50 Bob Charles Drive 
Botany Downs

Tel 021 95 95 95
or 09 273 7092

November 2003


The skeleton makes up 15% of the body's weight.  The bones are composed of half water and half solid matter and contain nearly 1kg of calcium and about half a kg of phosphorus.  That is enough phosphorus for two thousand matchheads.

Lets talk about OOS

OOS is actually an umbrella term covering a range of occupational overuse conditions, rather than being a condition in itself.  OOS symptoms include pain and/or other sensations in muscles, tendons, nerves, soft tissues and joints.  

In the clinic, the most common OOS related symptoms I see are tingling in the fingers, and pain and discomfort in the wrist, forearm and elbow.  This pain is usually caused by prolonged muscle tension, repetitive actions and sustained posture, together with poor breathing patterns.  Have you ever noticed how you tend to almost hold your breath when you're concentrating hard, working away on the computer??  There is also usually increased amounts of tension throughout the neck and shoulder muscles generally.

But the good news is that addressed early, OOS type symptoms can often be successfully managed, and of course massage is an important tool in doing so.

It is necessary to address the underlying cause of the symptoms, before addressing the symptoms themselves.  Fortunately most workplaces have now addressed their workplace design, or are willing to do so if employees ask.  While looking at workplace design, you also need to consider your own work technique and posture - do you sit properly, or do you tend to cross your legs or slouch at your desk?  Regular breaks are also important - but not only to have a break from the repetitive keyboard and mouse work.  You need to get up and MOVE.   Our bodies weren't designed to be static, so muscles tighten, blood and lymph flow is impeded and the tension-pain cycle begins.  

Regular exercise is also an important tool in reducing OOS related symptoms - stretching the muscles and helping blood and lymph to flow efficiently so that blood and lymph move nutrients into the cells and remove waste products.

Stress is also thought to be a contributing factor to the development of OOS conditions, so learning strategies to manage stressors that can't be removed is highly recommended.

Relaxation - sometimes it seems so under rated these days with the busy lives we all lead.  Relaxation can be something as simple as having a massage or a walk on the beach or something as learned as yoga or playing sport.

So what part does massage have to play in all this?  

Well massage can help in many ways.  Firstly in helping to identify an underlying problem - for example, many people aren't aware how much pain and tension they have in their arms until they have their arms massaged.  They would have found out eventually when the muscles finally cried enough, but identification of the problems brewing enable earlier treatment and usually a more successful outcome.  

Secondly, having found the issues in the tissues, they can often be addressed with specific massage techniques and a stretching programme.   

Thirdly, your massage therapist may also help you to identify the underlying causes of the symptoms, and suggest strategies for addressing them.

And of course, last but by no means least, massage can provide you with relaxation and time out - often what is missing most.

BODYGLIDE 36.9g $21.00

Prevent chafing and blisters with BODYGLIDE from the USA.

BODYGLIDE is the official skin lubricant of the USA triathlon team and is wetsuit safe and water and sweat resistant.  Its reliable, non-greasy, non-oily, and comes in a no mess stick for easy application.

It is an amazing product, particularly popular with runners although it can be used by everyone.  Get some for yourself or it makes a great Christmas gift, especially for the athlete in your family.

Brochures and product now available here at Botany Muscle Therapy.

I know we had this stretch in August, but it is such an important one for the management of OOS symptoms, here it is again.

It stretches the pectoral muscles and chest area and surprisingly can often provide relief from numbness and tingling in the fingers, and for pain in the wrist area.

Stand in an open doorway.  Raise your elbows above shoulder height at your sides to form the letter V, slightly flex your elbows, and place your palms against either side of the door frame.  Exhale and lean your entire body forward. Repeat, varying the height of your arms.

So you all have lots of notice J, there is a new fee schedule effective February 1 2004.  A 1 hour massage increases to $50, and a 1/2 hour to $30.

You can save $5 per massage off the above prices when you purchase a massage concession card for 5 half or one hour sessions.

Book online here or  
Phone Rachael on 021 95 95 95 or  
Leave a message on my home phone 273 7092

The annual Lake Taupo Cycle Challenge is held on the last Saturday in November each year.  I'm not riding this time, but you will find me in the Manukau City Vets club tent, providing their post ride massage.  

If you haven't tried the sport of triathlon before, check out the Try-a-Tri at Aunt Betty's People's Triathlon  The series is superbly organised by Frank Clarke, a former top Canadian international triathlete, and it has events to cater for the beginner through to the elite.  Next race is January 18 at Mission Bay.

Every Monday night at 6pm there is a 5k run or walk from O'Hagans in Highland Park.  Check in at the courtyard from 5.30pm and pick up a race number, then follow the crowd from outside Placemakers, through Lloyd Elsmore Park, along Cascades Road and Aviemore Drive and back to the pub.  You'll receive a time for your run and there are some great spot prizes (you can even win a massage J).  And entry is free!

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Rachael Button
Botany Muscle Therapy
50 Bob Charles Drive, Botany Downs, Auckland