If you’ve ever been to the Northern College of Acupuncture (NCA), then there’s a good chance you might have bumped into Jacky Keller and Margaret Cocks (pictured).

Based in Micklegate, York, the College celebrates its 30th birthday this year, and sisters-in-law Jacky and Margaret have been attending its in-house acupuncture clinic for almost as long as it’s been in existence.

The prestigious teaching college was founded in 1988 by Professor Hugh MacPherson and Nicholas Haines, and is now nationally, and internationally, recognised as one of the world’s leading institutions in the field of Traditional Chinese Medicine.

Over 30 students, from across the UK, pass through the NCA’s doors each year as BSc, qualified acupuncturists; alongside 25 students on its Nutrition Masters programme, which was added in 2008.  Additionally, the College also offers online Masters courses for complementary healthcare practitioners, globally.

Jacky has been visiting the College’s student clinic for an incredible 25 years now, with Margaret not far behind after first attending a mere 16 years ago!  The pair originally sought help at the College for various health issues, but now believe their regular acupuncture sessions helps to keep them well, generally.

Jacky explains “I first heard about the College whilst listening to Radio York, and Hugh McPherson, the then Principal, was talking about acupuncture. My mum had passed away in the previous month; I had nursed her for a long time and was at a very low ebb physically, mentally and emotionally – so I thought I’d give it a go.

“I went twice a week initially, and the experience, right from the start, has always been fantastic. Everyone is so nice, kind and professional and I’ve always been happy with the treatment I’ve had. Initially it helped me to recover from a difficult time. Now I go weekly to help with my arthritis, and some other conditions, and I know I wouldn’t be as well as I am if I didn’t go.”

Margaret has a similar story, with a traumatic health experience prompting her to investigate acupuncture treatment at the College.  Now though she is a fortnightly visitor, and the Acomb resident is convinced her regular needling sessions are key to her maintaining a good level of holistic health.

“I had major brain surgery 16 years ago, which left me needing help for balance, headaches, and co-ordination,” revealed Margaret.  “Jacky took me along and I’ve been going ever since.  I’ve actually had three major operations since first going, and I go along now for pain management, and general maintenance.

“I can’t say enough good about it; the College staff are amazing, and the acupuncture definitely helps me to keep, and stay, well.  Recently, I went away on holiday and missed two appointments, and I really knew about it when I got back.”

Both ladies talk about how helping the students is a factor in the longevity of their time at the teaching clinic and say: “We both really like being able to help the students during their training, and seeing so many of them become fully qualified practitioners is as important to us as the treatment we are receiving.”

The College acupuncture clinic is open Monday to Saturday, with all members of the public welcome to book an appointment.  Patients are treated by a team of students, under the supervision of one of the NCA’s clinical supervisors, and people attend with a variety of conditions including headaches and migraines, IBS, stress, insomnia, back pain, musculo-skeletal conditions, arthritis and many more.

“I’d say to any prospective patients to not be afraid and to give acupuncture a chance,” concluded Jacky.  “It’s painless, and everybody at the College is so caring, understanding and will do everything they can to help you.”

To find out more about the various health clinics at the NCA – please visit: https://chinese-medicine.co.uk/the-clinics/all-clinics or call 01904 343305

If you’re interested in studying acupuncture, call Denise on 01904 343309, or take a look at the NCA website: https://chinese-medicine.co.uk/

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