Comprehensive and specialised physiotherapy services

The Unexpected Challenge

Think Tai Chi is too easy…think again!

 

Tai Chi is often misinterpreted as being an exercise for older people only.

Not true! It is great for everyone.

In fact, a session of Tai Chi is the equivalent to 30mins of gentle cycling or gentle gymnastics.

 

There are many forms of Tai Chi, PhysioWest focus on ‘Tai Chi for Health’ which is aimed at improving your strength and endurance, posture and breathing pattern. It also centres around improving your coordination, flexibility and balance. So why not wake up with us on a Wednesday morning?

 

Picture this …You move your weight into your right foot then you lift your left heel up off the ground. You engage through your tummy, breathe in then breathe out as you lift your foot. You hold that left foot up in the air and hear the count of “10… 9… 8…” as you keep holding. Your right leg starts to quiver. You remember you are tensing your shoulders, so you consciously relax your shoulders and stop clenching your face.  You are asked to bend your right leg a little more, which will make it easier to balance, but also makes your right leg work hard!

 

After your leg exercises in standing, you are encouraged to take a seat. But don’t put your feet up and relax, there is still more to do! We aren’t just sitting down so you can take it easy. We are sitting down to mimic the position you will be in later that day when you are sitting at your office desk, driving, eating dinner or watching television this evening. You will be asked to focus on your breathing and experiment with getting a bit more flexibility in your mid back as you hold a series of poses.

 

You will be given homework – exercises you can easily repeat later that day for lasting benefits.

 

Are you an

  • office worker who sits ALL day? This class is perfect. Before long you will be doing your chin tucks as your write emails without even knowing it.
  • tradie who spends more time standing at the work bench? Don’t worry, you will have standing exercises as well; this might alleviate any aches or pains you experience as the day drags on.
  • mum, dad, aunty, uncle, brother, sister or grandparent who spends time sitting on the floor with your kids? Of course there are easy mat exercises you can take home with you as well.

 

See we told you it was great for everyone!

Does this sound like a class that might interest you?

A class that will make you work?

This class will help to improve your posture, flexibility, coordination and strength.

Join us for 7.15am Stretch and Tai Chi with Laura Wednesday mornings. Book now online or by calling 8352 3582.

Physio West | Physiotherapy, exercise therapy and massage services in Adelaide, South Australia.

Published by Laura Hundertmark

Physiotherapist, PhysioWest

 

Laura’s Handy Hints for Moving House, Pain-free!

Moving house can be a rollercoaster; exciting but physically and emotionally draining. I recently bought a house and did the all-important move last weekend. Whether you have done it once or 20 times, it can be tough! I wanted to share with you my top tips for avoiding injury and taking care of yourself when moving house.

1. Activate your core

When you lift a box, a bag or a bit of furniture: use your core and breathe.

You may have heard the term “turn on your core” or “use your TA”. When physio’s say this, we are basically asking you to recruit the deep muscles that support your spine. You can do this by gently tensing your lower tummy. It may feel weird if you haven’t done this before; come see us if you would like a hand with getting this muscle working. After having a lot of practice myself, it becomes second nature over time. When I was tiring there were definitely a couple of times I forgot to do it – and I knew about it afterwards.

2. Breathe

If you hold your breath, it is really hard to activate your core. So even if you aren’t sure if you are turning on your core muscle correctly, then make sure you breathe as you move. For example, when I was helping my partner lift our desk and we were standing at each end of the desk, I would breathe in first then breathe out as I lifted up the desk.

3. Listen to your body

It’s simple. If your body is quivering at the thought of lifting that 3 seater sofa – don’t do it! I knew that my move had to be completed in a weekend and we would be pushed for time, so my partner and I carried all the small things and we hired a removalist truck to move the bigger furniture.

If you have lots of time, the right equipment (big cars, sack trucks) and you are confident in your physical condition, you might not need to hire a removalist. But if you are really busy, time and resource poor, you should acknowledge that and get the help where you need it.

