Stuart’s Sports Clinic

Welcome to the first blog in a new series where I will talk about what I do and how it will help you.

For those of you that follow us regularly you will know that Alchemy is a joint venture between myself and Holly, but I’m sure plenty of you dont know what I do here, hiding away in a back room that emits screams and yelps and random swear words.  Contrary to popular belief I’m not torturing people or trying to extract their PIN numbers, I’m actually helping them.

So what am I doing and why am I doing it?  Well it all started about twelve years ago while I was sat in an accounting office being bored senseless in yet another pointless meeting about why some numbers weren’t high enough for some directors and i had an epiphany!


Despite my twenty years experience I decided I had had enough of numbers and accounting and I needed a change, before it all went wrong and I started strangling people in the boardroom.  So I walked away from a well paid job and went back to college to retrain in something that would be more beneficial to the world.  I chose Sports Massage.


Although I havent really been sporty in my youth, I’ve always been interested in how I can help people to better themselves and to improve their own health rather than living with pain or popping pills from their GP.  I studied Reiki many years ago and have looked at various other forms of alternative therapy, but for me Sports Massage speaks to the scientist inside.  And of course its not just for sports people.  A Sports Massage is beneficial for anyone with muscle pains of any kind.  Whether you spend too much time on a computer, or in a car, or under the sink fixing someones pipes, Sports Massage will help.

Ten years later, here I am running a successful clinic in the Beauty Salon I own with Holly and we are now into our sixth year.  Over the next few months I hope to tell you more of my journey into alternative therapy and share some of my experiences with different sports, different injuries and maybe how I can help you.


Stuart 🙂

Holly’s health corner- coping with work

Many of you know I went on long term sick in the middle of 2018 due to Anxiety. I have been working towards getting back into work over the past couple of months and taking things slowly. 

When you suffer from Anxiety work can become extremely stressful. Not only as a business owner but for anyone working along side this difficult condition. Over the past 5 years of owning the salon I ended up sending my body into overdrive due to personal circumstances. This is one of the main reasons I ended up very unwell last summer. As a business owner I find it very difficult to take time away from work. Although I already have a human baby who I adrore, my work is like a second baby to me. I use to spend hours and hours at home trying to juggle a busy life of being a mum, running a business, keeping to deadlines, ordering stock, spending time on work social media, advertising, spending time with family, friends, housework…the list goes on and for many people like myself it never ends. Now, everyone has plenty of responsibilities to tackle in their daily life but those who struggle with anxiety can often forget to add in the “rest” part of the day. I also find resting very difficult because its often the time when my thoughts will wonder, But that’s a blog topic for another day!

When you’re stressed, anxious, depressed etc the last thing you feel manageable, is work. All you want to do is hide away. Stay home and not face the day. Things can get worse by this and your body can actually prevent you from leaving the house. When we feel like we need to take time off work that then causes more stress. For me personally I felt like taking time of work being unwell made me a failure. Not being able to get up and do the job I love was so difficult. But my body was telling me to stop. Spending time off work away from the salon made my anxiety worse. All those feelings that you’re letting other people down because you can’t make it in exacerbate anxiety and so the vicious cycle begins.

It took me many months to come back to work (let alone leave my house) and slowly but surely I’ve done it. What’s been most important is to take things slowly. Not to rush back into doing everything you feel like you have to do because ultimately the only thing in life you have to do is look after yourself.  I started by spending a few hours in the salon. Then a couple of half days. I’m still currently only here 3 days a week working longer hours and eventually I would like to be back up to 4 days. When I’m at work it’s a distraction. I have a purpose when I’m here and the anxiety improves because I am doing something that I enjoy. There are days when I can’t manage and times when I want to run back home but this feeling is slowly diminishing and I’m finding work easier and easier as time goes on. 

My advice to anyone who is struggling with mental health and if it’s affecting their work would be to tell someone. Tell your boss, tell your doctor, tell your friends. Anyone that you think will lead you in the right direction. Sometimes pushing on isn’t the answer and this can take things too far and before you know it you have no choice other than to not be able to go to work because your body is in shut down mode. Get the help you need before it’s to late. It really is that simple. 

When I’m at work. I work. When I’m at home I spend the time finding who I am again. Having the balance between the two is enabling me to get back the life I’ve always wanted.

If work is your main cause of stress then make sure you really sit down and figure out what it is that you want. Life is too short to spend in a job that you hate. Regardless of the pay cheque you receive at the end of the month. I’m certainly not suggesting you leave your job straight away. Give up all your responsibilities but taking the time to seek your other options can be really beneficial. For me taking a step back and allowing my body and mind to recover has improved not only my mental health but also my business.

I have been very lucky in the sense that my transition back to work has been at my own pace and although people feel they may not have the same opportunity as I do when it comes to taking thing slowly then it’s time to see what’s the most important in life. You. Your physical and mental wellbeing and your happiness. 

Thank you for reading! If you’re enjoying these posts then please comment below either on Facebook or directly to this blog post. If there’s any areas you would like me to cover on how I cope in daily life or anything you find anxiety provoking then please do let me know 😌

Holly x


Holly’s health corner – Happiness

Hi Everyone! 

The past 6 months have been tough as you all have seen from my previous posts but I finally have something to celebrate and I’m so excited to share it with you! 

This Saturday (9th February 2019) myself and Stuart will be celebrating 5 years of running Alchemy Therapy Centre! I can’t quite believe its been 5 years. The time has flown and I am so incredibly happy with where the business is and how I get to spend my days living a dream I have always had. 

Don’t get me wrong it certainly hasn’t been the easiest thing I’ve done and opening at 21 I had many reservations if this would even work. Yet here we are 5 years on opening the doors into our 6th year of business.

I haven’t had much to celebrate recently but this is one of those things that has boosted my moral, made me realise how incredibly lucky I have been to have such a great opportunity in life to run my own salon and how grateful I am to everyone who has support us on a business and personal level over the past 5 years

We should celebrate even the smallest achievements along with the largest ones! 

Only 4 months ago I was writing my achievements in my daily log stating “I managed to get out of bed today for 2 hours” and now I’m writing “celebrating 5 years of business”. Neither one or the other of these achievements are better than the other. They’re both huge achievements at different stages of my life. I really would advise everyone to write a monthly achievement log down just to run through all the things you have achieved over the past month! It’s incredibly empowering and can give you insight into all the amazing things you’ve done without even realising! Write the small things. Write the big things and everything in between. Some times the smallest achievements have the largest impact!  

I’ll be opening the salon doors this weekend for our 5th year birthday party and I can’t wait to see you all! All our details can be found on our Facebook page or call me for more info 01908 567766.

Holly x