“Research across multiple fields highlights the multiples influences on how patients move – their strategies for movement – and how they feel – their symptoms and experience of their body.”
Dr Linda-Joy Lee
ConnectTherapy™ is a treatment model that emphasises the connections between different parts of the body and between the body and mind. It also explores the physical, social and emotional connections that are part of being human.
ConnectTherapy™ helps address the root cause of your musculoskeletal pain.
We all tend to notice symptoms like a stiff neck, sore shoulder or painful knee. Relieving those symptoms is important but the pain tends to return unless we also identify and treat the underlying cause.
Over time, your body can get into bad habits with basic movements or postures. These bad habits may occur as compensation for previous injuries or as a result of asymmetries that may develop from work, recreation or sporting activities.
Ultimately, these lead to altered mechanics of movement which are often accompanied by pain and dysfunction. Whether your body is being still or active, every part of it has to work together so you can function. This is why it is essential to assess the whole body, not just the area that is in pain or symptomatic.
The ConnectTherapy™ framework considers the complicated network of physical connections in the human body, as well as social and emotional contributors that may be relevant to the pain that you are experiencing. Addressing these factors in a holistic and collective way helps treat the cause of the painful condition rather than only the symptoms.
Sure. It’s always helpful to show how we put a theory into practice.
Let’s say you’re a parent who always carries your toddler on your left hip. You repeat that many times a day. Over time, you’ll develop an asymmetric loading pattern. You’ve consistently carried more weight on your left side and those muscles have got stronger. But that means your body is now slightly rotated and favouring your left side.
If this loading pattern persists over a long period of time, it will cause structural changes in your thoracic and lumbar spine alignment (your middle and lower back).
You may come to see us because your left knee hurts. However, treating the knee will only have short-term effects unless the asymmetric loading pattern and body rotations are addressed as well.
Now let’s say you’re a tradie who wears steel cap boots for 12 hours per day and 6 days per week. You make an appointment with us because you’ve developed lower back pain but the underlying cause of that may be foot stiffness due to heavy and rigid footwear.
Your foot is meant to absorb shock during walking and to distribute weight evenly throughout the body. Spending the majority of time wearing rigid footwear can result in stiffness and over time cause structural changes to the biomechanics of the foot. Your body may adapt to these changes with rotations which may result in lower back pain.
Treating the lower back helps ease the pain but to address the cause of that pain we need to address the dysfunction of the foot. That may include modifying your footwear to ensure long-term management and prevent recurrent low back pain.
ConnectTherapy™ was developed by Dr Linda-Joy (LJ) Lee, a Canadian physiotherapist whose work has been published in many peer-reviewed journals. She is an Honorary Senior Fellow at Melbourne University’s Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences.
LJ’s research is driven by her unconventional thinking and her passion about changing people’s lives. The framework integrates current scientific research with her clinical expertise and explores how pain-free dysfunctional areas of the body can lead to pain in other areas.
We start by asking you about your symptoms. Then we carry out a detailed and thorough assessment to determine how all areas of your body are linking and interacting with each other during a specific activity.
Next, we spend some time explaining how one area of the body can impact another, showing you why your hip pain, for example, may relate to your ankles.
Then we’ll develop a program of exercises tailored to your needs. Completing these exercises regularly at home and attending any follow-up appointments will help to improve your mobility, strength, and flexibility. Our goal is to relieve your current symptoms and prevent a recurrence by addressing the true cause of your condition.
All physiotherapists at Physionorth consistently use the ConnectTherapy™ treatment approach. The majority of our physiotherapists have undergone postgraduate training with Dr. Linda-Joy Lee.
If you are looking for more than just symptom management and you would like to get to the root of your problem please contact us at Physionorth on 4724 0768 or book online.
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Our professional team delivers quality treatment, advice & education to really help you move & feel your best!