Category: Massage


Ania’s birth story about Elina’s Massage, Homeopathy and Doula services

Elina is an experienced and qualified Massage Therapist, Homeopath and Doula. With over 10 years of supporting women through pregnancies, it is always admirable when her patients share their stories.
Ania has a beautiful birth and pregnancy story and we hope you enjoy it.

Ania’s birth story

I have been under care of Elina since 3 months pregnant. I wanted to find homeopathic doula and I was very lucky to get in touch with Elina. My husband Allan and I decided since I didn’t have my mother present, I will need some support person to attend the birth, to make sure that my birth is natural and best possible outcome for me and the baby.

During consultations with Elina I was informed on what kind of food to eat during pregnancy, what exercise to do, what supplement to take. Elina is also amazing massage therapist, after each session with her I felt like new woman. From 36 weeks onwards I was taking Homeopathic remedy called Amazonite which gentle open me up and prepare me for birthing experience.

I was over my due date 40+1 when I had strong urge to go to for walk to particular place between Maroubra and Coogee I wanted to go there few days before but finally went there on Tuesday reaching the beach overlooking the ocean, I saw pod of dolphins there were about 20 dolphins playing on the waves. I knew this was a positive sign for me – I am crazy about dolphins and this is why I moved to Australia.
I cried and thanked and I knew that the baby will arrive tonight or tomorrow.

From this magic place I was standing I suddenly felt the urge to have a bout diarrhoea and I was 1 km away from the toilets. I never walk/ run so fast during pregnancy and made it!

That Night I was ok a bit of pains here and there. I wake up at 6am my waters started to trickle. I woke up Allan who supported me during the pains. I called hospital and Elina and we ate breakfast.

Elina arrived around 8am and pains were more intense by then we went to hospital to for a check-up. All was well and they send us home. At home pains become more intense Elina gave me massage to help my uterus and bladder. We managed to go for lunch to cafe near ocean and then come back as the pain got really intense I was not comfortable lying down anymore. My waters broke completely during this time Elina was giving me homeopathic remedies to manage pains and make contraction productive. When contractions were 3 minutes apart we called the hospital and were told to come to hospital.

I was examined and nurse told me that I am 9 cm dilated. From my studies I thought I have heaps of time that I will be probably pushing for about two hours.
So I insisted my birth pool will be filled and I couldn’t understand why midwife was hesitant. So I waited and actually held my baby in by will power until the pool was full. I was asked to sit in the pool by the midwife, a position which I didn’t like sitting.

Make an appointment with Elina to discuss your birth plan and talk about how Elina can support your journey through pregnancy to motherhood. Whether it is all her services, a remedial massage or homeopathic consult at DHCTC, Elina is happy to help.



Why you stress, and what are you doing about it?

We live in a world today where technology seems to be ruling our lives. We are finding ways to entertain ourselves in every way possible, which in turn is leaving no room for ‘me time’. Now I don’t mean the ‘me time’ where you can sit in front of the television, or scroll through Facebook and the likes, or occupy your time with something else. I mean the ‘me time’ where you can actually take a deep breath, enjoy a time out away from the world (not the earth) to listen to your thoughts, or just enjoy what our beautiful earth has to offer.
How many times have you heard the phrase – ‘wow, time is just flying by’, or ‘can you believe we are already in so and so month?’ Well, time is actually flying by. We are just too occupied to realise it. On top of our everyday activities, like work and play, we are losing time for the ‘rest’ part of that phrase. Yes we are probably sleeping, but are we sleeping the best we could be? Yes we are resting, but are we really taking the time to really rest?
Much of the latest research is indicating that stress related days off from work are on the rise, depression is on the rise, there is more communication breakdowns between family, friends etc and what are we really doing about it?
There are some stresses which we might not be able to avoid like going to work, meeting deadlines, looking after family, paying bills, etc, but it is important to look at reducing those added stresses. By taking small steps which lead to major changes, you can really attempt to break that cycle and help reduce that added stress in your life.
Here is what we suggest:
• Start by taking 10 minutes out of your day to sit there and breathe. Pick a nice place to sit, don’t look at your phone, do it on your own, and absorb what is around you and what is inside of you. This is a small commitment that allows for a time out in your day.
• Include exercise in your life. Try to exercise twice a week. It doesn’t need to be vigorous.
• Drink plenty of water through the day and include more vegetables in your diet. As we say here at DHCTC – eat well-ish.
• Stop yourself from scrolling through social media at least a couple of times through the day to give you some time to process your thoughts. Stop walking with your eyes glued to the phone in your hand, it’s quite dangerous.
• Allow yourself time for a massage at least once a month. Even if it’s just a half hour massage, it could help so much.
• Respond to your body better. If you are in pain, do something about it. If you feel anxious, do something out it. If you are sick, do something about it. Stop putting your health second, or third, or forth. PUT IT FIRST.
These are some easy things that you can do. Are you ready to do it though?
If you want more time in your life you will do it.

If you want to live a better life you will do it.

If you really want to make the most out of your life and not watch it go by you will do it.

