I am an Independent Physiotherapy Consultant based in Sheffield, a northern city in the United Kingdom. I have also held an honorary role as a Visiting Fellow at Sheffield Hallam University since 2010. My career until that point had been heavily biased toward clinical practice, and then standard setting since qualifying in 1988. It was the undertaking and completion of a Doctorate and involvement in research that started turning my interests towards a more shared understanding between the ‘patient’ and myself as a clinician. My areas of specialism are in elder rehabilitation and neurology, particularly working with people affected by Parkinson’s. Co-producing my doctoral project with others through participative methodology made me realise the one-sided stance from which guidelines and standards of clinical practice are written – many, relating to physiotherapy in my field of expertise contributed to by myself over the years. My eyes were opened to the benefits of a more collaborative and informed work through shared experiences and knowledge between the professionals and people with different diagnoses. My new goal became to aim for more co-produced and qualitative inquiry (critical of course), but it continues to be a slow process for me.
My first steps have been more towards the first part of that goal i.e. that of co-production, gaining ideas of what people with Parkinson’s felt would help them. Last year, I co-authored for publication a first peer-reviewed article with a man (now friend) with Parkinson’s – still pretty clinical, but he wanted to explore and share his journey to undertake a marathon at aged 58 years, so that’s what we wrote about; it was interesting writing from each of our perspectives about this. I then involved myself in helping develop an exercise framework pushed by the wishes of people affected by the condition to get professionals to understand what evidence about exercise was telling them; again an eye opener about the acceptance of things that have no ‘hard evidence’ base, but people still find of use, or follow the latest well-marketed trend. Right now, I am undertaking to write about appreciative inquiry, so let’s see where this takes me ……
Email address: firstname.lastname@example.org
Location (city/town, country): Sheffield, England
Current position(s): Independent Physiotherapy Consultant and Visiting Fellow Sheffield Hallam University