Monday, 17 June 2013

Feel Good Factor

Well another Monday morning and look at this weather, where did our beautiful sunshine go???

All that beautiful weather makes us feel so much better, everyone feels like they have a spring in their step and carry smiles on their faces ... the feel good factor!

All complementary therapies carry this "Feel Good Factor", something we tend to forget. We live our lives at such a fast pace we forget to Feel Good.  We need to totally recharge our batteries properly, otherwise dis-ease starts to embed itself into our systems and we start running with imbalances and illness creeps in!

Therapies can help with this imbalance and restore equilibrium within the body to create a good environment and restore that "Feel Good Factor".  Remember, what life takes out of us, on whatever level, therapies can put it back.

Why not train in a new therapy, refresh an old one, come to our meditation courses and learn how to meditate, or join us monthly on our meditation evening.  Learn to restore your own "Feel Good Factor".

During the year we are offering some brilliant deals on our courses for Holistic and Beauty so if you not already signed up to our Newsletter, then it's time you did.  You could be missing a wonderful opportunity and right here on your doorstep in Wantage!  At Como we have free parking, on-site shop serving hot and cold food, easy access, easy to find on the main A338 from Wantage to Abingdon.  Hope to see you soon!

For further details on this and other courses see our website

Hope to see you all again soon
Love and Reiki blessings Gill

Monday, 15 April 2013


Welcome to Monday morning; it’s lovely and bright but not sure for how long.  Seems we get a little taste and then it’s taken away again.  However, I’m sure we will all soon be feeling that warmth on our skin, the glow in the cheeks and the feeling of well-being once the sun does start to shine.  But all of these beautiful feelings can be achieved from receiving holistic therapies, they all have a place and all come under one umbrella, we treat the mind, body and spirit.

A Brief History
Healing by touch is as old as mankind, requiring insight, intuition and specialized skills and techniques.  Many of the touch therapies are based on the theory that for good health within the body, the energies must flow creating a good environment and balancing on all levels.  Given this good environment the body has the ability to heal itself!

Reflexology can be traced back generations.  In Egypt its origins can be seen in a frieze at the tomb of Ankhm’ahor.  The tomb in Saqqara is known as the “Physicians’ Tomb” owing to the many marvellous scenes found on its walls.  From ancient illustrations we know that the early Chinese, Japanese, Indians and Russians worked on the feet to promote good health.  Many of these same techniques have been developed into a modern method called reflexology.

Developed in the early years of the twentieth century into the reflexology we practise today.  Ear, nose and throat specialist, Dr William Fitzgerald, studied and developed Zone Therapy.  As he studied his patients he discovered that parts of the body corresponded to other parts.  Using pressure in one area could cause an anaesthetic effect on another part.  To convince others of this theory, he used a dramatic demonstration of applying pressure to a point in the hand and then sticking a pin into the corresponding area on a volunteer’s face, without causing pain.

Around the 1930s a physiotherapist called Eunice Ingham also studied the theory used in the zone therapy.  She discovered that the feet where more responsive and, by using alternating pressure on various points, pain relief and the therapeutic effect was greater than using the zone therapy.  Hence, reflexology was born.  Eunice Ingham has written Stories the Feet Can Tell and Stories the Feet Have Told, both of which are worth reading!  Doreen Bailey, a student of Eunice Ingham, studied and trained in America and brought reflexology to Britain in 1966.

There are many schools of reflexology and new thoughts and techniques are being discovered and taught all the time - the years ahead are looking promising for reflexology.

The Many Benefits of Reflexology
Reflexology has many benefits, it is a subject we could talk about forever!  I have been a reflexologist for many years and I have discovered many ways it has helped my clients and on many levels.  We must also remember that this beautiful therapy is totally holistic, balancing the mind, body and spirit.  I am sure I will discover much more on my journey and I am looking forward to sharing some of it with you.

