Rehabilitation

Foot Drop and How to Manage your Condition

Written by Matthew Craig, Exercise Physiologist at Thornleigh . Article from March 2019

Foot Drop and How to Manage your Condition

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Foot drop is caused by a weakness/inability to activate the muscles on the anterior portion of an individual’s lower limb, especially the Tibialis Anterior muscles. The condition causes a weakness in the dorsiflexors of the foot which clear our foot off the ground when walking or running (i.e. pull our toes towards our shin), putting sufferers at a much higher risk of falls and injuries. Drop foot also regular causes patients to present with an abnormal gait, most commonly a high steppage gait, where the hip and knee are flexed excessively to compensate for the lack of foot clearance at the ankle joint.

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How Does Incorrect Breathing Contribute To The Neck Pain?

Written by Demi Ljilja, Exercise Physiologist at Campbelltown. Article from March 2019

How Does Incorrect Breathing Contribute To The Neck Pain?

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Incorrect breathing is not the primary or only cause of neck pain and bad posture. There are many more factors such as muscular imbalance, biomechanical alignment, muscular tightness, mobility and movement proficiency that account for and contribute to the pain to a greater extent. All these factors need to be addressed prior to primarily focusing on breathing. So what is the correct way to breathe at rest, during activity/ exercise?

The correct way is by using the diaphragm during inhalation and exhalation, called diaphragmic breathing.

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The Necessity Of Exercise For People With Parkinson’s Disease: External Movement And Internal Factors Of The Disease

Written by Adrian Choy, Exercise Physiologist at Blacktown. Article from January 2019

The Necessity Of Exercise For People With Parkinson’s Disease: External Movement And Internal Factors Of The Disease

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Parkinson’s disease (PD) is a progressive, chronic and neurodegenerative movement disease. Specifically, what has been historically considered a motor disorder, it is characterized by both many motor and non-motor symptoms such as balance decrements, bradykinesia (slow movement), resting tremor, gait disruption and reduced quality of life. PD patients also tend to display a stooped posture when walking, rigidity and postural instability with reductions in speech volume. An iceberg can describe the clinical status of PD; motor symptoms represent the visible portion whereas the various non-motor manifestations represent the most non-visible portion (1).

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How Optimum’s Exercise Physiologists Program for NDIS Participants

Written by Matthew Craig, Exercise Physiologist at Thornleigh. Article from December 2018

How Optimum’s Exercise Physiologists Program for NDIS Participants

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What exactly is an exercise physiologist? Accredited Exercise Physiologists (AEPs) AEPs are university qualified allied health professionals equipped with the knowledge, skills and competencies to design, deliver and evaluate safe and effective exercise interventions for people with acute, sub-acute or chronic medical conditions, injuries or disabilities. So essentially exercise is medicine!

Optimum Health Solutions has really taken the time to understand the NDIS. So when it comes to the NDIS our programs focus around 3 main goals, 3 main goals that most families, support coordinators and participants of the NDIS will be familiar with as they are in every NDIS plan ever!

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Exercise and Prostate Cancer

Written by Taylor Moore, Exercise Physiologist at Sylvania. Article from November 2018

Exercise and Prostate Cancer

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Prostate cancer is the most common cancer amongst Australian men, each year there is 20,000 new diagnosis’ and 3300 men die from the disease. Prostate cancer involves an abnormal growth of cells in the prostate gland and can be detected through a blood test. Common treatments for prostate cancer can include surgery, radiation or hormone therapies all of which can be supplemented by exercise to enhance treatment.

If you have been diagnosed with prostate cancer, exercise is an excellent adjunct therapy to reduce symptoms of first-line treatments such as fatigue as well as improve mental health and survival rate.

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Diabetes: Australia’s Silent Problem

Written by Taylor Moore, Exercise Physiologist at Sylvania. Article from October 2018

Diabetes: Australia’s Silent Problem

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In Australia there are currently over 1 million people with Diabetes, approximately 100,00 new diagnoses each year and it was made a National Health Priority in 1997. Type 2 Diabetes is a chronic disease that occurs when the body doesn’t produce enough insulin or is unable to utilise the available insulin effectively. This results in increased blood glucose levels. Type 2 Diabetes occurrence is strongly linked to lifestyle factors such as diet, exercise, alcohol intake and overweight/obesity. Luckily, however, many of the risk factors for diabetes are modifiable and you can decrease your risk by making healthy lifestyle choices. 

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Neuroplasticity and Parkinson’s Disease

Written by Taylor Moore, Exercise Physiologist at Sylvania. Article from October 2018

Neuroplasticity and Parkinson’s Disease

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Neuroplasticity refers to the brain’s ability to reorganise itself both in its structure and how it functions. The brain continuously creates new cells (neurogenesis). When we practice new skills or experience new things our brain makes connections (synapses) to these new cells. These new connections are able to form within 15 minutes of a new activity being commenced are strengthened with repetition and weakened when they are not used.

So why is this relevant to Parkinson’s Disease?

Parkinson’s is a progressive, degenerative disease of the brain.

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Patellofemoral Pain

Written by Adrian Choy, Exercise Physiologist at Blacktown. Article from October 2018

Patellofemoral Pain

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Do you experience knee pain in the front of your knee but don’t know why? You may be experiencing what’s called patellofemoral pain syndrome. This condition is multifactorial but can be treated with appropriately prescribed exercise.

In PTFP, the patella may be the main issue whereby it is not in the correct position it should be, leading to pain being felt in the kneecap region. The patella itself may be tilted, shifted or hypermobile. A potential reason for this can be due to a muscle imbalance between two quadriceps muscles sitting either side of the patella – the vastus medialis and vastus lateralis.

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Beyond The Scale

Written by Taylor Moore, Exercise Physiologist at Sylvania. Article from Septemeber 2018

Beyond The Scale

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Often when people start out on their weight loss journey they fixate on the numbers on the scale. Decreasing that number is often important, however, what many people are unaware of are the other changes happening with your body that some scales just can’t measure.

  • Changing Body Composition – When we start exercising, there are a lot of changes that occur within our bodies. With exercise, our bodies lose weight and gain muscle, however, this fat loss may not always be visible on the scales. On top of this, exercise reduces the amount of visceral fat (fat around our vital organs, of which you cannot track on your normal scales.
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Stuttering in Children and Adults

Written by Siri Burke, Speech Pathologist at Blacktown. Article from Septemeber 2018

Stuttering in Children and Adults

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Often when I meet someone new at a cocktail party and tell them I’m a speech pathologist, they’ll say ‘Oh like Geoffrey Rush in the King’s Speech!’

Truthfully, providing intervention for clients who stutter is a world away from the Geoffrey’s kooky strategies in the delightful period drama, but similarly, we are able to provide strategies to help people who stutter reduce the severity of their symptoms and improve their communication.

What is stuttering?


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Stuttering affects the fluency of speech. It is characterised by disfluencies or disruptions to a speech of several types;
Repetitions – where a syllable, a whole word, or several words are repeated, e.g.

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