Mitchell Gibbs is a PhD candidate at Western Sydney University where he researches chronic pain, pain science, and exercise. Mitch also has a Master of Research in chronic pain and exercise, and a bachelor of Sport and Exercise Science.
Mitchell’s 2018 paper Buy In For Back Pain – Does Individualization Matter? had some very surprising findings in relation to the benefits of doing a thorough physical assessment on clients with low back pain. The paper was published in the Journal of Clinical Exercise Physiology.
In this conversation Mitch talks through the research process, and discusses what he thinks the findings mean for clinicians.
Dr. Rebecca Lewthwaite received her PhD in kinesiology (what in Australia we call exercise science or human movement) from UCLA. She is Director of Research and Education in Physical Therapy and Director of Rehabilitation Outcomes Management at Rancho Los Amigos National Rehabilitation Center in Los Angeles, and an adjunct faculty member in biokinesiology and physical therapy at the University of Southern California (USC).
Dr. Lewthwaite’s research focuses on the role of confidence and autonomy support in motor performance and learning, in a variety of individuals, from those undergoing physical rehabilitation to developing and high-performing athletes. Recent work includes the facilitation of confidence building in individuals recovering from stroke. As an investigator in the recent ICARE clinical trial in stroke rehabilitation, Dr. Lewthwaite co-designed with Carolee Winstein the investigational Accelerated Skill Acquisition Program (ASAP) around skill acquisition principles common to OPTIMAL theory. She was an intercollegiate athlete in two sports and a coach on a national championship softball team at UCLA. She and Gaby Wulf co-authored the OPTIMAL theory of motor performance and learning.
Dr. Gabriele Wulf is a sport scientist with PhDs from the German Sports University in Cologne and the University of Munich. She is a UNLV Distinguished Professor in the Department of Kinesiology at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV).
Dr. Wulf has conducted research in motor learning for more than 30 years. She studies factors that influence the learning of motor skills, including attentional focus and motivational variables. She has published approximately 200 journal articles and book chapters, as well as two books, both of which I have read, and they are both excellent!
Dr. Wulf has received various awards for her research, including UNLV’s Barrick Distinguished Scholar Award. She was elected Fellow of the National Academy of Kinesiology and given the North American Society for the Psychology of Sport and Physical Activity’s (NASPSPA) Distinguished Scholar Award. She has served as President of NASPSPA and the Founding Editor of two journals in the movement sciences. Dr. Wulf has given keynote addresses to national and international societies in movement science and physical therapy. She and Rebecca Lewthwaite co-authored the OPTIMAL theory of motor performance and learning.
Antony Lo is a Sydney based physiotherapist who specialises in female athletes, and in particular female Crossfit athletes.
Having successfully grown 2 private practices, Antony sold these to concentrate on his Specialisation Training Program and developing educational courses for health professionals and the general public. He still consults at 2 locations in Sydney seeing everyone from children to the elderly, as well as his sports-specific patients. He also travels around Australia to deliver seminar information for his course The Female Athlete, and to provide consultations for those interested in his approach.
I have been friends with Antony since 2006 when we worked together. Every time I talk with Antony I learn something valuable, he is one of the practitioners I admire the most, and who I have learned the most from.
In this conversation we talk about pelvic health, urinary incontinence, low back pain, making quick changes and Antony’s approach to evidence-based practice.
Kjartan Vibe Fersum is a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Bergen, Norway, and was the lead author on the original CFT paper in 2012, with co-authors Peter O’Sullivan, Skouen, Smith, & Kvåle.
In addition to his teaching and research at the University of Bergen, he works in clinical practice as a Specialist Musculoskeletal Physiotherapist in Bergen, and a contributor to the Pain-Ed project, where his mission is to inform both the public and health care practitioners about the latest pain research, and to dispel common myths about pain and provide hope for change.
Kjartan is incredibly well-read, but his true genius seems to lie in combining his rich and nuanced understanding of the research with a flexible, person-centred worldview.
This interview has too many gems and insights to list – you must listen to it if you work with people in pain.
