by Fiona Duncan-Steer

Author: Fiona Duncan

SACO Derby Apartments- The Millhouse

SACO Derby Apartments- The Millhouse

Set in a stunning refurbished mill, Saco have converted what was once a mill house into a set of beautiful self-serviced apartments just a short walk from Derby city centre… Located within a private courtyard behind electric gates the security is high and as this […]

Brewery Experience Day- Brewhouse & Kitchen

Brewery Experience Day- Brewhouse & Kitchen

Masterclasses are quite obviously on trend at the moment and due to their vast array of themes they are also extremely popular group activities to undertake- gin making/cocktail making/flower arranging you name it there’s a masterclass for it, all making for perfect team building or […]

All You Yoga

All You Yoga

I’m so pleased to have recently discovered All You Yoga ran by Lee-ann Cordingley.

As a self-confessed, not by any means expert but enthusiastic yogi, I have practised yoga for many years- different types, different classes, different teachers and have enjoyed all experiences, as I find it really helps me to calm my mind and tones my body at the same time- win win!

Lee-ann invited me to one of her themed classes recently based at the John Godber Centre in Hucknall, Nottingham to try out her class- named Lunar Practise, a salutation to the moon as opposed to the sun, which is often a common practise in yoga.

My friend and I went along to the centre which has free parking after 6pm to the rear (very handy as the class starts at 8pm).  The class was full but with still ample space to swing your arms without knocking out your neighbour.  We were asked to bring our own mats which I own, however blocks and other equipment were provided.  Interestingly this was the first time I was asked to use a yoga strap for foot stretches, something that I found immensely satisfying and will buy for myself to continue at home in my own time.

Lee-ann started with a rather loud yoga chant to focus our attention.  Once the practise started, I noticed her very soothing, gentle voice as she explained the moves and each position very well, assisting where necessary.  She gave a very in-depth introduction into what we were to expect from the session and it actually went very quickly, as I must have been in the zone enjoying it all too much.  After our yoga practise we then went into our meditation section of the evening and were told we should put on any additional clothing such as our hoodies, socks etc and cover ourselves in our blankets if we had bought them with us (I had done, as this is one of my favourite parts of any yoga session!) we get to lie back on our mats, close our eyes, breathe deeply and relax…there have been classes I have attended in the past where at this point some folk in the class have actually fallen asleep- I know this because they let out a great big snort.

The meditation part of the program (or savasana) allows you to re-connect with your breathe, your body and yourself after working hard in your practise and positioning.  It is almost like a “well done you deserve this rest and recuperation now.” 

Following our savasana we were then offered the opportunity to write in our journals- a really lovely touch to end a yoga class and something I have not encountered before but really liked. Lee-ann provided us with our own booklets explaining a few main yoga poses, a few tips and techniques on healthy living and there was even space in the back to write about our positive intentions and to doodle and let our minds be free and wander.

That evening I slept like a baby having returned home for around 10pm, I climbed straight into bed in such a relaxed and content state I’m sure I fell asleep with a smile on my face 😊

Namaste.

More information on All You Yoga and the class timetable can be found on their website:

www.allyouyoga.co.uk  

Brewhouse & Kitchen – New Menu

Brewhouse & Kitchen – New Menu

Brewhouse and Kitchen recently opened in Nottingham in the popular West Bridgford area located directly on Trent Bridge over looking the river Trent, so the perfect location for drinks in Summer with a view, local to the vibrant centre of Bridgford and near all of […]

Mike Lawrence Holistic Therapies

Mike Lawrence Holistic Therapies

Mike Lawrence has been hailed in the media as having a ‘gift’  being the ‘go-to’ person when considering a holistic treatment… Treatments advertised on Mike’s website range from stress management and life coaching to cognitive behavioural solutions and Chinese therapies.  Many of these therapies are […]

Acupuncture at Acu Spirit

Acupuncture at Acu Spirit

Acu Spirit Healing Centre situated on Wollaton Street in the centre of Nottingham state that they are dedicated to maintaining a balance of body and mind using a holistic approach catered to the patient. 

Bing -the owner recently invited me along to experience a consultation and treatment and  having heard a lot about the positive benefits of Chinese medicine, I was intrigued to know more…

The centre is fairly small and intimate with a reception area and display cabinet full to the brim of Chinese herbal medicines and teas and to my delight I was offered a cup of white tea on arrival taken of course without milk or sugar- just as is.  I instantly felt as though I had entered a healthy environment and was at the very beginning of my Chinese holistic health journey.

