So by now you may have seen numerous video posts and social media content about how we differ from other Physiotherapy clinics in the area. The reason for this is our passion for exercise based rehabilitation which comes from many years of experience in elite sport. Having a total of 20 years experience in elite sport and healthcare we have refined our processes to ensure that whoever the patient, we treat them like a professional athlete! Now this doesn’t mean that we expect you to be super fit, run long distances or to be able to train like a professional athlete. We are talking about our (Flex Health’s) processes and using exercise as a fundamental tool to improve your pain and symptoms. We aim to treat every single patients as a professional athlete, as professional athletes are used to receiving the highest possible care and attention frequently.
Take low back pain (LBP) for example, we offer soft tissue management as a treatment method for improving symptoms inline with NICE guidelines however, our main process is to “consider exercise programmes (biomechanical, aerobic) with low back pain with or without sciatica” (NICE, 2016). Therefore we use clinical research and our elite experience in sport to demonstrate that exercise rehabilitation successfully works. For an acute LBP case, as per professional sport we recommended that frequency of treatment is key. Within professional sport athletes are treated daily, as a result of this the players rehabilitation times are generally quicker than the general public. We implement the same strategies seen in professional sport to the general public, and aim to review patients twice weekly if possible to ensure better carry over of treatment and quicker progression of rehabilitation. Ultimately this process returns the patient back to work/exercise more quickly as we know this rehabilitation method is proven!
Our exercise processes are taken very slowly and we do not push the patient quicker than pain, weakness or discomfort allows. We listen to all our patient’s individual needs and understand what their goals and expectations are.
We feel that frequency of treatment is also important. Having worked with and currently working with professional athletes we see that frequency of treatment is key to returning to work, sport or daily actives more quickly. At Hull City football and every other football club in the country, players are seen 5 times a week/daily and work through a number of different processes during a typical rehab period. The rehab process will include passive treatment, strength based exercises, balance based exercises and range movement based exercises. We follow this exact process and have seen excellent results with all our patients. The reason we believe in this process is because you have a better carry over of symptom relief and pain reduction from the last Physiotherapy session and we can monitor your symptoms more easily and progress you more quickly through the rehab stages. For example, an ACL rehabilitation process needs a lot of external feedback from a therapist to correct movement patterns and ensure that exercises are performed correctly, this is done much more easily with a therapist present compared to doing it alone (Bucksworth et al., 2007).
We also take this exact approach for the neurological conditions that we see. We are a unique facility that not only caters for musculoskeletal conditions but neurological conditions also. We have specialist rehabilitation equipment only seen in few clinics in Yorkshire please see the link http://www.cyclonemobility.com/f.e.s . Our neurological team assess and treat patients with conditions such as Parkinson’s, Multiple Sclerosis, Stroke and traumatic brain injuries to name just a few. Our processes and technology help patient’s with increasing their strength, improving fitness, improving the ease of carrying out daily activities and ultimately gain a level of independence.
So who are we and what do we know?
Alex Chester: Has spent 7 years working for Hull City FC with both the first team and academy, as a key member of the rehabilitation team overseeing the soft tissue needs of all players and leading the rehabilitation processes for a multitude of different and complex injuries. Has a specific passion for gym and outdoor based rehabilitation and is extremely creative when it comes to performing functional rehabilitation drills. Using unique techniques and patient led targets to design and implement drills to ensure patient’s recover better and stronger.
Matthew Booth- Is currently working for Hull City FC and spent the last 5 years working at the club. Involved with the medical needs for the first team and being in charge of all the medical needs of the entire academy in the role of “Head academy Physiotherapist”. This role involves ensuring that the player’s welfare is maintained from initial injury to return to sport. Being directly involved in every players rehabilitation process has given him a wide knowledge of a vast array of different injuries. He has a MSc in sport and exercise medicine and uses the knowledge learnt from this when assessing and treating all patients.
Imogen Fryer- Imogen is our lead neuro-rehabilitator and has extensive experience treating a range of disabilities and injuries. She has worked with neurological patients for over 5 years and has vast experience in assessing and treating a different array of injuries and disabilities. We have leading equipment at Flex Health that is only seen in few clinics in Yorkshire, Imogen is extremely experienced on these machines and has helped numerous patients to achieve their rehabilitation goals. Focusing on providing exercise rehabilitation to maximise independence and mobility, Imogen is able to help patients improve their health, well being and quality of life.
Steve Watson- Steve has three years experience working within academy football at Hull City FC. He has seen different injuries from a number of age groups and has an excellent understanding of how to rehabilitate adult and juvenile conditions. He is currently completing his Phd at Hull University and will be conducting his studies out of our new premises within Hull University.
Alex Hastie- Alex has also had 3 previous years of working within a professional football academy setting. He has worked at Hull city FC and has also treated and rehabilitated a number of different conditions. Alex helps Imogen with our neurological patients and aids in delivering rehabilitation plans for these patients.
Bucksworth, J., Lee, R. E., Regan, G., Schneider, L. K., DiClemente, C. C. (2007) Decomposing intrinsic and extrinsic motivation for exercise: Application to stages of motivational readiness. Psychology of Sport and Exercise, 8 4: 441-461.
Cyclone Mobility- http://www.cyclonemobility.com/f.e.s/benefits
Gardner, A., Buchanan, K. (2015) Neuromuscular Strengthening Exercises following ACL and Meniscal Repair in a 15 Year Old Female Athlete with Generalized Knee Laxity: A Case Report. Accessed from: http://dune.une.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1043&context=pt_studcrposter
Nice Guidelines (2016) Low back pain and sciatica in over 16s: assessment and management. Accessed online: https://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/NG59/chapter/Recommendations#assessment-of-low-back-pain-and-sciatica