Synnott et al., (2015) Physiotherapists may stigmatise or feel unprepared to treat people with low back pain and psychosocial factors that influence recovery: a systematic review
Greg Lehman http://www.greglehman.ca/ is a Canadian physiotherapist, chiropractor and strength and conditioning specialist treating musculoskeletal disorders within a biopsychosocial model. He is incredibly well-read, a highly skilled educator. And he’s funny.
Before his clinical career, Greg received a Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council MSc graduate scholarship and became one of only two students each year to train with Professor Stuart McGill in his Occupational Biomechanics Laboratory, subsequently published more than 20 peer-reviewed papers in the manual therapy and exercise biomechanics field. He was an assistant professor at the Canadian Memorial Chiropractic College teaching a graduate-level course in Spine Biomechanics and Instrumentation as well conducting more than 20 research experiments while supervising more than 50 students.
Greg has lectured on a number of topics on reconciling treatment biomechanics with pain science, running injuries, golf biomechanics, occupational low back injuries and therapeutic neuroscience. His courses Reconciling Biomechanics with Pain Science and Running Resiliency have been taught more than 60 times in more than 40 locations worldwide.
In this conversation, Greg and I talk about how the biomechanics research invalidates the idea of ‘dysfunction’ as a cause of pain or disability, why scapular dyskinesis (aka poor scapular positioning and movement) is not a thing, knee valgus during a squat is nothing to worry about and several other interesting topics.
Greg shares his approach of movement optimism, and his basic framework for working within a biopsychosocial model.
I was inspired to write this by Jenna Zaffino’s story in episode 52 of Pilates Unfiltered – I don’t want to put words in Jenna’s mouth so you should listen to the episode after reading this if you’re interested to understand her point of view.
As movement teachers – Pilates professionals, exercise physiologists, physiotherapists – for years we have operated on the assumption that understanding anatomy, physiology and biomechanics are foundational to being an effective practitioner and teacher.
I think this assumption is wrong. You don’t need to know anything about anatomy, physiology OR biomechanics to effectively teach Pilates or help people rehabilitate.
Yep. Anatomy is not important when teaching Pilates. In fact, I think it gets in the way of good teaching.
I will even go so far as to say, you don’t need to know ANY anatomy, physiology or biomechanics in order to be a great teacher and practitioner. The less the better.
Lars Avemarie is one of the most well-read, clear-thinking people I have come across in the fields of pain science and rehabilitation. Born in Denmark, he currently works in Sweden. He is a physiotherapist and personal trainer, and a prolific blogger, educator and public figure on social media.
In this conversation, Lars shares his experiences going back to university at the age of 39 to study physiotherapy, his advice on learning to think critically and challenge your own beliefs, and how to develop your confidence to effectively apply the biopsychosocial approach to pain rehabilitation.
During my masters, I did my clinical placement with Brendan Mouatt and his business partner Luke Postlethwaite at their clinic The Biomechanics in Footscray, Melbourne Australia.
Like me, Brendan is a clinical exercise physiologist, and we enjoy talking about evidence-based practice and pain science in particular.
This is a free-ranging conversation where we think about whether we should provide clients with the treatment they expect, and how to navigate professional relationships with people who are not up to date with current best practice.
Brendan also has a thoughtful blog on all things rehabilitation.
Nick Hannah is a Canadian physiotherapist who has been taking social media by storm with his funny, poignant and scientifically sound memes advocating a biopsychosocial or whole-person approach to rehabilitation.
Nick’s Facebook page Hannah Moves has over 6,500 likes a the time of recording this interview, and his posts are shared by leading researchers and clinicians around the globe.
Nick’s Instagram page is also a source of much wisdom.
Nick talks frankly about his education, his approach to clinical assessment and treatment and his goals with the meme thing.
Ben Cormack’s business Cor-Kinetic delivers evidence-based rehabilitation courses based on cutting-edge neuroscience, pain science and exercise science. Ben regularly travels the world, delivering courses to health professionals in Europe, North America and Asia each year.
He has presented at the San Diego Pain Summit, guested on many PT podcasts and is a prolific blogger on all things exercise, rehabilitation and pain science.
Ben shares his thoughts on the current best practice in rehabilitation, how to interpret evidence, and how to navigate the tricky relationships with colleagues or bosses who are still working within a biomedical framework.
