Sports injuries and other physical discomforts can be a real pain to get over. From chronic back aches to joint pain, slow muscle recovery or even post-surgery rehab, recovery can be particularly taxing when your discomfort prevents you from enjoying other aspects of your life, like work or social activities.
Whether you’re experiencing headaches, a sporting injury, knee pain or a complex illness like chronic fatigue syndrome or fibromyalgia, a physiotherapist can assist in improving your condition in the short term, to then build up strength in the long term. A physiotherapist is a medical professional qualified to treat diseases, deformities and injuries through physical methodologies. These can include exercises, massage, hydrotherapy and heat treatment.
Finding a physiotherapist who you’re comfortable with can be a challenge – you want to feel like you can trust them to build a program that accounts for all your particular needs and comfort levels without crossing any physical or personal boundaries. But what qualities make a good physiotherapist, and where can you find the best in Canberra? In this article, we’ll break down a few key things to look out for when finding a physio, and a helpful guide to some of Canberra’s best.
What makes a great physiotherapist?
As with any other type of health professional, physiotherapists have different backgrounds, personalities and areas of expertise. To find one that’s compatible with you and your needs, we recommend keeping an eye out for the following traits:
- Expertise and experience. The best therapists are lifelong learners. Finding a physio with up-to-date knowledge and qualifications is essential to ensuring you receive the best treatment possible, so make sure you ask your physiotherapist what kind of therapy work they’ve done before and if they are experienced with your type of injury.
- Variety of therapy styles. The best physiotherapy practices offer a variety of different therapies so that they can treat all kinds of injuries, such as acupuncture, hydrotherapy, and Pilates classes. Finding a practice that can build a broad and holistic program to help you best recover from your injury, as opposed to a practice that can only offer massages and at-home exercises, can mean the difference between a short-term fix with more pain and discomfort in the future and a long-term solution that will help you build up strength.
- Holistic approach. From sprained ankles to chronic back pain, all conditions affect multiple body systems in different ways. Look for a physiotherapist that takes a holistic approach, assessing and treating every system in the body, and is approaching your problems with the big, long-term picture in mind.
- Ability to listen and understand your condition. Every patient is unique. A tailored approach needs to start with the ability to listen to each patient. If you feel your concerns aren’t being taken seriously, or you aren’t being heard, consider working with a different practitioner.
- Compassion. It’s no secret that ill health can make us feel vulnerable. Your physio should be empathetic and compassionate so that you feel supported and really trust them to have your best interests at heart.
The best physiotherapists in Canberra
RiotACT’s editorial team has combed through 20 years of on-site comments to compile a list of the most recommended businesses according to you.
To be listed in our Best of Canberra series, each business needs to have consistently received positive feedback on RiotACT and Facebook as well as maintaining a minimum average of 4/5 stars on Google.
With over 30 years of experience, Hawker Place Physiotherapy and Pilates provides the highest standard of care in a safe, friendly and professional environment. From osteoporosis prevention to rehabilitating sporting injuries and treating pelvic floor conditions, Hawker Place Physiotherapy and Pilates’ qualified team uses evidence-based practices to assess, diagnose and treat every patient.
Hawker Place is one of Canberra’s only private physiotherapy practices with a qualified lymphoedema practitioner. You don’t need a referral, and appointments are usually available within 48 hours. It also offers evidence-based clinical pilates guided by APPI qualified physiotherapists, as well as small group and private therapeutic exercises classes.
The practice, which is conveniently located near Hawker Shops in Belconnen, takes online bookings. There is plenty of free parking nearby.
Ellebanna Eel wrote on RiotACT, “Hawker physio is amazing! I’ve seen Grant there and done Pilates. Incredibly knowledgeable, helpful and he’s the first physio I’ve seen who understands how injury, pain and movement impact real life… Effective, professional and wholistic.”
in.motion offers more than simply world class orthopaedic services. They boast a unique integrated medical approach providing a higher level of care tailored to their client’s individual needs. Front and centre of this integrated approach are the practice’s physiotherapy services.
in.motion offers the very latest in physiotherapy services and rehabilitative programs to support optimum joint health, rehabilitation, and sports injuries.
