Physiotherapy is recognised throughout the world as an effective and safe therapy for symptoms of pain, weakness, stiffness and loss of movement.
Physiotherapy aims to promote, restore and optimise function and facilitate return to health and fitness. Physiotherapy uses a number of physical, manual, exercise and electrical techniques to treat injury and disease. Various applications help to block pain and speed up the body's natural healing process.
Physiotherapy plays an invaluable role in the return to health after injury, and therefore our aim is to keep you fit to undertake the alpine sport you have chosen to pursue – whatever that might be. We will take a precise history to enable us to fully understand the problem and why the injury may have occurred. We can provide treatment for a range of different problems, including recently acquired or long standing orthopaedic conditions and sporting injuries. The physiotherapists at Bonne Santé are highly trained to offer a comprehensive functional and musculoskeletal assessment of any injuries or general aches and pains. A precise treatment programme tailored to your individual needs can then be implemented.
Please note, whilst chalet visits are also on offer for physiotherapy treatment for people who may be in a lot of pain and are having difficulty with mobility, we advise visiting the clinic where we have a wide range of equipment and materials that help in the assessment and treatment of any injury..
What should you expect at your appointment?
At the first appointment our physiotherapist will make an initial assessment of your condition by asking about the nature of the injury or problem, your lifestyle and medical history. The physiotherapist will then need to perform a physical examination. This may involve you removing some items of your clothing.
During the physical examination your physiotherapist may look at your range of movement, functional ability and muscle strength. He/she will feel areas of your body, including muscles and joints, for pain and restrictions in order to help to identify the problem area as accurately as possible.
The physiotherapist will then give you an explanation of the problem and plan a treatment programme with you. Together you may set treatment goals and objectives, and the physiotherapist will aim to indicate how long it will take you to get better in his or her opinion.
The initial assessment may take 45 minutes to an hour. Follow up sessions are usually half an hour appointments, although if you have a complex problem you may need slightly longer. This is also dependant on what techniques your therapist needs to use. The number of sessions that you will be advised to attend will depend on the nature of the problem and how long you have had it for. If you need to continue treatment in the UK, your physiotherapist can give you a report of your current status. The earlier that you seek advice, the sooner you will get better.
Whether you are a beginner in your chosen sport, for example mastering the nursery slopes or an expert ski racer or instructor, all the therapists at Bonne Santé have the expertise, experience and the determination to keep you mountain fit.
What Can Physiotherapy Treat?
Conditions and injuries that can be treated with physiotherapy include:
Acute and chronic sports injuries
Muscle and joint problems
Soft tissue injuries, strains and sprains
Neck and back pain, including whiplash injuries and sciatic pain
Repetitive strain injuries
Post fracture or post op recovery
Antenatal, postnatal and continence problems
Foot and ankle injuries
Treatment may include a variety of the following:
Pain anti-inflammatory management
Passive & joint play movement
Muscle energy techniques (MET) and proprioception neuromuscular facilitation (PNF)
Soft tissue techniques and massage
Biomechanical assessment & analysis
Postural evaluation / correction
Muscle re-education, re-programming
Spinal adjustments / balancing, core stability training
Individual exercise programmes
Injury prevention / fitness training
Strengthening and conditioning training
Advanced rehab programmes
We work with all levels of skiers and snow boarders, as well as those undertaking the more summer-focussed activities such as cycling, climbing and walking, so whatever your level of fitness or your experience, your treatment will be personalised to your needs.
In the Alpine world, where holidays are always too short, time to get the correct diagnosis and the most effective physiotherapy for your injury is crucial and we are here to help you get back on the mountains as safely and as quickly as possible.
Physiotherapy and Soft Tissue Treatments
Is a technique our physiotherapists use to restore the small, involuntary movements that assist joints to perform to their optimum. The two main joint problems are joint pain and joint stiffness, and they can occur in isolation or simultaneously, which means you can have both joint stiffness and pain. Joint mobilisation involves performing a back and forth oscillation of the joint in order to regain full joint range and pain-free movement.
Our therapist will help you decipher if the nature of the problem is an inflammatory one and, if so, how best to manage it. Advice would include potential anti-inflammatory medications, nutrition and supplements that may aid the healing process, as well as movement and exercise advise.
Soft Tissue Techniques
Is a form of manual physical therapy where our therapists use hands-on techniques on muscles, ligaments and fascia with the goal of breaking adhesions, reducing swelling, lengthening muscles and tendons and decreasing pain. Adhesions are your body’s attempt to heal a soft tissue injury with a lengthy inflammation process, resulting in long strands of collagenous scar tissue. These new tissues pull against one another, forming trigger points of pain. By using their hands to push, pull and knead your muscles, ligaments, tendons and nerves in precise ways the objective of the therapist is to help bring you pain relief and return you to functionality.
Electrotherapy and Ultrasound
In our clinics we are able to offer electrotherapy treatments that can be used to treat a variety of conditions to either enhance the tissue repair process and / or help to control pain levels.
Antenatal & Postnatal Physiotherapy
Pregnancy is an experience that is unique to each individual. The body is placed under enormous demands from the physical and hormonal changes that take place. Many women go through pregnancy feeling happy and healthy, whilst others suffer from aches, pains and emotional stress.
