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How massage can help teachers avoid burnout

by Jane McClurg 6th April 2017

 Chalk

 

Teachers are some of our most regular clients and it’s not hard to see why. Inspiring our future generations can be exhausting work ...I know I’m exhausted after a day at home with my 3 year old! I’m always so in awe of the day-care teachers when I pick my son up from day-care. Then of course the teachers of older children from primary, intermediate and college who have a huge task daily in managing larger and larger classroom sizes, variety of behaviours at the same time as being creative and inspiring.

Then there is the marking in the “holidays” and the after school activities and other school events such as fundraising....so they are constantly giving, giving, giving!
Sometimes when you are really good at giving, receiving is difficult...but a
good place to start is by receiving a massage as it can really help reduce stress levels and return feelings of well-being.

Best bits of massage for teachers

  • You don’t have to talk to anyone...just tune out!
  • Reducing muscle tension from standing in front of a class all day...in particular lower back pain and tired legs.
  • Quieten your mind...although some clients find they get their To Do List organised in their head which can be a win win.
  • Postural awareness...do you slouch at your desk too? (It’s not just the students!) Massage brings awareness to your body that can improve posture (not to mention releasing tight muscles and giving you exercises to strengthen and stretch the right muscles.
  • Computer / “Marking” shoulder...ouch! Don’t let this one worsen, get on top of that niggling pain in your shoulder now! Once better...keep it maintained with regular massage.

 

Other tips

  • Wear comfortable shoes this will assist in reducing calf and hamstring tightness, and lower back issues.
  • Learn mindfulness or meditation...Headspace is a great app to start with.
  • Try essential oils either at home or even in the class room...basil and rosemary for alertness and mental clarity.
     
  • 7 minute workout App is a great quick workout you can do at home or generally staying fit or try yoga.
  • Good nutrition; especially breakfast...check out our resident nutritionist Mikki Williden’s website for inspiration and great advice such as have some protein for breakfast to keep you going.
  • Find a mentor or a support person that understands your stresses as a teacher.

 

As Nick Halsman-Smith from the Nurturing Schools Network says “Teachers need to acknowledge the impact of their wellbeing on pupils and prioritise setting time aside for themselves, without feeling guilty. When you are on an aeroplane, flight attendants instruct travellers to put on their own oxygen mask before helping others in an emergency, and this analogy is applicable to teacher wellbeing.”

So many of us these days put others first when we should be taking care of ourselves so we can look after those we care about and those we teach in a better more positive way.

Massage is a fantastic tool for this as it is scheduled time-out for you and at the same time it can also help to reduce any physical pain as well as restore your energy reserves.


So share this if you know a teacher...they will thank you for it!

 

 

 References:

 

https://www.edutopia.org/blog/ten-tips-to-avoid-teacher-burnout-ben-johnson

http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/nick-haismansmith/teacher-wellbeing_b_15335608.html

 

 

 

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