Category Archives: Blog

Physiotherapy in Pregnancy

Due to changes with the body during pregnancy (hormonal, fluid, weight changes), there are numerous musculoskeletal disorders that can develop. Like a lot of conditions, prevention is the key! Being educated and aware of some of these common conditions can reduce the risk of developing pain or can settle it down quickly if early signs of pain are recognised.

Common areas of pain include:

Pelvic Girdle Pain

Pain can either be at the pubic joint or sacro-illiac joint (central lower pelvis). Commonly felt with ‘shearing’ type forces like standing on one leg, getting out of the car, walking upstairs, vacuuming and rolling in bed.

Wrist pain 

During pregnancy, carpal tunnel syndrome can be the more common type of wrist pain. This is due to the increased swelling/fluid in the body which takes up space in the tunnel (palm side of the wrist) where there are tendons, vessels and nerves. Symptoms can include pain, numbness/tingling or sometimes weakness in the hand. Postnatally, De Quervains syndrome is more common on the thumb side of the wrist due to repetitive lifting and carrying of the baby.

Lower back pain

Pain can be localised to the lower back (lumbar spine) or sometimes can refer into the back of the legs. Usually occurs with prolonged positions (sitting or standing) or repetitive movements. A physio assessment can differentiate whether pain is coming from the spine or from the pelvis.

Thoracic/Rib Pain

As the baby grows, the body needs to make some room! The lower ribs expand to allow for the growing tummy and as the ribs attach to the thoracic spine, this can sometimes cause some stiffness or pain. Thoracic pain can also sometimes be felt with deep breathing. Thoracic pain is also very common after delivery due to carrying the baby and breastfeeding.

Treatment for these conditions can vary depending on how far along in the pregnancy you are, the severity of pain and what is involved in your day to day tasks.

Our physiotherapists can tailor a treatment plan to help you manage your pain throughout the pregnancy and also postnatally. Call today to book an appointment 9351 8737 or you can book online.




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Meet George

This is George. He has been a patient of ours since 2011. George has always been a regular at our weekly exercise sessions and has always been very diligent at doing his exercises between the sessions at home. He also happens to be quite the handyman and is very creative when it comes to exercises if he doesn’t have quite the same equipment he needs at home to carry them out.

George has had quite the year. He had a fall in late 2017 where he suffered a concussion and developed a bleed on the brain. He was frequently dizzy following this and one of the challenges he had to overcome afterwards was regaining his balance and ideally
preventing any further falls (and potential injuries).

George also had shoulder surgery (rotator cuff repair) this year. He has made a speedy recovery, partly due to his compliance with his prescribed exercises. If anything, sometimes we need to remind him not to overdo it!  6 months on, he is managing very well in regards to his shoulder and is starting to get back into working in his shed, one of his favourite hobbies.

As physios, we are always encouraging our patients to do some form of exercise suited to them on a regular basis due to its various benefits. As we grow older and natural age related changes occur, our physical and therefore functional capacity gradually declines. It’s important we at least maintain, if not aim improve this capacity so that we can keep mobile and ideally improve our quality of life.

We strongly agree with the theory that if you don’t move it you lose it. Despite the challenges George has faced both medically and physically, he has managed to get his physical capacity back to the same level,  if not better. It goes to show it’s never too late to get back into exercising in a way that’s appropriate to your injuries and goals.

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Dry Needling Explained

Dry needling has become more common recently as an effective physiotherapy treatment tool for many musculoskeletal problems. Dry needling is an evidence based treatment that has many known effects and some relatively unknown. As physio’s we are often asked- what does it do?

Put simply…

Dry needling is very different to Chinese based acupuncture. Chinese acupuncture aims to restore energy flow as per Eastern medicine beliefs. Dry needling uses the same type of needles, although, we aim to stimulate active trigger points by direct insertion into muscles. When a needle is introduced into this tight area there is often a localised twitch response. The twitch response deactivates the trigger point and the muscle then relaxes. There is also increasing evidence that needling can stimulate the brain’s pain relieving chemicals as well as inhibit pain pathway signals.

There are certain medical reasons that occasionally prevent us performing this treatment. If you are interested in receiving dry needling as part of your physiotherapy treatment, ask your physiotherapist and they will determine if it is suitable for you.

If you’re not comfortable with the idea of needling, that’s OK! Just let the physiotherapist know and I’m sure there are many alternative methods to treat your injury or condition.

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Lets Hop To It – An Easter Message

Well it’s been a very busy start to 2018 at Cannington Physiotherapy.

The winter sport’s season is only weeks away. We trust that you have all been working very hard during pre-season to ensure your body is ready to tackle the season head on and minimize your risk of injury. This is traditionally a very busy time of year for our physiotherapists!

Cannington Physio are proudly supporting the South East Demons State Netball League squad again this year and we wish them all the best for the 2018 season.

We have had many questions from our loyal patients about the recent changes to ‘PILATES’ cover from Private Health Insurers. Thankfully this will not affect us! Our physiotherapists ensure that all sessions meet the physiotherapy framework and eligible patients can therefore claim under their ‘PHYSIOTHERAPY’ cover. If you are thinking of starting Physio Pilates, speak to one of our friendly team about booking your Initial Assessment.

Finally we would like to wish our beautiful patients and their families a very happy & safe Easter.

Best Wishes
Ian, Ida and the Staff at Cannington Physiotherapy

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A Christmas Message

To our wonderful family at Cannington Physiotherapy,

We wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! Please stay safe over the holidays and don’t forget to keep up with your stretching and Pilates Exercises.

