If you have looked at the services I offer, you’ll have noticed that they either include or require an initial assessment to take place, right at the start of whichever training option you select. But what is an initial assessment, and why is it so essential?
The initial assessment appointment itself is around 45minutes long. Prior to attending, you’ll fill out a few questions for me – questions relating to your general health, your history of any pregnancies or births, if applicable, and whether you suffer from any specific issues relating to your core, floor, back and pelvis. These questions are super important, because they give me an overview of your current health and condition – meaning that already, I’ll have an idea about the sort of support and training you might benefit from, and more importantly, any exercises to avoid that may cause you problems.
When you come along to my studio for your face to face appointment, firstly, you’ll be met with a smile and a safe place for you to talk about any issues, without embarrassment. Well have a quick chat about the questions you answered and you’ll be able to ask me any questions too.
The physical side of the assessment is where I take the time to look for and assess any potential issues that you may or may not be aware of. I’ll check your alignment and ask you to perform a series of movements whilst standing, then a series of movements and breathing patterns whilst lying down. I’ll also check your abdominal muscles for any separation and check the tissue tension. All of these checks are done over the top of your clothes, so you don’t need to worry about removing clothing – however, it is helpful if you are able to wear fitted sports clothing to your assessment, as bulky or overly baggy clothes like jeans or a sweatshirt can make it tricky to see what is going on.
The information that I gather at this appointment will inform how best for your training to proceed. If any issues are identified, such as a large Diastatsis Recti (separation of abdominal muscles) or the fact that you pee when you sneeze, then it immediately tells me that there are certain movements and exercise that should be avoided or changed and there are others that can help to heal that separation or to help reduce leaking.
When I assess your breathing pattern, I will look for your core connection – because of the way we habitually sit or move during the day, it can quite often lead us to breathe in a disjointed pattern, which can actually impact your pelvic floor function. I’ll help you to understand the correct way to breath for optimal core function.
There are a few reasons that I make this assessment an absolute pre-requisite to training with me:
- Firstly, it is essential to identify any current issues to make sure they are not made worse and that they can potentially be improved.
- Secondly, this assessment will give you a record of your starting point – with the correct posture, alignment, breathing, and core and floor connection, you will be able to make improvements on any current issues, safely. These improvements will be measurable against your initial assessment results.
- Thirdly, it is absolutely essential for all women, especially those that may have a compromised core or floor (hello pregnancy) to seek this invaluable support before throwing yourself blindly in to a fitness class, gym routine or home workout series. I personally won’t train any woman that isn’t fully in the know about her own body, I won’t risk your health like that and you shouldn’t either. This assessment will give you a wealth of information about your body and its function.
You’ll notice that many classes aimed specifically at women, or at new mums often don’t require you to attend a face to face session before joining their classes. They may ask you to answer a few questions, but that’s often where the investigation ends. Women, especially those that have been pregnant, have had any abdominal surgery (hernias, hysterectomy, appendix etc.), those that experience pain or discomfort in the pelvic region or lower back – well, these women are a special population and they require specialist training, training that goes over and above the baseline questions. You absolutely owe it to yourself to seek out the best support.
These essential assessments are included free in all my 1:1 packages and they are also available to purchase separately at just £30 for 45 minutes – which, for the information you receive, makes it excellent value for money (and costs less than many other more regular self-care routines, like hair, massage, nails, coffee shop stops). Once you have had this assessment, you don’t need to keep having them – unless you specifically want to, or unless something happens, like having another child or undergoing a hysterectomy, or a development of new symptoms. These sessions can be bought prior to joining any of my small group classes, or they can be bought individually even without any further training from me. These assessments also make a great gift for a new mum – give her some well earned self-care time and make sure she is healing well.
All initial assessments that are paid for before September 19th are offered at 25% off, making an appointment just £22.50, just add in the code POPCORN on ordering.
Sometimes, its good to just find out how your body is doing. This assessment is really an MOT for your body. Time to look after yourself – you are worth it, and more.