On a one to one basis Joan is able to work with people who have special needs to
give them a programme to suit their disabilities and capabilities.
No matter how challenging, there is a way. Movement is life.
Here is a testimonial from a gentleman who found himself on a lonely journey (his
words). John had some difficult mountains to climb and Joan is so pleased that she
was able to help him on his way.
His lonely journey has transformed into a more positive and determined mission to
improve his health.
John will tell you his story:
I became ill in 2002 at the age of 58 with Guillan Barre syndrome and pneumonia which
left me totally paralysed and in Intensive Care on life support for almost 3 weeks.
During this period I was given a tracheotomy under anesthetic. After that I was admitted
to a High Dependency Unit where I spent a further 10 days before finally going into
an Acute Medicine ward. In total I was in hospital for more than 7 months.
Prior to this I had an active job and was generally very fit and strong.
Following my discharge from hospital I returned home, still in a very poorly state.
I then attended a rehabilitation unit twice a week for physiotherapy and continued
with exercises mainly for my hands at home.
Over the next 3 years I had very limited physical range and suffered from anxiety,
chronic fatigue and chronic weakness. I felt I was on a lonely journey.
In 2005 a Social worker felt that I should try Pilates as a form of exercise which
would be beneficial to me in regaining mobility, core strength and wellbeing and
she suggested Joan Harrison who was a highly qualified local Pilates Instructor.
She contacted Joan and a weekly one to one session was arranged.
I saw Joan for about 18 months and at the start I found it quite challenging and
it took me 3 or 4 sessions to get used to co-ordination and breathing techniques.
During this time, with the help of Joan’s tuition I slowly improved with my Pilates
lessons. Joan also gave me an exercise programme which included Tai Chi movements,
relaxation and meditation to work on at home.
At the end of this period I had to have an operation for an unrelated condition which
took me a year to recover from. This was unfortunate because I felt I had reached
an optimum level of recovery at that stage.
On returning to Joan’s programme in summer of 2008 I started to get back on track
with the help of the Pilates Reformer and Joan also began to apply the Bowen technique
which I found most helpful.
Since I started the programme with Joan she has been an excellent trainer and, with
all the disciplines we have developed and worked on together, I leave her sessions
feeling more positive and optimistic.
She has been a patient, inspiring and caring tutor and I now feel so much better
as a result of her help.
Thanks for all you’ve done Joan and I look forward to further progress in the future.