Online Physio

Virtual physiotherapy offers an opportunity for real recovery.

Since the start of the first lockdown, The Chartered Society of Physiotherapy ruled that all physio should be  “virtual first”.  And although the restrictions are now lifting, I’m still offering online physiotherapy as an option. If you choose to go virtual, we’ll begin with an online video assessment and then decide whether online physio, in-clinic physio, or a hybrid of both is best suited to your current situation. Even if a clinic visit isn’t right for you right now or if you live too far away from London for in-person treatment to be practical, I can still give you real help, treatment and support. Here’s how it works: 

Get in contact

Just call my London team on
0207 175 0150 or use the form below and let me help you get better.

Just call my London team on
0207 175 0150 or use the form here.

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Discovering what’s wrong from a distance: an in-depth assessment process using movement-based tests and careful questions

Working out why someone’s in pain is definitely the most complicated part of online physio! Most acute injuries aren’t that complex and can be largely diagnosed and treated through pattern recognition (for example, if you twisted your ankle, we consider which structures are most likely to have been overstretched) but around 30% aren’t quite that simple and take a bit more digging to work out. 

Where (before the first lockdown) I always looked for feedback through using my hands to feel how my patients movee, I’ve now developed a series of movement-based tests that can help me to work out visually which body parts aren’t doing their fair share of the work as you move, which is usually the reason that the overloaded bit starts to hurt.

Whether in clinic or online, I usually spend an awful lot of the initial assessment session just talking, and learning your story. This is vital, especially if you’ve had a problem or a series of problems for a long time. One of the best strategies I’ve learned is to get you to “fill in the gaps” of the statement: “I haven’t been the same since…” Of course, it’s not foolproof, but it’s interesting how often that uncovers the real source of the problem.

Working as a team to get you better: referrals are still possible with online treatment

Hospitals are getting back to a more normal service.  The main private MRI centres in London are still running, albeit they’re offering a reduced service to maximise social distancing, and with a super-strict cleaning routine. So I can still refer you for an MRI!

Most of my usual consultants are, like me, offering a mixture of online and face-to-face clinics. They are also now getting back into the operating theatre, so if you need surgery you should be able to get it.

So if you have a physio appointment and it looks as though you need to see a consultant, have a scan or even an operation — these are not normal times, but these things are still doable.

You’re not alone: reassurance and hope are a big part of getting better, and I can offer them from anywhere

One of the scariest things about injuries is not knowing why you’re in pain. It can be especially lonely and frightening to suffer on your own, and this pandemic has been isolating. We all know that the longer you sit along and Google your symptoms, the more you’ll eventually be convinced that you have some sort of rare disease. 

During our online appointment, I can help you find some peace of mind. If you have big health worries, my job is to help you rationalise how realistic those worries are, with the benefit of my 20+ years of practice.  The truth is that, good as I like to think I am as a physio, I can’t actually cure cancer — so if I can change your symptoms or make your pain go away, then we can both be pretty sure that it wasn’t cancer!

Options for hands-on treatment: I’ll help you build a support bubble to get better faster

With coaching from England rugby physio Dave O’Sullivan as well as from the amazing Diane Lee, over the past year I’ve discovered how my hands-on skills translate into online treatment. It’s not the same as treating patients in clinic, but we can accomplish a lot with a virtual visit.

As long as the body part that needs treatment is something you can reach for yourself, I can also teach you some hands-on techniques to use to help yourself — just as I would in clinic — and there are some useful tools I can recommend that may help you.

Something I’m always happy to do in clinic is to give you the option to bring someone else into your treatment session, to learn how they can help you when I’m not around. I’ve found that this can help people to feel more in control of their injury treatment, can increase the amount of carry-over between sessions — and also saves money! 

As long as you’re sharing a house with someone who’s prepared to help you, this is something we can still do. Since April, over an encrypted videolink, I’ve been teaching mothers how to stretch and mobilise their daughter’s hips; girlfriends how to treat their partners’ ankles; and husband how to help their wives’ backs — and I follow up with videos to remind the “temporary physios” what they need to do going forward.

One-on-one guidance to help you learn your rehab exercises at home

In clinic I’ll use my hands as a guide to see how well my patients are progressing with their exercises and to give feedback and guidance — for example, to remind a hunched shoulder to drop back down, or to provide resistance. In a virtual setting, I’ll be asking you for more feedback about what you can feel and when — but I can still see you moving, and you can still see me. And I can still make you videos to remind you of what you need to practise — either I can film you over the video link, or I can film me afterwards — so you still have me in your pocket telling you what to do, just like normal!

Find relief and recovery without ever having to leave home

The biggest advantage of online physio is that you don’t have to travel further than your laptop to see me! I’m always conscious that there are some patients for whom travelling to and from the clinic is difficult, stressful or painful; and there are also others who simply live too far from London to make it viable. Hopefully I will have more opportunity to help those people now that distance isn’t an issue!

If you think that online physiotherapy might be right for you, I would love to help.

Call us at (+44) 0207 175 0150 send us an email at help@nellmead.com, or fill in this form, and we’ll book you in for a virtual appointment.