Comprehensive and specialised physiotherapy services

PhysioWest Team Reflection

Team Reflection

I joined the PhysioWest family early this year, in January, and I was so eager to start a new career in a new industry! I started in a new role that was created to make sure that our patients and clients get the best experience, every visit – Clinic coordinator! What does my job entail, you ask? To help our team go above and beyond for our everyday patients. At the time I thought I had found the perfect place to continue to build on my personal and professional growth.

 

Just as I had completed my induction and was getting ready to take a big leap into my shiny new career, we encountered the biggest hurdle the world has seen in a while – COVID-19. This put a major pin in my plans to take on this role and run with it! As we all well and truly know, the effects of COVID-19 came in fast and hard. We had big plans for our clinics and suddenly, seemingly overnight, we had to change tactics. This forced us, like so many businesses, to take a look at how we were running. We needed to make sure, most of all, that our team and patients were safe and healthy. Then we needed to work out how we could continue to care for, educate and empower our patients during such an uncertain time. Our passionate management team spent many, many hours making sure that we would be able to continue all doing what we love. We switched to new session formats like telehealth, we had to adjust to new behaviours and restrictions. With each announcement of new restrictions, we had to pivot. We all felt the pressure to make sure that the experiences in the clinic and via digital mediums were just as warm and friendly as before COVID. Alongside this, our clinics had a downturn of visitors which meant reducing operating and working hours. The mental load that this time brought with it was immense and meant that we were all feeling out of sorts and unsure on how we would pull through.

 

With our clinics back running at full capacity I have been able to take a look back at that time with less cloudy vision and see that, while the times were uncertain, the support that we all had in our management team and each other was rock solid! While COVID-19 is still somewhat looming over us I am confident that we have bonded and grown throughout the last 5-6 months and have come out knowing that whatever we face moving forward, each one of us has the support of our teammates. Remember how I said, “At the time I thought I had found the perfect place to continue to build on my personal and professional growth”? You know what… I was right! I am so thrilled to be a part of this group of super cool humans and we can’t wait to look after you in our clinics. 

 

Signing off for now,

~ Alexandra

Post-Op Rehab

NEXT STEPS..

So you have finished your in-home rehabilitation, what’s next?

Well one thing is for sure, your rehabilitation does not stop there! The fun and exciting part of your rehabilitation starts now, as you can push beyond the boundaries of your home.

Everyone’s next step can vary based on personal preference, recommendation of your physiotherapist and approval from your surgeon. The transition can likely begin back in the clinic where you are able to have continued guidance and reassurance from a physiotherapist. Here we work with you to reevaluate your current goals and set some more functional and longer term goals based on your aims. Our Mile End and Salisbury clinic are a great foundation and further provide other great avenues for you to continue your rehabilitation with the same team.

Getting back into the gym is one great option and we recommend a supervised gym session with one of our physiotherapists, so you feel comfortable and reassured. Our physiotherapists can work with you to develop an individualised gym program based on your functional status and goals. Supervised gym sessions can somewhat mimic your guided in-home sessions, except you have awesome new and exciting equipment to work with and progress you further.

Group classes are a great compliment treatment and are a fun and social alternative to continue your care.  We offer a wide range of classes, all of which are run and supervised by a physiotherapist, so you can feel guided throughout the process. Check out Sophie’s earlier blog on classes, to help you understand more about what we offer and the overall benefits.

Hydrotherapy can initially be disregarded by some, but once a patient hits that warm water and feels the freedom of movement they are more than likely hooked. Hydrotherapy is a great option as it provides a great alternative to gym based exercises, particularly for those who may still be limited by pain and stiffness post operation. In the pool you can be guided by a physiotherapist to continue working on mobility, range of motion, strength and even balance.  

The options are endless for those continuing their care after rehabilitation in the home. Feedback from previous patients suggest that the continued care with a physiotherapist is both comforting and reassuring, especially during a process of unfamiliarity.  It is important to understand that all journeys differ and what works for some may not work for others. Therefore, your transition for continued care after in-home rehabilitation will be individualised to suit you.