Don’t just sit there and think about it. Be a doer and DO IT!

Meet the Staff, Anna Rollo – Sports/Remedial Massage

Introduction to Anna, Sports/Remedial Massage, Relief, Recovery, Preparation and Rehabilitation

Anna Rollo, our Remedial and Sports Massage Therapist over the last few years, is classed as one of the most knowledgable and respected massage therapists in Sydney. With a Diploma in Remedial Massage Therapy, Cert IV in Fitness Training and also a Certificate in Kinesio Training, Anna’s qualifications alone exemplify her ability to deal with active individuals at all levels. Anna has an array of experience dealing with active individuals and is famous for her sports massage, where she takes the time to ensure all clients are provided with great comfort and results. Some sports Anna has dealt with include ice skating, soccer, hockey, basketball, golf and rugby. These are just to name a few.

All sports have a demanding physical element and the unfortunate reality is that over time, they take their toll on the body. Without the right preparation and recovery and measures, individuals are prone to injury. In order to continue enjoying the benefits of sport, it is vital that the pressures of the sport are managed. It is safe to say that all professional sporting teams have a sports massage therapist and a fitness trainer on the team, to educate players and deal with any issues as they arise. Having Anna on your team is crucial in ensuring that you are able to continue participating in the activities which you enjoy most.


What Anna has to say:

Sports Massage is a key ingredient to physical and mental preparation and recovery with all sports. My philosophy is to find the source of acute problems and then to prescribe a massage and exercise plan for that specific issue. As everyone is different, I tailor my treatment plans specifically for each individual clients needs.

My interests in sports and sports massage go back to my days in Poland, where my mother was a physiotherapist and I had a lot of involvement in the whole sporting scene. My studies and therapeutic directions have been geared to specialist sports conditioning, as this is what I am passionate about.  Although I enjoy all types of remedial massage, sports massage is the most exciting for me. It is where I can use all my ability and knowledge in a therapeutic application, which benefits my clients, and that is important to me.


What patients have to say:

Charlie: ‘I have been playing golf for a number of years and I noticed a constant pain developing in my back and arms. Initially, I visited Anna for treatment with muscle strain. In the course of a few treatments, I was not only able to address the strain, but also rectify other issues I had. In addition, I learnt some great exercises which I do before and after a game, greatly assisting in my golf swing and recovery time.

Joe: ‘I play Rugby, an especially physically demanding sport, for a team in the Inner West. I have been seeing Anna regularly for over 2 years now and I get exited in the days leading up to my massage with Anna.  I just want to say thank you for everything, Anna!’

Voula: ‘I’m a netballer and a dancer so my fitness regime is pretty demanding. I don’t know if I would still have been able to keep to this schedule if it wasn’t for Anna’s help.’

Massage for Seniors: What the Research Says

Massage for Seniors: What the Research Says

As the number of seniors continues to grow, so does the number of articles on the potential benefits of massage therapy for this special population. And the number of seniors is still growing as the baby boomer generation begin turning 65.

The National Center for Health Statistics, part of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, reports that the proportion of the U.S. population aged 65 years and older is projected to increase from its current level of 12.9 percent to 19.6 percent by 2030. The number of people over age 65 is expected to double from 35 million to 71 million, and the number of people over age 80 is expected to grow from 9.3 million in 2000 to 19.5 million. As the baby boomers age, many of those who already use massage will continue to do so, while others may seek it out for the first time. What evidence is there that massage therapy can help with the common side effects of aging?

Research on Benefits of Massage

Several studies have investigated whether massage therapy can relieve some of the symptoms of two common conditions associated with aging: osteoarthritis and Alzheimer’s disease.

Osteoarthritis: Massage therapy is a commonly used complementary therapy by older adults with osteoarthritis (OA). A 2001 survey conducted in the state of Washington found that 57 percent of the 122 respondents with diagnosed OA reported having used massage therapy within the last five months, more than chiropractic (21 percent) or over-the-counter medications and dietary supplements (17 percent). Seniors with more functional disability were more likely to use any complementary therapy compared to those with less severe symptoms. The implications are that clients seeking massage may be more affected by OA, and that how well they can perform activities of daily living could be a useful outcome measure for evaluating treatment effectiveness.

A more recent randomized controlled trial conducted by Perlman et al. compared eight weeks of massage therapy to a wait-list control for 68 adults between the ages of 55 and 75 with radiographically confirmed OA of the knee. Participants received an hour-long massage twice a week for the first four weeks of the study intervention, then once a week for the remaining four weeks. Therapists used a standard protocol incorporating effleurage, petrissage and tapotement, although the sequence of strokes was left to the judgment of the therapists.

The primary outcome measures were changes in the Western Ontario and McMaster Universities Osteoarthritis Index(WOMAC) pain and functional scores, and the visual analog scale (VAS) for pain assessment. The WOMAC is a 24-item self-report questionnaire that assesses pain, stiffness and physical functional disability in patients with knee and hip OA using a 0 to 100 scale. A negative change in WOMAC scores from baseline indicates improvement of symptoms and limitation, where a positive change indicates deterioration of symptoms and limitation. There was no difference in scores for measures at baseline between the treatment and control group.

