Physiotherapy Portal

Acupuncture and Physiotherapy

Posted by Stuart Fossella on Monday, June 19, 2017

Want Needles with that?

 Acupuncture Needles

You probably didn't know that we all are trained in Acupuncture here at Straight Back Physio. But then we probably never told you.

You see at our old location we weren't insured to practice the treatment, so never offered it. But...

Our sparkly new home allows us to provide Acupuncture as a treatment!

So if it's something that you have given some thought to in the past but never tried then please do ask about its suitability to you and your injury.

You see, there are all kinds of claims made about Acupuncture and please remember we are not Acupuncture therapists. We are Physio's who might or might not use Acupuncture as an accompaniment to your other treatment techniques.

We don't make claims to use it to help you get pregnant nor give up smoking. But we think it can be really useful in helping to reduce what some people call 'knots in muscles' or tightness through muscles.

Particularly good for shoulder or Neck pain and Low back pain, Calf Strains and Achilles problems in our experience.

So if you have postural or sports related muscular tension or tightness then please ask us about your suitability to Acupuncture as something to help alongside your other rehabilitation.

More info from the Acupuncture Association of Chartered Physiotherapists Which we are members of by the way.

If you want even more information then call 01242 802365 or Email us on

You know where to find us.

And please feel free to share this with anyone you think might find it useful :-)

Crooked Back

Posted by Stuart Fossella on Thursday, May 25, 2017

Is your Back Crooked?

 Crooked Back Book Cover

I think that American Backs are made the same as British Backs...

Here is a link to a pretty novel book exposing the 'Crooked Back Pain industry', got to hand it to the creatives for that book title :-)

Check out this authors 6-year mission to highlight just what Back pain is and how it can REALLY be treated.

Check out this excert of the interview:

Perhaps the most shocking statistic in your book was regarding your poll of 100 doctors. This was a question posed to spine surgeons: ‘Would you have spine surgery?’ [Specifically lumbar fusion or disc replacement surgery.] And resoundingly, in this group, all said ‘No,’ except one. Now, that should tell you all you need to know.


Looks like we've said all along it's about REHAB - we know no one wants surgery on their spine, do they??

Like the piece that follows:

What's Causing your Back Pain?

Need more advice and want to avoid surgery???

 You know where to find us.

Physio Advice on managing Back Pain

Posted by Sarah Fossella on Thursday, May 04, 2017

Keep Going...

Nice piece from The Chartered Society Of Physiotherapists on Managing Back Pain

Easy to digest info...

Short, Sharp and to the point

Need more advice, you know where to find us.

Pole Dancers chest pain

Posted by Stuart Fossella on Thursday, March 30, 2017

Chest Pain coming from the Back?

 Boy Lifting Arm

When Chest pain comes from the Back

So things come along in 3's right, just like London Buses.

In the last week alone I've seen 3 patients complaining of Chest pain that’s actually coming from the back.

You see the ribs attach from the spine to the front of the chest wall, curving around the chest.

Because of this curve and path that nerves and muscles run, pain can be sent from the back to the front of the body.

Just like sciatica is pain that is sent from the back down the leg, you can have pain that comes from the back but is actually felt in the chest!

Have a look at the following link for a review of the anatomy of the ribs and link to the spine.

The following link provides a 3D image of the Spine & Ribs hopefully allowing you to visualise how the pain may be felt in the chest Healthline Healthline

Hopefully it makes sense how pain can be sensed around and in the chest. Although the pain is felt here, perhaps more than the back its actually the back that needs the care and attention.

The last 3 people with this pain seemed to get it from:

  • 1) Not sure how.
  • 2) A tennis shot.
  • 3) From pole dancing (for fitness).

As with most treatment techniques, the aim of treatment is to minimise inflammation with ice and relative and rest etc and then restore full movement in the spine, and add strength to the area to maximise the outcome and reduce the risk of an injury recurrence!

Simple when you know whats going on.

But that's why we are here, so Bring us your problems :-)

Stay safe, and be careful the next time you are flying around the Pole dancing pole - great for fitness I hear.