Reflexology totally reduces stress!  We live with stress every day of our lives, to a larger or smaller degree, and this is neither good or bad as we all need a degree of stress to function.  It is a problem, however, when the stress becomes too great and the body’s systems are affected allowing disease and illness to creep in.  It has been estimated that over 75% of all illness are stress related.

Reflexology cleanses the body, balances the systems, revitalizes energy, nurtures relationships, eases pain, improves the circulation and lymphatic flow, stimulates and soothes the nervous system, balances the endocrine system, improves the immune system, sleep patterns change and improve and natural endorphins are released to give that feel good factor.  All-in-all it is beneficial to all systems of the body.

We are running a course on 1st and 2nd June - if you are interested please give us a call, email or contact on Facebook.  The course fee is £350 and carries 46 CPD points.  You will need to complete 20 cases studies.

Learning the art of this beautiful treatment will never fail to amaze you, after all we are amazing people!!

For further details on this and other courses see our website

Hope to see you all soon
Love and Reiki blessings 

Tuesday, 9 April 2013

Hopi Ear Candling

Brrrrr it’s a chilly day again.  I have picked up someone’s cold and feeling a little sorry for myself.  With that thought it brings me to beautiful Hopi Ear Candling, taking the pressure and strain from my head, throat and ears - what a wonderful soothing treatment.  Well I better tell you more!!


This is an ancient and natural therapy handed down by many civilisations.  It is believed that the Ancient Greeks used ear candles, initially for cleansing, purifying and healing on a spiritual basis, but much later on a purely physical basis.  The practice reached the modern world via Native American Hopi Indians of North Arizona.  Ear candles were used traditionally by Shamen healers.  Ancient wall paintings show their importance in initiation rituals and healing ceremonies of the tribe.  The candles are still made today on the basis of the old traditional formula originating from the Hopi Indians.

Hopi Ear Candling can help relieve the symptoms of headaches and migraine, hay fever, colds, sore throats, tinnitus, rhinitis, glue ear, sinusitis, balance problems, swimmers ear, ear itching, pre- and post-flying, catarrh, compacted ear wax.  Calming and relaxing - so wonderful for stress.

Some Ear Conditions
As our ears are connected to the nose and throat, Hopi ear candles can be helpful with the relief of many of the symptoms we encounter with these organs.

Below are some examples of ear conditions:

Sinusitis – is an inflammation of the sinuses.  Acute symptoms are conditions which develop and subside quickly.  Chronic symptoms are long term conditions.  Generally the most common ailment associated with sinusitis is the common cold. Others symptoms can develop such as headache, pain, pressure especially when bending or lying down and the area can be very tender.

Otitis Media -  this is more common in children and is a collection of fluid in the middle ear, also known as “Glue Ear”.  The ear fills with sticky fluid and this causes hearing impairment in children under the age of eight.  If this tube becomes blocked, generally through infection, the middle ear will fill up with fluid causing chronic Otitis Media.  The insertion of grommets will allow the circulation of air.  Grommets will fall out of their own accord, after which a monthly treatment would be very beneficial.

Hay Fever and Rhinitis – these are allergies and cause inflammation to the membrane lining of the nose and throat.  These conditions generally occur in the spring and summer, however some allergies are associated with other conditions such as asthma.  Generally the symptoms are running eyes, blocked nose, itching eyes, headaches and sneezing.

Tinnitus (ringing in the ear) – ringing, buzzing or other sounds can be heard in one ear or both.  Hopi ear candles help relax the client but can also temporarily change the noise, which is quiet welcoming.

Tension Headaches -  Hopi can help this condition as tension headaches are generally associated with stress.  The gentle and calming influence of the treatment will prove very beneficial.

Blockage of Wax – this condition causes a feeling of fullness in the ear and can cause irritation.  Ear wax is produced by the glands in the ear canal to protect against foreign objects and to keep the area clean and moist.  Regular treatments will help prevent a build-up of wax.  People who work in noisy environments, or wear ear plugs, will find wax builds up quicker than normal.

