Physio-led Exercise Improves Bone Density!

Osteoporosis or ‘porous bones’ is a disorder in which the density and quality of bone are reduced. It is often termed the ‘silent pathology’, as a person may not be aware they have it until a bone breaks. Breaks, or fractures, are most commonly seen in the thoracic spine (middle of your back), hip or wrist. Osteoporosis is more common in females post menopause, due to a decrease in oestrogen. In women from the age of 45 years, bone loss begins then accelerates at the onset of menopause. By 6-7 years post menopause, bone density has reduced by 20%. Post 70 years, females have lost 30-50% bone mass and men have lost 20-33%.

Drinking, smoking, lack of vitamin D, lack of exercise and a diet low in calcium may also predispose one to osteoporosis. Asians and Caucasians are more susceptible to osteoporosis than Hispanics and Africans.

What can you do to prevent or manage osteoporosis?

Regular physical activity and exercise plays an important role in maintaining healthy bones, especially if it is weight bearing as this promotes bone growth. Exercise is recognised as one of the most effective lifestyle strategies to help make bones as strong as possible, reducing the risk of fractures later in life. As well as improving or maintaining bone mineral density, exercise increases the size, strength and capacity of muscles.

Physio-led Exercise or Pilates, especially reformer based, is an ideal form of exercise for people with osteoporosis and for osteoporosis prevention alike. Weight bearing can be achieved on the equipment with spring resistance, and the exercises are controlled and balanced.

Osteoporosis Australia recommends that older adults and people at risk of osteoporosis participate in varied and supervised exercise programs, including weight-bearing activities, progressive resistance training and challenging balance and functional activities, at least 3 times per week. 

If you think you could benefit from reformer-based Physio-led Exercise, contact us today on 8555 4099 for a consultation or Book Online.

Written by Physiotherapist Kelly Gailis

Can I exercise while I’m pregnant?

Exercise is very beneficial during pregnancy and can actually help to prepare you for labour and prevent complications. It is perfectly safe to exercise during pregnancy, as long as activities are performed at an appropriate level for you and your body. Please note, if you have been given restrictions by a health care professional regarding exercise, it is important to adhere to said restrictions.

What are the benefits of regular exercise during pregnancy?

  • Increased energy
  • Improved fitness
  • Reduced back and pelvic pain
  • Stress relief

How much should you exercise?

  • 30 minutes, 3-4 days per week

What kinds of exercise are appropriate?

  • Pilates for pregnancy
  • Gentle yoga
  • Walking
  • Swimming
  • Pelvic floor exercises

What exercises should you avoid?

  • Heavy weights (excessive pressure on core and pelvic floor)
  • High impact exercise (e.g. netball or aerobics – this can put too much pressure on your joints or cause your core temperature to rise to an unsafe level for your baby)
  • Wide and/or deep squats and lunges (excessive pressure on pelvic floor)
  • Significant changes in pressure (eg. swimming in very deep in water)
  • Anything which brings on the following symptoms

What are warning signs you need to look out for?

  • Headaches
  • Dizziness or feeling faint
  • Chest pain
  • Calf pain or swelling
  • Cramping in the lower abdomen
  • Feeling too hot.

If any of these symptoms occur, ensure you contact your doctor, midwife or physiotherapist.

During this time, it is important to remember that your body is creating and carrying another being. Listen to your body so that you don’t push yourself too hard. Just keep yourself moving within your own capacity.

If you are pregnant and would like to start Pilates with us or would like some advice on what exercise would be appropriate for you based on your previous exercise levels, previous/current injuries or any pregnancy-related conditions, call us on 8555 4099 to make an appointment with one of our Physiotherapists, or click here to book online.

Post written by Lily Percoco (Work Experience Student) and Meg Doyle (Physiotherapist)

Pain at the side of your hip?

Is the side of your hip painful? The gluteals are a group of muscles which form the shape of your buttocks. Gluteal tendinopathy is the most common cause of pain at the side of your hip. This is an irritation of the tendon, which attaches the gluteal muscles to the hip and is often a result of overuse. But don’t worry, tendons are strong and resilient and this pain is due to a reaction to excessive load, not a sign of damage.

