Having worked within high performance sport in the UK, the pressures on young, promising athletes to reach their full potential is immense. That pressure comes from a variety of different sources, parents, peers, coaches, performance staff and the player themselves. That pressure is a double edged sword. On one hand it helps to drive the athlete to raise the bar in terms of improvements in performance, but on the other it may hinder development and lead to extra physical as well as emotional stress, especially where injury is concerned.
Nowadays, young athletes are training more often each week, for longer durations and often with additional strength and conditioning demands. Couple that cocktail with the fact that these same players may be playing for school and local clubs and you can see a very hectic training schedule.
A typical week may look like 3 training sessions a week for Club, alongside 1-2 training sessions a week for school, leading up to 2 games on the weekend. The strength and conditioning sessions would be a minimum of 1 x week. That week doesn’t even take into account that these young athletes are still studying at school with additional academic, social and emotional demands. Physical and psychological load is very high.
Often when that load is not managed correctly, it is when the risk of injury is generally higher. If you would like advice on load management or ensuring your body (or your child's) has the strength, flexibility and endurance to cope with that load, talk to David.
Injury prevention tip:
For more advice, book a session with David Bahadoor HERE
Facing a cancer diagnosis is a life-altering experience that brings with it a multitude of physical and emotional challenges. As medical advancements continue to improve cancer treatment outcomes, the significance of integrating Physiotherapy rehabilitation into the care plan of cancer patients has gained substantial recognition and research backing.
Ideally it would be part of everyone’s cancer journey, so we’re delighted to be able to restart our cancer rehabilitation service here at Auckland Physiotherapy. Kirsten will now be providing PINC and STEEL certified cancer rehabilitation in 1-1 sessions and group classes.
In this blog post, we'll delve into the essential reasons why exercise and Physiotherapy have been shown to be incredibly beneficial for individuals navigating their cancer journey.
Inclusive Programs for All Stages:
The PINC and STEEL programs have emerged as beacons of hope for people with cancer, embracing individuals from the initial diagnosis to those 25+ years post-diagnosis. This inclusivity underscores the understanding that exercise and rehabilitation are essential not only for recovery but also for enhancing long-term quality of life. It’s never too early or too late to start.
Embarking on cancer treatment is daunting, but early intervention through Physiotherapy can provide a sense of preparedness and understanding. Starting rehabilitation prior to surgery or other treatment can equip you with tools to counteract and manage potential challenges, ultimately facilitating a faster recovery process.
Remaining physically active during cancer treatment is paramount. Physiotherapy helps to reduce pain, increase energy levels, minimise side effects, prevent complications, and alleviate stress and anxiety. It counteracts the adverse effects of inactivity, enabling you to maintain your strength and resilience throughout treatment.
Post-surgery and treatment can bring various physical hurdles. Physiotherapists specialise in identifying these challenges and designing interventions that address specific issues like pain, strength reduction, body image concerns, and fatigue. By reintroducing movement and exercise, secondary health conditions can be prevented, and the likelihood of cancer recurrence reduced.
Individually Tailored Treatment:
Cancer rehabilitation extends beyond medical treatment by acknowledging the importance of holistic well-being. With a focus on empowering you to regain control of your life, Physiotherapists create bespoke exercise regimens that cater to your specific needs and limitations. This personalised approach ensures that rehabilitation aligns with your unique condition, treatment trajectory, and goals. Some of the benefits of engaging in rehabilitation include:
In summary, the role of Physiotherapy rehabilitation as part of a cancer journey is nothing short of transformative. We can offer hope, strength and a roadmap to recovery. With each session we can support you to take a step closer to reclaiming your life from the clutches of cancer. It really is making better lives possible.
We have been approved funding for a group cancer rehabilitation class. We're looking for 5 women to join our first group. The classes start on Tuesday 17th October at 12.30 for one hour and will run once per week for 6 weeks. Cost for the classes is covered by the PINC & STEEL Foundation.
