First up in our series of Meet the Team interviews is Ally Purchon, a popular and highly qualified traditional acupuncturist, who treats clients at Lifeways as well as at clinics in Warwickshire and London. As she explains here, Ally is a long-standing member of the Lifeways team - keep reading to find out a surprising fact about her youthful stint as a racing driver!
Q: Hi Ally, would you please tell us about the range of therapeutic services that you offer.
My main therapy is Traditional Five Element Acupuncture, although I also offer Western Medical Trigger Point Acupuncture for pain, Cupping, Moxibustion to turn breech babies and pregnancy induction.
Q: Who might these services help?
I treat a huge range of conditions, the majority of my patients present with depression, stress, anxiety and insomnia, or musculoskeletal pain, but over the years I have treated a very varied range of conditions, many of which have become chronic. Most of the GPS in Stratford Upon Avon are aware of me and I work alongside the doctors at Rother House.
Q: How long have you been working as a therapist and how many people do you estimate you have helped in this time?
I qualified in 2007 and started working at Lifeways then. I estimate that I have treated over 2,500 people since. I hope I have helped them all! My longest running patient has had over 130 treatments and very many people see me regularly to maintain their equilibrium.
Q: What first inspired you in this form of therapy – was there any personal experience that led you to it?
I was a hotel manager for 20 years, but when pregnant with my first child suffered dreadful morning sickness. My inspired GP, Dr Nigel Wood, referred me for acupuncture. I was so impressed I retrained and then worked with Dr Wood and Dr Crowfoot at Arden Medical Centre for my first seven years.
Q: What might people expect if they book an appointment with you?
Potential patients should expect me to take a full history, engage with their situation, treat them to the very best of my ability, but know my limits and refer them into another medical professional if need be. A fear of needles should not put anyone off - I can use acupressure as an alternative.
Q: What do you like doing in your free time?
I provide acupuncture to the Royal Shakespeare Company and absolutely love to visit the theatres in Stratford to enjoy their top class productions.
I love my weekly Pilates class with Paula at Lifeways and the lovely people I have met there.
I also sail with my husband at weekends and enjoy walking my dogs.
Q: Tell us something unexpected about yourself.
I competed in a vintage racing car in my 20s and was Ladies Champion in 1979, 1980 and 1981 – I was the only woman racing.
Q: Tell us something that would make us smile about your work?
I am needle phobic!
To read more about Ally's work at Lifeways, including contact details click here http://www.lifewaystherapycentre.com/therapists/acupuncture/16-therapists/accupuncture/87-ally-purchon