4. Pack smarter: Think outside the box

It doesn’t all have to be in boxes; and the boxes definitely don’t have to be big. Sometimes it’s better to get lots of small boxes and bags (the canvas reusable ones you get when grocery shopping are fantastic) to put your things in so when you have to move them, you can carry smaller loads and avoid over straining.

5. Do things when you are at your peak

When do you function best? I’m a morning person (hence why I run a 7.15am Stretch & TaiChi class!). Therefore, I woke up really early on Saturday morning and started loading my car. When I try and do physical work late at night, I don’t think about breathing or using my core as I’m just too tired. But I know some night owls who are more mentally alert when the sun goes down. So plan your moving period and get the work in when you will be the most efficient.

6. Congratulate yourself

“Yes we’re in, but maybe I’ll just sort that box of beach towels and grandma’s old cutlery set before I go to bed…” – NO, you won’t. It was my lovely partner who had to reinforce to me; there is a time to stop. There’s no point adding things to your immediate ‘to do’ list when you are tired. When you’re finished the initial move, give yourself a pat on the back. You should congratulate yourself! Why not book yourself a massage with Alan, just as a little reward and w well done.

If you would like more tips on lifting or manual handling in general, please make an appointment with me and I would love to help you; We are here to help make your life easier!

 

Physio West | Physiotherapy, exercise therapy and massage services in Adelaide, South Australia.

Laura Hundertmark, Physiotherapist

Concussion in sport – who should I see?

Concussion

Not a topic we often like to talk about but in reality it happens more than you think

AND you don’t have to be knocked unconscious to suffer a concussion.

 

I’m sure we have all cringed watching the footy when there is a big clash of players tackling in a pack or going up for a courageous mark. There have been some sickening blows televised over the years, but what about the ones that go un-noticed?

 

Approximately one third of athletes who play contact sports may have had a previously undiagnosed concussion. Whether it was a ball to the head, a knock on the ground, or a heavy bump, concussions can be easily missed. Given their seriousness, managing them appropriately is vital.

 

Obvious signs can be picked up in the moment, such as a loss of consciousness, loss of balance, and confusion. Despite this, not all concussions will present this way, and many can often be more subtle symptoms.

These include:

  • Mood swings,
  • fogginess,
  • neck pain and
  • nausea (along with a list of other symptoms) can also indicate concussion.

 

No concussion should be taken lightly, as they all have potential of a more significant brain trauma – scary I know. Similar to pregnancy, because you are 10 weeks pregnant doesn’t make you “a little pregnant”. You are either pregnant or not. No ifs or buts.  You can’t just be a little concussed, you either are or you aren’t.

 

Youngsters are particularly important, as their growing brains need more time to recover. Any child or adolescent under the age of 18 should wait at least 3 weeks before medical clearance and return to sport after being diagnosed with concussion.

 

A thorough assessment should be carried out to establish a baseline of your concussion as soon as possible, to help outline the most appropriate management. A gradual return to sport program is then implemented, to ensure a safe return once symptoms have cleared.

 

So if you or your child have copped a head knock on the weekend and are feeling a bit off, speak with one of our physiotherapists today. We take the time to walk you through an assessment, and refer on to a medical doctor or emergency department where appropriate.

Physio West | Physiotherapy, exercise therapy and massage services in Adelaide, South Australia.

Published by: Matt Nowosilskyj

Physiotherapist, PhysioWest

 

 

Make the most out of your movement

You get out of bed, stumble around the house getting ready for work and making a coffee. When you sit in the car or the train you might be a little drowsy still, leaning your head to the side to remember that glorious feeling of having your head back on the pillow. You get to work and sit or stand at your work area, pouring all your concentration into your tasks. At the end of the work day you feel an annoying ache in your back. You think to yourself, how can I be so sore? I did nothing out of the ordinary. You didn’t sleep in, you traveled to work and you went about your tasks normally….

 

You may not have realised but throughout the day your routine movements could improve your physical well-being if undertaken ‘mindfully’.  My tip is, throughout the day, utilise your body to move in the most competent, resourceful way.

