My Journey with NAT - Stuart Hinds
Stuart Hinds - Using NAT techniques since 2008
I have been using NAT techniques since 2008 and have had consistent highly effective results
To begin I should explain that I am a treatment orientated soft tissue therapist, meaning that 99 percent of work in my clinic is directed at assessment and treatment of varying musculoskeletal dysfunction via soft tissue therapy.
I pride myself on knowing my scope of practice so I often refer my clients/athletes to physiotherapists, osteopaths, chiropractors and sports doctors etc.
So over the 25 years of doing so I’ve been exposed to a range techniques and concepts, I can tell you that in that time I have become quite skeptical when it comes to the next big thing (revolutionary techniques). I’m driven by results on and off the table always.
My background comes from the sports medicine framework in treating musculoskeletal dysfunction, so when working in this arena I align myself with therapy that provides positive outcomes consistently.
I have been lucky enough to pick up gems (tricks of the trade so to speak) from other practitioners/ educators and the rest from my own trial and error.
The experience I’m sharing with you in this article is unique as it was a client that exposed me to a new direction of treatment.
I had a client (45 year old female) come to me for assessment and treatment for an ongoing shoulder condition she had been suffering with for 2 months, which had started insidiously without any mechanism of injury or trauma.
She had several treatments with varying practitioners with little to no change and mostly aggravation of symptoms. She had been referred to me via another existing client.
This is not uncommon in that I have many people come to see me for advice on their pain and dysfunction, I offer direction and advice based on my experience and knowledge, sometimes I can help them, other times I refer them off to other practitioners who would be best suited to help them.
I soon become aware after physically assessing her signs/symptoms and Rom testing that this women was suffering with your classic frozen shoulder (adhesive capsultis), Phase 2. Classic night pain, global restriction in all AROM of the GH joint, PROM also confirmed with restriction.
At that stage of my career, my understanding and treatment protocols for treating Frozen Shoulder was limited and I must admit I dreaded the Frozen Shoulder (FS) walking through the clinic doors, due to the frustrating inability to treat the condition with any therapeutic benefit, in fact in some cases I would simply aggravate it.
My options were undertaking the 3 treatment rule, change governed by reduction in frequency/duration/intensity in pain and an increase in ROM, if no change referral to Doctor for possible Hydrodilation
I had explained to her all about the condition and my reservations in providing significant change to her condition.
After the first treatment she returned to me excited and enthusiastic with some information about a hands on technique specifically designed to treat the FS condition THAT SHE HAD FOUND FROM SEARCHING ON THE INTERNET, this was my introduction to the Niel-Asher Technique for FS.
Taking my First NAT Course
I spent the next week conversing with the people from Niel-Asher, and enrolled myself in the technique learning and reading as much as I could in any spare moment. At that time I was still a skeptic as to its benefits, but that's just me. I have to live and breathe it and have my own epiphany! I thought at best it could provide me with a better option hands on wise than I had currently been using.
Putting it to the Test
I applied the technique in a text-book fashion set out in the NAT guidelines, I had assessed her as a lateral FS condition according to the NAT guidelines.
I treated the specific TP's over a series of consultations and low and behold she began to improve.
The first change was the dramatic change in the ongoing pain levels (especially night pain). She came in after 4 sessions and said that the night pain had completely subsided, which she was as euphoric about as I was.
Next came increases in the AROM, and the following treatments saw continued improvements, not unlike it was defrosting, I could not believe it, each treatment better than the next, I must admit we were both were thrilled with the outcomes.
The NAT technique provided me with my first epiphany which is what I needed to be convinced it could provide a significant treatment protocol for FS.
Great for my Business
I have been using the technique since 2008 and apart from 2 people I can say I have had consistent highly effective changes to the FS client/condition, I now welcome the FS client. What I didn't realize was the increase business this would bring.
Word of mouth spread and I became inundated with FS clients. In most cases I would be treating the FS clients for at least 10 treatments per condition and could be treating up to 10 FS clients a week or more.
My journey with NAT does not end here. NAT and it's fresh approach to trigger point thinking inspired me to delve deeper into trigger points than ever before.
In recent years I begun to teach NAT trigger point techniques in therapists across Australia, and in 2017 I will be working as one of the lead teachers at the NAT workshop in Sao Paulo, Brazil.
Stuart became an NAT Teacher in 2013
Stuart Hinds is one of Australia’s leading soft tissue therapists, with over 25 years of experience as practitioner, working with elite sports athletes, supporting Olympic teams, educating and mentoring others as well as running a highly successful clinic in Geelong.
Recognised for his expertise in working with Elite Athletes, Stuart has played a key role in soft tissue support with the Australian Olympics Team since 2000 at four separate Olympics (2012 London Olympics, the 2008 Beijing Olympics, the 2004 Athens Olympics and the 2000 Sydney Olympics).
Stuart has also worked with athletes at his Geelong Clinic including elite road cyclists. He has also worked with the National Premiership winning Geelong Football Club (Australian Rules Football League).
Recognised for his expertise he regularly lectures on remedial soft tissue techniques at Victoria University (Melbourne Australia), where he received a Diploma in Health (Remedial Massage).
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This trigger point therapy blog is intended to be used for information purposes only and is not intended to be used for medical diagnosis or treatment or to substitute for a medical diagnosis and/or treatment rendered or prescribed by a physician or competent healthcare professional. This information is designed as educational material, but should not be taken as a recommendation for treatment of any particular person or patient. Always consult your physician if you think you need treatment or if you feel unwell.
Bryan James said:
I started using NAT for treating frozen shoulders about 5 years ago. The technique and the approach to trigger points as neural pathways makes a lot of sense and results are consistently good.