Sam Lacey Holistic Massage Therapist, Southville, Bristol
holistic healing from the heart
My path in life has been one of transformation and healing. Through working with my own physical and emotional pain I have developed a level of sensitivity, understanding and presence that allows me to connect deeply with clients of all ages and backgrounds.
I came to massage relatively late on, having first had a fast-paced, city-life as director of my own business. On the outside I was successful businesswoman with a thriving creative agency, but inside I was stressed, anxious and burnt out. By my mid-30s it became clear to me that something needed to change. My health was declining and stress levels spiraling out of control. My already chronic back-pain was becoming exacerbated and anxiety ruling my life. Holistic massage helped me to relax, connect back into myself and ultimately find my way out of a life I was tired of living. In 2011 I made a career change and I can honestly say I've never looked back.
Now, the focus of my work is helping others to experience comfort and relaxation through sensitive, nurturing touch. Holistic massage can help counter the effects of stress and anxiety as well as releasing occupational or postural tension and discomfort. I am trained with MTI in Holistic Massage Therapy with a specialism in massage for pregnancy, birth and post-natal care. My interest in women’s health has led me to Alexandra Pope and Jane Hardwicke-Collings who have both inspired me greatly with their teaching. Personal experience of working consciously with the ebb and flow of my menstrual cycle has been supported by their insight and wisdom. I honour and respect our cyclical nature through regular meditation, ritual and time on the land.
As well as offering massage, I also teach one-to-one yoga and offer group courses for beginners. My teaching is inspired by a personal practice that has been cultivated over the last ten years – having trained with many experienced teachers in the UK, Europe and India. I spent time at Sivananda Ashram in Kerala and been fortunate enough to practice Ashtanga yoga under the guidance of Dena Kingsberg, John Scott and Lucy Crawford. My personal experience of Asthma has led me to study breathwork in more depth with The Buteyko Method, which I now practice daily.
A commitment to my personal and professional development enriches my work as a therapist, teacher and mentor. I continue to widen my knowledge through ongoing CPD. I receive massage, attend regular supervision and I have also completed a number of specialist, short courses including: Sports & Remedial Massage, Chair Massage, Mobilising Massage, Working with Trauma, Thai massage and Ayurvedic Yoga Massage. To support the work I do with pregnant women, I have recently undertaken training with the Microbirth School to study how the infants immune system is established during pregnancy and childbirth. I also offer professional supervision to practitioners who are wanting to benefit from my knowledge, support and experience.
Outside of my treatment room I spend most of my time on the land. I'm an emerging herbalist, artist and writer. I'm continually deepening my knowledge and experience of the mind and the body, understanding the inner and outer relationships we choose to cultivate. The relationship to our own suffering interests me and, having experienced early separation from my mother, I am also interested in pre and perinatal psychology and how early trauma impacts the relationship we have to ourselves and others. With time, I am becoming increasingly aware of how mental and physical discomfort is arising as a symptom of our disconnected communities and our separation from the natural world. This awareness has drawn me to the regenerative culture/village building work of Jon Young and 8 Shields.
I am grateful for being able to live a creative, fluid and abundant life that is aligned with the natural cycles. And each year I make an overland migration to Spain where I write and continue to tend to my interest in wild foods and herbal medicine.
Life is ever rich.