Category Archives: Head and Neck

IFOMPT manual therapy update

IFOMPT manual therapy update

I recently attended the IFOMPT congress in Quebec City.  IFOMPT is the International Federation of Manipulative Physiotherapists It is an organization that was formed to promote high standards amongst physical therapists practicing manual therapy in the field of orthopaedics (http://www.ifompt.com). Every 4 years, the top manual physical therapists from around the world, gather to share information and techniques with their colleagues.  I participated in an Explain Pain course from David Butler, the founder of the Neuroorthopaedic Institute in Australia (http://www.noigroup.com) and was not disappointed. No one is able to make … Read the rest of this post »

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Recovering from Chronic Illness…. the PGAP can help.

Recovering from Chronic Illness.... the PGAP can help.

Getting active again after chronic illness: PGAP (Progressive Goal Attainment Program) I will now be adding the PGAP program as a service at West 4th Physiotherapy Clinic.  The PGAP program consists of weekly one hour coaching sessions with respect to goal setting and problem solving regarding return to activity, for up to 10 weeks.  The program was designed by a team of health care practitioners and researchers at McGill University. Numerous research studies have shown it to be beneficial for preventing chronic disability and improving quality of life for people … Read the rest of this post »

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Computer posture – part 3

Computer posture - part 3

Ok, so you have done your stretches through the day and maybe a bit at the end of the day. No doubt you feel that they help for a while but that nagging ache around the shoulders and neck keeps coming back. You want more! These exercises will help build your shoulder blade and upper back strength so that you can keep decent posture throughout the day without feeling tired from the effort. They are three of my favourite tension busters and work very well when combined with the stretch … Read the rest of this post »

Posted in Avoiding Injury, Children's Health, Head and Neck, Low back, Men's Health, Posture, Senior's Health, Women's Health | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

Computer posture: part 2

Computer posture: part 2

During the last post I looked at some of the problems that develop in association with poor desk ergonomics and unsuitable posture at the computer. http://www.west4thphysio.com/archives/1751 I promised a few exercises that can help alleviate the symptoms of upper back and neck tightness after a long session stuck at the desk. Overall strengthening of the upper back also helps reduce symptoms by allowing you to keep a more upright and open chest position. First up is the Cobra as pictured above. This helps restore spinal length and alignment. If off … Read the rest of this post »

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Computer posture

Computer posture

A common reason to see people in our clinic is aches and pains associated with working at the computer. Computer use invites you to sit in the same position for long periods. The problem is compounded too in that now it’s common to go home from a day of work and find recreation…on the computer! A combination of both poor positioning and too much time spent in that position can cause posture to change in ways that eventually become painful. What happens? muscles around the upper back and shoulder blades … Read the rest of this post »

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Does your bike fit?

Does your bike fit?

In early March my colleague Jen Mcpherson and I rolled on down to Seattle to attend an intensive 2 day workshop on bike fitting. Jen is an avid multisport athlete who has completed multiple Ironman competitions and marathons and I’m a keen recreational road cyclist so our interest  in learning the process of getting a rider to the best possible position for comfort and power comes from the heart. This was an excellent course with both days full of hands on fitting experience. Thanks to the volunteers who attended and … Read the rest of this post »

Posted in Avoiding Injury, Head and Neck, Knee, Low back, Senior's Health, Sports | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Physiotherapy and TMJ (jaw) pain

Physiotherapy and TMJ (jaw) pain

I attended the Pacific Dental Conference in Vancouver on March 11 and 12.  Many of the sessions were not relevant to physiotherapists but Dr. Mariano Rocabado a well-known physiotherapist from Chile drew me there. He specializes in treating head and neck pain, which is related to the jaw and or neck.  He was invited due to his expertise with TMJ (temporomandibular joint or jaw joint) pain and dysfunction. At the Friday session he spoke all day about how the upper neck joints can influence the function of the jaw, including … Read the rest of this post »

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Whiplash and chronic pain

Whiplash and chronic pain

Why me? Chronic Pain and Whiplash I recently attended an excellent course in Victoria, BC.  The instructors were two experienced physiotherapists who are pursuing PhDs at University of Calgary in the area of chronic pain and whiplash, Ashley Smith and Geoff Schneider. The course was titled Physiotherapy and Complex Whiplash. Ashley now focuses his practice on assessing and advising people with pain persisting for many months following traumatic neck injury, typically people who have had motor vehicle accidents and are at least 18 months post-injury.  He founded the Advanced Spine … Read the rest of this post »

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Choosing a school backpack

Choosing a school backpack

Hating to be the bearer of bad news, I feel almost guilty in pointing out to my children that the school year is about to start anew. So it’s new shoes and school supplies and for at least one of them, a new backpack. Backpacks are a popular and practical way for children and teenagers to carry schoolbooks and supplies. When used correctly, backpacks can be a good way to carry the necessities of the school day. They are designed to distribute the weight of the load among some of … Read the rest of this post »

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Whiplash update

Whiplash update

Neck Muscles and Whiplash   Whiplash injuries are common worldwide. In BC we have more than 60,000 motor vehicle related whiplash injuries per year.  Some people recover quickly, while 40-60 percent of people are still having neck pain 6 months or more after their injuries. Why is this?  In an effort to improve understanding of persistent neck muscle complaints post whiplash, I recently completed my Master of Science in Biomedical Physiology and Kinesiology at Simon Fraser University and chose to study upper trapezius activation before, during and after a repetitive upper … Read the rest of this post »

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