Gluteal tendinopathy affects one in four women.

What are the symptoms?

The tendon is sensitive to particular movements at the moment and usually these movements involve:

  • Hip flexion, which occurs in deep squatting or sitting in a low chair.
  • Hip adduction, which occurs when your knee rolls in towards your other knee when you walk, run, step up or squat.
  • Hip external rotation, which occurs when the thigh rotates outwards.
  • If these movements occur in combination the chance of irritation to the painful tendon is especially increased.

How do you manage gluteal tendinopathy?

In the initial painful stages, the aim is to reduce the painful movements described above for a short period of time. A Physiotherapist can help guide you through the following so you can achieve your goals.

  1. Be careful of too much stretching – In the early painful stages, too much gluteal stretching may irritate the tendon further, so be careful of this. You may need to stop stretching, at least for a period of time, to allow the tendon to settle.
  2. Watch the posture of your legs when you do your most painful activity. Is your knee rolling in towards the other knee as you walk, run or step up?
  3. Reduce your exercise to a level where your pain is not aggravated for 24 hours after the activity. Find your threshold and stay below it. Look for an exercise level with minimal pain during and no lasting symptoms. If you wake up the next morning stiff and sore, you have probably done too much the previous day!
  4. Physio prescribed rehabilitation program and a graded return to activity.

Please contact us on 8555 4099 or BOOK ONLINE with one of our Physiotherapists to help you and your painful hip.

Do you experience plantar heel pain? What do you need to know?

Plantar heel pain (PHP), which describes pain in or around your heel, is one of the most common sporting injuries these days. You may have heard it being referred to as plantar fasciitis, however, research found that it is not really an inflammatory condition and the term has been changed to either plantar heel pain or plantar fasciopathy.

There are some common questions that patients with plantar heel pain often ask:

What are the risk factors of plantar heel pain? or Why do I have plantar heel pain?

For athletic people/runners:

-The use of running shoes with spikes

-A large training volume (more days/kilometres running per week)

-Your foot having a high arch


Among non-athletic people:

-High BMI or being overweight

-Starting new physical activity after being inactive

-Flat feet in standing

-Plantar fascia (the tissue in the sole of your foot) thickening

-Thickening of the heel pad (fatty tissue that cushions your heel) and heel spur (extra bony growth on the underside of your heel bone)

What are the typical symptoms of plantar heel pain?

  • Sharp and localised pain under the heel when weight bearing.
  • The pain will be worse in the morning and the first few steps when getting out of bed or after prolonged sitting.

What are the treatments available for plantar heel pain?

Your Physiotherapist will be able to diagnose the source of pain and prescribe a management plan for your individual case. This plan may include:

  • Stretching of the plantar fascia (see picture).
  • A calf strengthening program performed slowly with the plantar fascia on stretch and with heavy resistance.
  • Foot orthoses such as a gel heel cup.
  • Taping.
  • If the above fail, you may consider shockwave therapy, cortisone injection, botox, or a platelet rich plasma injection (PRP), where platelets from your own blood are injected into the plantar fascia to encourage healing. Surgery for plantar heel pain should be the last option only after all other treatments have failed.

If you are in doubt of having plantar heel pain or in need of a thorough treatment program to get you back to being active, our team can help you to achieve your goal and be fit again. Book Online or contact us today on 8555 4099 for a consultation.

How is sitting affecting your health?

Many of us have jobs that require us to sit at our desks for a prolonged period of time, fixated on the work at hand. Sitting for an extended period of time can increase the risk of obesity, type 2 diabetes and heart disease. It also can cause back pain and one’s metabolism to slow down, affecting the break down of fat and the regulation of blood pressure and blood sugar.

Though many of us are still required to be at a desk to complete our work, there are ways to keep our bodies from staying still in a certain position for hours on end, including:

  • Taking the active option:
    • Walking or riding to work is a great way to make sure you ou get your exercise in
    • Commuting to work via some physical activity ensures you complete your daily exercise and is a much more efficient use of your time
    • Also consider taking the stairs instead of the elevator, walking to a colleagues desk rather than emailing or even taking a moment to do a few stretches will really enhance your overall wellbeing.
  • Good posture:
    • Posture can become a problem when looking down at a laptop or slouching in a chair. To fix this consider getting a monitor and typing on a separate keyboard so you can decrease the stress of your neck muscles. Having a supportive chair that is adjusted to your height and your desk will also encourage a better position.
  • Consider investing in, or asking your employer about, a sit-to-stand desk:
    • Standing desks have impressive benefits to one’s health as standing is a much more active
      option. By having an interchanging desk, you can switch it up every half an hour so you are not maintaining the same posture for the whole day.

