Jack Walton | Functional Health and Performance
Whilst always having a natural desire to be active (as opposed to just keeping-fit), my curiosity for how the body worked really began on an academic level when studying Applied Biology. This then focused towards Sport and Exercise Science during my post-graduate course and the next few years involved gaining hands on and real-world experience of health, exercise and conditioning.
Training with the CHEK Institute and with Charles Poliquin has enabled me to learn from some of the best practitioners in the world. The skills and knowledge I have learned on these and other courses have lead to being able to deliver a unique service to those looking to improve their health and athletic ability.
Often the nature of these courses has been that I have found myself learning things that contradicted a lot of what I had previously been taught. This, it seems, is just par for the course as we learn more about human function and look past the media frenzies, conventional healthcare models, poor research and plain old disinformation.
Studying methods such as Metabolic Typing (R) , BioSignature Modulation and Functional Medicine has revolutionised the way I approach nutrition and lifestyle aspects of enhancing function. The body is a system of systems and each one will influence the next. The influence that this has had on my practice is that we therefore know that no matter who I’m working with, what the symptoms are and what the goal is, we must look at the body as a whole to truly achieve successful results.
Today I provide one-to-one support on nutrition, exercise and lifestyle. This is supported by a curriculum of workshops, articles, eBooks, audios and videos. I work across the North East UK, out of high quality gym facilities and two successful integrated health practices. I am proud to have been involved with the development of the ‘Northern Integrative Health Practice’ in Co. Durham, where we endeavour to build an integrative model for health care.
Although my practice includes a holistic approach that embraces the Physical, Mental and Spiritual aspects of enhancing health and performance, this site will be dedicated to everything I know and love about Exercise, Strength and Movement.
As a CHEK Exercise Coach, Poliquin Strength Coach and Bowen Technique Therapist this forms a lot of my day to day work with clients. Whilst every person is individual and requires a holistic approach to achieve their goals, the power of strength training, corrective exercise and bodywork means that movement really can be our medicine.
Whether I am working with an elite athlete, a diabetic client, someone suffering from depression or those diagnosed with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome or Irritable Bowel Syndrome............exercise and movement will form a major part of the process to enhanced health and performance.
The complete model developed at Functional Health and Performance integrates several assessment and therapy methods in order to create a program that gets to the root cause, whilst working with your strengths to achieve your health goal:
The Next Step
Integrative Approach to Healthcare
If you are interested in my thoughts on the future of healthcare and progression for athletic conditioning......please read on.....
A Paradigm Shift for the Health and Performance Industry
The current health care and sports performance paradigm is dominated by symptom-based diagnosis and treatment and follows a very conventional medicine-based methodology. This is valuable, but has inherent practical, biological and philosophical limitations. The new paradigm shift for health and performance is to integrate the success of the conventional approach together with a person-centred and root-cause approach that enhances quality of life and shifts the perspective and responsibility of health to the individual.
All too often a symptom is treated with a drug, whilst the causal factor (nutrition, lifestyle, exercise, digestion, stress, immune etc) is ignored. Whilst there is a growth in alternative and complimentary therapies, it is my opinion that unfortunately the majority of these ‘holistic therapies’ also operate ironically in a symptom-based methodology. This is a misrepresentation of the word holistic, which simply means “to view as a whole”. The 'FHP' model is driven to make a powerful change and apply all our methods for health care and sports performance in a systematic way, identifying the root cause and working with the whole individual.
An essential part of this Integrative Healthcare Model is the ability to move away from the conventional idea that there is a one-size-fits-all approach to fixing a problem. Does it serve us best to have a blanket view that we only go to see a physiotherapist for knee pain, or a colonic hydrotherapist for abdominal bloating, or a psychotherapist for stress, or surgery for weight loss? The real worldwide change in health and performance would come from finding out what causes the pain, bloating or stress and then managing that. For example knee pain has many causes, not all physical and often not caused by the knee itself. Furthermore, giving a supplement for joint health is a gross misunderstanding of human function – what happens if the problem all-along is that they can’t digest and assimilate the nutrient?
"There are many ways to skin a cat" and of course there is a definite need to work with symptoms and look at the apparent issues, but to take a step back and look at the 'whole' is essential. Here’s another example:
Let’s say that a person's particular goal is that they want to eliminate their reoccurring digestive system symptoms such as constipation, abdominal pain and bloating. They are not necessarily aware, or bothered about how they go about improving the situation, but they are most definitely aware that they want to achieve their goal and eliminate the symptoms and improve their quality of life. A typical approach may include the effective use of medication and colonic hydrotherapy to reduces/eliminate symptoms, only for it to reoccur a couple of months down the line and require another colonic and more meds. The question here is whether this will be an ongoing cycle of symptoms and treatment for as the person does not get to the root cause. For example, if it becomes clear that the cause of the pain/bloating is from poor diet, parasitic infection and inflammatory issues in the gut and emotional stress. Whilst colonic hydrotherapy may make up part of this management, it will be supported by nutritional and emotional principles. Decisions made from a position of greater strength, leading to greater results.
This highlights the importance to be focused towards our goals, values and needs (Stress, Energy, Depression, Movement, Strength, Power, Pain, Happiness, Sport, Ailments), which is surprisingly far from the conventional approach in society today.
Simplicity vs Complexity
Simple is Beautiful. The Integrative Model does not serve to create complications, extra cost, levels or time spent on ineffective methods. Building on the Foundations of human health and wellbeing simply requires us to find out which systems of the individual require strengthening. You could choose (and many do) to do this with a pot-luck or one-size-fits-all approach, or you could be empowered to embrace a person-centered, individual-specific approach that begins with assessments and addresses the root cause.
How to get the best from this site