To be eligible for the group:
The recovery shorts/ leggings help to speed up your post-pregnancy recovery and:
If that doesn't convince you, here are seven compelling reasons why you should consider choosing SRC Recovery Compression garments:
For the best fit and performance, it is recommended to have someone else take your measurements, as proper sizing is crucial for the garment's effectiveness. You can find a helpful video and size chart on our website. If you need further assistance or advice, please do not hesitate to contact our reception at 093664880 or reach out via [email protected].
Incorporating strength/resistance training into our daily lives
As we age, we naturally begin to experience some reduction in lean muscle mass, strength and function, a process known as sarcopenia. Strength training, also known as weight or resistance training is highly beneficial to everyone because it helps build strength, stability, endurance, preserves bone density and builds overall muscle mass.
Research has been showing us for a number of years now, that strength and resistance training are just as important as the cardio aspect of your workout. Depending on your health and fitness goals, there are many reasons why strength and resistance training is the key to achieving them.
What is strength training?
For some people, the phrase strength training is intimidating, but you actually need to look at it in a different light - that it’s enhancing your ability to move safely and effectively in your life, not becoming the next bodybuilder! For example; your ability to lift something and put it on a shelf, carry your groceries in the door, bend down and pick something up.
Strength training is a type of physical activity which focuses on the use of resistance and weights to induce muscle contraction which builds strength. The basic principle is to apply load and overload the muscle so it needs to adapt and get stronger. When training for strength, we are aiming to train the nervous system as much as we are muscles. The nervous system adapts by firing more rapid impulses and activating more muscle fibres which in turn make us stronger. One reason why people can be much more prone to injury if strength or resistance movement is not part of their life is because their muscles and connective tissue are weak due to never being stimulated.
At its heart, strength training is based on functional movements — lifting, pushing, pulling in order to build muscle and coordination needed for everyday activities. The stronger you are as you age, the more robust you will be in the real world.
Why strength training?
Did you know that a reduction in lean muscle mass, strength and function can begin as early as your 30's and continue at a rate of 3% to 5% per decade! So the outcome of regular strength or resistance training can actually slow down the loss of skeletal muscle mass/strength quite significantly. Therefore it is great for people of all ages to adopt some strength and resistance movement into their lives as it can help you preserve and enhance this natural loss of lean muscle mass that comes with ageing.
The benefits of strength training
Many ongoing physical health conditions can be managed better and reduced by regular strength training, but there are many benefits for everyone that make adding some resistance to your workout worthwhile:
How to integrate strength/resistance training into your fitness regime:
Many people find using a dedicated exercise studio or facility to do their strength training is a good option, as they often have a range of equipment available, as well as help from exercise professionals if you need it. However this is not your only option! Your strength training workout can be done at home or at your local park using your own bodyweight …. whether it’s squats, lunges, push-ups, or one of the endless variety of exercises.
There is a large range of resistance equipment available for all levels - many of these are in our very own Auckland Physiotherapy Health Collective shop. If you are not sure what you need, our team at Auckland Physiotherapy can help you with this.
Do I need a professional to help with my strength training?
There are no downsides to being stronger. The only thing you need to consider is this: how much does strength contribute to what you want to achieve? If you are going to start down the path to getting stronger, it is important to have a solid plan from the start. Getting advice from a qualified and experienced Personal Trainer can help you to make sure you are using the correct exercises that are the best fit for your biomechanics, past/current injuries, exercise goals and fitness level. Get in touch with Adele at Auckland Physiotherapy if you are interested in adding some strength training into your daily exercise routine and she will be able to help you out.
Overall, here at Auckland Physiotherapy we always say - at the end of the day, moving and being active in any way is a great start. The short version is we stand a much higher chance of actually avoiding injury if we are strong, flexible and well balanced. Specific types of exercise have some pretty awesome benefits, with strength training definitely being one and this is certainly going to help you to live a more mobile, energetic and longer life!
In today's fast-paced world, maintaining good posture often takes a back seat. However, it is crucial to recognise that good posture plays a significant role in our overall health and wellbeing. In this post, we will delve into the importance of good posture to highlight the positive impact it can have on various aspects of our lives.