Overall it is extremely important that we prioritise our health while on the job. Increasing your exercise and being more healthy overall will actually improve your work as it
reduces stress, anxiety and increases productivity.

If you or a work colleague are experiencing pain in or out of the office, click here to book an appointment with one of our Physiotherapists online, or call us on 8555 4099.


Written by Hannah (Work Experience Student) & Meg Doyle (Physiotherapist)

We are hiring a full or part time Physio – Apply now!!

At InnerStrength of Bayside, we are a premier physiotherapy clinic with state of the art facilities and a large service offering. We specialise in Physio-led Exercise, drawing on the Clinical Pilates method, cancer rehabilitation (Pinc and Steel), joint mobilisation, massage, dry needling and exercise rehabilitation. Our friendly staff remains committed to providing clients and the wider community with industry-leading physiotherapy services.

About the Role 

We have an exciting opportunity for a junior or experienced Physiotherapist to join our team and take ownership of an existing caseload. Commencing in late June/early July 2019 and working on a full-time or part-time basis, the role will involve supporting our busy schedule of over 40 Physio-led Exercise classes, including Group Physio (Clinical) and Mums & Bubs

Duties Include: 

  • Running Group Physio-led Exercise classes
  • Hands-on manual techniques, writing and implementing rehabilitation programs
  • Clear and concise record keeping
  • Managing and building your own caseload
  • Build relationships to promote our services to the surrounding community, GP’s, schools and specialists

Skills & Experiences 

  • Fully Registered AHPRA Physiotherapist
  • Clinical Pilates experience/training highly regarded
  • Genuine interest in musculoskeletal clients
  • Dry needling training is desirable
  • A passion to deliver exceptional results that achieve optional physical health, not just clinical recovery

Benefits & Culture 

Great Working Environment – Enjoy working alongside a group of fun, like-minded individuals who share a passion for physiotherapy

Advance Your Career – Great opportunity to progress and develop within our industry-leading clinic

Fantastic Earning Potential – Great salary package + super + leave & bonus earnings

Flexible Arrangements – We accommodate our team’s lifestyles by arranging optimal working hours

To apply, please email your CV to or call Luci on 8555 4099 or 0415 582 980.

Why am I only moving the left or right side of my body in my Group Physio sessions?

Do you ever feel ‘lop sided’ or ‘out of whack’? Are the majority of your current and/or past injuries on one side of your body?

Injuries mainly on one side of the body is something that we often hear our physiotherapy patients complain of. Physio-led Exercise or Clinical Pilates has moved away from treating isolated structures as we have found that this can have limited scope. Research is becoming less supportive of this also. Radiology such as X-rays and MRIs do not always explain your pain. There are many people walking around completely pain free who on scans would have quite serious disc bulges and joint degeneration. This can seem quite strange to comprehend, but there are fit and healthy 18 year olds out there with disc bulges that you would never pick.

Craig Phillips, the creator of Clinical Pilates, has redefined Physio-led Exercise as a “Movement Based Classification & Treatment” (MBCT) tool.  This tool allows a physio to classify the patient against a directional preference model and “tailor” the exercises into the direction of flexion (e.g bending forwards) vs extension (e.g. bending backwards), the left side of your body vs right and also rotation.

When you come in for a Physio-led Exercise Assessment, your Physio will assess you based on four areas.

