A lot of you may have watched the commonwealth games this year and noticed a familiar location that the mountain bikers raced on. Cannock Chase has provided us with the opportunity to use this track whether to practice or cycle on for the experience. Whether you are interested in mountain biking over Cannock Chase, or road cycling and you want to do so while minimising your chances of injury, then here is some free advice given to you from our sports therapists at Nicky Snazell’s Wellness and Physiotherapy Clinic.

First, there are many ways to decrease your chance of injury and footwear is one factor you should consider.

Compared to running shoes, cycling shoes are designed with stiffer soles to help optimize your energy transfer. You should keep your foot rigid, so there’s no power lost through your feet and all the power from your legs goes directly into the pedal stroke. Additional support from clipping your shoes into your road bike will also help you to feel more secure when you are pedalling and can help prevent you from losing balance. It can also make you more aerodynamic as it has been noted that it is easier to get your torso lower toward your handlebars making you more streamlined increasing your speed.

That said, proper trainers are only part of the solution if you are struggling with any pain when cycling. Strengthening and conditioning the muscles in your legs and core region is essential for injury prevention. We can provide guidance, not only to stop and prevent pain occurring but to increase your cycling longevity and your performance.


What are the most common injury areas from Cycling?

The most common injury areas, more often due to overuse and poor technique are:

  • Knee
  • Lower back
  • Neck
  • Thigh
  • Ankle

Specific diagnoses for these areas are:

  • Anterior knee pain
  • Lumbar or neck myofascial pain, a chronic condition affecting the muscles
  • The iliotibial band running up the outside of the thigh
  • Achilles tendonitis

If you are a keen cyclist, the chances are you have suffered from an injury throughout your training. Understanding how and why this is caused and taking steps to strengthen your weakness could be a game-changer for your performance.


Strength and Conditioning

The problem for many of us is that daily life can involve a lot of sitting at a computer screen all day and this can lead to poor posture and the important muscles in our trunk stiffening up and weakening. These core muscles, along with those in the buttocks and thigh are important tant in stabilising you during exercise. If these muscles become weak you are more likely to injure yourself from falls or strains.


What is Strength and conditioning?

The use of dynamic and static bodyweight and resistance exercises to improve your performance and reduce the likelihood of injury occurring. It is also used during injury recovery.


Why should I strength and condition?

  • Injury prevention – helps to correct muscle imbalances and improve muscle activation, as well as increasing the efficiency of your running biomechanics which results in improved running performance.
  • To be faster/ stronger
  • To enjoy exercise more.

If this sounds like something you may need, book an appointment with one of our sports therapists to get the best possible guidance and treatment. As an athlete, you put so much effort into your training, it’s worth putting the effort into taking care of your body too. Prevention is just as important as recovery.


Call 01889 881488 Now

Erica, Jean and Charlotte will be happy to help

Great event management can help your health and here's how

At Nicky Snazell Clinic Stafford, we find ourselves treating events staff, exhibitors and conference managers for stress-related issues such as back pain, neck pain, and general niggles, most of which are the result of stress caused by their jobs.

If you are involved with running an event or exhibition, it can be a high-stress situation, one which despite your best efforts is controlled by others. - That is where well-executed event management can help.


So, what should you do?  

Firstly, you should carefully select your exhibition partner, someone like Exhibition Designer, custom exhibitions & live events specialists. They take your brief and run it, taking the hassle out of your event management. Event companies like this look after the managed delivery, reducing the stress involved with stand creation. This type of company also understands the best ways to provide breakout areas where event staff and visitors can sit and discuss business in comfortable surroundings.


event management women smiling

Secondly, follow Nicky's advice allow yourself to relax emotionally, draw on your spiritual self through the mind and body meditation- It will relieve your anxiousness and negative energy.  This kind of self-awareness will make a difference to your output at the event and your health and wellbeing.


Stress and negative energy are dangerous because they affect our bodies physically, upsetting digestion, which restricts nutrient absorption making us tired, lethargic and can cause mood swings - all this volatility is no good for our performance.