 

I’m asking you to spend a minute sweating the small stuff. It is as simple as:

  • Engaged your core muscles to smoothly get up out of bed,
  • Squeeze your bum muscles and make your glutes work as you are walking up the stairs.
  • Kept your chin a little bit tucked on that boring ride to work this morning
  • Get up and walk to the printer rather than asking your colleague to grab it on their way past.
  • Try adjusting your work seat and sit in a different position.

It is amazing the difference that can be made by stopping to think about the small things. This may reduce current pains and prevent future pains.

 

If you are struggling at the end of the day with an achy neck or back, a physiotherapist can look at the way you move and help you pick it apart to be more efficient. If you would like some help making the most out of your movement, book in to see us today.

Physio West | Headaches and Migraines | Physiotherapy, exercise therapy and massage services in Adelaide, South Australia.

 

Laura Hundertmark, Physiotherapist

Special interest in posture, movement efficiency and brain retraining

Physio West | Back Pain | Physiotherapy, exercise therapy and massage services in Adelaide, South Australia.

Back pain, can it come from your organs?

Most of us will suffer an achey back from time to time. Maybe you’ve spent your Sunday slouched in the couch watching movies, or lifting heavy bags of cement on and off a trailer. Most commonly, back pain will come on due to a mechanical overload . As physios we are often asked if the cause of back pain could be related to something a little deeper?

 

The answer is YES.

We refer to this as visceral pain.

Visceral pain refers to pain generated from our internal organs. While our bones and muscles are prone to aggravation through trauma or gradual overloading, our organs can also contribute to our body’s pain response.

 

When our internal organs are put on excessive stretch, experience a reduced blood supply, or are inflamed, our bodies can elicit a pain response. This pain can be felt in areas away from the organ, giving a dull, vague ache that is difficult to pin point. This can often be misleading, presenting as superficial back pain, rather than something more.

 

Visceral pain tends to be stubborn and usually responds poorly to physiotherapy treatment, which can be costly and frustrating.Pancreatitis, or inflammation of the pancreas, is a common example of an inflamed organ that can refer pain to the lower back.

 

At PhysioWest, your physiotherapist will take you through a thorough assessment of your presentation to determine the true source of your symptoms. Where appropriate, our therapists will refer on for further investigation, or make contact with your GP to ensure you have the best management possible.

 

If you are concerned about your back pain, make an appointment at PhysioWest today.

Physio West | Physiotherapy, exercise therapy and massage services in Adelaide, South Australia.

Author – Matt Nowosilskyj, Physiotherapist, PhysioWest

Physio West | Physiotherapy, exercise therapy and massage services in Adelaide, South Australia.

Remedial Massage – More than just a luxury

Massage Myth Debunked

Recently I overheard two mothers chatting while their kids were taking turns on the terrific Flying Fox ride at Bonython Park.  The first mother said that she had been feeling a bit run down of late, feeling sore through her back and was thinking of booking a massage. She asked her friend, “What do you think?”  The second mother replied, “I have always found facials more relaxing for me than massages. But then I have only had a few massages when away on holidays…”

 

Physio West | Physiotherapy, exercise therapy and massage services in Adelaide, South Australia.

While relaxation techniques are very individual, the conversation made me think of how often people I meet view massage as a luxury “relaxation” item that they indulge in only on holidays. The truth is that massages performed by properly qualified remedial massage therapists, offer much more than relaxation. I would even go as far in saying that regular massages are an essential maintenance therapy for your well-being. Remedial massage can be used as a form of ‘maintenance treatment’  to support optimal well-being.

 

In 2016, an American complementary therapy journal published a review on the use of massage therapy. They found beneficial effects on a wide range of varying conditions including prenatal depression, autism, pain syndromes including arthritis and fibromyalgia, hypertension, and multiple sclerosis. The study discussed that the benefits may relate to the stimulation of pressure receptors used in massage therapy that enhances vagal nerve activity and reduces cortisol levels.

Reading this, I smiled and thought, I must go back to Bonython Park soon and share this study with two mothers.

 

 

Use your private health insurance rebate towards remedial massage therapy at PhysioWest. 

Physio West | Physiotherapy, exercise therapy and massage services in Adelaide, South Australia.Alan Quek, Remedial Massage Therapist, PhysioWest