“My first consultation with Cathy Howard at the Howard Clinic was in March 2010. I had suffered constant lower back and hip pain for over a decade, with visits to several chiropractors and osteopaths during that time providing respite for less than 24 hours post each session. I was even under a consultant orthopedic surgeon at the local hospital assessing the merits of undergoing the fusion of adjacent vertebrae in my lower back to provide some relief.
From my first appointment with Cathy I felt totally at ease, as the passion she has for her vocation has to be experienced to be appreciated. Despite her initial alarm at just how inflexible I was and the degree to which I veered off centre when bending forward, Cathy assessed that she could help me by employing techniques pioneered by Sarah Key, for which Cathy is an advanced practitioner in the UK.
Working with Cathy is a partnership, my trust in her professionalism was there from the start, but hard work has to be put in on both sides. My carefully structured exercise plan became part of my daily routine, and most definitely still is. What really impressed me from Day 1 was that Cathy’s ethos was to teach me to repair the damage myself, through increasingly demanding exercises, rather than by selling a long programme of regular visits, having extracted my bank card details!
My initial assessment, along with teaching me the daily exercises, took 4 consultations over 6 months. Although over this time I did much background reading to increase my awareness of how the back works. Within a year my back pain was considerably reduced. In June 2012 I had to return to Cathy, purely through my own fault in becoming complacent in how I exercised. Two sessions of re-training later and I had recovered from my set back.
To bring my experience up to date, I have not visited Cathy for nearly a year as in that time I have not had one twinge from either my back or my hip.
Finding Cathy has honestly given me a new, pain free, lease of life. The fact that I averted undergoing a major operation, where the chances of relieving my pain were put at only 50/50, must be the best recommendation anyone can give.”
T. Walker Wokingham
“I recently visited Fiona as I saw from the Howard Clinic leaflet that Fiona specialised in women’s health problems. Due to an early onset of the menopause I began to suffer from stress and urge incontinence. I had hoped the problem would go away of its own accord but unfortunately it gradually got worse. When the problem first started I approached my doctor who referred me to an NHS specialist. Sadly the specialist just sent me away with a leaflet to read. I tried to do the exercises from the leaflet but saw no progress so consequently gave up. I felt very disillusioned by this and ignored my condition for the next few years until the problems started to really impact my everyday life. At this stage I decided I would tackle the problem head on and decided to seek Fiona’s help via physiotherapy. Fiona explained the anatomy of my problems and helped me understand what I needed to do. I was shown what exercises to perform and very importantly I was shown how to do them properly and how to make them part of my everyday life. “As well as my pelvic floor exercises, I was also given simple brain teaser exercises to help with my urge incontinence which had immediate impact. After 4 visits to Fiona I have seen an amazing transformation and I am now pleased to say that I can now even do “star jumps” again! This is something I had avoided for years! Fiona has a very gentle approach and if you choose to have an examination then this is carried our very discreetly respecting your privacy. Personally I felt it was very important to do this as Fiona was able to tell you if you were doing your pelvic floor exercises correctly. There is certainly a correct way to do the exercises and without professional help most of us do them incorrectly which is a waste of time and effort. “I am very pleased that I took the initial steps to make an appointment with Fiona and I would recommend anyone with a similar problem to do the same. I am delighted with my progress which is progress I would never have made without Fiona’s help, guidance and support. The problems with my incontinence were starting to negatively impact my daily life and I did worry that things were only going to get worse. I am now very pleased to say that my pelvic floor is back to normal and life is now so much easier.
Thank you Fiona for helping me make this transition and for giving me a much better quality of life.”
SD August 2013
Back Awareness Sessions – Recommendation. (To view full recommendation [pdf] click here)
Kim Stevens, Head HR, Environment, Culture and Communities,
Bracknell Forest Council
“Cathy and her team at the Howard Clinic are playing a vital part in my recovery and rehabilitation from a serious spinal cord injury. Their high level skills and experience in neuro physiotherapy are bringing continued improvements even four years after my accident. I find their easy movement between leading edge Western neuro physiotherapy and traditional Chinese medicine hugely beneficial. Weekly land based treatment and hydrotherapy sessions combined with acupuncture and Tui Na when appropriate have led to great improvements in my complex condition. This is a highly professional yet very caring team”.
“I have been treated by Cathy Howard for 6 months. I have had a chronic back problem for 3 years with no exact diagnosis after the usual scans and MRIs etc. Cathy has helped me enormously with her expertise which ranges from traditional physiotherapy to Chinese and other methods. Her dedication and enthusiasm is totally inspiring. Over the last 3 years I have seen chiropractors, physios etc. with no great result and I am so lucky to have found Cathy. I am now walking without a limp for the first time in 3 years and my back feels stronger too”.
“On behalf of myself, and Redingensians Rams, I would like to thank you for all your excellent work through 2011. Your intervention with regard some of our squad’s complex injuries has enabled certain players to return to full fitness much quicker than we ever expected. Not only that, they have remained fit and that is a great credit to the Howard Clinic team. Thank you also for your attendance at pitch side on 10th December. I understand that you helped treat a couple of players and it was meant to be a day off!
Director of Rugby – Redingensians Rams RFC
“your feet are the 8th wonder of the world Cathy. My back feels awesome thanks!
Debbie, March 2012
“I snapped my ACL in October last year and was referred by my surgeon onto Carolyn. She has been fantastic and gave me some excellent exercises both post and pre op to help get me get my strength and movement back. She has always been very understanding and always had the view of “how do we get you playing rugby again” rather than take it easy avoid those sort of sports. This is something that I really appreciate. She was excellent after the operation during a couple of set backs and always gave me the right advice on how to get over certain milestones and went the extra mile for me when I emailed questions outside of my appointments. I am now back playing rugby in full and a lot of this is done to the work that Carolyn put in herself and got me motivated to do. I would have no hesitation recommending her to anyone who needs physiotherapy”.
Anthony Baker, August 2012