Headaches, neck stiffness, backache, lots of common issues can be stopped sooner with knowledge and advice. We try to provide this at Nicky Snazell's Pain Relief Clinic because it modifies the causal behaviours that keep a niggle from going away.  The mindset of event staff is paramount to stopping this impending stress developing into ongoing issues.



Think about what you are doing, give yourself time, work with a right exhibition company, remember your mental wellbeing and make time to relax.  Stay well hydrated and smile.


We hope that you enjoyed this article and we look forward to hearing how it helped you.  Thank you and bye for now.







The 4 keys to health

The 4 keys to health is all about investing in the healthiest happiest future you could wish for with sound scientific knowledge and big spoonfuls of commonsense and experience.Tonights blog is for nutrition week. The traffic lights approach to healthfor the 4 keys to health gives one point for every yes answer.
0 – 3: RED.
3 – 6: AMBER.
6 – 9: GREEN.
Scores: Now count up your scores – are you red, amber, or green for this key?
Initial score:
Once you’ve read the chapter and implemented any changes, take the
questionnaire again to see how much you’ve improved.This questionnaire is in 4 parts.
Diet and Blood Sugar Levels
• Is your weight good for your age and height?
• Do you have lots of energy and do you like to exercise?
• Are you free from joint pain?
• Do you rarely feel like dozing in the day and feel alert after eating?
• Do you hardly ever get stomach ache or bloating?
• Do you concentrate easily with a clear memory and few
• Do you hardly ever need sweet food or caffeine fixes?
• Do you jump out of bed, raring to go?
• Do you rarely feel dizzy / irritable / have mood swings in
gaps between meals?
• Do you rarely have thirst / dry mouth?
• Do you rarely get headaches?
• Is your urine a mild (not dark) yellow colour?
• Are your skin and lips moist, not dry?
• Do you have regular bowel movements most days?
• Do you have less than two glasses of alcohol a day?
• Do you have five helpings of fresh fruit and vegetables a day?
• Do you have several glasses of fruit water / juice / herbal
teas a day, even if resting?
• Do you avoid having too many salty snacks?
Healthy Low Homocysteine Levels (repairing DNA
and building nerves / cartilage)
• Is your weight satisfactory and stable?
• Are you a clear thinker with a good memory and rare
• Do you eat healthily with green veggies, seeds, and nuts,
but aren’t vegan?
• You are not an alcoholic, smoker, or heavy coffee drinker?
• Do you have little joint pain?
• Do you have great stamina without weariness?
• Is your cardiovascular system and blood pressure normal?
• Do you sleep well?
• Are you rarely angry, irritable, or down?
Essential Fats
• Do you have healthy hair?
• Do you have flexible, pain-free joints?
• You are not taking painkillers?
• No arthritis, asthma, or eczema?
• No diagnosed cardiovascular problems?
• Do you spend more than thirty minutes a day outside in
• Do you eat healthily with oily fish, about four eggs a week,
seeds and nuts most days, and fewer than two alcoholic
drinks a day?
• Do you have a good memory, learning abilities, and
• You don’t get down, anxious or unnecessarily angry?
Anti-Ageing, Anti-rot, Antioxidants
• Are you a quick healer?
• Are you younger than middle aged (40)?
• Do you have healthy skin?
• No diagnosis of cancer or cardiovascular disease?
• Don’t bruise easily?
• Do you live in quiet, clear air, healthy countryside, not
near major roads?
• Do you eat healthily with five lots of fruit and veg a day,
raw seeds / nuts, and at least two oily fish a week?
• Do you take antioxidant supplements?
• Do you exercise and raise your heart rate five times a
week?If you got a red key read my blogs or get a copy of my book,through www.thepainkiller.co.uk,www.painreliefclinic.co.uk, or amazon.