Aches and pains may occur for a number of reasons. As the body changes in shape and size to accommodate the growing uterus, extra demands are placed on joints and ligaments. Changes in posture also occur that may put a huge strain on the back, neck and legs. The ligaments of the whole body soften during pregnancy due to hormonal changes. This allows the pelvis to be more flexible to accommodate the baby and to facilitate child birth. The down side of this is that the body becomes more vulnerable to joint aggravation, aches and pains.
Common complaints during pregnancy that can be treated by physiotherapy include:
Pelvic pain, sacroiliac joint discomfort, coccyx pain and symphysis pubis dysfunction
Carpal tunnel syndrome / wrist pain and swelling in hands
Calf pain and cramps
Rectus abdominus diastysis / parting of stomach muscles
Rib pain / rib flare
How can Physiotherapy help in pregnancy?
Advice on activity modification and lifestyle options
Treatment of musculo-skeletal conditions by manual techniques
Core stability work to support the back
Pelvic floor muscle exercises to help support the pelvis and decrease continence problems
Recommendation of support belt and wrist supports as appropriate
Prepare the body for the demands of labour
Help the mother to recover and return to activities after the birth
Is Physiotherapy safe during pregnancy?
Yes, as long as you see a physiotherapist who is trained in obstetrics. At Bonne Santé we have at least one therapist who has worked in a variety of antenatal and postnatal settings.
Self Help Tips during pregnancy
Look after your posture, stand tall & try to sit in well supported chairs
Be as symmetrical as possible to avoid undue stress on joints
Avoid crossing your legs to help stay symmetrical and to improve circulation
Will I still have problems after the birth?
Yes and no. After the birth often the decreased weight will immediately decrease the strain on the body. However, the hormonal changes in the body can take a number of weeks to settle, and therefore the body can stay vulnerable to aches and pains. After the birth, the body not only has to recover from the changes it made during pregnancy, but also from the effects of delivery. Physiotherapy is effective in helping the mother to recover. Pelvic floor trauma can also be helped by physiotherapy including Back and Pelvic Pain, Cramps and Muscle Aches.
Electrotherapy: TENS (Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation)
TENS is often used in the treatment of chronic pain and is used to provide some pain relief by stimulating nerves. This action inhibits the amount of pain signals received by the brain whilst also increasing the levels of the body’s own natural pain killing substances called endorphins and enkephalins.
Using ultrasound enables our physiotherapists to help reduce healing time for some soft tissue injuries, both chronic and acute. These soft tissues can include muscle, tendon and ligament injuries, haematomas and oedema. The ultrasound machine produces high frequency sound waves that are moved over the affected area that work at a cellular level, increasing blood flow and the production of collagen (the main component of soft tissue). The combination of these help to reduce pain, muscle spasm and promote the healing process.
Our physiotherapist can use passive movement techniques to aid with joint stiffness that may be restricting mobility. With these treatments the physiotherapist manually moves the affected part of the body without any assistance from the person involved.
By examining a person’s posture our physiotherapists can determine if there are any poor alignments that can cause problems with muscle length and strength around joint movement. They are able to separate the parts of the body from the whole, and in turn assess the sum of these parts in relation to their interaction for the entire body. The therapists can recommend exercises and any relevant treatments to better align the body, giving improved quality of movement and potential benefits in performance of the sporting activity being undertaken. Postural alignment plays an important part in the Biomechanical Assessments offered by the clinic.
Is the process of applying tape directly to the skin in order to maintain a stable position of bones and muscles during any sporting activity, thus helping to optimise performance . Our physiotherapists use Kinesio Tape that gives support and stability to joints and muscles without affecting circulation and the range of motion. The tape restricts the motion of an injured joint, compresses soft tissues to reduce swelling, supports anatomical structures involved in any injury, protects the injured joint from re-injury whilst it is in the process of healing. It also helps to reduce pain.
Aside giving injury specific treatments out therapists can advise on any specific pain relief that may be taken to reduce pain and speed recovery.
Our aim is to get you back on the mountain as quickly as it is safe to do so. If you want to recover from an injury as fast as possible rehabilitation is essential.
Rehabilitation aims to:
help recover from injury faster
optimise recovery potential
regain lost strength and movement
prevent future injuries from occurring
At Bonne Santé we tailor rehabilitation programmes to meet individual needs. We have a well – equipped sports studio and various pieces of equipment to facilitate return to full recovery.
We see many different types of injury here in the Alps. For example, the most common ski injuries that we rehabilitate are knee injuries, mostly to the MCL (medial collateral ligament) and the ACL (anterior cruciate ligament). These ligament injuries usually occur due to twisting falls when the ski bindings don't release.
If this happens, the severity of the ligament damage will dictate how soon a person is able to return to the slopes. A physiotherapist will be able to determine the extent of the damage sustained. A brace may be suggested, or support to help protect and support the knee joint. For more information about the braces and supports we use to prevent injury and aid rehabilitation, visit www.Firstaid4sport.co.uk.