How Rocktape Changed My Life – Graeme Watson

How Rocktape Changed My Life – Graeme Watson

I joined the Army in August 1992 as a member of the Royal Engineers. I played football from the minute I joined, representing my Regiment and was also lucky enough to also represent the Corps of Royal Engineers, until everything went rapidly and abruptly downhill in 2003. I had just been promoted to Sergeant and was serving in Hameln, Germany.  My Regiment had reached the Army Cup Final, the pinnacle of football within the Army. An innocuous challenge in a training session, whilst preparing for this Cup Final, brought my world to an abrupt halt! A slight pain led me to casualty, where it transpired I had fractured my right Patellar.  Not good. I was placed in a plaster cast from ankle to thigh for 6 weeks and left to stew at my misfortune.  Gutted. Once the cast was removed it was identified that the break had been more technical than first identified.  Although the fracture had healed, my kneecap was dislocating and then popping back in as I walked, leading to intense pain. It was decide to carry out a ‘Lateral Release’ operation in a German Hospital – an operation not carried out within the UK medical system.  This procedure involved the cutting of a ligament on one side of the knee to hopefully make it the same strength as the other side, thus allowing the knee to operate and track correctly. This didn’t work out as planned so I was sent back to the UK to have another operation – a ‘Patellar Decompression’.  This time they opened up the knee and cut a slight ‘v’ into the...
Two Disabled Veterans, 518 Miles. All For Charity

Two Disabled Veterans, 518 Miles. All For Charity

On the 13th May, two disabled veterans from the British Army, set off from Edinburgh Castle heading to Exeter. All in aid of Help for Heroes and Veterans With Dogs. Both veterans have been helped by these two charities during their ongoing recovery pathway. However, this is no ordinary challenge. Both veterans will be doing the challenge on recumbent bikes. Laura will be using an ICE Trike which uses foot power, and Patrick on his Top End Force 3 hand bike. That’s right, 518 miles by arm power, because doing it by leg power isn’t hard enough. They will be using these bikes as their disabilities restrict them from using a normal bicycle. Patrick Medhurst-Feeney and Laura Ellis were both Medically Discharged from the Army after they picked injuries and illness while in service. Both suffer with physical and mental health conditions, that hugely effect their daily lives. After receiving help from both charities, they had the idea of giving something back to two charities that have helped them so much. Safe to say they went for a big challenge. Training is in full swing, with Laura working hard in Bathgate, Scotland, and Patrick’s tackling Dartmoor from his home in Plymouth. Building up the miles so that they’re ready to tackle the challenge that sits in front of them. Continuously reminding themselves that it’s all for charity. However, this challenge brings something else to the pair. It’s giving them an aim and a sense of achievement. Since leaving the Army, both have struggled with finding those things, so having this challenge is a big boost for the pair of...
RockTape Tips & Tricks

RockTape Tips & Tricks

Rocktape is considered to be hypoallergenic as the adhesive is an acrylic adhesive and contains no zinc oxide.  Rocktape is also latex free.  Because of these two properties, Rocktape is generally considered to be very good for skin of all ages.  Very occasionally, some skin sensitivity can occur, but this is much more likely to be “operator error” than a true reaction to the tape itself.  We have listed some steps below to ensure that you get the most out of your Rocktape application, and also reduce the risk of any skin issues. 1. Round the corners: this means cutting the corners off your Rocktape before applying. The reason we do this is that the corners are much more likely to catch on clothing, towels, sheets etc and cause the edge of the tape to lift. Once this lifts, the rest of the tape can peel off very quickly. We want your tape to last 3-5 days, so this is important! 2. No tension on the first or last inch of tape: each end of the tape needs at least an inch (2.5cm for those who only know metric!) of UNSTRETCHED “anchor”. This anchor means the tape is going to stay stuck better, but most importantly, it reduces the risk of skin traction injuries that can occur right at the very end of the tape.  If you have a very small patch of irritation on the skin where the tape started or finished, this is most likely the cause.  THIS IS REALLY IMPORTANT IN AREAS WHERE THERE IS A LOT OF SKIN MOVEMENT, LIKE AROUND THE SHOULDER 3. Stretch...
RockBlades: Redefining IASTM

RockBlades: Redefining IASTM

I always get a little pumped to get a play with a new bit of kit and an oppourtunity to teach a new course.  Two years of development has culminated in Rocktape’s version of IASTM (instrument assisted soft-tissue mobilization) tool appropriately called RockBlades.  A lot of people think of Rocktape as a taping company. We like to think of ourselves as a “Movement company that dabbles in tape.”  As with the tape, Rockblades are another tool to help our medical professionals help our patients decrease pain, move better, and ultimately perform better. RockBlades consist of 2 tools. One, attractive surgical-grade stainless steel tool affectionately called the “Mallet” and a smaller thermoplastic tool the “Mullet”.  The Mallet is designed for in clinic use and the Mullet is for pitch side or out of clinic use.  Both tools have a variety of edges for use with multiple body-parts and techniques.  Rockblades come in an attractive case including a tub of RockRub emollient and RockWipes to clean the tools and the bodypart prior to taping. I had the honour of teaching the first RockBlade course in the UK with Rocktape’s Medical Director Paul Coker at the British School of Osteopathy in London.  The course was attended by a variety of manual therapists including, physiotherapists, chiropractors, osteopaths, sport therapists, and sport massage therapists.  There were quite a few familiar faces that have been on previous Rocktape UK’s courses.  As with all of our courses we present concepts rather than recipes.  We feel once a therapist understands a concept you can apply the concept to a wide range of conditions. We spend a lot...
#RockToRio with Lauren Billys, Equestrian Eventer

#RockToRio with Lauren Billys, Equestrian Eventer

Do you remember the first time you rode a horse?   It was a day I relived for years.  I was visiting my mom’s friend, Pam Hubbard, and she let me ride on of her daughter’s horses.  I had been practicing for weeks on a horse made of chairs and blankets in my living room.   What kind of horses do you ride in your sport? Who is your favorite four-legged riding companion/why?   I ride mostly warmblood horses which are bred with the stamina to gallop long distances, the athleticism to jump large fences and the movement to be competitive in dressage.  The types of horses I ride typically are the trip-athlete of horses. I have been blessed to ride so many wonderful horses, but at the moment, Castle Larchfield Purdy is my top horse and he is truly a gift to have at the barn.  He is an integral part of my dream and has help it become a reality.  I am his biggest fan! How/when did your career begin?   I have ridden since I was eight years old, and attended my first recognized event when I was 13 years old.  I spend many years on at the lower levels and competed in my first international competition at the age of 21. What is “eventing”?   Three-day eventing is the triathlon of equestrian.  It is comprised of three disciplines of riding which stems from the test that the calvary would take to prepare for battle.  The first is dressage where we memorize a test, wear a top hat and tails, and are judged on our the...
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