Therapist Spotlight: Laura Dalby
Laura Dalby has a degree in Injury Rehabilitation and Prevention, and is a Level 5 trained sports massage therapist who is also fully qualified in pregnancy massage. Here she talks about her inspiration in becoming a massage therapist, the clients she most loves working with, and how she looks after her own self-care…
What inspired you to pursue a career in massage therapy?
I still remember my University application statement asking why I want to do my sports injury course. The reason was being inspired by watching Kelly Holmes at the Olympics Athens 2004 – specifically, emotionally thanking her coach and physiotherapist after winning gold. I have always found the determination, drive and ambition of athletes truly inspiring and remarkable, and to be part of their team was my drive to pursue this career.
After working with athletes and extending the same skills and treatment to all clients, I am so pleased to still be enjoying the varied inspiring stories of non-athletes too, and being able to help people achieve their goals or simply help them out of pain confirms I made the right choice.
What do you enjoy most about being a massage therapist?
Many people simply put up with aches and pains. It can be very frustrating to be in pain, and my clients are often confused as to why the pain is there, and believe that there is nothing else that can be done. I get so much joy from helping people to overcome their physical discomfort – with an effective hands-on massage treatment, some knowledge and education about their pain, and lastly with useful and effective movements and stretches to help recovery and prevent a recurrence.
What sort of clients do you most enjoy treating?
As my career has progressed, I have enjoyed adding new types of clients to my list all the time. Starting with athletes, this now extends to charity runners achieving great feats, busy London workers needing body and mind recovery, and helping pre and postnatal women with pregnancy-related aches and pains.
What do you enjoy most about being a massage therapist? How would you describe your massage ‘style’?
I have often had clients put off by the phrase ‘sports massage’, thinking that it will be painful and not relaxing – and some have had this exact experience. I pride myself on changing those opinions and believe deep tissue and ‘sports massage’ can be both deep and effective without being painful. In fact, my massages have often been described as ‘thorough – finding all the tight spots and working on them’, like I have ‘magic hands’, and ‘firm but relaxing’. With great results and some clients even falling asleep, I am confident in providing a firm deep tissue massage that is easily adjusted to the client – effective, thorough and deeply relaxing!
What do you do to keep yourself healthy?
I love all things healthy – if it is good for you I will try it (I do of course like to treat myself too!) Being active is a must and I enjoy regular gym workouts, as well as getting out for walks, runs and cycles – when the weather is good! I believe nutrition is important (including treats in moderation), and I enjoy using food as a way to fuel my body, mind and wellbeing. I’m always learning how influential those nutrients are to how I feel, and the best ways of finding them!