At Hong Kong Sports Clinic, our experts provide only the best physiotherapy services

What is (good) physiotherapy?

 

A general definition of physiotherapy

According to the World Health Organization, Hong Kong physiotherapists should comply with the following:

  • Create rehabilitative programs that improve or restore movement ability, and treat or prevent physical challenges associated with injuries, diseases, and other impairments. 
  • Apply a broad range of physical therapies and techniques such as movement, ultrasound, heating, laser, and other techniques.
  • Develop and implement programs for screening and prevention of common physical ailments and disorders.

Please note that we do not agree with everything this definition encapsulates, as several techniques have been proven to not add noticeable benefits in many cases - like ultrasounds therapy, for example. At Hong Kong Sports Clinic, we rely on a hands-on approach to physiotherapy.

Different terms referring to physiotherapy

In Hong Kong, most people refer to this discipline by either physiotherapy or physical therapy. The practitioner is often called a physiotherapist, or simply physio. Kinesiotherapy is commonly used worldwide, but not so much in our city.

The concept of evidence-based physiotherapy

This worldwide used terminology does not have a strict definition. Collecting data from various part of the world, evidence-based physiotherapy can be defined as:

  • “The integration of best research evidence with clinical expertise and patient values”.
    • From this definition, we can see that it involves the science available at the time of treatment, mixed with each physiotherapist’s skills and decision-making abilities, and each patient’s individual thoughts and beliefs about their pain/pathology.
    • By pushing a bit further, we have come to the more thorough definition of evidence-based physiotherapy: “an area of study, research, and practice in which clinical decisions are based on the best available evidence, integrating professional practice and expertise with ethical principles”
    • A good, modern physiotherapist wants to seek continuous education - being up-to-date with the best available scientific evidence while integrating ethics within the professional practice. This last point expands our professional responsibility to try our best to consider each patient individually, but also to the society as a whole - for example, reflections around optimal costs to benefits/risks ratios.

More information about physiotherapy in Hong Kong

  • The approach for good and modern physiotherapy is a combination of hands-on techniques and exercises, rather than medication and surgery.
  • Modern, best available physiotherapy should be evidence-based, with accurate clinical judgment and informed interpretation at its core.
  • We see ourselves as “guides” helping patients through their journey towards a pain-free life
    • At Hong Kong Sports Clinic, the physios trust in patients’ active role in the rehabilitation process.
    • We guide through education, precise touch and movement assessments, as well as tailored exercise plans.

What is a typical physiotherapy session at Hong Kong Sports Clinic

 

Our experienced physiotherapists assess, diagnose, and start the treatment from the very first session with each patient.

Screening/assessment

  • The physiotherapist starts by reviewing the patient’s current condition. Questions include both subjective and objective examination. We value the patient’s point of view just as much as the information we gather from the different testings.
    • Subjective screening incorporates patients’ current signs and symptoms, past pain experiences, but also the values and beliefs about pain or injury. These are very important to the physiotherapist. In Hong Kong, many practitioners focus almost exclusively on the anatomical and biomechanical aspects of the pain. But scientific research has proven that a wide range of conditions can also be influenced by the psycho-emotional and social aspects of the patient’s life. This refers to a broader bio-psycho-social vision of pain.
    • Objective screening includes postural assessment, active and passive joints mobility tests, muscle strength, and function analysis.

Diagnosis

After assessing a patient, the physiotherapist tries to put a name on the presented signs and symptoms. Sometimes it is quite specific, like an Achilles tendinopathy. Other times more generic, like acute lower back pain. A good physio always aims at understanding what is really going on, and what underlying mechanisms could have led to the current pain.

Hands-on treatment

It consists of a variety of techniques, including but not limited to: dry needles, mobilizations, trigger points, massage, stretches, muscle energy, joint adjustments… Each physiotherapist has personal preferences and leans more towards certain techniques rather than others. Our experienced staff will try their best to refer each individual patient to the right practitioner. 

Why do patients choose to see physiotherapists at Hong Kong Sports Clinic

We are very proud and humbled by the number of positive feedback we get from our patients. We also put a lot of effort into making every session a meaningful experience.

We strive at learning and progressing

Science advances daily, and the amount of knowledge available in scientific literature pushes us to become better physiotherapists every day. We believe there is always room for improvement in manual therapies.