In the treatment group, scores for pain improved by 23 points compared to baseline, stiffness improved by 21 points and physical function disability by 20.5 points. No significant differences in any of the outcome measures were observed in the control group. These improvements largely remained at a 16-week follow-up. Because some participants dropped out of the study before completion, an intent to treat analysis was used, which takes this attrition into account.

The authors believe that this more conservative approach to the data analysis may underestimate the magnitude of the treatment effect size. To date, this is the only prospective trial evaluating massage for OA. While the results are positive and support the use of massage for OA, more research of the same caliber is needed to draw firm conclusions.

Alzheimer’s Disease: There is a larger body of research, particularly in the nursing literature, on massage therapy and Alzheimer’s disease. An early 1995 study tested brief hand massage and therapeutic touch as interventions to reduce agitation behavior in patients with dementia. While massage was more effective than therapeutic touch in producing a relaxation response, neither intervention reduced agitation behaviors. A subsequent study using slow-stroke back massage found that physical expressions of agitation such as pacing, wandering and resisting were decreased when slow-stroke massage was applied, while verbal displays of agitation, the most frequently cited form of agitation in community-dwelling individuals with Alzheimer’s disease, were not reduced.

More recently, Hicks-Moore and Robinson used a repeated measures design to test the effectiveness of favorite music (FM) and hand massage (HM) in reducing agitated behaviors with 41 nursing home residents with mild to moderate dementia. Agitated residents were randomly assigned to either the treatment or control groups. Residents in the treatment group received each of three treatments, HM, FM, and both HMFM, with each treatment lasting 10 minutes.

Residents in the control group received no treatment. Agitation was measured using the Cohen- Mansfield Agitation Inventory at three different intervals. The results suggested that FM and HM individually and combined were effective in significantly decreasing agitation immediately following the intervention, as well as one hour post intervention.

In a systematic review of nursing literature on massage for relaxation in older adults, Harris and Richards describe the cumulative results of six experimental studies and one qualitative study that investigated the effects of hand massage on relaxation among older people with dementia. The studies measured dependent variables for verbal agitation, non-aggressive agitated behaviors, comfort and anxious behaviors.

All experimental studies of hand massage lasting from three to 10 minutes showed statistically significant improvements on dependent variables. The single qualitative study by Kilstoff and Chenoweth8 concluded that hand massage was a beneficial intervention for dementia. Overall, the studies on hand massage reported a consistent reduction in verbal aggression and nonaggressive behaviors in persons with dementia.

Some limitations should be noted. Many of the quantitative studies were limited by small sample sizes and lack of an adequate comparison group. Environmental factors such as room temperature and frequency of interruption in elder care settings are difficult to control and likely pose a source of bias. Taking these factors into consideration, the balance of the evidence is positive. As is common in much of the research on massage therapy, more high-quality studies are needed to confirm this conclusion.


Massage has a great deal to offer in ameliorating the aches and pains associated with aging. Along with exercise and NSAIDs, massage can reduce symptoms of common OA. For people living with Alzheimer’s disease, massage is a low-risk and relatively low-cost intervention that can be easily taught to caregivers. Particularly with the concern over the long-term side effects associated with many of the medications used to manage behavior in patients with Alzheimer’s disease, massage is a promising intervention that may reduce caregiver stress as well.


1. US Department of Health and Human Services (2010). Summary Health Statistics for the U. S. Population: National Health Interview Survey, 2009. Series 10: Data From the National Health Interview Survey No. 248. Hyattsville, Maryland: National Center for Health Statistics.
2. Ramsey SD, Spencer AC, Topolski TD, Belza B, Patrick DL. Use of alternative therapies by older adults with osteoarthritis. Arthritis Rheum. 2001 Jun;45(3):222-7.
3. Perlman AI, Sabina A, Williams AL, Njike VY, Katz DL. Massage therapy for osteoarthritis of the knee: a randomized controlled trial. Arch Intern Med. 2006 Dec 11-25;166(22):2533-8.
4. Snyder M, Egan EC, Burns KR. Interventions for decreasing agitation behaviors in persons with dementia. J Gerontol Nurs. 1995 Jul;21(7):34-40.
5. Rowe M, Alfred D. The effectiveness of slow-stroke massage in diffusing agitated behaviors in individuals with Alzheimer’s disease. J Gerontol Nurs. 1999 Jun;25(6):22-34.
6. Hicks-Moore S, Robinson B. Favorite music and hand massage. Dementia 2008;7, 95–108.
7. Harris M, Richards K. The physiological and psychological effects of slow stroke back massage and hand massage on relaxation in older people. J Clin Nurs 2010;19(7):917-926.
8. Kilstoff K, Chenoweth L. New approaches to health and well-being for dementia day-care clients, family carers and day-care staff. InternationalJournal of Nursing Practice 1998;4:70–83

Source: MTJ, Spring 2011