Take a hike, low back pain!

Quadratus lumborum, a deep abdominal muscle that moves and stabilizes the torso, can contribute to low back pain.

Body Poets Massage Therapy

Muscle of the Month: Quadratus Lumborum – the hip hiker

Low back pain: we’ve all experienced it at least once in our lives. That nagging stiffness, inability to move, and dull ache can put the best of us in a bad mood, or worse, at home in bed. Low back pain can be cause by MANY factors. Muscle, joint, and fascial imbalances all tend to play a large role; one major muscle that can cause low back pain is the quadratus lumborum.

QL - Ottawa massage blogNo, it’s not a Harry Potter magic spell. The quadratus lumborum, or QL, is one of your low back muscles that is tucked very neatly between your hip and the last rib. With one on each side of the spine, the QL, especially when tight, can affect many areas of the body.

Actions: When one QL contracts: laterally flex torso, elevate hip (hip hike).  When both…

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The Thigh Who Loved Me

While watching the 23rd Olympic Games, you’ll notice the amazing quadriceps muscles of the winter athletes. For all of us, the quads are essential to movement, but thigh and knee pain can be caused by dysfunction in any of the four quadriceps muscles. This post looks at some of the reasons for this pain and ways to restore function.

Body Poets Massage Therapy

Muscle of the Month: Quadriceps

Quads - ottawa massage blog

The quadriceps (‘quads’) are the beautiful muscles that make up the fronts of your thighs. They are a group of four muscles that, working together, help flex (bend) the hip and extend (straighten) the knee. Only one of the quad muscles actually flexes the hip, while all four of them help stabilize and extend the knee. The more support and strength the knee has, the less likely it is to be prone to injury; so it is important to keep the quads strong and healthy to ensure a healthy knee joint later in life.

Rectus Femoris: This one muscle moves two joints: hip and knee

Actions – Flexes the hip, extends the knee

Common pain culprits – excessive stair climbing, running

The rectus femoris is the longest of the four quad muscles and is the only one to cross over two joints: hip and…

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How to: Stretch Pirformis

Maybe you’ve spent more time sitting around over the past few weeks, or maybe you’ve been out on the slopes or the rink. Either way, you may find yourself feeling stiff or tight around the low back, hips, or buttocks. And if you’ve been driving more than usual, some sciatic-type symptoms might be showing up. One of these piriformis stretches may be just what you need to ease some of that discomfort. Your RMT can also suggest rolling and other exercises or treatment that can get down into whatever muscle tension is cramping your style.

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Piriformis - Ottawa Massage BlogOne of the more commonly tight muscles, the piriformis, can be a real pain in your …. well, you know. But stretching it out regularly will help reduce pain and discomfort in your … well, you know. The following stretches aren’t just for the piriformis though. They also help with the gluteus minimus and other external rotators of the hip (there are five others!).

Some indications that you may need to stretch your external hip rotators are:

  • sciatic pain
  • SI joint pain
  • stiffness in the hips
  • postural imbalances such as being ‘duck-footed’ (toes pointing out) or weight bearing on one leg (hip jutting out)

Without further ado, here are some stretches and modifications for the external hip rotators. Find one that best suits your flexibility level.

Pigeon Pose: Kneeling on all 4s, bring the right knee forward to the right wrist. Let the right knee sink out toward the ground…

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Top Choice Awards 2018: Please vote for us!

We’ve been nominated by you, our clients, for the third year in a row as top massage clinic in Ottawa!

Many of you threw your support behind us two years ago and we were thrilled to be voted Ottawa’s Top Massage Therapist in 2016.

Vote Now

Voting has opened for the 2018 Top Choice Awards, and we hope we might have your vote as top massage clinic again this year!

Top Choice Award Nominee 2018

Thank you as always for your continued support and patronage,

The Body Poets Massage Therapy team

Gut Feelings – The benefits of abdominal massage

Overall fitness includes abdominal muscle and digestive health. Sarah Million, RMT explains why.

Body Poets Massage Therapy

By: Sarah Million, RMT

Sarah is a believer in whole body health. She treats everything from bellowing bellies, maddened muscles, and nervy nervous systems to help attain a body-wide wellness.


Would you let a stranger rub your belly?

What about a trained professional? In my role as a registered massage therapist I can ease muscle pain, mobilize joints, assist fluid flow, mobilise connective tissue, and yes, I am trained and qualified to provide abdominal massage.

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Put your best feet forward! Foot health and massage therapy

By: Jessica Zatylny-Koch, RPN, RMT

Jessica is a registered practical nurse and registered massage therapist with advanced training in foot and leg care. In her mobile foot-care practice and as a massage therapist, Jessica has witnessed how improved foot health contributes to better health for the whole body.


Feet are one area of the body that often gets neglected!

This could be because they are the furthest things from our brains or possibly because they are hidden throughout the day. They are, however, extremely important not only for ambulation and bringing us everywhere we need to go, but for the overall health of our body. Continue reading

Gut Feelings – The benefits of abdominal massage

By: Sarah Million, RMT

Sarah is a believer in whole body health. She treats everything from bellowing bellies, maddened muscles, and nervy nervous systems to help attain a body-wide wellness.


Would you let a stranger rub your belly?

What about a trained professional? In my role as a registered massage therapist I can ease muscle pain, mobilize joints, assist fluid flow, mobilise connective tissue, and yes, I am trained and qualified to provide abdominal massage. Continue reading