapula and inserts on the upper aspect of the humerus.

Although they are not capable of generating much force, they play a fundamental role in stabilizing and controlling movement at the shoulder joint. This group of muscles are often referred to as rotator cuff muscles and as stabilisers of the shoulder joint; the integrity and coordinated function of these muscles reduces the potential for injury at the joint. The muscles of the rotator cuff are: Read More

How would you select the most appropriate method of collecting client information?

Personal trainers have a legally bound duty to minimise the risks and maximise the benefits of exercise for their clients and to protect themselves from litigation.

It is therefore essential that, prior to participation, clients are:

– Screened to identify risks of potential risks of participation that may need to be referred to the GP for clearance.

– Consulted to gather information that can be used to guide the planning of the personal training programme. This may include the client’s: Read More