You know where we are - and we’d love to help you out if we can.

If a colleague, partner or friend may find this piece useful, we’d love it if you passed it on to them to read.

The Team at Straight Back

Tips for Smart Working

Posted by Stuart Fossella on Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Here's is a little update for you on the last message we sent.

 Take a Break

You know, and we know that back pain is a right pest, and we've already told you about the need to help yourself out by doing what you can to keep it under control.

So here is a little list of Apps and general advice that we like...

These Apps are little reminders that help you to basically get up and out of the office chair for a few moments during your working day.

So many of you end up engrossed in work that you might not get up from the desk from one hour to the next.

It's been previously been mentioned that:

Sitting as bad for you as smoking

Blimey, I've even heard about people who have slept in the office before because of deadlines! That's got to be some kind of comfy office chair you've got (and I don't believe that Occupational health have been that kind to order you in a bed).

So in order to stop looking like a 90 year old Tin Man when you get in and out of your work chair, get moving some more.

Have a little look through this little list, there has to be something that you like, and something that the IT Administrator will let you install!

Here is the List for you

So if you have followed a little of previous advice you are already scheduling a walking break in the day, and now you can start the 3xhour desk giggle by simply standing up, having a stretch and getting back to it.

My particular favourite method is the Pomodoro, check that out, great Italian tomato sauce and time management :-) - which not only sees you get up and move but maybe even makes you more productive, WIN, WIN, WIN.

The Pomodoro Technique

The boss is going to love you this year...

  1. Happier staff
  2. Less groaning about back pain
  3. More productive!

If you have enjoyed reading this piece and know of someone else who may find this or our previous pieces interesting please forward on details of our Blog.

Big Thanks :-)

You can find our other pieces right here--->>>

For more tips on easing back pain like this, here’s free special report with 7 top tips on how to avoid back pain… ->


Give us a Reply if you need any advice in the meantime.


New Years Resolution

Posted by Stuart Fossella on Wednesday, January 04, 2017

Some New Years Advice for You-

 Person Walking

Keeping your Back Tip Top

So Low Back Pain is without a doubt one of the main conditions we treat at Straight Back Physio

And if there is one, just one piece of advice that I can give you to keep that ache at bay it's...

To schedule in a regular walk during your day!

Yes as simple as that.

I wont suggest anything more radical than that, as a starting point to helping you to clearing up your own Back Pain.

I'm not suggesting it will be the ultimate cure to any niggle you may be 'carrying', but its a good place to start helping yourself.

Lots of us commute by car or bus now and driving or reading on a bus each day can be enough to set off those aches and pains.

Not all of us have manual jobs, and its been mentioned before that sitting at work can be as bad for your health as smoking!!

Sitting as bad for you as smoking

So do yourself a favour and if you only do one thing this new year to help keep your back supple and moving - Get up and schedule a walking break into your day.

Maybe make it habit to walk at lunch time, get some fresh air in the lungs. Or perhaps when you park the car on the drive of an evening go for a 15 minute brisk stroll before you get in through the front door to slide into the slippers.

Its just and idea, but maybe now with the new year, its time to make a resolution to get a little more active - for the sake of your Back if nothing else.

PS Happy New Year from the Stuart, Sarah and Francesca

If you have enjoyed reading this piece and know of someone else who may find this or our previous pieces interesting please forward on details of our Blog.

Big Thanks :-)

You can find our other pieces right here--->>>

For more tips on easing back pain like this, here’s free special report with 7 top tips on how to avoid back pain… ->


Give us a Reply if you need any advice in the meantime.


Back Pain and Running

Posted by Stuart Fossella on Wednesday, October 05, 2016


Simple Coincidences and Exercises to ease Back pain

We seem to get these strange coincidences at times in treating with Physiotherapy.

All of a sudden and out of the blue we end up seeing a run of patients who complain of similar problems.

It might be a run of 2 or 3 people complaining of Achilles pain or it might be that they all complain of Knee pain.