Optimal Spinal Alignment
Proper posture ensures that our spine is aligned correctly, maintaining the natural curves of the spine. According to a study published in the Journal of Physical Therapy Science, maintaining good posture helps distribute mechanical stresses evenly on the spine, reducing the risk of musculoskeletal disorders and back pain . Additionally, research published in the European Spine Journal found that maintaining an erect posture during sitting significantly reduces the load on spinal discs compared to slouching .
Improved Breathing and Digestion
Posture affects our breathing and digestion. A study published in the Journal of Bodywork and Movement Therapies highlighted that an upright sitting posture facilitates optimal lung function and deeper breaths, leading to improved oxygenation of the body and increased energy levels . Sitting or standing in the correct postural position allows your lungs to fully expand, increasing your oxygen intake.
Enhanced Muscle Function
Maintaining proper alignment of the spine and other joints is crucial for optimal musculoskeletal health. Good posture distributes the forces exerted on our bodies evenly, reducing excessive stress on specific muscles and joints. This in turn can prevent chronic pain, muscle imbalances, and the development of musculoskeletal conditions. Having good posture also relies on engaging our core muscles including our abdominal and back muscles. By keeping these muscles engaged your core strength will improve over time. This again is linked to reducing the risk of injuries over time.
Increased Energy and Confidence
Maintaining good posture positively affects our energy levels and psychological wellbeing. Good posture allows for better circulation, leading to increased alertness and overall vitality. Ensuring that you have the correct alignment is vital to ensuring you maintain the correct posture. Getting seen by a physiotherapist can help with this and set you up to align your spine correctly to enable you to maintain this position over time.
Posture at Work
Whether you are sitting or standing in your workplace it is important to ensure you are maintaining your correct postural alignment. If you work at a desk all day, an ergonomically workstation is important for maintaining the health of your back, shoulders, arms and wrists. Ideally, your desk should be slightly below elbow level so that your forearms and wrists can stay parallel to the floor when typing. Be sure that your shoulders stay relaxed, not hunched. Typing with poor posture and ergonomics can cause various types of repetitive strain injury, such as carpal tunnel syndrome and tendinitis. These conditions can affect not just the wrists but the whole upper body. They are painful and can be difficult to treat, so it’s important to nip them in the bud. Physiotherapists can help you to ensure your workstation is set up correctly.
The significance of good posture cannot be understated when it comes to our health and well-being. Supported by scientific research, we have explored how proper posture influences spinal alignment, breathing, digestion, muscle function, energy levels, and long-term health. By prioritising good posture and making conscious efforts to maintain it, we can reap the numerous benefits it offers.
If you would like to work on posture, or even have a workstation assessment book in to see our Physio’s or Pilates instructors to have a postural assessment and work on postural wellbeing.
By Lisa Brooker, Senior Physiotherapist + Pilates Instructor
1. Kim SH, et al. (2015). Comparison of spinal alignment, body balance, and muscle strength in women in their 20s and 30s with and without chronic lower back pain. Journal of Physical Therapy Science, 27(7), 2189-2192.
2. O'Sullivan PB, et al. (2002). The effect of posture and seat design on the discomfort and back muscle activation of sitting workers with chronic low back pain. European Spine Journal, 11(1), 50-55. 3. Smith MD, et al. (2017). The effect of posture on lung volumes and oxygen saturation in healthy adults. Journal of Bodywork and Movement Therapies, 21(2), 299-
Physiotherapist and Health Coach Kirsten Rose suggests a yummy breakfast idea that is great, especially if you are trying to build muscle mass. Good news is that it is quick to make and the whole family will love it.
Serves 1, Prep time 5 minutes, Cook time 10 minutes
What you need;
1/4 cup egg whites (around 4
1 scoop (25g) of vanilla whey
1/2 banana, mashed
almond milk, if needed
1/4 cup (25g) fresh or frozen
½ tsp. coconut oil
What you need to do;
Whisk together the egg whites and protein powder.