Principles of Ear Candling
Ear Candling in a non-invasive treatment.  The treatment begins by applying pressure points to the face, without the use of oil.  This starts the procedure of relaxation and stimulation to the sinuses. 

The client lies on their side.  The candle will be lit and placed gently into the auditory canal, causing a seal.  As the treatment begins the client may experience crackling or hissing noises as the candle starts to burn down.  This generally takes about ten minutes for each ear.  The experience is so relaxing that the client often drifts off to sleep.

As the candles burn they cause a suction effect, like a chimney, simulating a gentle massage to the ear drum.  A feeling of warmth is sometimes felt, soothing and relaxing the area.  The last part of the candle helps balance the fluid of the inner ear.

Once the candles have been removed the client lies on their back and a relaxing facial massage is applied.  This aids deeper relaxation and helps to clear the sinuses. Pressure point work and drainage stimulates the circulation which helps blood flow in and out of the area and assists with lymphatic drainage.

More pressure points and drainage moves are applied with the use of oil.  If preferred, a gentle head massage can be performed to finish the treatment.

This treatment is totally holistic, working on the physical and spiritual levels, clearing negative energies and so leaving the client feeling refreshed, renewed, energised and clear of the cotton wool feeling in the head.

Well I must get cracking and have a beautiful treatment. 

As a therapist why not add it to your list of therapies, the course is over one and half days, carries 17 CPD points, includes 12 case studies for completion and the cost is just £150.

For further details on this and other courses see our website at Como.

Hope to see you all again soon,
Love and Reiki blessings

Tuesday, 2 April 2013


Here we are again, what a beautiful morning, clear and crisp - I do love mornings like this.  I can hear you all saying "it’s cold and where is the sunshine and warmth?", but I’m sure it will come.  The flowers will start to poke their heads out to feel the warmth on their tiny faces.  I often look deep into the face of a flower - you can see their faces like little people smiling back at you, especially pansies with their beautiful colours.  Well who wouldn’t smile back if you really did stop for a moment to look - but really look!

This brings me to the aroma of flowers and plants, which I feel we sometimes take for granted.  When was the last time you stopped to smell a flower or a plant?  I love the smell of honeysuckle on a warm summer evening.  We have had one in the garden for many years it always brings a smile to my face.  The dear memories I hold of summer evenings and my children when they were younger. 

Smell plays an important role in our lives, it unlocks memories of happy or sad times.  We should fill our lives with the aromas we love, uplifting, rejuvenating, relaxing.

Aromatherapy is a beautiful therapy to have and to learn.  Essential oils can be used in many different ways but combined with a beautiful massage - well what more can I say!!!!

At Como we offer you training in Aromatherapy Massage, together with other ways to use the beautiful oils.  The course is over four and half days, you will need to complete 20 case studies, the cost is £350 and is accredited by The Guild of Holistic Therapies and carries 60 CPD points.

So, what are you waiting for?  Call us, Facebook us, Twitter us, come and see us - were always happy to chat.  

In fact, we have an Open Morning at Como this coming Saturday, 6th April, from 10am till 1pm.  Do join us, we would love to see you there.

For further details on this and other courses see our website

Bless you all, take care and I hope to see some new faces soon.
Love and Reiki blessings

Sunday, 24 March 2013

Unhappy with your life? Want a new challenge? Thought of a new career?

Ever wanted to change your life, to bring some new challenges, more enjoyment and happiness , feel more fulfilled?  Then maybe it’s time to consider a change of career. 

Have you considered becoming a Complementary Therapist?  If not, then take a few minutes to consider the benefits:
  •       Run your own business
  •       Work the hours that suit you
  •       Work from home
  •       Meet new people every day
  •       Enjoy helping others
  •       Learn new skills as and when you are ready
  •       Become part of a professional team
In fact, the list of benefits is endless.

Let us, at the Como Centre, help you to achieve this ambition.  We provide all the training you need, at your own pace and at times to suit you.

