About Your Therapist
Mike originally discovered Sports Therapy as a career after suffering himself with an ongoing back problem for about eight years. This was compounded by taking his back for granted before and after the original accident that caused it.
The problem was usually given a couple of days rest but was always there as a low level ache. At least once a year it would “go” again, leaving him unable to work, sit, stand or sleep for a week or two.
Years later, after various hospital specialists and GPs told him to live with it because there was nothing that could be done, the problem recurred as he walked into the gym that he trained at. He was advised to see a guy while he was there – who confidently told him that there was no reason why he shouldn’t be pain free with the right treatment; regular DIY help and a healthy dose of respect for his body’s limits!
He had been aware of sports massage prior to this, after seeing riders on the Tour de France having their legs rubbed down at the end of each day’s racing, but he didn’t think for one second that he could have the same type of treatment or that massage could fix injuries or long term problems.
After a few sessions, he began reading up about the various muscles his Sports Therapist was working on and grew more and more hooked on learning about anatomy. After asking his therapist a few questions, he gave Mike the contact details for the guy who had trained him and said ring this man, you’ll love it. And the rest, as they say, is history.
Now, years later, Mike can honestly say that he’s have never enjoyed working as much as he does now and has never looked back.
As a school boy, Mike enjoyed taking part in most sports, particularly running, winning the 800m in a time he has since managed to forget. This was his first of a few sweet tastes of victory, but he took it all the same!
By the age of around 17, he had been bitten by the cycling bug and his naturally competitive side quickly led him to joining a club (Northern Velo) to enable him to race.
He found that he enjoyed time trialling (that’s blasting up and down dual carriageways racing a stopwatch) more than anything so he tended to favour them.
His favourite distances were 10 and 25 miles, recording personal bests of 21 minutes and 56 minutes respectfully. He had numerous top five finishes and one or two top three placings.
Meanwhile in mass start Road Racing, he managed to win one event and take three spot prizes in the process (that was a good day) but apart from that only ever placed in the top 10 on a couple of other occasions.
By the time he reached 22/23 years of age, he had all but finished racing bikes and spent the next couple of years doing little in the way of regular structured exercise. It was in 1999 that he took up running (for a short while) to get himself back into some sort of shape. This, again, led straight to races to please his competitive streak.
He messed around with some 10k road races (his best being nineth in 34:40 on what now appears to have been on a course only about 9.5k in length!) and took on what seemed to be at the time, the huge challenge of running a half marathon. This had terrified him for a while, as the thought of putting one foot in front of the other for 13 miles seemed impossible. With a little more training, he turned up on the start line for the Leeds Half with the attitude of “see what happens”.
He reckons that he must have got on the nerves of so many fellow runners during that race, constantly asking “what time will you do at this pace” or “do you mind if I run with you, you look like you know what you’re doing”. Suffice to say there was good reason for their very abrupt and often descriptive replies!! Anyway, with or without their help, he finished with a respectable time of 1:28, although he admits that he suffered for the next couple of days.
Sadly due to work commitments, the running fizzled out very shortly after that and he only took it up again in 2006. He is noticing though that those extra years don’t help make things easier!
Mike now runs for Acorn York and says seem to be forever chasing that level of fitness he used to have. He also enjoys getting out on the bike again, although the speed and distances might be a tad less than in the past!