Are you suffering from pain and stiffness? Is it causing unnecessary burden to your everyday tasks? Pain is often an indication of underlying chronic issues that don’t resurface or cause discomfort until weeks or months later. It is common for many people to ignore it and think that it will “come good” until the next episode, causing you misery. Delaying treatments will not only prolong the recovery rate, but it will also cause the condition to become more chronic, costing you time and money in the end.
Reform Bodyworks provide services in Remedial Massage Therapy, Acupuncture, and Chinese Herbal Medicine. Some conditions are easily treated with Remedial Massage, while others may require additional modalities such as Acupuncture and Herbal Medicine. For further enquiries, please feel free to contact the clinic. Online bookings available by clicking on “make an appointment”
About Tania Siu
B App Sci (TCM) Member of AHPRA & ATMS
Dip Remedial Massage
Tania Siu is a registered practitioner in Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM), Acupuncture, and Remedial massage therapy and has been in practice for more than 13 years. She gained her qualifications at the Western Sydney University in 2004, and completed her internship in China at the Nanjing Chinese medicine hospital. She has a genuine interest in Chinese culture, food and their language, after the completion of her studies she ventured off and travelled around China for 6 months. Since being back in Australia, she has been in private practice for 10 years.
Tania’s training and interests in the musculoskeletal area and pain management began in the early 2000s. She was trained by teachings in the spectrum of myotherapy, where a majority of its theories go under the scope of trigger points, myofascial release, and structural assessments. After her completion in TCM, she has combined many of her skills from an Eastern standpoint. She is currently undergoing training using the Balance Method Acupuncture, where its philosophies stem from renowned Dr Richard Tan.
As an active person, Tania spends most of her activities at the gym, and bushwalking on the weekends. She is passionate about skiing and devotes her time and holidays in the snow every season, which she has been doing for the past 12 years.
For any further enquiries, please feel free to contact via email/mobile. Online bookings are also available.
How does it work?
Based on meridian theory, it is part of the Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) healthcare system dating back historic times, as described in “The Yellow Emperor’s Classic of Internal Medicine”. For treatments to be most effective and responsive, the meridian theory and its network plays an essential part of a practitioner’s diagnosis and selection of acupuncture points. Although there is limited scientific evidence shown for this network of pathways, it is still an important and a widely used form of diagnosis in modern day TCM practice.
The meridian theory is based on empirical experience over decades, where a precision of lines were drawn on the body, which make up a total of 14 meridians. Each of these meridians will correspond to a particular organ. For example, the Lung meridian will be selected as a treatment protocol for a patient presenting symptoms of hay fever and sneezing. In this particular scenario, points can be selected away from the actual lung area and as far as the limb, (known as distal points) which connects and treat the lung area.
What are the latest research and evidence?
The Acupuncture Evidence Project, recently published in 2017, had positive findings of 117 different health conditions treated by acupuncture. This study was over a 11 year time frame with a focus of systemic reviews and meta-analysis (the highest form of evidence available)
The findings suggest that a strong outcome in the effectiveness of acupuncture treatment falls into the following health category:
Respiratory system – allergic rhinitis
Pain management – headache (tension type and chronic), migraine, chronic lower back pain, post-operative pain, knee osteoarthritis
Chemotherapy related side effects – nausea and vomiting
Why and when would you consider acupuncture as a choice of treatment?
Acupuncture is a preferred choice of modality over its cost effectiveness and minimal side effects. When medication is taken over a long period of time, your body’s ability to adapt to it meant that its effectiveness will decrease, thus more dependence on the drug and an increase in dosage.
Acupuncture can also be an adjunctive therapy to Western medicine, particularly in an increasing number of researches in the past decade related to infertility, arthritis and gastrointestinal issues.
Strong results suggests that cost effective treatment are favourable in conditions such as allergic rhinitis, most pain related issues, menstrual cramps and mental health such as depression.
How often and how many visits?
Acute or less complicated conditions can often be resolved in 1-2 treatments. Chronic cases with underlying complications that have been ongoing for years will require some time and patience. Acupuncture has a cumulative effect and therefore frequent short treatments are required in some cases for the best results.
To get a better outcome, any health issues that have been ongoing should not be delayed and are best to be addressed as soon as possible. A treatment plan with a realistic time frame can be discussed and drawn out to monitor the progression of your health status.
What are the techniques used in this practice?
Acupuncture (both traditional and modern concepts)
Chinese Herbal Medicine
McDonald, J. & Janz, S. (2017). The Acupuncture Evidence Project: Plain English Summary. (pp. 1-5) Retrieved from http://acupuncture.org.au
Zhou, W. (2014). Effects and Mechanisms of Acupuncture Based on Principles of Meridians. Journal of Acupuncture and Meridian Studies (4):190-193
Remedial Massage refers to the manual treatment and remediation of the muscular system and its surrounding structures, such as the tendons, ligaments and connective tissues of the body. It is to assist the rehabilitation of pain and injury management. Remedial massage is also a treatment designed to balance muscle or soft tissue length, remove tension and in turn promote the return to normal joint/capsular/bone position, increase blood flow to injured areas, thus removing blockages, damaged cells, scar tissue and adhesions resulting from injury.