Stir in the mashed banana and add the blueberries. If the pancake
mixture seems too thick, add a splash of almond milk to thin it.
Heat the coconut oil in a pan to low-medium. Pour in the pancake
mixture and cook until little bubbles form (about 5 minutes).
Make sure the pancake has set enough before you try flipping it,
then flip over. Cook the pancake for another
You can also make 3 small pancakes instead of 1 large.
Serve with your favourite toppings.
How are you really feeling today?
Do you ever ‘check in’ with your body?
What sensations can you feel in your body that may be related to stress?
Did you know that there is a direct relationship between our thoughts, our emotions, and therefore the reactions that happen internally in our bodies?
We live in a society full of pressure, judgement, stress, deadlines, overwhelm, anxiety and trauma. It is normal to go through ups and downs in life. It is how we grow learn, and develop coping mechanisms and resilience as humans. However it is vital we choose tools that are positive to our recovery during these times.
My name is Renée Malyon and I am a Senior Physiotherapist at Auckland Physiotherapy, with a holistic and multidisciplinary approach to patient care. I am very passionate about mental wellness with my own life experience, and having the realisation that the mind is so interconnected with what I do helping people as a Physiotherapist.
I have a special interest in women’s and pelvic health Physiotherapy, clinical Pilates, and health promotion – including corporate health, ergonomics, sleep, and mental wellbeing. I am a qualified Mindfulness teacher through the Holistic Therapies Institute in the UK, and I am also trained in some forms of Somatic Trauma Release therapy.
My Top 10 Tips for Mental Wellbeing:
1) Provide a safe and secure environment to those who share with you. We all want to feel this when being vulnerable and opening up. When you learn to do that for others, you will find the value in receiving that yourself.
2) Practice mindful breath work and meditation – daily. You can do it anywhere, anytime. Find stillness as frequently as you can to instil focus, a sense of grounding, and increase your sense of calm. Learn these life changing skills...they are not just for hippies I promise.
3) Stress is real and you shouldn’t ignore its ability to affect your body. Many symptoms’ people go to the GP for a due to stress. Did you know that calming down your nervous system regularly through the day using breath awareness meditation, visualisation, mindful movement, and many other tools, can reduce the effects of stress on your body?
4) Journaling or simply putting pen to paper, can be a great way to name the emotions you are feeling, and therefore understand your thoughts. This in turn will affect how you feel mentally but then how your body feels physically i.e. pain, tension etc.
5) Gratitude practice can trigger certain reactions in the brain to immediately change your mood. You can practice this in written form, in meditation, or even in front of a mirror. It can be beneficial to do before bed to help improve sleep.
6) Eat healthy fresh food, reduce or eliminate alcohol consumption, and focus on quality sleep routine methods. Keep your lights low at night, and use dark modes on all of your technology. There is software you can even download now on to your computers.
7) Exercise, especially in nature, can help improve your mood and energy. Stop and really SEE the beauty around you.
8) 'Acceptance' is a big one. We simply cannot control everything in life. The things we can control are: exercise, food intake, sleep, choosing healthy coping tools, what you are saying to yourself and others, controlling your media observation, boundaries of your energy and people, expectations of yourself and others, and mindfulness practice – choosing how you want to respond to situations and conflict. Acceptance also to others, situations, yourself, the past etc.
9) 'Letting go' and forgiveness. These relate to acceptance also. Learn to forgive and let go of situations, conflict, even your thoughts and beliefs that may be holding you back from living a truly fulfilled and happy life.
10) Practice compassion and kindness…it seems simple but having an open mind with true empathy and understanding for others seems to be lost in today’s society. Treat others as you would like to be treated. Respect yourself, respect others, respect the environment.
There are lots of amazing resources and contact details for helplines on mentalhealth.org.nz.
If you are interested in learning more about what Renée has to offer, and what would be right for you, please feel free to contact her on [email protected] for a free phone consultation.