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Mel Cash Sports Massage Masterclass in Chamonix

Mel Cash Sports Massage Training – Chamonix

There are many great massage therapists in Chamonix Mont Blanc and based around the Alps. Any good massage practitioner wants to keep training – but accessing the major massage schools from the Alps is trickier than hopping aboard a train and a tube!  So ChamoFix Massage has been looking to Fix up some of the best massage training available – but here in our own beautiful Alpine location. The London School of Sports Massage, set up by Mel Cash, author of “Sport & Remedial Massage Therapy“, “The Pocket Atlas of the Moving Body” and “Sports Massage“, offers the highest qualification in Clinical Sport and Remedial Massage – the BTEC Diploma level 5. Mel Cash also offers bi-monthly massage training clinics for professional massage therapists at the London School. With the plethora of action sports and sports people in the valley of Chamonix Mont Blanc, from skiing and snowboarding to high mountain multi-pitch climbing, downhill mountain biking, trail running, road biking and triathlons – this sort of CPD massage training would be rather useful for Chamonix massage therapists and thus the greater Chamonix community at large!

So, as massage therapists passionate about learning more and more to offer better and better massage treatments, ChamoFix Massage has invited Mel Cash, the original Sports Massage Master and elite-athlete Masseur over to our beautiful Chamonix valley… for a three day Sports Massage Masterclass – Mon 3rd, Tues 4th and Wed 5th May 2010.

While Chamonix has access to one of the world’s leading sports massage masters, we are also putting on a 10euro evening lecture (Monday 3rd May 2010) for anyone interested in helping our bodies perform better and last longer! The Mel Cash lecture will be about: “Posture and Core-Stability – what does it mean and why is it important?”

Three Day Sports Massage Master Class with Mel Cash

Reserved for Qualified Massage Therapists  (minimum ITEC A&P and Holistic Massage Level 3 or equivalent.), the three-day sports massage course is limited to 12 spaces, so book early to avoid disappointment!

Course Outline

Although the workshops can be taken separately it is hoped that most therapists will attend all three. As well as the techniques mentioned here Mel will talk about the latest understanding of musculoskeletal anatomy and try to answer any clinical concerns you have. The program is flexible and aims  to cover any relevant subject that arises.

Day 1 (Mon 3rd May 2010):
Sports Massage Techniques: Focusing on best practice techniques, good working posture through the efficient use of body-weight and working with safe hand, arm and elbow techniques. Mel Cash’s massage training will also include a variety of side-lying and other treatment positions.

Day 2 (Tue 4th May 2010):
Soft Tissue Release: A fast and effective technique to release tension in non-acute conditions. It is incredibly versatile and can be applied in a wide variety of clinical and out-door situation.

Day 3 (Wed 5th May 2010)
Muscle Energy Techniques: Day 3 will focus on the most common of the PIR (Post Isometric Relaxation) techniques. PIR can be used to safely and effectively restore normal tissue length in areas of chronic soft tissue tension.

Mon 3rd May 2010 (10am – 5pm)
Mon 3rd May 2010 (Evening lecture 7.30-9.45pm)
Tues 4th May 2010 (10am – 5pm)
Wed 5th May 2010 (10am – 5pm)

INSTED French language school
, 285 Rue des Allobroges (next to Lamy), Chamonix Mont Blanc – 2 minute walk from Chamonix Train Station

295 euros (or 275 pounds sterling) for 3 day course
120 euros (or 115 pounds sterling) per day

Evening lecture included for all 3-day course participants / 10e entry fee for all others.

Book a place
To book a place on the three day Sports Massage Masterclass with Mel Cash, in Chamonix Mont Blanc, please email revive@chamofix.com and we’ll send you back a booking form and payment details (cheque, cash or BACS)

If you would like to book accommodation, we can recommend Le Vert Hotel as great value, lovely location, and a 20 minute walk into town.


Amazing New Massage Wax for Chamonix

Here at ChamoFix we are delighted to have sourced the wonderfully delectable Tui Balmes & Waxes from New Zealand to be used for therapeutic massage treatments in Chamonix, Argentiere, Vallorcine and across the Mont Blanc Massif! Tui Massage Waxes are brilliant, and everyone in the Chamonix Valley deserves to get a pure Tui Massage Fix!