2017 has been an amazing year and we are looking forward to what 2018 has to offer, especially the return of Kelsey a favourite among many loyal patients.

We look forward to seeing you all again in 2018.

Best Wishes
Ian, Ida and the Staff at Cannington Physiotherapy

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Have you met Jackie???

Jackeline Gartrell is the newest member of the Cannington Physiotherapy Staff taking on the role as our Remedial Massage Therapist. Jackie has over ten years’ experience and is a qualified Physiotherapist in her home of Brazil. Jackie is available for appointments on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday.

If you’re not sure what a Remedial Massage Therapist does here is a quick summary;

Massage therapy recognises and values the healing properties of touch and is a very safe and non-invasive form of treatment. Massage therapists use a number of different hands-on techniques to diagnose and treat underlying conditions and problems. Treatment focuses on the soft tissues of the body including muscles, tendons, ligaments and fascia to help you perform at your peak.

Each treatment is tailored to the patients’ presenting complaints and a treatment plan is devised including appropriate changed in lifestyle, work practice or exercise. Here at Cannington Physiotherapy our Massage therapist works closely with our physiotherapists to gain the best results for each patient.

Cannington Physiotherapy offers 60 minute consultations with our highly trained therapist. During your initial consultation a brief history is taken and full assessment of joint range of motion and muscle length is performed. This enables our therapist to design and implement a specific treatment plan to best suit your individual goals and needs.

If you have any questions or would like to book an appointment with Jackie please click on the link above or call (08) 9351 8737.

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Physiotherapy : The Right Choice

Did you know that GP’s refer to Physiotherapists more than any other Health Professional?

Physiotherapists are pretty talented people (even if we do say so ourselves) but despite this a lot of people are unsure when to see a physio or how physiotherapy may help them. Fortunately the Australian Physiotherapy Association has recently developed a website that is designed to help answer these very questions.

Here at Cannington Physiotherapy we thrive on helping people reach their goals and live a happier pain free life. So if you are unsure whether Physiotherapy may be appropriate for you head over to

Alternatively if you would prefer to speak directly with one of our therapists you can call Cannington Physiotherapy on (08) 9351 8737


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June a Balanced Month










Cannington Physiotherapy would like to welcome you to the first in a series of videos that we will be uploading over the next few months. Each video will be based around a different stretch or exercise. These videos will be found on our homepage, YouTube and Facebook page and we will provide some back ground information here.

Our first topic is Balance and some of you may recognise our balance extraordinaire

Balance is the ability to control your body’s position, whether stationary or while moving.

Balance training is often neglected when people are developing their exercise or sporting regime.  This may be because they don’t understand the benefits of balance training.

Balance is a key component of fitness, along with strength, endurance, and flexibility. Balance is essential in preventing falls as people age, as well as for every day functional tasks such as reaching up to get something from the cupboard, or walking on uneven ground. In the sporting population, balance is pivotal in attaining the skills used to change direction, maintain a position or complete relevant skills such as kicking a ball.

There are various ways to perform balance exercises. Equipment like a stability ball, BOSU ball, or balance board can be incorporated.

Also don’t forget to check back from time to time as we continue to update our videos.


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Another Season, Another Hamstring Strain

The AFL season is well and truly under way, unfortunately with every season there are two things we see time and time again:

  1. 1. Dubious umpiring decisions and,
  2. 2. Hamstring strains.

To avoid starting any arguments between our Eagles and Dockers fans especially after the most recent Derby, let’s take the high road and discuss Hamstring Strains.

Hamstring Strains occur when the muscle or tendon is overloaded resulting in tearing of the fibres. Pain is usually sudden and felt in the back of the leg. Swelling and bruising may be present but not always. Depending on the severity of your injury a hamstring strain could mean missing a 1-2 games or upwards of 6 games.

At Cannington Physiotherapy we believe prevention is the best cure and whilst some injuries in sport can’t be helped there are ways to reduce your risk. Factors that could contribute to a hamstring strain include:

  • Not warming up adequately before exercising
  • Having tight quadriceps muscles that pull your pelvis forward resulting in tightening your hamstrings.
  • Having weak glutes which forces the hamstring muscles to work harder in an effort to compensate.

Our physiotherapists are all highly trained in identifying injuries and potential risk factors for a wide variety of sporting injuries. So as you embark on another season let us help you perform at your peak and keep you in the game rather than on the bench.

If you would like further information feel free to contact us on (08) 9351 8737 or you can click on the link above and book and appointment with one of our brilliant Physiotherapists.


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Back to School and Back Pain

School Bags and Back Pain.

We brought this to your attention a few years ago but we wanted to take a minute to reflect on all the kids heading back to school and what it means for there little bodies.

School is back! Whether you think this is a good thing or a bad thing, we have something for you to consider.

When was the last time you picked up your child’s school bag?

It seems every year the amount of books kids need to take to school is increasing and as a result of this extra weight we are beginning to see an increase in childhood back pain. Statics released by the Victorian Government have suggested that around 70% of Australian school children may suffer back pain from carrying to heavy schoolbags and poor lifting techniques. Risks include muscle strains and a gradual change of spinal position all of which can linger into adulthood.

There are lots of different ways to minimise the amount of stress on these little spines, having the right bag is one thing but making sure it has been adjusted specifically to fit your child is just as important. What works for one does not work for all.

Here at Cannington Physiotherapy our physiotherapist are all too familiar with back pain and how it can affect people in all stages of the lifespan. If your child is complaining of back pain why not bring them down with their school bag and we will happily assess the type of bag, lifting technique and provide ways to help minimise and relieve the pain.

Call 9351 8737 to speak with our friendly staff for more information

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