Alongside principal Dr Damian Smith, Kristen Steele operates as in.motion’s in-house physiotherapist. Passionate about health and fitness, Kristen believes that movement is a crucial component to strength and overall wellness.
With over three decades in the healthcare and fitness industry Kristen brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise to the practice. Her training is as extensive as her experience, holding a Masters of Physiotherapy and double degree in Sports Management and Coaching Science.
Kristen is also a specialised trainer for acute and chronic health conditions, sports injury, and seniors. Importantly, Kristen is well connected to the industry at large as a registered AHPRA and APA Professional.
in.motion offers a range of specialised physiotherapist-led classes, each catering to individual needs and emphasising targeted movement to assist in joint health. Classes include clinical pilates, aquatic physiotherapy, and group exercise. Each offers its own set of unique health benefits to improve overall physical function.
Whether you are recovering from surgery, nursing a sports injury, managing arthritis, or looking for preventative care in.motion physiotherapy has it covered. For a professional and passionate team who strive to deliver life-changing results through integrated physiotherapy look to in.motion.
Alex Andra shared this great review on Facebook, “Fantastic practice! Damian and his team are exceptionally professional, caring and thorough ..highly recommended!”
Back in Strength, founded in 2011, provides physiotherapy, rehabilitation, and Pilates services.
It’s personalised physiotherapy treatment and rehabilitation services helps patients overcome pain and regain movement, to live freer, healthier and happier lives. Back in Strength’s physiotherapists can assess, diagnose, treat and manage physical dysfunction.
At Back in Strength, physiotherapists use their clinical experience to diagnose the problem, working with the client to develop power and strength in movement. It tailors programs, treating back, neck and pelvis issues (chronic and acute). The studio is the first in Canberra to introduce Redcord, a tool for remedial therapy and those needing challenging core exercises.
Physiotherapists are registered with the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency. All of their team are very experienced and skilled, plus you can make an appointment with Jean Lim, a physiotherapist from Singapore who is fluent in Mandarin
Open Monday to Saturday. Free parking and disability access.
mariahgwilko wrote on RiotACT, “Anne at Back in Strength at Deakin is incredible. Really takes the time to help create a program for you personally! They also have Pilates as well which helped with my issues.”
SportsTec Clinic is a multidisciplinary physiotherapy practice that strives to provide the best patient experience, evidence-based treatment and optimal clinical outcomes. In addition to offering physiotherapy services, its team also provides massage, hydrotherapy, acupuncture, pilates and nutritional guidance. Their centre boasts a cutting-edge gym and pilates studio, optimised to help you heal from any sports, dance or other injuries, as well as for strength training and rehabilitation. They’re also currently offering live online fitness classes and physio consults if you’re unable to make it to their location.
Jeanette Freedman-Chan wrote the following in their Google review, “Have been attending this clinic for 8 weeks and have excellent results in such a short amount of time. It is life changing.”
The team at Origin Physiotherapy and Wellness don’t like to think of themselves as practitioners at just another physiotherapy clinic. Instead, they’re a support network, with an approach built on the idea that people deserve the best support and care. Origin offers musculoskeletal services and women’s health physiotherapy. Its consultation times are longer than most other clinics and its ethos is education and managing change. Origin has a genuine passion for achieving exceptional outcomes for its clients, which it says deserve nothing less.
As Connor O’Byrne writes in their Google review, “By far the best physio practice I have been to. The staff are very knowledgeable and are committed to helping you achieve your goals. Definitely recommend seeing Origin for all your injury needs.”
Are you looking for more ways to improve your physical health? Check out our articles on the best Pilates studios in Canberra, the best acupuncturists in Canberra and the best Yoga Studios in Canberra for some useful information on our city’s top services.