Using food as medicine to stay out of pain

Using food as medicine to stay out of pain.The Wrong Food Feeds Pain
Most of us eat too much of the food that enhances pain, and too little of the
food that reduces pain. Soil nutrients are not what they used to be, as they
have more additives, more are being processed, and more have a longer
shelf life. Our cells depend on good food and water for creating healing, energy
and cleansing, but because of the poor food we eat (which has additives
and is heavily processed), we have persistent inflammation contributing
to musculoskeletal pain, arthritis, diabetes, heart attacks, strokes, cancer…
you name it. Refined grains, omega 6 fats, too much sugar, and too much
dairy – especially milk – all stress the system out, and pain due to too much
inflammation damages nerves beyond any injury, and also causes tissue
pain in the tendons, ligaments, and joints.
Our ancestors were hunters and gatherers who lived on a planet with a
relatively low population, where the soil was rich in nutrients with hardly any toxic chemicals. They ate good food medicine, fresh fish or meat, berries, roots (therefore, a lot of
healthy omega 3 oils), and fruit and vegetables high in antioxidants. They
had no processed foods, no wheat, no trans fats, no excess sugar or omega 6
and no processed dairy. Even if you eat some of these foods yourself, pulling
some fresh vegetables out of your garden – from well fertilised soil – is a
small start. For our ancestors,using good food as medicine helped to control chronic
inflammation, something which pervades the modern day Western lifestyle.
We are becoming increasingly obese, including our children. We are a
fat nation, and because of this, we find ourselves in a major health crisis.
This extra fat not only strains our joints, but these engorged fat cells fire
off inflammation. Organ fat is crawling with immune cells, prolonging
inflammation and damaging the surrounding tissue. Living longer means
that these days, a lot more of us are over 35, and around this age, our
natural pain blocking anti-inflammatories (proteolytic enzymes) dry up.
We are, essentially, rotting, as these are the guys that usually help to shut
the pain gate in the dorsal horn of the spinal cord. Our next generation
is not going to live longer than us, and this is the first time in history that
this has happened – it says a lot, doesn’t it? Due to needing more help in
order to control our body and not getting it, we make too much fibrin,
causing too much scar tissue in our tendons, skin, and joints. This then
causes arthritis, fibromyalgia, artery narrowing, and poor healing all round.
I now have ground breaking technology at my practice that puts the clock
back on joints, however, cells still need a healthy environment in which to
flourish in the first place.


Using food as medicine to stay out of pain.

We all overindulge in the winter especially with the run up to xmas and then eating left overs in January. In February we are all have colds and achy joints as our immune system is suffering from our rich diet, lack of raw fresh fruit and veggies and sunshine.

I mentioned in an earlier article about a highly publicised TV program, which monitored the health implications of food by getting a volunteer to live on nothing other than junk. He had to be taken off the diet because his health plummeted so rapidly.

So this February don’t waste money on fad diets, just do a little reading about healthy food and drink more water, and use natural pain killing foods with natural anti-inflammatories. Most of us eat too much food that enhances pain and too little of the food that reduces pain.

Our cells depend on nutrients and water for creating healing, energy and cleansing. Poor food has additives and is heavily processed leading to persistent inflammation contributing to musculoskeletal pain, arthritis, diabetis, heart attacks, strokes, and cancer …you name it.

Pain due to too much inflammation damages nerves beyond any injury, and also causes tissue pain in our tendons, ligaments and joints.

Our ancestors were hunters and gatherers in a relatively lowly populated planet. The soil was rich in nutrients with little toxic chemicals. They ate fresh meat, berries, and roots. Therefore healthy omega3 oils, fruit and vegetables high in antioxidants, no processed foods, no wheat, no trans fats, no excess sugar and omega6 and processed dairy.

This helped to control chronic inflammation that prevades modern day western lifestyle.

We are becoming increasingly obese. This extra fat not only strains our joints, these engorged fat cells fire off inflammation. Organ fat is crawling with immune cells, prolonging inflammation and damaging surrounding tissue.

Living longer means a lot more of us are over 35.Around this age our natural pain blockers no longer  shut the pain gate in the dorsal horn of the spinal cord.

Due to needing more help to control mounting inflammation in the body and not getting it….we make too much fibrin, causing too much scar tissue in tendons, skin, joints. We develop arthritis, fibromyalgia, and sclerosis which is artery narrowing and poor healing all round.

Man made drugs[ NSAIDs] are only relatively safe for short term use, as gut bleeds, nausea, vomiting, headaches, dizziness are all possible side effects.

Turn your kitchen into a pharmacy. Step inside mine.