Tui Balmes & Waxes offer a range of a natural health care that is gently effective, nourishing and healing. A superb alternative to traditional massage oils, Tui massage waxes leave the massage client feeling delightfully moisturized rather than “oily” after a massage treatment.

Argentiere based massage therapist, Ruth Martin, reckons she was a convert when a fellow masseuse gave her a massage treatment with the Tui Lavender Massage & Body Wax. She had to get some for herself and get some for Chamonix! While a little goes a long way, the texture of the wax under the warmth of a Swedish massage feels amazing. It’s as lovely and relaxing for the client as it is practical for the massage practitioner.

Made in a small New Zealand community, , Tui Balmes and Waxes are nourishing and non-allergenic and ethically produced from organic beeswax, Propolis, pure vegetable oils, essential oils and natural vitamin E anti oxidizing extracts. The ingredients used in Tui Balmes & Waxes are either whole substances occurring in nature or directly extracted from a whole, natural source. Tui Balmes and Waxes are guaranteed free from any artificial or chemical additives, animal testing or genetic engineering.

New Zealand’s Tui Bee Balme Co-operative in Wainui Bay have been promoting and providing natural therapies and natural alternatives to toxic modern lifestyles for over 17 years.

To add to the (hopefully good) karma of importing Tui Balmes & Waxes for the ultimate Chamonix massage fix, apparently the profits earned from Tui’s supreme massage medium are donated to charities, including the Tui Spiritual & Educational Trust, a registered charity dedicated to promoting and sustaining more healthy communities in New Zealand.


Einstein’s Advice

“There are moments when one feels free from one’s own identification with human limitations and inadequacies. At such moments one imagines that one stands on some spot of a small planet, gazing in amazement at the cold yet profoundly moving beauty of the eternal, the unfathomable; life and death flow into one, and there is neither evolution nor destiny; only Being.” – Albert Einstein

Cool.. I’ve just added ChamoFix to SNOmobi… a mobile phone resort directory.


Chamonix Massage Fix – inter season special

If you are a local in Chamonix Mont Blanc, then inter-season is your chance to RE-ENERGISE for the forthcoming winter 2009/10 season. Between the dates of 9th October and 12th November 2009, ChamoFix offers a Chamonix Massage Fix “three hours for the price of two hours”.  So whatever you pay for two hourly sessions of Holistic / Swedish Massage, Hot Stones Massage or Deep Tissue Therapeutic Massage, you’ll get a third hour thrown in. These need to be taken between 9th October and 12th November.. That’s good news for you, as three whole hours of a ChamoFix Massage Fix will have you feeling relaxed, rejuvenated and super motivated for your winter preparations.

Cattle battle it out in Argentiere Tennis Courts

Well Argentiere is mellow with the still Autumnal chill that makes the Chamonix Valley seem so peaceful during interseason, with the added benefit of reduced cars up and down Argentiere’s main street.

Still there’s always something happening in the mountains, or else plenty to do. Yesterday was spent watching big black (and brown) be-horned cattle battling in out in Argentiere’s tennis courts… using their heads and horns rather than rackets… in the Combat des Reines. It seemed like the whole of the Chamonix Valley had come to watch the lovely mooing ladies strut their stuff daintily around a specially constructed sandy arena, then paw the ground intensively,  then butt heads powerfully, until a judge called out the winners and the losers. The losing cows seemed quite happy with their lot, content with a tickle on the chin and a pat on the flank from the stewards. Later in the evening, many of the cattle had to march up through Argentiere village and several cow fights were reported outside the Office Bar, Argentiere!

Bravo to finishers of the Aiguilles Rouges – Epic Endurance Race

In between the heats and the finals we managed to drive down to Les Houches to watch our friends and family finish the Aiguille Rouges mountain race. They’d started in Vallorcine at 5am and covered 51km (3300m climb). Epic effort. ChamoFix’s Masseuse, Ruth, was pleased to have massaged one successful participant the night before the event, gently loosening up any tensions in the calf, quadriceps and hamstring muscles. Next year’s Aiguilles Rouges endurance race, if I’m not racing it, then ChamoFix hopes to volunteer to massage at the finish line.