Bing the owner and practitioner specialising in acupuncture, asked me to complete an in-depth form about my health and then we began my consultation.  For years I have suffered with digestive/stomach issues being passed off by Western doctors as IBS – which can cover all manner of things and cannot be cured- simply managed.  Made worse by stress, certain foods, alcohol or general unhealthy living I have had to learn to manage it as best I can and now know the signs of a pending flair up.   Having made my way through all kinds of prescribed medicine and blood tests over the years, the best results have always come from natural, alternative therapies and so I was completely open to hearing what Bing had to suggest. 

Bing’s diagnostic techniques are both interesting and impressive, he will be able to pin point where your issues are on your body and get to the root of the causes just by going through a series of questions, feeling your pulse ( to which he will close his eyes and concentrate), look at your face /skin and relate this to the five elements of Chinese astrology- metal, wood, water, fire and earth.  

The treatment room is also small and cosy but warm with soft mood lighting.  I was asked to lay on the couch, relax, close my eyes and take a few deep breaths.  Bing spent some time looking at my posture and the alignment of my body, shaking my feet to see where they fell and walking up and down from my head to my toes correctly diagnosing that I have long standing pelvic issues (I was born with ‘clicky hips’ and had to wear a splint for the first two years of my life), also noticing that I tend to stand on one leg more than the other, which has subtly made my posture lop sided- something that my osteopath already stated a few months before!

My acupuncture session began and lasted 45 minutes.   For those not experienced in this popular Chinese treatment, acupuncture aims to promote all aspects of health and well-being; physical, mental and emotional.  Good health is a positive state rather than merely the absence of illness or pain.  In the view of traditional Chinese philosophy, this positive state of health depends on the smooth flow and balance of the ‘chi’ – our body’s motivating energy – as it moves through a series of channels under our skin.  The flow of chi can become blocked or put out of balance by physical or emotional factors such as infection, trauma, poor nutrition, anger, grief or stress, resulting in illness.

Very fine acupuncture needles are inserted at points along the channels of energy appropriate to the condition being treated.  Thus the body’s own healing system is stimulated and the correct balance restored.  The aim is to treat the cause of the condition as well as your symptoms, often resulting in (or leading to) a more permanent solution to your health problems.

I received the fine needles mostly on the right side of my body, in my fore-arms, legs, feet and my third eye (forehead between my eyes).  You can feel them going in slightly and some areas are more sensitive than others, but once in you very quickly forget they are there and do not cause any discomfort if you lay still and relax.

Bing then left the room and set the mood lighting to my colour of choice – this is forced downtime if anything for the busy, so an excuse to lay still and not be able to go anywhere for 45 minutes of your life which isn’t a bad thing!

I was told that this treatment can bring out all kinds of emotions if causing a blockage in your mind/body and he was correct, as I did feel extremely emotional at one point- it came from nowhere and I couldn’t avoid the tears.  Having asked Bing if that was normal following the treatment he stated that yes he sees it a lot- some people literally release everything in that room and feel so much better afterwards  – like a weight had been lifted.  This may not happen in just your first session- it may take a few goes, but will be different for everyone.

Interestingly Bing also mentioned that as there is a lot of emotion and energy released in his treatment room, he has installed an large extractor fan to suck out all of that energy to cleanse the room ready for his next patient!

I have since booked a series of sessions at Acu Spirit which include 5 sessions of acupuncture with 2 free and this includes a consultation and a lifestyle plan for £190.00

I’d highly recommend trying it for yourself and at least booking in for a consultation whatever your reason – Bing is extremely knowledgeable in a lot of areas and also offers various types of massages, cupping and other treatments within the centre.

Fiona Duncan-Steer

The Hockley Arts Club, Nottingham

The Hockley Arts Club, Nottingham

My recent visit to The Hockley Arts Club in Nottingham took place at lunchtime on a Friday- the perfect way to spend a few hours winding down at the end of a busy working week… Hidden away behind the busy streets of Nottingham’s Hockley area […]

The Lost City Adventure Golf

The Lost City Adventure Golf

My recent visit to this Nottingham based family attraction was nothing short of fun, fun fun! I took my mum along for what was an afternoon was tasty food, impressive cocktails and crazy golf located in the basement of the popular Cornerhouse complex in Nottingham […]

A ‘Fab’ experience with Fab Clinic

A ‘Fab’ experience with Fab Clinic

Fab Clinics, located in Loughborough exists with the aim of giving both men and women the option of achieving their skin and body goals, using the latest in non-evasive technology.