A remedial massage therapist undergoes training between 12-18 months to obtain an in depth understanding of anatomy, physiology and pathophysiology and assessments in order to decide on the most appropriate techniques and treatment for the patient.
The following techniques are common remedies incorporated into most remedial massage treatments:
This is the manipulation of the fascia, a connective tissue that surrounds all organs and muscles of the body. In remedial massage, it is the focus of the deep fascia which surrounds each individual muscle. The technique behind myofascial release is to lengthen the fascial structure surrounding the muscle, so that stiffness and tension can be released.
Trigger Point Therapy
It is a type of manual therapy using palpation skills to release tight bands and nodules in the muscle or its fascia. Its characteristics are often pain upon pressure, and gives rise to referred pain to other areas. They are caused by a number of factors, including overuse, repetitive strains, trauma or acute overload.
Chinese medicine sees trigger points as a type of blockage or blood stagnant in the area. A straightforward way and often the most effective method are obtained by inserting the needle into trigger points so that the most stubborn area is released through penetration.
Suction cups are used on the skin, most likely shoulder and back regions to initiate blood circulation, remove toxins and free up muscular tension. Location is also selected dependent on acupuncture meridians. The physiology behind cupping is to draw circulation of blood, lymph and toxins towards the surface of the skin so that it can eliminate through the pores. The darkness that is shown on the skin after cupping therapy depends on an individual circumstance, often the more tension or toxins accumulated in the body, the darker the colour appears after a treatment. For this reason, the common cold, fever and a chesty cough are some examples effective with cupping therapy.
Myotherapy (muscle therapy) involves the physical and structural assessment of the body. It pays particular attention to the muscles and the fascia (thin layer around the muscle), and its close association to attached ligaments and tendons. It was founded by Drs Travell & Simons based on theories which revolve around pain caused by releasing trigger points, soft tissue manipulation, stretching techniques and myofascial dry needling.
This therapy is very effective in maintaining a person’s flexibility as emphasis is based on “lengthening” contracted muscles and the fascia around it. Other combined techniques often seen in myotherapy include:
Trigger point and myofascial release – a palpatory technique that involves assessing areas of pain, often found to be a tight band or area which may cause referred pain to other parts of the body. Pressure and stretching of the fascia is applied to these areas to eliminate tightness
Dry needling – the insertion of fine acupuncture needles into selected trigger points in the body to release tightness or muscle spasms.
Hot/Cold therapy – depending on condition, hot or cold pack is applied to affected area to either relax muscle tightness or alleviate swelling.
PNF stretching (Proprioceptive neuromuscular facilitation) – a combination of isometric, passive and static stretching exercises with the assistance of the therapist to increase muscle flexibility and suppleness.
Neural stretching – stretching of nerve pathways that may be trapped by muscular tension. This can effectively alleviate the sensation of pins and needles.
Chinese herbal medicine (CHM) is a practitioner prescribed only form of remedies and is a variety of herbal health ailments derived from plants or mineral origin, often used alone or combined with several herbs known as a formula. There are two methods of taking herbal medicine.
1. internal medicine – herbal medicine are extracted and refined into pills/powder formulas and taken internally
2. external application – applied onto skin and absorbed into your system (most common for pain/injury related conditions)
Some commonly prescribed herbal formulas used in TCM include:
• Respiratory conditions – asthma, bronchitis, hayfever, wheezing, sinusitus, colds & flus
• Circulatory conditions – edema, fluid retention
• Pain/injury related conditions – bruises, swelling, arthritis, gout
• Womens health – pain related menstruation, endometriosis, PCOS, irregular cycles
Prices in herbal medicine will vary according to your condition, generally it is prescribed on a weekly/monthly period, at around $15-40 per week.
Nutritional Supplements Metagenics is a practitioner only range of products which targets a variety of health conditions. For more information please visit: www.metagenics.com.au
Online bookings available 2 weeks in advance. Please log in or sign up then select available time slots. Returning clients you may be required to sign up again if you haven’t visited for more than 1 year.
You will be given an email confirmation within 30-40 minutes. For any other bookings in advance or outside trading hours, please call the practice or use the contact form provided.
Schedule of fees
Remedial Massage 60 mins $97/45 mins $77
Acupuncture Initial 45-50 mins $75
Acupuncture follow up up to 45 mins $70
Herbal Medicine – prices vary, approximately $30-50 per week depending on condition, please call to enquire
*2% surcharge applies to AMEX
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Address: Suite 4, 98 Alfred St, Milsons Point 2061
Getting here by:
Train: Milsons Point station, exit Alfred St side, walk approximately 300m
Ferry: Luna Park wharf, walk towards North Sydney. (Currently closed for upgrades)
Parking: 2 hr metered parking along Alfred St, or limited free parking in Kirribilli