You start with Anatomy & Physiology – an on-line course which is completed in your own time, with no time limits imposed.  Follow this with courses of your choice, be it beauty or holistic therapies.   You then start to build your own portfolio of therapies to offer and you expand at your own pace.

At Como you will gain a Diploma in your chosen therapy, earn valuable CPD points, be accredited by the Guild of Beauty Therapists, be eligible for insurance, etc, etc.

In addition, we provide you with on-going help, advice and support, advertise and help promote your new business, welcome you to the Como group where you can enjoy all the benefits Como has to offer.

So why not take action now and benefit from our special offer?  Book both Anatomy & Physiology plus Body Massage Courses in April and save £50; approximately 15% discount.  You start A&P immediately and as soon as you have completed four modules we will arrange dates for your Body Massage Course.

This could be the start of the future you’ve always dreamed of.

Tuesday, 19 March 2013

Hot Stone Massage

Hello ....... brrrrr, it’s been really cold over the weekend and snow - well didn’t expect it.  

So this brings me on to think of how beautiful it is to have Hot Stone Massage.  The thought of those beautiful natural basalt stones, heated and placed on the body and used to massage is just blissful, especially warming those cold tired muscles, which are working hard to keep us warm.

A Brief History of Hot Stone Massage Therapy

Massage is considered to be among the oldest of all treatments used by man.  Chinese records dating back three thousand years documented its use.  The ancient Hindus, Persians and Egyptians used forms of massage for some ailments, and Hippocrates wrote papers recommending the use of rubbing and friction for joint and circulatory problems.  Today massage is an accepted part of many physical rehabilitation programmes and has proven beneficial for many chronic conditions, such as low-back pain, arthritis, and bursitis.  Massage helps relieve the stress and tension of everyday living.

Ancient Hot Stone Therapy

Early use and evolution of hot stone massage originated in four geographical areas: China, India, Hawaii and the mainland United States.

China - As early as 2,000 B.C., ancient Chinese healers applied warm stones to the body in the treatment of disease and muscular pain.  In China stones were heated in the sun and used for muscle and joint pains.

India - The origin of hot stone massage can be traced back 5000 years to India, with the ancient healing tradition of Ayurveda.  According to some researches, this therapy originated from healers who used rocks from the river beds and warmed them in either hot water or hot coals before using them to treat any feeling of discomfort in the body.

Mainland United States - Early Native Americans used heated stones in sweat lodges, placing them on the abdomen for the relief of cramps and other stomach pain.  In Central and South America some Mayan, Inca, Aztec and Peruvian tribes have ceremonies that involve using stones on the body.  Some of these are specially carved (fetishes), some are heated and some are cold.  Reflexology was first practiced in the Aztec temples and often involved using stones.

Looking for a way to continue her work that would overcome her damaged hands, Mary Nelson introduced LaStone therapy in 1993.  Mary’s Story in inspirational and a must read for anyone embarking on hot stone therapy.

Our course will teach you how to apply hot stones and use them in your massage routine.  I must point out, however,  that this course is not the original LaStone – as with other therapies there are vast variations and this is one of them.

The Benefits of Hot Stone Massage Therapy
  • Induces deep relaxation, the warm stones work on a physical and emotional level
  • Warm stones help ease the muscles and allow a greater intensity
  • Every stoke is equivalent to ten massage strokes
  • Increases more blood flow to the areas being worked
  • Increases the removal of waste products within the muscle fibres
  • Improves tissue repair due to the increased blood supply and oxygen
  • Reduces stress
  • Nurtures and calms with the natural healing properties of the stones
  • The stones can also be used cold
  • Stimulating
  • Good for injuries which need to be cooled
This therapy enhances the overall effect of a traditional massage tenfold whilst taking care of the therapist hands and joints.

Well what do you think - lush or what!!!

Not only is this a beautiful therapy to have but it is a wonderful treatment to give.  As therapists our hands get a hammering, we end up with all kinds of problems if we don’t take care of ourselves, which we must!!