Conclusion:

At PhysioWest we want your journey to run as smoothly as possible. We love to work with you in and out of the home, to help you work towards those more functional and longer term goals. If you would like some more information and discuss our options further come into the clinics to see our team at PhysioWest.  


Plantar Fasciitis

Plantar Fasciitis explained

With gyms only starting to re-open again, many of you have been shifting your focus towards beating your best running records. We’re now starting to see a lot more foot and ankle injuries in the clinic as a result, with the most common injury being plantar fasciitis.

 

What is plantar fasciitis?

Plantar fasciitis is the irritation of the plantar fascia, which attaches to your heel and the bottom of your toes. The role of the plantar fascia is to support the arch of your foot, and to absorb and distribute load throughout your foot while you are walking and running. If the plantar fascia can’t handle the load that is being placed through it, such as a sudden spike in running, then it can become irritated and possibly weakened which leads to pain.

 

What causes plantar fasciitis?

As well as an increased exercise or running load, there are a few other factors that may predispose someone to experiencing plantar fasciitis which include;

  • High BMI
  • Reduced ankle mobility
  • Foot posture abnormalities
  • Poor footwear
  • Other health conditions

 

How do we treat plantar fasciitis?

There are a number of different treatment methods that help alleviate pain from plantar fasciitis such as;

  • Rest
  • Ice
  • Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs
  • Massage
  • Stretching
  • Shoe inserts or orthotics
  • Foot taping
  • Shockwave therapy

These treatment methods are great at relieving the short-term and often high level of pain from plantar fasciitis, but it is important to include a structured exercise program if you want to continue performing exercises such as running.

Strengthening exercises involving heavy resistance have been shown to be effective in reducing and preventing pain from plantar fasciitis. The reason that heavy strength exercises help is because they increase the load tolerance of the plantar fascia, which means that you can put more stress through the plantar fascia without causing injury or irritation.

 

If you have been experiencing heel or foot pain as a result of running, make sure to use the links below to book in with our physios to get you started on an in-depth rehab program to get you back on track.

 


Injury Prevention

Does stretching help to prevent injury risk?

As a footballer having played for 20+ years, I have seen some pretty drastic changes in the way “warm-ups” are conducted. Do yourself a favour and watch Diego Maradonna warming up in his prime on YouTube – you will be treated to some stretching, dancing, smiling and him juggling a ball. I also remember getting to soccer as a young kid; the coach would always start warming up with static stretching. Following this, we might start practicing shooting to prepare us for the game. Coaches and players would never start this type of activity without an adequate warm-up these days. 

Although warm-ups have changed over time, one thing seems to be relatively constant in warm-ups at a lot of levels of sport; and that is STRETCHING. I still hear coaches at all levels of sport promoting stretching as something that will prevent injuries. This is pretty far from the truth and is inconsistent with what the current research tells us. Although stretching often feels great and shouldn’t necessarily be discouraged, research has identified that it DOES NOT reduce your risk of injury. 

When preparing for a game or training, your time would be much better spent on an active warm-up which prepares your body for movements that are specific to your sport. There are a number of complex mechanisms that are at play here, but put simply, this type of active warm-up supplies more blood to your muscles so that they are ready to function and it also activates the communication pathways between your brain and muscles. 

To have maximum injury risk reduction, adequate warm-ups, a routine structured strength/exercise program and careful management of exercise load is the best approach to reduce injury rates in Football (and all other sports for that matter). Stretching will not reduce your injury risk and for more advice to avoid injuries, use the links below to book in and come have a chat with us. 

~ Nathan Andijanto, Physiotherapist

 

REFERENCES:

Nuzzo JL 2020, ‘The Case for Retiring Flexibility as a Major Component of Physical Fitness’, Sports Medicine, vol 50, no. 5, pp. 853–870.