September ’21 Newsletter

September ’21 Newsletter

How active are you? Do you need to get moving more, or do you sometimes overdo it?
When it comes to conditions like osteoarthritis, the World Health Organisation has confirmed that exercise really is the best medicine. Studies have proven that regular movement (even of short duration) can do wonders. But for the intense exercise enthusiast, it’s important to be aware that doing too much too soon, or using an incorrect technique, can put you at risk of injury. So in this month’s newsletter, we’re looking at the different ways we can support you with all aspects of exercise.

The WHO guidelines for Osteoarthritis
The World Health Organisation recommends that older adults should do at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic physical activity throughout the week. Performing physical activity on a weekly basis enhances balance and prevents falls for those with poor mobility, along with regular muscle-strengthening activities. This is integral to maintaining a healthy lifestyle. However, only 13% of people with knee and hip osteoarthritis worldwide are meeting these guidelines (Wallis et. al, 2014).

The WHO guidelines suggest that exercise and weight loss may be more effective at treating OA than opioids, arthroscopy and cortisone injections. (RACGP Guideline for the management of knee and hip osteoarthritis, 2018), (Deyle et. al 2020).

Coming soon: GLAD for Osteoarthritis

We will soon be launching a brand new program for hip and knee osteoarthritis. The GLAD programme has been proven to reduce pain, reduce the need for medication, increase mobility and reduce the need for surgery.
The GLAD program involves an initial assessment (physical testing, questionnaire and outcome measures), education (2 lectures), exercise (6 weeks of twice weekly group sessions), 3 month review (questionnaire and outcome measures) and 12-month review (questionnaire). You will be in a small group of 4-6 people so you can share your journey with others and support one another.
GLAD Australian outcomes 2020

  • Average age is 65 years old, 71% women and average BMI is 29.9
  • Reduced pain (33% less for knees, 27% for hips)
  • Reduced medication (49% less for knees, 45% for hips)
  • Increased walking speed (14% more for knees, 12% for hips)
  • Improved quality of life (29% more for knees, 20% for hips)
  • 3 out 4 changed their intention to have surgery from yes to no

If you’d like to learn more about GLAD or register your interest in the program, reach out to us on (02) 9438 1782 or email

Sports physiotherapy at St Leonards

Whether you are a weekend warrior or an experienced athlete, we have sports injuries covered. Our physios provide unique expertise in treating and preventing sports injuries.  Our aim is to commence treatment as early as possible and implement a rehabilitation program that will get you back playing sport as quickly as possible.

One of the key benefits of St Leonards Physiotherapy is our access to the gym and our treatment rooms at Norths Fitness.  It allows us to provide the full spectrum of treatment from initial treatment to gym-based strength and rehabilitation programs that ensures a quick and successful return to sport.

For more information, call us on (02) 9438 1782.

Have you ever experienced Plantar Fasciopathy?

With talk about implementing further physical activity, it is important to be mindful of injuries that can incur if precautions are not taken.
Plantar fasciopathy is an umbrella term for different problems that can impact the plantar fascia, which is the thick band of tough tissue that connects your heel bone to your toes. When you push off with your foot to take a step, this band tightens to increase the arch height and create a lever to propel you forward.
This is a very common area to experience pain – and one in ten people will suffer from it in their lifetime. What causes plantar fasciopathy? How can you identify the symptoms and treat them? Read our latest blog post to find out!

Whatever questions or concerns you have about your health, don’t hesitate to reach out.

Don’t forget that our Telehealth appointments can be booked online or by calling us – where we aim to give you effective help from the comfort of your home.

To book an appointment, or discuss whether Telehealth is suitable for you,
please call us on (02) 9438 1782.

The Education Quarter


Although they are most commonly associated with foot problems, “orthotics” is an umbrella term for a wide range of types of equipment that can be used to support rehabilitation from an injury or to prevent injury from occurring in the first place. So, what are the options, and how do you use them?

Types of orthotics

There are a broad variety of orthotics, and they can range from something as simple as an insole in a shoe to protect the foot, to more complex equipment like a back brace to stabilise the spine.
Orthotics are generally used in one of the following areas:

  • Feet
  • Lower limbs
  • Upper limbs
  • Trunk

Orthotics can either be “off-the-shelf” standard items that are ready made and adjusted for the patient’s particular size – or custom-made, particularly in cases of more complex injuries or changes to multiple joint structures.
Reasons to use orthotics

There are a few reasons that your physiotherapist might recommend the use of orthotics. Generally speaking, orthotics are designed to either stabilise a body part, or assist that body part in movement. For example, if a joint is not in a functional position, then orthotics may be used to help it to function better, recover and to prevent further injury during the recovery process.
Some conditions that might require orthotics include:

  • Back pain – if this is caused by foot or leg problems that are causing uneven gait, then orthotics might help you to walk more evenly and reduce the pressure on your back
  • Arthritis – orthotics can help with positioning of the joints to relieve discomfort
  • Bursitis – when the fluid-filled sacs in the heels and toes become inflamed, they cause a great deal of discomfort which orthotics can help to reduce
  • Ankle sprain – an orthotic might provide support to prevent further injury while you recover and to allow you greater movement

Common mistakes with orthotics

Orthotics can be incredibly valuable tools in your recovery, but only if they’re used correctly. There are a few key mistakes that people regularly make, so we want to help you avoid them!

  • You need to wear them in gradually

It will probably take two to three weeks to get completely used to wearing your
orthotics and, except in serious cases or unless your physiotherapist tells you
differently, you will need to gradually build up the amount of time you wear them
each day rather than wearing them full-time from the offset.

  • You must follow your physiotherapist’s instructions

We know it can be a hassle to have to put that wrist support on every time you
play sport, but it really is important. You need to wear the orthotics in the right
way, at the right time, for the right amount of time, or they may not work as effectively as they could. Your physiotherapist has given you those instructions for a reason, so it would be advised to follow them as best as possible.

  • Don’t give up on them as soon as you’re feeling better

Because it can be a hassle to keep putting them on, or because people don’t think they look particularly attractive, or because they might not be incredibly comfortable, many people are keen to ditch their orthotics as soon as possible. But just because the pain has subsided doesn’t mean the problem’s gone away. If you give up on them too soon, the problem might come back or get worse. So don’t put them away until your physiotherapist gives you the go-ahead.
When you’re experiencing pain, we’re happy to talk you through all the different treatment options available, including what types of orthotics might work for you alongside our hands-on and movement / exercise-based treatments (but only if needed of course!). Give us a call on (02) 9438 1782 or email and we can discuss your choices.

Happy to help.

If you’d like to book an appointment, or have questions about any pain or injury you may be experiencing, please get in touch.