32. Come on people!!!

Blog 32 – “Come on People!”

Having lived with active chronic pain throughout my 20’s and 30’s I have benefited from lots of forms of bodywork, but this came with a lot of restrictions, any rotation in my torso was limited and would induce pain, not during but after the activity and required frequent trips to bodyworkers.  Chris often “joked” that it cost me more in bodywork after I had taken a horse for training than I earned for schooling livery - and often he hasn’t wrong. 

During my first session with P.K. I realised that if I was going to be able to follow his instructions, particularly when it came to training and improving lateral work then I would need, amongst other things, to be able isolate my torso from my pelvis.  I found a bodyworker who had qualified as an Anatomy Trains Structural Integrator (ATSI) (formally known as Kinesis Myofascial Integration (KMI)) with Thomas Myers, author of “Anatomy Trains”.  She helped me hugely but I still needed Sacral Occipital Technique (SOT) Chiropractic work from time-to-time to keep me “sound”.  (I would like to take this opportunity to write a few words about Dr. Brian Carter of Brentwood Chiropractic without whom Noni may never have recovered from cluster head-aches, thanks to him we got our daughter back and Brian got me functioning well enough post leg-breaks to be receptive to ATSI and F.P, Brian you are a genius.)

I prefer to take a pro-active approach to looking after myself, I do not resent spending time and money on visiting bodyworkers but wanted to take responsibility for my own health and well-being.  Probably because of various online searches my computer kept alerting me to Functional Patterns (F.P.) eventually I looked it up and bought “The Power Posture”, a book by the founder of F.P. Naudi Aguilar.  It took some research to understand and I did my best to follow the book and felt and saw huge changes, so much so I was considering a trip to the US to train with Naudi.  To my delight I heard that he was coming to the UK to run a course, I got accepted on the course and in 2015 became qualified as an Instructor of Functional Patterns.

Of all of the things I have benefited from personally and professionally clicker training is and is the most life-changing of all.  It has transformed the relationships I have with my horses and it has transformed the way I behave more globally – it’s huge. 

But F.P. comes a very close second.  

Now in my mid-forties, totally pain free and more mobile than I have ever been.  My scoliosis is gone, my lung capacity is increased, I can access my core, and I no longer suffer anxiety, stress or sleep issues.  

Chris, whose pain and stress-levels were such that he had a breakdown in his 30’s is now in his 50’s and happy and able to work and live a full life again.  

Our kids have seen huge benefits too, not just because Chris and I are in a better place but by utilising the techniques themselves.  (The techniques include myofascial releases and corrective exercises that the participant does to and for themselves, rather than having to rely on a trainer or bodyworker.)

I encourage people who are not already clicker trainers but interested in pursuing it to start off by attending a clicker foundations course, once the foundations are in place they are able to apply clicker in their lives and we can integrate it into any other courses that they attend.   All of the other techniques I coach, the interface between rider as cause and the horse as effect and classical principles can be integrated within my courses as and when appropriate.  

However one of the things that makes F.P. so unique and effective is that there is a very specific and clear protocol which needs to be followed for participants to really see and feel the difference and therefore it needs to be coached in isolation of other courses.  The uptake of these 2 day courses is good, but relatively few are able to commit to the “homework” (about 30 – 60 mins a day for a month or so, then reducing to only a few minutes a day).  

It frustrates and saddens me that while the horse-people that 
I have the privilege of working with cannot do enough for their horses frequently they neglect themselves.  

I understand time is precious – but so are you, without you feeling and being at your best you AND your horses will pay the price…

Next time, "Planes, Trains and Horseboxes" published 28th May. 

For those searching online for more “instructional” resources than offered in these blogs please make use of my video downloads www.ashenec.co.uk

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