TheĀ Aftercare Academy Blog

The Aftercare Academy; where Manual Lymph Drainage and Lymphoedema therapists gain confidence and success treating postop cosmetic plastic surgery patients

A New and Unique Way to Learn: A Postoperative Therapy Training Retreat in Sunny Spain

Jun 20, 2024

Clinical learning can be challenging! Over the 20+ years since I had a complete career change, from working in Recruitment to working in Healthcare, I have found that sitting in a classroom setting and listening to lectures has been a challenge for me. And, if I'm honest, that probably goes right back to my school days.

I am not a typical note-taker. I listen to lectures and concentrate on what is being taught, then go back and read over the information given by the tutor. Then by watching a demonstration, followed by practising any practical, hands-on, that information is embedded into my brain. Then, when I have some time to sit and relax and mull over what I've learned, that information becomes further embedded into my psyche.

Over the years, I have found that learning a lot of theory, on top of the practical stuff, is quite overwhelming and exhausting. So, when I developed the Aftercare Academy, I wanted to put together a training program that would make learning easy and interesting for the students.

It has been a gradual progression to get to where we are now. First I put together the online, self-study 'Cosmetic and Plastic Surgery Recovery Treatment' training program to test out the information I wanted to share with students who wanted to increase their knowledge. With everyone who has taken this training giving excellent feedback on the content, I needed to add in the hands-on training.

But, teaching a group of students has always terrified me. Yes, I know what I'm doing and am confident in my skills when I have a patient on my treatment bed. But, sharing that knowledge and demonstrating techniques to people who are watching me closely, is pretty damn scary. So, I have kept putting it off. That old imposter syndrome has a sneaky way of creeping into your head right when you don't want it.

However, I knew I was doing myself and my training a disservice by NOT offering hands-on training. I was increasingly aware of many substandard courses that teach incorrect information and protocols to be safe and effective for such a 'delicate' patient population. With an increase in the number of people having cosmetic plastic surgery procedures, there has been an increase in the number of therapists offering 'expert' and 'specialist' treatments to postoperative patients. Unfortunately, though, many of these therapists are insufficiently trained, fast-tracking their training on the promise of becoming rich. Money has become the priority. Not the safety of the patient.

Having learned the hard way by spending my time in the treatment room and working with numerous medical and surgical specialists in various clinical settings, both in the NHS and in private practice, I know there is no comparison to the training I offer. But I wanted to offer it in a very different setting. I wanted to combine learning with rest, relaxation and good food in a special location and for students to have an experience they would never forget. And so my idea of a 'Training Retreat' was borne.

I am delighted to say it was a very special experience. By keeping the number to just ten students, it meant everyone got to know each other and special bonds were established. The Retreat was residential and all-inclusive. Students had online pre-learning to complete in advance - the theory that often takes up so much time in a classroom. So that when they came to the Retreat, they could concentrate on their hands-on skills.

It was exactly the unique experience I wanted to offer and I feel honoured to have played my part in facilitating the special bonds that were established during those wonderful ten nights.

In addition to the advanced manual skills everyone learned, each day began with a gentle meditation class, before a healthy breakfast, eaten in the sunshine. During the first week, there was a Vision Mapping workshop, where we all planned out our business and personal 'mission' for the next 90 days.  

During the second week, there was a breathwork class so students could teach their patients how to de-stress and lower their cortisol levels, having a positive impact on wound healing.

One of the favourite classes was the Movement Therapy class, where students learned self-care through dance to music. And on the day off, students could avail of a beautiful Yin Yoga class, taken on the lawn in front of the house, with the view over the Gibraltar Strait to Morocco, only a few miles away.

In addition, during free time, students had access to Holistic Massage therapy, Cranio-sacral therapy, a swimming pool, an infrared sauna and a jacuzzi.

All in all, it was not only an incredible learning experience but a rejuvenating one too!

I'm delighted to say I have booked the same venue again from 3rd to 13th May 2025. So, if you're a Manual Lymph Drainage or Lymphoedema therapist wanting to increase you knowledge and skills so you provide safe and effective treatments for your postop patients, then why not come and join the next Postoperative Therapy & Lipoedema Liposuction Training Retreat near Tarifa in southern Spain. 

You can find out more HERE



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