Mindset & More

Which do you need – physio, chiro, osteo or massage?

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Trying to figure out just who to turn to for your creaky neck, stubborn shoulders and rickety knees but not sure where to start? In the ever growing health and fitness industry, we are overwhelmed with different kinds of practitioners, each offering up unique ways to help us feel at our most optimum, but who should you turn to and why?

What’s a ‘chiro’? How can acupuncture, or naturopathy help your health and wellbeing? And how do you know which osteo to trust? Over the next two weeks on the blog, we’ll check out eight alternate therapies that might just change your life, as well as identifying which health concerns you might use each of them to address (because let’s face it, there isn’t always one approach for all our aches, niggles and pains). We’ll also give you our recommendations on local practitioners that rock!

This week we’ll cover physiotherapy, chiropractic, osteopathy and massage. Here goes…

 

Physiotherapy

What is it:

Essentially the aim of physiotherapy is to improve mobility and restore proper function to the body, usually with a focus on local areas of injury (pre-hab, rehab, or tending to acute injuries with tape, ice, needling and ultrasound techniques).

What to use them for:

Muscle sprains and other sports injuries, ongoing posture issues and surgery rehab (or pre-hab). Also the best peeps to hit up for recover of movement and coordination following a stroke, spinal cord injury, or other serious neurological condition affecting the physical body.

Locals we love:

Balance In Motion (Curlewis St, Bondi)
Nick Torrance and his team are arguably the best physios in East Sydney, with a particular specialty in working with athletes and lower limb injury. You’ll receive comprehensive analysis, out of session research, hands on treatment and an ongoing rehab plan if needed.

 

Chiropractic

What is it:

Chiropractors set out to improve health problems that relate to your entire skeletal, muscular and nervous system. They use a special type of manipulation called ‘adjustment’ to improve the way your body moves and feels, making sure every muscle, bone and system is working smoothly together, like a well-oiled machine.

What we use them for:

Any spinal conditions such as poor posture, lower back, or neck pain. Any problems with other joints such as knees, shoulders, feet and hands, as well as general niggling health problems, such as headaches, period pain and digestive issues. A lot of people think all chiropractors do is ‘crack’ your joints but we promise that’s not the full story and a good chiro will use multiple techniques to gently steer your body in the right direction.

Locals we love:

Healthspace (from Bondi Junction to Potts Point, Rozelle and beyond!)
Between us, we’ve met every single member of the Healthspace staff and they are all incredibly professional, knowledgeable and thorough. I’ve never had a business take such care to comprehensively look into my numerous niggles and pains, while also taking the time to talk me through each of them and illuminate the path to recovery. Oh and “The” Bachelor works there… need we say more 😉

 

Osteopathy

What is it:

Osteopathy involves soft tissue work, stretching and manipulation of the bones and muscles to promote mobility and restore balance to the body. A little like a combo of physio and chiro, you can expect your osteo to focus on full body biomechanics, working on everything from soft tissues (such as muscles, ligaments and tendons), to the spine and also the nervous system. So you might be massaged and stretched, as well as adjusted and corrected, all in one session.

What we use them for:

Osteopaths treat disorders such as back and neck pain, headache, joint pain, arthritis, repetitive strain injuries (RSI), vertigo, sciatica, sports injuries and tendonitis. They’ll look at how each part of the musculoskeletal system interacts with and influences the part that’s injured, since other parts of the musculoskeletal system may also be affected, or compensating. You might go in with a foot injury and end up having your shoulder looked at, for instance, or complain of headaches only to have your jaw adjusted. High tech stuff!

Locals we love:

Dan Turner Osteopath from Sydney Osteopathy (Bondi Junction)
We can very confidently say that Dan is one of the best in the business, Australia-wide. He’s a complete body-nerd and because he’s a sportsman himself (actually, rather an extreme sportsman), he promotes active recovery, not just “rest” whenever he can. This is awesome for those of us who hate being told to just ‘chill out for six weeks and rest’… no thanks. Dan’s also amazing in a crisis… when you’re in serious pain and nobody else will touch you, he’s a one appointment wonder!

 

Massage (Remedial and Sports)

What is it:

Obviously you don’t need me to tell you what a massage is, but it’s important to know the difference between those Thai massage places you see all over town and the practitioners who know what they’re doing to improve your sports performance and/or leave you stress free.

What we use them for:

Remedial massage is great for focusing on trigger points, myofascial release and lymphatic drainage techniques to help heal damaged or sore muscles, soft tissue and joint pain. Plus, they’re easily accessible (you often don’t need an appointment), relaxing and calm the nervous system. A great way to recover after a big week!

Sports massage is a good option if you’re injured, are feeling like your muscles aren’t firing up as they normally would, or have over-done your training. Basically, this kind of massage is specifically tailored to sports people, preventing and relieving injuries. Be aware that the pressure is often very strong, as the goal is to reduce tension that builds up within the body’s soft tissue while exercising.

Locals we love:

Revive (Waterloo), Chillax Therapy (Potts Point), or Healthspace (Bondi Junction)
My number one recommendation is Stevie at Revive – there’s no one I’d rather turn to for a cruel but kind sports massage.

 

Next week I’ll cover acupuncture, kinesiology, naturopathy & Chinese medicine, plus nutrition & dietetics. I hope you use this week’s blog as an excuse to book a massage in the meantime!

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