  • The Problem: We will record your areas of pain on a body chart and look for any pattern. Are most of your injuries on the left or right side of your body? If so, we will look at the strength and control on that side vs the other and if it is in fact weaker, then we will focus more on treating that side.
  • Preference: What things make your pain better? Do things such as sitting/bending forwards help your pain? These are flexion activities and we will try and chose exercises in your program into the direction which your body prefers.
  • Exclusion: What exercises should we avoid? E.g. Sitting (a flexion position) may help your pain, but walking (an extension position) aggravates it.
  • Trauma: Was there a trauma that lead to your injury and if so, what movement direction was this trauma in? e.g. were you leaning back and rotated when you were hit by another player in sport? If so, then we will initially try to avoid these positions in your exercise program.

Once your Physio has determined a directional classification based on your problem and preference of movement, we can then treat you by developing a rehabilitation program that meet the directional criteria that we have found. We will check in with you regularly and once a year have a one on one session with you to determine the effectiveness of this program and make sure it is helping to reduce your symptoms and achieve your goals.

We hope this has helped to explain why you may be working one side of your body more than the other and also why you may be doing a different program to some of your friends in your group physiotherapy session.

Please contact us on 8555 4099 or book online if you would like to join us in Physio-led Exercise.


Written by Luci Minogue, Physiotherapist.


Hot flushes? Weight gain? Changes in mood? Point the finger at menopause

Menopause is something that all women will go through. It involves a lot of changes due to the shifts in hormone levels, and can often leave women feeling like they’re losing control of their body. But there are things that you can do!

“So, what is menopause?”

Menopause begins when a woman has not had a period for 12 months, most commonly occurring between 48 – 55 years of age. Symptoms of menopause include:

  • Hot flushes and/or night sweats
  • Aches and pains, including headaches
  • Difficulty sleeping, including insomnia
  • Changes in mood such as irritability, depression or lack of self-esteem
  • Reduced sex drive (libido) as well as vaginal dryness
  • Fatigue
  • Going to the toilet more often or experiencing incontinence
  • Increased weight

Unseen changes include:

  • Decreased bone density
  • Increased cardiovascular disease risk
  • Issues with blood vessels

“That all sounds wonderful, but why are you telling me this?”

Well, it turns out that exercise is extremely beneficial for multiple reasons during this time. Some benefits include:

  • Increasing or maintaining bone density, and improving balance to prevent falls and therefore risk of fracture
  • Lowering weight and reducing waist circumference
  • Reducing the risk of breast cancer and Type 2 Diabetes
  • Improving mood
  • Improving sleep
  • Improving cardiovascular health, including lowering blood pressure
  • Reducing the symptoms of menopause, contributing to improved quality of life

“Okay, great! I’m in. So what type of exercise should I be doing?”

For your bones!

For benefits relating to bone density, the bones and muscles need to be overloaded to stimulate new bone growth. This means weight-bearing exercises where you’re on your feet! Think, hill walking, skipping, jumping, running, or weight training. Tai Chi, Yoga and Pilates-style (including Physio-led Exercise) are also good options as they aid in improving your balance which can prevent falls in the future.

Please keep in mind that if you do have osteopenia or osteoporosis, you want to ensure that you do not do anything that increases your risk of falling (eg. cycling where you could fall from a height) as your risk of fracture is much higher. Also, if you have pelvic floor or incontinence issues, you should consult your pelvic floor Physiotherapist on what the most appropriate exercises for you are, as certain exercises (such as jumping, skipping or inappropriately prescribed core work) can make your pelvic floor issue worse.

For your mood and mental health!

Walking (and I mean walking at a pace that gets that heart rate up!) at least three times per week has shown to reduce depressive symptoms.

For your sleep!

It is recommended that you exercise for 45 minutes, five times per week to see benefits in sleep. It sounds like a lot but you can tie this in with your recommendations for bone density, mood and cardiovascular health benefits.

And for your cardiovascular health!

For the best benefits in this area, it is recommended that you do three 45 minute sessions per week of aerobic interval training per week. Again, this overlaps with previous recommendations.


This all sounds like a lot, but when you break it down and start slow, you will find ways to fit it into your daily life. Once you start feeling the benefits? You’ll want to do it more! So, let’s all aim for 45 minutes of exercise, five times per week. There are numerous other health benefits, not mentioned in this article, that this amount of exercise will give you.

If you have any questions about your exercise regime, or have an injury or condition that you are unsure how to work around, book in for a session with one our Physiotherapists by calling 8555 4099 or click here to book online.


