Talking Physio, with David Jones
with David Jones
We spent some time with the charismatic and consummate professional, David Jones.
David, or DJ as he is known, is a Co-owner and Principal Physiotherapist at move physio pilates. We got him talking on everything from the perks of his job to owning a practice.
What was it about Physiotherapy that drew you to the profession in the first place?
I was an active youngster who grew very quickly through my teens, so was exposed to the profession early after having plenty of injuries of my own. My interest in science also developed rapidly during high school. Truth be told, I was and still am a bit of a science nerd and developed a keen interest in the human body and the way that it worked. Not only that, I knew that I wanted a career that allowed me to help people and have a positive impact on people’s lives, so I completed both my Exercise Physiology and Masters of Physiotherapy degrees through Sydney University and I guess you can say... the rest is history! Completing my Ex Phys degree as well gave me a special appreciation for the adaptive capacity of the human body, that has definitely helped shaped my style as a practitioner and my approach to treatment.
In that respect, what’s the best part of your job?
For me, it’s helping people to improve, to experience less pain and to return to the things they love doing. I’d also say that it’s getting to meet lots of different people in a really positive environment. I walk away knowing that I’ve had a positive impact on their lives whether it be big or small and that, for me, is why I find what I do so fulfilling.
Who would you say has had the biggest influence on your career?
It would have to be LJ Lee, a physiotherapist and pioneer of Connect Therapy. Her approach focuses on the relationships that exist between different areas of your body and put simply, how a problem in one area can cause a problem in another. Her approach to treatment definitely aligns with mine, in that I look to always treat the root cause of the underlying issue, not just the symptoms. I’ve completed her courses here in Sydney and have since had a teaching role too.
Launching move physio pilates must have been an exciting step in your career. Why did you decide to branch into Pilates and how does it complement what you do?
Pilates is fantastic because firstly, it helps to improve a person’s awareness of how they move. This in turn allows them to correct dysfunctional movement patterns that have led to pain and pathology. Pilates also helps to improve muscular strength and endurance, flexibility, coordination... all things that are crucial for someone looking to either prevent the onset of injury, or rehabilitate those who have unfortunately already ended up on my table because of injury. I guess you could say that Pilates helps to reprogram your body to move better, retrain your mind into optimal movement patterns and muscular control, whilst reducing your risk of pain and dysfunction as a result. I try to get to our classes whenever I can and although I’m still learning, the Instructors here are first class and don’t go any easier on me!
Outside of the practice, how do you choose to spend your time?
Family time is a big one for me. I have a 17 month old daughter who does her best to run rings around me and my wife, Amy, who also works alongside me at move. So for us, getting away every now and then is a priority. I love spending time outdoors and having grown up in the Blue Mountains, I have always spent a lot of time outside hiking, camping and fishing. I have a better track record with the first two though...
What do you love most about managing your own practice?
It’s as simple as 'you get out what you put in'. You also have the ability to shape your own vision and turn in into your own reality. I now have the capacity to help a greater number of people with my knowledge and treatment techniques, as I mentor my staff closely and this allows me to help more people and expose them to a better quality of service than I ever could on my own.
You must have seen many patients over the years, but do any stand out as huge success stories?
One of my long-term patients is a war veteran who sacrificed a lot to serve this country and as a result, sustained a severe back injury. I’ve seen him go from complex back surgery to now being able to return to not only work, but to the activities that bring him happiness. Just last week, I saw him get back onto to the golf course. There was such a deep sense of satisfaction watching him swing a golf club again after the long journey he’s been on to get there.
Have you worked with many sports teams over the years?
Indeed, I worked with the Penrith Panthers for two years, the Windsor Wolves, Hawkesbury Rugby Union Club and currently, with the Sydney Convicts. I really enjoy my time with sports teams because athletes are such a highly motivated group of people who take great responsibility and accountability for their recovery. There is also something special about working with an athlete from the time they unfortunately get injured on the field, to diagnosis, treatment, rehabilitation and then running back out on that same field again. It’s about playing a role in the entire circle of recovery. I’d have to say that watching your team win is a pretty good feeling too.
Last but not least, where do you see the profession of Physiotherapy progressing?
In my opinion, Physio is an ever-evolving science. I've seen it move away from passive interventions and machine based therapy to having a strong focus on diagnostics, excellent manual therapy and restoring correct movement patterns of a patient. It’s definitely moving to more of a functional, active rehabilitation profession. This really aligns with my approach to treatment, as it takes into account the holistic nature of the person who has the condition, rather than defining that person by a diagnosis. I believe the more we can take environmental and behavioural factors into consideration, the better the outcome for that individual. I also see the concept of neural plasticity playing more of a key role, which accounts for central adaptation and changes within the brain. Without going into too much detail here, there’s a book called ‘The Brain that Changes Itself’ by Norman Doidge, which is a great place to start for all of my fellow science lovers out there.
Thanks for your time David!
Next time, we'll catch up with one of our Pilates gurus here at move physio pilates. You can keep up to date with the latest via our Instagram and Facebook pages :)