In the last few weeks I've seen 3 separate people who have told me they have been restricted in their ability to run because of increasing levels back pain

Now there is not an awful lot that is strange about that at first glance, but what is strange is that 3 people have come in recently with the same problem.

And the similarities in what they told me are striking...

"I've always been active and enjoyed running, but a few months ago I began to feel back pain when I went out running with my friends.

It's reached the point where I can't run any further than 2 or 3 miles and I have to stop.

Now I'm scared that I won't be able to run further than 3 miles again and that I'm going to lose all my fitness.

Can you help"

Sue 49, B.Cleeve

I heard the same thing no less than 3 times in the last few weeks!

Weird how it sometimes happens.

The thing is...

I reviewed all 3 of these people in clinic and do you know what I discovered?

All 3 patients did have back pain, but not 'runners back pain', just the normal kind of symptoms that any other person may have.

It just happened that these 3 people ENJOY RUNNING.

It may have been patients who had back pain but enjoyed hill walking - just a simple coincidence!

And you know what..

Let me start by saying, yes I can definitely help.

This really isn’t uncommon… Back pain is one of the most common injuries we see here at the clinic.

We often here that the GP has advised rest and sure, even though the GP is right, that you need to rest your back. One of the worst things you can do with back pain is to rest too much and do nothing at all.

Too much rest will only end up making things worse in the long run, and equally doing nothing at all will mean that you won't ever run more than 3 miles before the back pain strikes again!

So what can you do when you have a bad so bad that it’s stopping you from doing what you want?

Treat it and Strengthen it!

Our backs aren’t made to sit for long periods of time and we need to be active to maintain flexibility and mobility and strength of the spine.

So taking part in regular mobility style exercises to increase your muscle control, using exercises like those of Pilates and Yoga will help to keep muscles and joints flexible – meaning when you do go back to doing activities like running, gym classes etc., you’ll have a strong back protecting you from more...back pain!

So what's our point?

A bit of regular exercise really does help, and a few months of perseverance means you won't be suffering with back pain anymore

For more tips on easing back pain like this, here’s free special report with 7 top tips on how to avoid back pain… ->


Give us a Reply if you need any advice in the meantime.


Lazy Arse

Posted by Stuart Fossella on Thursday, September 22, 2016

Are you a lazy Arse? - Dormant Butt Syndrome

This was kindly pointed out to me today by a patient and it made me chuckle.

When I assessed the patient I pointed out her super weak Glutes - these are the muscles that make up the buttocks, and she told me she must have a 'Dormant Butt'.

Now we have previously written about the hard time the Glutes have, either being accused of being too tight or too weak!

But this piece is great, if only for coining the term a Dormant Butt.

<<Here it is->>

The piece potentially links weak Glutes to well... Just about everything :-)

Back pain, Knee pain, Ankle pain...

So here's the link and the Video piece with the recovering victim of Dormant Butt Syndrome - Note on her caption 10 seconds in, she 'Had' Dormant Butt Syndrome - thankfully it would seem she now has a lively Butt

Check the piece above

To all of our patients running the Cheltenham half on Sunday - good luck, you guys certainly aren't lazy Arses.

If you see our very own Francesca on the route - give her a shout - Good luck all of you

“If you have enjoyed reading this piece and know of someone else who may find this or our previous pieces interesting please forward on details of our Blog. Big Thanks :-)

You can find our other pieces right here--->>>

If you’d like more quick tips like this to help ease Sports Injuries, visit our website where you can download my free tips guide instantly:

Or click here: ->


Give us a Reply if you need any advice in the meantime.


Pilates & Physiotherapy

Posted by Sarah Fossella on Thursday, July 21, 2016


Francesca is trained in Pilates

Because she's Hard-CORE

Not everyone can hop under the Squat Rack for there rehab, we know that and Francesca knows that. It's why she uses Pilates with her Physio treatments.

If you’re suffering with aches and pains from injuries to your back, neck or shoulder, or just wanting to avoid them, then Physio & Pilates is a useful place to start.