We want to offer the best personalized treatments available

We try to have a good balance of evidence-based and practice-based approaches. Mixing our hands-on experience with the latest scientific discoveries.

Our patients are not a number

Following-up on our patients is an essential part of our work. Monitoring symptoms progress, checking exercises diligence, or simply answering any questions and worries the patients may have. We will always take the time to get back to you.

We believe in active treatments

A good Hong Kong physiotherapist should encourage patients to take charge and responsibility for their recovery. The on-table part of the treatments is “passive”. It aims at reducing symptoms and controlling the pain level. The prescribed tailored exercise plan aims at helping to work at the root cause of the problem. It is up to each patient to be as diligent as possible and practice the exercises at home, or in a gym environment if required. We want our patients to feel responsible and in control of the improvements, while guiding and supporting them the best we can.

Our front desk staff works hard for patients’ satisfaction

From keeping the clinic neat and tidy to guiding patients through the booking process, we have received much positive feedback about the clinic’s front desk team. One of the patients’ most praised featured is the option to contact and book us through Whatsapp.

Most frequently asked questions about the physiotherapy services at Hong Kong Sports Clinic

Do you only treat sportspeople/athletes?

Some of our patients get confused about the clinic's name. But while some physiotherapists specialize in a given field, practitioners at Hong Kong Sports Clinic tend to treat a wide range of conditions, including - but not limited to - orthopedics, neurology, pediatrics, sports, rheumatology, geriatrics, and women’s health.

Athletes and desk-workers, adults and children, everyone are happily welcome to book our physios.

How do I know if I can come and see a physio or if I need to see a general practitioner first?

This is usually a personal decision. For insurance purposes, many patients are referred by other health professionals, like general practitioners. But we often see people coming to the clinic by themselves. Physiotherapists become their first-line specialists, and as such should be able to determine if their condition requires additional tests. The goal is to rule out a more serious cause of pain, also called “red flags”.

Will my insurance cover the full cost of treatment?

Each insurance in Hong Kong has different policies in regard to physiotherapy treatments. Please verify with your insurance company before coming to our clinic, as some require you to get a referral letter from a doctor before claiming the physio sessions.

What are the differences between a physio / a chiro / an osteo?

This is a tricky question that requires a thorough answer. We are working on this and will link it to the adequate page on our website as soon as possible!

I want to get better after one or two sessions! Can you guarantee this?

Unfortunately not. Our physiotherapists are going above and beyond to help you out, but results can vary from one patient to the other. Sometimes pain level subsides significantly after a couple of sessions, other times it can take several weeks to start noticing improvements. No matter how hard we try, we have little control over this.

Do I need to bring or run imagery exams, like an X-ray or an MRI?

In many cases, it is not necessary. For specific cases that require further investigation, your physio will inform you about the type of exam that needs to be done. If you have images and results from previous consultations, you are welcome to bring them over with you.

How to experiment with Hong Kong's high level of physiotherapy?

Contact us

Simply call our reception - 37092846 - for more information, or to book an appointment. You can also use the Whatsapp button on the bottom right corner of the page.

References

 

Bjorbækmo, W. and Mengshoel, A., 2016. “A touch of physiotherapy” — the significance and meaning of touch in the practice of physiotherapy. Physiotherapy Theory and Practice, 32(1), pp.10-19.

Kumar R, K., 2018. Physiotherapy-In the Modern Times-The Need vs Necessity. Examines in Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation, 1(4).

Physiopedia. 2020. Physiotherapy / Physical Therapy. [online] Available at: https://www.physio-pedia.com/Physiotherapy_/_Physical_Therapy

Veras, M., Kairy, D. and Paquet, N., 2016. What Is Evidence-Based Physiotherapy?. Physiotherapy Canada, 68(2), pp.95-96.

World Physiotherapy. 2020. Policy Statement: Description Of Physical Therapy. [online] Available at: <http://www.wcpt.org/policy/ps-descriptionPT#appendix_1>

 

 

Joseph March
Founder and Physiotherapist

After graduating from university in Australia, Joseph had solid exposure in a wide range of areas including professional sports, neurological, pediatrics, gerontology, and rehabilitation.

