Congratulations to winners of the National Massage Championship 2019


NMC 2019 Monica and Tamer

We would like to say a huge ‘Congratulations!’ to the winners and runners-up of the National Massage Championship 2019, sponsored by the FHT, Massage World, CityLux London and Massage Warehouse.

In particular, we’d like to give a special mention to four FHT members and one of our accredited course providers who received an award:

Tamer Morsy, MFHT – joint first in the Freestyle Massage category (two-person massage) and second place in the Advanced Massage category.

Monica Paslaru, MFHT – joint first with Tamer in the Freestyle Massage category and second place in the Eastern Massage category.

Jevgenijs Jarecs, MFHT – second place in the Freestyle Massage category.

Una Tucker, FHT accredited course provider – third place in the Chair Massage category.

Georgia Curry, MFHT – special award from judges for Most Caring Therapist.

Hosted by Olympia Beauty on Sunday 29 and Monday 30 September, the National Massage Championship is the only UK competition of its kind.

FHT Vice President, Mary Dalgleish, was a judge for the second year running and also featured in a short promotional video, explaining why taking part in industry awards and events like the National Massage Championship can help to raise the profile of complementary therapies and promote high standards of practice.

Speaking about this year’s Championship, Mary (second left in the picture below) says: ‘I was delighted to participate as a judge on behalf of the FHT. Kate from CityLux London and Carl from Massage World magazine did an amazing job helping to organise this wonderful event, and it was a real pleasure working alongside the other judges.

NMC 2019 Mary judges cropped

‘The Championship was an excellent platform for the 100-plus therapists who participated, to show the world their skills and learn from each other. The standards were very high and although there were winners, there were certainly no losers, as everyone who participated showed skill and great courage in stepping out of their comfort zone.’




FHT offers guidance to Natural Health readers looking for a therapist

Quote NH magazine

In the October issue of Natural Health magazine, FHT’s Registrar and Compliance Manager, Julie McFadden, offers readers a brief overview of how complementary therapies can help to support health and wellbeing, along with some top tips on what to look for when choosing a therapist.

As well as offering guidance on which type of therapy readers might like to explore first, Julie explains the benefits of choosing a therapist who belongs to the FHT and is listed on an Accredited Register, and outlines some questions that readers might like to ask before booking an appointment.

The FHT regularly contributes to national consumer publications to promote the FHT, its members and the therapies they practice.

Read the full article

Helen Sweeney, MFHT, provides massage and first aid at global karate event

Blog Helen Sweeney WIKF group shot

(Left to right) Herman Fenton, FHT Vice President; Helen Sweeney, FHT member and first responder; Dana Irvin; and FHT student member, Josh Hart

Helen Sweeney, MFHT, massage therapist and first responder, writes about her experience working at an international karate event…

I was delighted to be invited by FHT Vice President, Herman Fenton, to London to provide massage and medical cover for the recent Wado International Karate Do Federation (WIKF) Global Cup, being hosted in the UK for the first time in six years.  Held at K2 Crawley from 18 to 22 September, this prestigious event brought together teams from across the world, including the USA, Canada and Europe.

The atmosphere was amazing.  The stands were packed with knowledgeable spectators and team members, waving their respective country flags, cheering, banging drums and ringing cow bells, and really getting into the spirit of the occasion. The discipline and mutual respect among competitors in karate are truly remarkable to see.

Medics were allocated to the five competition areas or ‘dojos’, all dressed in our best blazers and flannels but without shoes, which are not allowed on these sacred areas.  Fortunately, other than a few cuts and bruises, strains and sprains and a dislocated finger, there were no serious injuries, while a table was provided in the arena for us to give over clothes massage to competitors between fights.

Blog Helen Sweeney WIKF Helen massageThe Wado International Karate-Do Federation (WIKF) was founded by the late Professor Tatsuo Suzuki and is the only group authorised before his passing to represent his teachings, and is therefore the only Wado federation in the world that is recognised by the late Suzuki Sensei.

As a first responder, I regularly cover sporting events, from white collar boxing and university sports teams, to televised cage fighting.  However, being tasked to be both a massage therapist and a medic at the WIKF Cup was brilliant experience.  The two work in perfect harmony.  Working with three other therapists – Herman Fenton, FHT student member Josh Hart, and Dana Irvin – it was an excellent opportunity to work on some valuable continuing professional development. We all had different skill sets, from massage and sports therapy, to medical training and physiotherapy.

I would highly recommend signing up to any local events that require therapists, where you can upskill your professional knowledge and even pass on your own.

Helen Sweeney, MFHT

Action for Happiness encourages us all to have an Optimistic October

Blog Action for Happiness calendar

Every month, Action for Happiness produces a calendar packed with actions we can all take to help create a happier and kinder world.

This October, the charity’s calendar focuses on daily activities ‘to help you be a realistic optimist’ and remain focused on what really matters.

After writing down your most important goals for this month, other suggestions include:

  • Take a first step towards a goal that really matters to you
  • Re-frame a problem you face as a potential opportunity
  • Write down three specific things that have gone well recently
  • Share an inspiring idea with a loved one or colleague
  • Let go of the expectations of others and focus on what matters

The calendar is free to download as a PDF or image file (JPEG) in 16 different languages. You can also download the actions straight to your calendar using a Google Calendar or iCalendar file.

Download the October 2019 Action for Happiness calendar

Study shows hand reflexology and acupressure equally effective for anxiety

Blog WRW hand reflex

Anxiety, fear and other unpleasant emotional experiences are common among patients before and after cardiovascular procedures (Chandrababu, 2019).

According to a recent study published in Healthcare (Vasokolaei, 2019), hand reflexology and acupressure are equally effective for reducing anxiety in patients with coronary artery diseases.

Aware that hospitalisation can increase anxiety in patients, a team of researchers in Tehran, Iran, conducted a randomised controlled trial to determine whether hand reflexology or acupressure would produce beneficial effects.

One hundred and thirty-five women with coronary artery disease were randomly assigned to three groups, receiving hand reflexology, acupressure or a placebo. For the first group, hand reflexology was performed on each hand for 10 minutes, using the Ingham method of reflexology, covering points corresponding to the solar plexus, pituitary gland and heart, with moderate pressure applied to each hand. The acupressure was also performed for 10 minutes on each hand, applying pressure to the Nei Guan point. For the placebo, similar conditions to the intervention groups were created, but a thumb touching method was used without applying acupressure or hand reflexology. The patients were asked to complete a questionnaire to examine the effects of treatments.

The results revealed significant changes in anxiety in the hand reflexology and acupressure groups, when compared to the placebo group. Mean anxiety scores reduced similarly with both treatments, indicating that they were equally effective.

Read the full study

Access references (see ‘Research’ section)

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FHT introduces In The Moment readers to scar therapy treatment


Scar therapy treatments use a variety of techniques that can help to improve feeling and functionality in the skin and other soft tissue that has been compromised by surgery, injury or certain inflammatory conditions.

In the latest issue (#30) of In The Moment  magazine, we introduce readers to scar therapy treatments, looking at what a session would typically involve, as well as five key benefits of this gentle but effective therapy.

We’d like to say a big thank you to Emma Holly, MFHT, for her support with this article, which is part of In The Moment’s regular ‘Have you tried’ series, putting a spotlight on different therapies practiced by FHT members.

In The Moment is a monthly lifestyle magazine, covering wellbeing, creativity, good living and travel, and is available to buy in a range of high street shops and supermarkets.

The FHT regularly contributes to national consumer publications to promote the FHT, its members and the therapies they practice.

Read the full article