Hot Stones was developed with that thought in mind - using the stones helps ease the trauma to our hands and, I must admit, it does.  It’s wonderful, using the stones takes the pressure off our hands and arms and it’s a must for all you budding massage therapists.  Try it - see what it’s like; maybe we could run a workshop for you to “have a go” so do let me know if it is something you would like to try.

Our course is run over a day and half, we require 12 case studies and the pre-requisite is Anatomy & Physiology and Body Massage.  The course carries 17 CPD points and the cost is £150.00

For further details on this and other courses see our website.

Bless you all, take care in this cold weather and speak soon.

Love and Reiki blessings

Wednesday, 13 March 2013


Image courtesy of marin at
Today I’d like to talk a little about Massage.  This wonderful treatment was the beginning of my journey and is, to be honest, my passion.

Massage is considered to be amongst the oldest of all treatments used by man.  Chinese records dating back three thousand years documented its use.  The ancient Hindus, Persians and Egyptians used forms of massage for some ailments, and Hippocrates wrote papers recommending the use of rubbing and friction for joint and circulatory problems.  Today massage is an accepted part of many physical rehabilitation programmes and has proven beneficial for many chronic conditions, such as low-back pain, arthritis, and bursitis.  Massage helps relieve the stress and tension of everyday living.

In the early nineteenth century a Swede, Henreich Ling (1776-1839), developed a scientific system of massage and exercise based on physiology.  We are indebted to Ling for our modern concept of Swedish massage, although many years were to pass before it was generally accepted by the medical profession as a form of treatment, and it was not until 1899 that Sir William Bennett inaugurated a Massage Department at St George’s Hospital, London.

Swedish Massage
Swedish massage is the manipulation of soft tissue for therapeutic purposes.  Massage has both a physiological and a psychological effect.  The various movements that massage exerts, either individually or in combination, affect the skin, muscle, and blood vessels, lymphatic, nervous and some of the internal organs, depending on the position and pressure of the movements involved.  In general, the pressure movements result in a speeding up of the body’s physiology, whilst slow, gentle effleurage has a soothing effect, calming the nerves and enabling the client to relax.
When effectively applied, this soothing massage quite often results in sending the client to sleep.

Holistic Massage
Holistic therapy treats the body as a "whole", which means that not only will a massage treatment pamper your physical body but it will also identify internal and external problems and provide an effective method of rebalancing.  Holistic massage is a therapeutic application of touch that is also a supportive, relaxing treatment that encourages the mind to slow down whilst energy is increased.  This treatment also lifts the spirit on an emotional level.

Benefits of Massage
Massage has both a physiological and a psychological effect.  Below is a list of the many benefits which can be achieved.
On a physical level:
Ø  Relaxes tense and overused muscles
Ø  Reduces pain and fatigue
Ø  Stimulating
Ø  Soothing
Ø  Increases blood flow in and out of the area
Ø  Increase lymphatic drainage
Ø  Improves skin conditions
Ø  Removes of waste products
Ø  Increases cellular function
Ø  Warms soft tissue
Ø  Slows heart rate
Ø  Reduces blood pressure

On a psychological level:
Ø  Reduces symptoms of stress
Ø  Relieves symptoms of depression, anxiety
Ø  Totally relaxes the mind
Ø  Invigorate, depending on client’s needs
Ø  Balances
Ø  Regenerates
Ø  Releases the natural endorphins in the brain,  our feel good factor

At Como Holistic Training we offer training this wonderful therapy, which is studied at our Centre over two and half days.  Students will have case studies to complete and revisit us for a final day for assessment and final exam.  

The course fee is £250 and carries 30.5 CPD points.  The prerequisite for this course is Anatomy and Physiology, which we also offer as an on-line distant learning course.

We also offer Introductory Courses, so you can see whether you like it.  Learn to do a back massage - it’s fun and how wonderful to learn to give your family a beautiful relaxing back massage.   The day workshop is just £45.

Have a look at our website - - if you can’t find what you’re looking for then email us; we are always happy to help.

Thank you for taking time to read my blog.

Reiki blessings