Pilates is now widely regarded as one the best ways to tone up weak muscles and give support to your back, neck and shoulder joints.

If you would like to ask Francesca anything about how Pilates can help then call on 01242 802365 / 07940 102905


Email Francesca directly on:




Copyright © Straight Back Physio

Back Pain and Holidays

Posted by Stuart Fossella on Tuesday, July 19, 2016


Back Pain & Driving - Our Back Pain Report

Ok, So here is a sorry cautionary tale from me, and it's something that's been spreading like wildfire and can only get worse in the next few weeks.

Last week was the Fossella's now annual pilgrimage to Pembrokeshire, there isn't much better than dedicated family time and no Internet connection, but have you tried to live without any 4G connection or WIFI for a week-nightmare. But makes for good family conversation :-)

So even before we went away we'd seen 3 or 4 cases of Back Pain associated with holidays at Straight Back Physio. We've even treated a SunBed related injury in the past!!

It was the same old story...Travel, sitting, suitcases, uncomfortable beds all leading to Back Pain.

So by the time we'd taken in a service station or 2 (for daddy's toilet break and more coffee - The kids were Sparko in the back, having fallen asleep while watching the same movie for the 100th time). I'd been driving for more than 4 hours. Now I probably don't drive for that long in any given week let alone 1 day-I was setting myself up for some tasty Back Pain.

What’s going on then?

Well…unaccustomed activity can lead to the onset of pain and dysfunction as we stress joints and muscles in ways in which we usually don't in a day to day basis - we have mentioned this in relation to sport in some of our other Blog posts (have a look at some of the other useful bits of info we've created here)

Find the Injury Info here

Now you probably won't believe this next statement...but the weather in Wales wasn't exactly brilliant last week - The irony of that is not lost on me as I sit here sweating on the hottest day of the year so far.

The regular downpours of rain led to a fair bit more sitting around, traumatising my back more, and stressing my head having to watch some awful kids DVDs we picked up in a charity shop. When you have done 1 soft play venue, I'm certain that you have done them all (and its really hard to be in there for more than a couple of hours).

This lead me to think about the post we put up a few weeks ago when we said that SITTING was said to be as bad for the health as Smoking - Seems to be a bit of an exaggeration you might think?

Well it certainly can cause an increase in Back Pain, and its one of the most common complaints we find in people who have come for treatment of Back Pain.

But check out this BBC piece to shed a little more light on what's mentioned.

BBC News Piece Here - Sitting as bad for you as smoking

Motion is lotion...

Lotion to our joints that is -

To our joints that can and should move freely - sitting for extended periods of time puts more stress on the joints and can lead to inflammation and pain just like what I felt on holiday last week.

Combine the increased inactivity of sitting around with an unusual pillow and mattress for 3-4 nights, lifting heavy suitcases and hey presto - I got myself a ‘bad’ back.

Sure its not going to last forever, but it can last a few weeks or months if you are unlucky, and this is just like what some of our current patients are experiencing and having treatment for.

Now I have been back to work for a week now and low and behold, what with me not sitting around so much, and getting back on the bike, the pain has cleared up nicely.

So get active, keep active, and above all else...

If Back Pain is troubling you get some help!

PS…A really good place to start if you do have Back pain is to start some simple exercising, have a look at the exercises below.

These exercises and stretches are designed to get the joints of the back moving again. They may not be enough on their own (we’ve found through years of experience in treating back and neck pain that the hands on treatments in conjunction with exercise work best)...

So I had a case of Back Pain, after driving 600 miles in a week and sitting on some uncomfortable chairs for many hours a day.

Luckily for me the pain has gone. But unluckily the holiday is over...

I just wish I could have more precious time away with the family.

If you are lucky enough to have some time off over summer - just be careful and don't rest too hard :-)

Here's some exciting info for you. 

We've got this great new report for anyone suffering from BACK PAIN

For more tips on easing back pain like this, here’s free special report with 7 top tips on how to avoid back pain… ->


Give us a Reply if you need any advice in the meantime.


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