Physiotherapists are very interested in fitness, leisure and sport, but they rarely discuss the history of these ideas, or the place of physical therapies (massage, manipulations and mobilisations, remedial exercise, electrotherapy, hydrotherapy etc.) in the promotion of the health of the population. There are a number of reasons why I think we should pay more attention to this specific history. Firstly, it's one of the few areas where physical therapies have made a genuine contribution to the health of the population. I don't mean the health of individual patients that, taken together, amounts to the health of the population, but rather an approach applied to the population as a whole - … [Read more...] about Strong and modern – physiotherapy and physical culture
Earlier this week Mike Stewart (@knowpainmike) ran a @physiotalk Tweet Chat on the hidden influence of metaphor in physiotherapy (see here, and Mike's excellent review of the Tweet Chat here). It inspired me to think about the role metaphors play in learning. If you follow this blog regularly, you will have heard the name Gilles Deleuze. If you haven't heard this name though, it might pay to do a bit of web trawling, because some of his ideas are pretty astonishing. There have been some startling thinkers emerge from Europe over the last 100 years - Heidegger, Foucault, Sartre, Derrida, Adorno, etc. - but, for pure inventiveness, Deleuze takes the biscuit. (One tip though...I would not … [Read more...] about Metaphors of rhizomatic thinking
There was a story going around recently about Phil Lord's response when asked why his Lego movie had been snubbed for an Oscar. His reply was priceless. "It's okay" he said. "Made my own" (link). One of the things that's so fantastic about this response is the way Lord snubs the authority of the Oscar Nomination's Committee and says "I don't need your validation to know I've made a movie that's been a popular success, and I've got my own gong to prove it." When people make this kind of statement it says some interesting things about our changing attitudes towards authority. It seems to me, people these days are much less dependent on the validation, approval and sanction of authority … [Read more...] about Do you want our physiotherapy degree? No thanks, I made my own.
I have a headache: 2000 BC: Here, eat this root. 1000 AD: That root is heathen. Here, say this prayer. 1850 AD: That prayer is superstition. Here, drink this potion. 1940 AD: That potion is snake oil. Here, swallow this pill. 1985 AD: That pill is ineffective. Here, take this antibiotic. 2015 AD: That antibiotic is artificial. Here, eat this root. (Adapted from post originally published here). … [Read more...] about A short history of medicine
Physiotherapy and rehabilitation have always been inextricably linked. Although they represent discrete fields, their histories have often been closely intertwined. Physical rehabilitation as an organised discipline has its origins in World War I. Beth Linker, in her excellent book War's waste: Rehabilitation in World War I America, describes how it became necessary to change American attitudes to the retired Civil War veteran who had been considered heroes and, as such, exempted from work. But as the cost of meeting their social welfare costs grew, the government realised it needed a solution, and found its answer in the emerging rehabilitation sciences. The idea of the noble war … [Read more...] about War’s waste – physiotherapy and the disabled war veteran
Yesterday, I took part in one of the regular and always enjoyable Physiotalk Tweet Chats (#physiotalk). This one was on the role of physiotherapy in exercise prescription. As usual, the discussion ranged widely over all sorts of topics: whether physiotherapists were experts in exercise prescription and what needs to be taught in the UG curriculum not being the least of them. One thing that came through strongly was a desire to manage the client/patient's behaviour. Words like adherence, compliance and motivation kept coming up and people seemed to recognise that all the skill in the world wouldn't matter to the therapist if the patient didn't engage. As someone who's read their fair … [Read more...] about Is behaviourism the future for physiotherapy?
A beautiful example of connectivity at work here. Two dancers - one in a wheelchair, one standing using immersive video goggles to embody dance. … [Read more...] about Embodied dance: connectivity at work