Written by Meg Doyle (Physiotherapist)



Is it better to exercise in a group or by myself?

For individuals who like to exercise, there is always an opportunity to do so, no matter how busy one’s schedule may be. This is because a conscious decision has been made to include exercise as an integral part of daily routine. Then there is the decision of what type of exercise to partake in. This choice depends on how your body physically reacts to different types of exercise. One person’s knees may be able to withstand running whereas another’s will not. Individual preferences for physical activity will determine whether the chosen exercise is slow, rhythmic movement, or fast paced exercise that makes you sweat and raises the heart rate. Ultimately, we want to try to vary the types of exercise we do in our weekly routine, whilst enjoying ourselves.

Another choice for individuals who like to exercise is whether they exercise alone, or with others. Sometimes you have to weigh up whether to get a quick walk or run in before dinner, or wait until later in the evening to walk in the company of a friend or partner. At the gym you could choose to workout solo, or join an exercise class so you can work out in a group setting. All exercise and movement is beneficial but there are a few key elements to group exercise that may encourage you to exercise with a friend or in a group setting.

Photo by Jonathan Colon

Firstly, according to Spink and Carron’s1 research, you are more likely to consistently come to classes and perform the exercises in the correct way in a group setting. The psychological benefits of exercising in a social setting are plentiful, whether it is the thrill of friendly competition, the positive effects of seeing other people outside of a work or home environment, reduction of stress2, or even the comradery around the difficulties in finding time and self-discipline to exercising. Many times, in a group setting, we may reassure ourselves that if ‘so and so’ can come to exercise class every week, then so can I!

Physio-led group exercise is our choice at InnerStrength of Bayside. We aim to provide a positive space, where you can exercise at your own pace, according to your needs and under the guidance of an experienced Physiotherapist. We recommend attending two group physio classes per week and adding cardiorespiratory exercises to your routine 3-4 times a week. This could be as simple as a 30-minute brisk walk with your dog or a friend with two legs.

Call us now on 8555 4099 or book a Physiotherapy Assessment online via this link and we can help you achieve your goals.


  1. Spink, K. S., & Carron, A. V. (1994). Group Cohesion Effects in Exercise Classes. Small Group Research, 25(1), 26–42. Retrieved from:
  2. UPI. (2017). Group exercise more effective than individual workouts, study says. Retrieved from:


Written by Beth Sackville (Physiotherapist)

Attention All Runners, Cyclists and Swimmers…. High Intensity Training Can Improve Your Performance!

Do you want to take your performance to the next level? Have you tried High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT)? HIIT is characterised by a burst of intense exercise, where you work as hard as you can, followed by a less intense exercise or active recovery.

The American Heart Association advises that 2 x 30 minutes of HIIT is equivalent to achieving 150 minutes of moderate intensity exercise per week! This means that HIIT training can make you fitter faster, which is so beneficial in a world where most people complain of being time poor.

HIIT can improve your performance by

  • Increasing cardiovascular fitness
  • Increasing endurance
  • Burning abdominal fat
  • Building muscles
  • Reducing blood pressure

InnerStrength of Bayside’s Physio led HIIT group sessions are dynamic and energetic. They are run by a Physiotherapist and performed on our state-of-the-art reformer beds using exercises derived from Pilates. This fun session, with up to three other people, will complement your other exercise routines or sports. Our sessions focus on all muscles groups especially around the hips, shoulders and trunk which will improve your power in the pool, whilst you run and/or on the bike.

As we all know, free time is often a limiting factor when it comes to achieving the recommended 150 minutes of moderate exercise per week.  So why not achieve the same health goals in a reduced time?

To ensure you reach your fitness goals and get the most out of your HIIT session, a 30 minute assessment with one of our Physiotherapists is required prior to attending your first class.

  • Run by a Physiotherapist.
  • Claim on Private Health Insurance.
  • Small classes, max 4 people.
  • Dynamic and energetic.

Don’t put it off any longer!

All HIIT sessions are claimable under Physiotherapy with Private Health Insurance. For more information including our session timetable or to book online please click here.

If you are unable to find a group session time that suits you, please let us know and we will try our hardest to accommodate you.



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