Joseph has over a decade of experience in Hong Kong, specializing in rehabilitation of musculoskeletal and sports injuries. He has treated issues related to pregnancy, desk jobs, as well as the unique injuries that come with a variety of athletic pursuits.

He has partnered with the Hong Kong Football Club as the performance squad physiotherapist, as well as the Hong Kong Ballet as the consulting physiotherapist.

Joseph’s hobby outside of work is the pursuit of a better functioning body. This has led him to delve deeply into many types of exercise and performance training. He has years of experience in Olympic weight lifting, movement training, powerlifting, yoga, pilates and strength, and conditioning. Through his own journey, Joseph has positioned himself well to understand other bodies and across a wide range of exercise and sport.

In the past Joseph competed at a high level in football and long distance running.

Cardeux Nel
Senior Physiotherapist

Cardeux represented South Africa and attained her first karate world championship medals at the age of 11. Cardeux’s other sport of interest is field hockey, which she has also played at a national level. From a young age, she attended physiotherapy to enhance performance and recovery. Understanding the importance of this stimulated her to pursue a career in helping others.

After graduating from The University of The Free State in South Africa, Cardeux spent a few years working in private practice as well as gaining experience in sports physiotherapy. She assisted with the Springboks in the lead up to the 2015 Rugby World Cup and worked at the Comrades Marathon for 4 consecutive years.

Cardeux’s treatment is focused on exercise, education and a holistic therapy approach. As a keen trail runner, she specializes in performing full running assessments, both clinical and video. She has also completed her post-graduate course in Dry Needling which she provides as part of her treatments.

Cardeux spends her time off continuing to pursue sports-related endeavors. She is captain of the Valley Premier women’s field hockey team, coaches running, and manages the Hong Kong Sports Clinic running team. She also extends her passion for the sport by giving back, as a member of WISE HK – Helping empower, educate and connect women and girls through sport in Hong Kong.

Elaine Leung
Principle Chiropractor

Elaine completed her chiropractic training at Macquarie University in Sydney, Australia with a Bachelor’s degree in Chiropractic Science and Master’s degree in Chiropractic. She then moved to Hong Kong to pursue her career and to promote the importance of health and the work-life balance.

Coming from a family of martial artist and traditional Chinese lion dancers, Elaine also developed an interest in Muay Thai, BJJ and weight training. This of course also comes with some injuries which have always been managed with chiropractic.

Her long interest and love for animals have then lead her to complete a Certificate in Animal Chiropractic in the USA to enable her to provide care for animals as she does for people. She is passionate about getting people (and animals) out of pain and living their lives to the fullest.

Emma Piachaud
Senior Physiotherapist

Emma returned ‘home’ to Hong Kong in 2011 after having spent her childhood here. She completed her Bachelor’s Degree (Hons) in Physiotherapy in the UK and has subsequently worked in the UK, France, and Hong Kong in a variety of settings, including the National Health Service, private hospitals and clinics, and a ski resort.

Emma is a keen sportswoman, which has led to a natural interest in sports injury rehabilitation and exercise-based therapy where she has completed many postgraduate courses specialising in manual therapy and core stability retraining. These have been in areas such as the lumbopelvic complex and thoracic rib cage and their combined effects on the musculoskeletal system. She has used this knowledge when treating clients, from elite athletes with chronic overuse injuries to postnatal women returning to sport.

Emma is available to assess and manage all musculoskeletal conditions including neck and back pain, sports injuries, thoracic and ribcage issues, and post-surgical rehabilitation. In addition, Emma has a specialist interest in treating specific problems related to ante and post-natal women, including pelvic girdle pain, rectus diastasis, mastitis, and assisting in return to sport and fitness.

Katia Kucher
Principle Nutritionist

Katia is a nutritionist with a Precision Nutrition certification and NASM Sports nutrition certification. Katia has also been a fitness, road, and trail running coach for many years. Her focus is on finding the ideal personalized diet plan to maintain a healthy lifestyle. Her other certifications include NASM Personal Trainer, PTA Global Personal Trainer. She also does corporate talks and presentations about nutrition and fitness.

As a nutritionist, her goal is to create a personalized nutrition plan and diet to help clients reach their health and fitness goals, or resolve any health issues. The key is to find a healthy, balanced, life sustainable diet that is adaptable to the client’s body type, metabolism, and lifestyle. For athletes, she creates nutrition programs to improve their performance, strength and endurance levels, and promote faster recovery.