Fix your IT Band

For those who don’t stretch regularly, chances are, if you’ve been hiking, biking, running and riding up and down the mountains trails of Chamonix, you will, whether you realise it or not, have an Iliotibial Band that’s so tight it’ll be pulling your toes out when you lie on your back. This is how I  immediately notice a tight IT Band before even starting the massage on skier clients on holiday or at the start of the season. A taught IT Band can cause knee pain and generally lessens your flexibility when performing sports.

While a sports massage will help, and self massaging up your legs in a warm arnica-infused or salt bath is an excellent way of loosening the muscles and shifting lactic acid, here’s a good everyday stretch for the IT Band:

  • Sit tall with legs stretched out in front of you
  • Bend the right knee and place the right foot on the ground to the left side of the left knee
  • Turn your shoulders so that you are facing to the right
  • Use your left arm against your right knee to help ease you further round
  • Use your right arm on the floor for support
  • You will feel the stretch along the length of the spine and in the muscles around the right hip

The iliotibial band stretch is part of an excellent list of stretches found online at Brian Mac personal trainer website.

Keep an eye out on the ChamoFix website for more details about Chamonix’s yoga classes and advice from the fitness and flexibility gurus based in Chamonix!


Four Easy Steps to Energy FIX & Rejuvenation

After a Fix of adrenaline (through exhilaration ideally rather than fear), your energy levels will be pumped!

After a Fix of adrenaline, your energy levels will be pumped!

In the Chamonix Valley, there’s plenty of extreme action, opportunities for life changing feats of human guts and endurance, plus alot of work to be done to sustain a lifestyle in the mountains and great outdoors. Often the mind is willing but the body is basically exhausted.

ChamoFix recommends four easy ways to keep ahead of the game and feel that buzz of health and general well being… not just through massage, though massage, of course, is one of the steps!


I’ve just had the best week ever last week, acheived loads more than normal and hardly feeling tired at all. The difference to usual: I just realised for the first time in months I’ve been making the effort to pack in the vegetables… and organic ones from the new shop down the valley in Les Houches! If you like your organic produce, try Chamonix’s organic farmers’ market in Chamonix Sud on Tuesdays 0830 – 1300h.

2. ST R  E   T    C     H   . .   .   .   . Use Chamonix’s Yoga Sessions

While it is sometimes the last thing you feel like after a long hike or climb, simple and *gentle* stretching of muscles and myofascia is a really important aid to quick recovery and rejuvenation of muscle power.

Muscle fibres shorten during exercise, tension and general usage, but in order to be at their most powerful and effective, muscle fibres need to be at their longest. You can help this by performing long stretches with each muscle group  (gently, slow and NOT to the point of pain). And it’s really motivating to see how those people who practice regular yoga have bodies that respond best to massage.  They are less likely to “seize up”.

Keep an eye out on the ChamoFix website for more details about Chamonix’s yoga classes. And to get started at your desk… check out this good list of static stretches at Brian Mac personal trainer website.

3. Breathe … breathe in Chamonix’s high mountain air.. but all the time

fresh mountain air - Chamonix Mont Blanc

fresh mountain air - Chamonix Mont Blanc

There’s all sorts of literature and theories about the best way to breathe while doing sports… but my osteopath in Chamonix showed me a basic breathing technique that should be used all the time.. at work, rest or high-octane play. “Belly breathing” is the term for it. Typically (especially amongst computer/ desk bound generations) we tend to breathe short, shallow breaths, only accessing the top of our lungs. Your chest raises but everything below that doesn’t seem to move. By trying to fill your belly with air when you breathe, you find you push your diaphram down lower, which brings in loads more oxygen. The added benefit is that various organs below your diaphram are shifted about a bit, which helps make space for clearing away stagnant waste materials to the lymphatic system. Breathing deeply not only give you more oxygen for extra power during exercise, but as the body relies on movement for elimation of toxins, deep (belly) breathing helps move the internal organs. A massage you give yourself with every breathe!

4. Adrenaline Fix! & Rehydration!

There’s nothing like a dose of adrenaline or exhilaration to get you motivated for more. Without always pummeling yourself, it’s simply good to keep fit so that those adrenaline-filled moments either flying in the sky or careering down a mountain pass end up rejuvenating you and emptying your head for reboot!

But for ultimate sports performance and recovery, not to mention work and social stamina, it’s crucial to keep rehydrated before, during and after, sports. If you can keep hydrated with the occasional adrenaline rush, then that energy FIX will stay with you for longer.