My HERBS and SPICES Rack, favourite pain relieving and anti inflammatory spices and herbs.

Turmeric ,cayenne pepper and chilli , Ginger especially migraines and heartburn, Rosemary, nerve, muscle, and  chronic headaches. Sage, muscles and sore throat, and Parsley for arthritic pain .

I have a nice selection of herbal teas to hand, very warming at this time of year. Tea contains flavonoids such as pain killing quercitin, I find nettle tea helps with arthritic pain, peppermint great for digestive pain,and chamomile reduces the stress of pain.

If you like beer rather than tea, Hop  extract, nearly matched ibuprofen in painkilling effects.

Olives I adore, and they have anti inflammatory and painkilling properties closely related to ibuprofen.

For gynaelogical pain, gin and tonic or Chinese herbs, Vitex agnus-castus, black cohosh, dong quai and st johns wort .


If you like SMOOTHIES,I do, I make one for my breakfast with soya milk yoghurt and fruit, easy to digest as I run afterwards. Pineapples have bromelian aids digestive pains, Payaya has papain, and cherries anthocyanin painkillers. Enjoy bananas, I have one everyday, they make happy juice in the brain.

In summary my winning formula for pain relief would be some olives and fish oils, nuts, eggs, onion and garlic, a couple of herbs in tea or in food like the ones above, fresh raw fruit in a smoothie or green veg juice, and antioxidants, C and E, Q10 and lipoic acid, and you have your own pharmacy of potent pain killers for every problem.

If you are having an arthritic flare up, avoid cooking with vegetable oil, gluten(wheat, rye, barley), avoid cooking at high temps, avoid soda as sugar spikes linked to OA knee and trans fats and too many processed foods.

Ending on a cheerful note,a special lusty  cocktail to get the juices going on Valentines night. Mug of oatstraw, salty seaweed,earthy burdock root, sweet scented rose petals and dark chocolate.Rosemary, lavender and basil.

Potted Rosemary for love, worn by brides in middle ages , planted out afterwards and if sprigs grew  it showed a strong relationship. Sprigs planted with lovers name to see which grew stronger.Lavender sprigs as an aphrodisiac. Basil pots placed outside eligible ladies homes, basil means commitment and fertility, in Romania means the same as an engagement ring.

Need any tips FB/twitter/www.painreliefclinic.co.uk.

Addnotes interwoven in story

Curcumin, Found in turmeric, America tried to get a patent, and India refused.powerful anti inflamm.antiseptic and antibacterial.

Capsaicin found in cayenne and red peppers

Boswellic acid in indian frankincense, reduces pain and swelling and stiffness in joints.

Aswagandha, indian ayurvedic medicine for arthritis

Ginger anti inflamm, migraines,heartburn.

Rosemary, nerve and muscle tension, chronic headaches, cancer related skin disorders, like aspirin has salicin

Sage, clear mind, achey muscles and inflammation. White one stronger


MSM sulphur, glucosamine, pain relief, anti inflamm.

Flavonoids such as quercitin found in tea, antioxidant and anti inflamm


Bromelian, in pineapple, anti inflamm

Hop  extract,nearly matched ibuprofen in painkilling effects

Vitamins..antioxidants,are anti inflamm pain killers, c and E, glutathione or N acetyl cysteine, lipoic acid and coenzyme Q10.

If in constant pain increase these and add more fruit andgreen leafy  veg and fishoil(omega3) and nuts,especially walnuts and almondseggs, onions and garlic.

Olives anti inflammatory and painkiller, closely related to ibuprofen.

Virgin olive oil oleocanthal natural pain killer

Shiitake mushrooms look pretty and have both anti viral and anti cancer fightingproperties and help with arthritis.

Figs, papaya and kiwi have PROTEOLYTIC enzymes do what???

Alfalfa high in vit A



Devils claw?

ionized alkaline H2o.

In summary a winning formula,some olives and fishoils, a couple of herbs from above and antioxidant supplements and you have a potent pain killer for every problem.

If you are having an arthritic flare up, avoid cooking with vegetable oil, gluten(wheat,rye,barley), avoid cooking at high temps, avoid soda as sugar spikes linked to OA knee and trans fats and too many processed foods.