Her background also includes helping clients dealing with injuries, by recommending a diet and specific foods that follow the healing phases to help with the healing quality and speed.

If you find it challenging to find a proper diet that will help you reach any of your goals, Katia can help you achieve your goals or help with any health issues, by recommending a diet you will enjoy and be able to maintain.

Taras Makarenko
Principle Osteopath

Taras is the Principal Osteopath with the Hong Kong Sports Clinic, where he specialises in mechanical pain associated with sports injuries, “desk-bound” related back pain, and nerve entrapment syndromes, like sciatica pain.

He has post-graduate training in both pre and postnatal as well as infant and newborn treatments. His experience includes over 6 years as an independent osteopath, working with multi-disciplinary fields alongside general practitioners, sports doctors, and physiotherapists to provide a higher level of effective recovery for his patients. He has engaged with high-level athletes in the field of tennis, soccer, rugby, field hockey, basketball, dance, ballet, trail-running, and triathletes.

To achieve long-lasting results, Taras strongly believes that structure and function have to be considered equally. His methodology includes an emphasis on educating patients about their pain, and to consider that effective recovery and treatment extends beyond the therapy room. Education is a key component to treatments when walking with patients for their road to recovery, with a mixture of in-clinic and home exercises (stretches and strength focused) as keys factors to improve symptoms.

A French national, he enjoys the fast-paced environment of Hong Kong, with his two kids and wife his loves alongside a keen interest in tennis and running.

Hamish Dickie
Senior Physiotherapist

Hamish originally undertook a Sports Science degree at Otago University and followed this up completing a physiotherapy degree at the Auckland University of Technology. A proud Kiwi, Hamish has worked with a number of high-performance teams and individuals and was part of the New Zealand Olympic team in 2018 where the team won 2 medals.

The first NZ Winter Olympics medals in 26 years. Hamish is still involved with the New Zealand Olympic program and physiotherapist for the Hong Kong Rugby men’s team. In 2018, Hamish’s wife Alex gave birth to the couple’s first child Charlie who has quickly become the apple of his father’s eye.

Prior to Hong Kong, Hamish and Alex spent a number of years in beautiful Queenstown, New Zealand where he developed the regions first high-performance youth sports academy to progress talented athletes. Hamish has worked in other high-performance programs including the New Zealand Baseball team and has worked at major tournaments such as the New Zealand Golf Open.

He has also worked in house at CrossFit boxes and is enjoying working with the CrossFit and weightlifting community in Hong Kong. Hamish was the physiotherapist for the Hong Kong Cricket Club rugby section in 2016/17 and is an active member of the cricket section where he captains the Optimists Sunday premier league team. An avid fitness enthusiast, Hamish loves all the running options that Hong Kong offers and is an avid runner on the wonderful trails.

Needless to say, Hamish understands sports and has a special interest in biomechanics and strength and conditioning components of rehabilitation. Hamish is also a qualified dry needling technician and uses a number of mobilizations, soft tissue and active release techniques to enhance the recovery process. Whether you’re a weekend warrior, youth athlete trying to reach the pinnacle of your sport or an international athlete Hamish is the right physio for you.

Charles Wang
Senior Physiotherapist

Charles completed his Physiotherapy degree at the University of Sydney, Australia. Charles has a particular interest in the link between biomechanics and injury, especially in the lumbopelvic area and lower limb. As such his treatment approach incorporates manual therapies and exercises prescription to optimise movement patterns and to recover from and prevent recurring injuries.

Joe Zhang
Physiotherapist

Joe graduated from the University of Sydney and has worked with a variety of athletes and programs, particularly at the Olympic and Professional level. He was a physiotherapist at the NSW Institute of Sport, working across all the programs in particular the Cycling, Hockey and Wheelchair Basketball programs.

Joe was also a team physiotherapist at the NSW Waratahs Super Rugby team and Sydney FC’s W-League team. He worked also as a state program physiotherapist in gymnastics and netball.

Joe’s treatment approach incorporates soft tissue release, dry needling, mobilisations and exercise prescription to speed up recovery, optimise movement patterns, and prevent injuries from recurring.

Joe has played representative basketball, and was also involved in weightlifting.

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