50 Bob Charles Drive 
Botany Downs

Tel 021 95 95 95
or 09 273 7092

September 2003




Humans only have four muscles with which to move their ears.  These muscles tend to be weak, and on some people they aren't even functional.  Horses however have thirteen muscles that perform a variety of ear movements. Why?  Humans communicate their feelings through facial expressions and not by wiggling their ears.  But horses display their emotions primarily with their ears, so they need a strong diverse group of muscles to create specific actions and expressions.

Now watching a Western will never be the same...

Just Soas You Know...

Chances are that you've never heard of your Psoas (SO-AZ) muscle, much less realised the havoc this guy can create for you when he gets right and develops trigger points. 

The psoas muscle originates from the lower part of your spine, crossing over the pelvis and hip joint, before inserting on the inside of your thigh.

The main function of the psoas is to flex your hip.  If you are sitting down as you read this, then your psoas muscle is working away nicely.  If you sleep in the fetal position with your knees drawn up, your psoas is at work while you sleep.  The more we flex the hip, the more we are exercising the psoas, and without proper stretching, a tight, inflexible psoas can be constantly pulling on the spine and causing all sorts of mischief.

Are you or someone you know any of the following for no apparent reason?  

  • Unresolvable lower back pain?  

  • A back that aches after sitting too long?

  • Pain in the hip?  

  • Pain in the groin?  

  • Clicking hip?  

  • Pain first thing in the morning that subsides as you get up and get going, or after a hot shower?  

  • A "short" leg?  

  • Lower limb injuries that aren't responding to standard treatment as they should?

While other causes still need to be ruled out, if you've already done that, then it is possible that it just might be your psoas thats causing all the grief.  

The main test used to assess the psoas is called the Thomas Test.  This is a non-invasive stretch type of test, done on the massage table with you fully clothed.  There are several other stretches that can also be done to confirm initial impressions.

A tight psoas usually responds exceptionally well to several sessions of massage, plus some diligient stretching and self-massage at home.  However, sometimes it is necessary to refer clients on to an Osteo, Chiro or other health professional for further treatment.

I am now using the fantastic Swiss range of Dul-X massage products in the clinic.  Dul-X is the leading sports massage range available in New Zealand, and is used at events like Ironman and the Rotorua Marathon.

Their Biokosma range caters for the non-athlete, and I expect to have stocks arriving shortly.

Dul-X and Biokosma products are also available in retail packs for purchase and make great gifts for the athlete and non-athlete alike.

Well it just had to be for the psoas this month!  Make sure you are warmed up before doing this one.

Stand with your feet about should width apart.  Flex one knee, lower your body, and place the opposite knee on the floor.  Roll you back foot under so that the top of the instep  rests on the floor.  Place your hands on your hips and keep your front knee bent at a 90 degree angle.  Exhale and push the front of the hip of your back leg toward the floor.  

With so many regular clients now on board, evening appointments are currently booked out about three weeks in advance, and most daytime ones about two weeks in advance, so planning ahead will help you to secure your preferred appointment time.
The best way to avoid disappointment is to have a regular standing appointment, be it weekly, fortnightly or monthly.  Some flexibility with standing appointments can be accommodated - please feel free to discuss your requirements with me.  
But I know life doesn't always work to a plan, so please don't hesitate to phone if you do require an appointment at short notice.  I usually do have a couple of cancellations each week (from that flexibility we've just been talking about!) and I'll do my best to find you an appointment or can put you on the waitlist.

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

Chris (aka Mr Botany Muscle Therapy), together with 49 other hardy souls from the Manukau City Veterans Cycle Club ( are doing a charity ride, raising funds for the Gisborne Cancer Society.  The ride around the East Cape is 482 hilly kms over 3 days.  Veterans can be as young as 30, and while the bulk of this group are 40-55, there are 7 riders in the group over 60, including 2 over the age of 70!  Hows that for some training inspiration!!

Of course no cycle tour is complete without the team soigneurs to provide the massage and first aid and carry the drugs!  Kent and his friend will be looking after things at home in our absence.  If you wish to contact me during this time, either leave a message on my cellphone (anyone know what the Vodafone coverage is like around the Cape??) or on the answerphone at home, (Kent isn't so great on taking messages) and I'll get back to you as soon as I return.

Oh and of course any donations to the cause will be gratefully accepted!

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