I was recently invited along to the clinic to sample a treatment based personally on my skins needs and so off I went to Loughborough!

Upon arrival I was greeted by the lovely Julia on reception who offered me a nice healthy green tea- great start.  The clinic is quite beautiful with charming chandeliers and plush fabrics- very stylish and welcoming from the moment you enter.

Lucy came to introduce herself as my therapist and took me into the consultation/treatment room where I completed a standard form, requesting health information as well as current skin care regimes.  Lucy was extremely knowledgeable; passionately explaining everything in detail including the science behind the treatments.   I learnt a lot in my initial consultation including interestingly that the SPF included in face moisturisers is not sufficient and should be worn separately over the top of your moisturiser to ensure full protection from the suns damage.  Lucy also informed me that abrasive exfoliants for the face actually do more harm than good to the skin, creating tiny tears on the surface which then age you quicker, therefore an exfoliator without granules is much better- who knew!

I was then taken for my skin analysis- whereby I was asked to pop my face into a machine just about big enough for my head, rest my chin, close my eyes and wait for it to take its ‘photo’. 

It took but a few seconds and we were done as quick as that and no pain- bonus!  Lucy then asked me to head back into the treatment room while she worked on the analysis and printed off the results.

The results appear as a graph chart, showing each area of potential damage or problem as a percentage, focusing on seven main areas; spot, pore, roughness, wrinkle, UV acne, UV spot and UV moisture.  Being blessed with pretty good skin through good genes, I had high hopes for my results however was soon bought back down to earth when I saw how in-depth the test really went- turns out my highest percentages fell within the ‘roughness’ and ‘large pore’ areas (Pores I expected- roughness I did not!)  This just goes to show that what is visible to the naked eye is not all what it seems, as the machine does not beat around the bush- it just says it how it is. 

My UV /sun damage section also needed work to ensure it doesn’t increase -hence the SPF chat, so this is something I will be taking into consideration from now on.

Lucy then advised that as I had lovely skin, she didn’t think it necessary for me to have an abrasive treatment, so something like Diamond Dermabrasion would be best suited to my skin on that day.  I was more than happy with this and so de-robed (there is a nice cupboard in the treatment room for all of your personal belongings/clothes) and relaxed on the couch awaiting my pamper.  Lucy explained every step of the treatment to me beforehand so that I knew what to expect and asked if I’d prefer a hand or a foot massage whilst the mask was on- how lovely.

The treatment Diamond Dermabrasion is a mechanical peel using a diamond treatment head, which is designed to remove dead skin cells, reduce acne scarring, minimise stretch marks and scars, reduce enlarged pores, fine lines and character lines and is often used for:

The face, neck and decollete, postnatal stretch marks and superficial scars from past injuries.

It was a pleasure to receive this treatment from start to finish, beautiful products were used throughout and applied to my skin to cleanse, exfoliate and moisturise.  When the mask was applied and left for ten minutes, I received a delightful foot massage, which literally sent me off to a peaceful slumber and whilst other beautiful products were left on my face, I received a lovely neck and shoulder massage.  The dermabrasion treatment itself was very gentle and feels a little like sandpaper being rubbed gently across small areas of the face, only you can think of it less as sand paper and more as crushed diamonds!

A gentle suction device was then applied across my skin- in particular across my ‘large pore’ areas with the intention of reducing black and white heads- I can’t tell you the satisfaction you feel when you know those crafty little blighters are being sucked from your skin at record speed.

This particular treatment can be used in conjunction with ultrasonic treatments, IPL skin rejuvenation, dermaroller and radiofrequency to achieve outstanding results.

The products Fab Clinic use are by a company called Alumier who focus on the science behind great skin and as a client of the clinic you can have the option of becoming a customer of the products too, as they will set up an account for you so that products can easily be ordered online and delivered straight to your door.  Product purchases can also be based on the recommendation of your therapist following your treatment. 

I left the clinic with a goody bag, a glow and a smile 😊

Fab Clinic offer many other treatments – for the full list see their website- www.fabclinics.com

Fiona Duncan-Steer

Ayurveda Massage With Alana

Ayurveda Massage With Alana

Alana Sheils is a specialist in the art of Ayurvedic massage and clearly radiates her passion for this 6000-year-old well-being healing system. A trained aromatherapist, Alana has moved into the world of Ayurveda and says, “I prefer to focus mainly on Ayurvedic massage now, as […]