Since the early 2000’s the notion of cueing pre-engagement of transversus abdominis (TrA) and lumbar multifidus has been widely accepted as standard practice in the physiotherapy, exercise and Pilates worlds.
Sadly it is not an evidence-based practice.
In this video, Raphael Bender from Breathe Education reviews the evidence on ‘motor control’ training (retraining of TrA and lumbar multifidus).
I wish there is a unit here in canberra, I would love to get my certificate from this course
06:30 07 Jul 20
I can highly recommend Breathe to anyone interested in learning more about movement, Pilates and Anatomy. Raph, Chlo and the team are wonderful teachers and human beings!
Rockell Williamson Rudder
00:48 08 Jun 20
I love the workshops to keep my skills fresh.
02:01 28 May 20
We are proud to be a Mentor studio for Breathe Education. After having gone through both Cert IV and Clinical Diploma, I recognised the exceptional quality of education given to graduates about Movement and Pilates. The teacher trainers of Breath Education are all highly intelligent and experts in their fields, relying on evidence based practice and in turn this provides Breathe graduates with an education that is second to none. Breathe Education's strength lies in their ability to create Community connections after graduation, continuing the support, empowerment and education of their graduates.
08:11 25 May 20
I keep coming back for Breathe Education courses, having completed the Cert IV Pilates Instructors course, the Anatomy 101 and other short courses and being now enrolled in the Clinical Pilates Diploma. As an experienced teacher I have high standards when it comes to education, and I have to say that Raph and his team do a great job of setting up the learning environment so it is effective and a pleasure to be part of! Online courses that have been developed by necessity this year are also impressive, with plenty of very practical demonstrations, supported by clear explanations and the opportunity for interactivity - thus they are excellent learning tools. Congrats to Raph and each one of your supporting team who have been doing such a great job of engaging with sensible, rational facts supported by relevant and current research and bringing the results to the lucky participants!
05:20 24 May 20
My time learning at Breathe Education has been one of the most positive experiences of my life. What I value the most is that once you complete your training you're still very much apart of the Breathe community & it's that connection to your peers & teachers that is priceless. Thankyou Breathe Education! You guys changed my life!!
Mary Fran Dion
13:29 19 May 20
I was looking to gain a deeper understanding of anatomy so when I saw the course, Intro to Anatomy Physiology and Biomechanics, I thought I would try it. The weekly webinars are very educational along with the supporting materials that Raphael provides. I am a very tactile learner so I was apprehensive of doing an online class but Raphael has brought out his skeleton to demonstrate different certain points and again his powerpoint is simplistic. Thank you Raphael for providing this course.
06:29 18 May 20
A wonderful online course, giving students an opportunity to brush up on previous knowledge as well as learning lots of new interesting stuff! Raph Explains key scientific findings and shares his knowledge on biomechanics and anatomy in a way that is accessible for everyone :) Highly recommend :)
Health and Balance with Julie Burgers
04:05 18 May 20
Highly recommend Breathe,Educations online courses. Detailed and helpful information
12:12 16 May 20
05:35 15 May 20
Teacher Raphael Bender ,delivering very professional teachings on the functional anatomy delivery every Saturday ,this is a very generous teaching on his part from the Breath Pilates establishment, keep up with the most informative lessons as l am a pilates teacher ,you can never know enough, thank you guys , stay safe & well ,keeping us motivated Yours sincerely Marika
06:32 12 May 20
I completed a Clinical Pilates Diploma with Breathe Education. Raphael and his team are very generous, selfless and supportive while sharing their vast knowledge and experience. I have done many courses during my Pilates career but none compares to my experience with Breathe! The quality of the material and the skilful way it is presented made it easy to apply in my work. Excellent value for money! I would highly recommend Breathe Education; their continual support of their students is just admirable. Maja Whitworth
Pilates By Magui
06:25 12 May 20
Thank you so much breath education for your amazing courses. I’m very happy I joined in. Raphael is a great educator, the way he explains everything makes it so easy to understand. I have done many pilates courses in other countries, but this one has been amazing. Thank you so much!
Wanderlust Health Co
03:35 12 May 20
While I have only just started my Cert IV, I am already so impressed with the organisation of the company, the anatomy knowledge from Raphael has been mind blowing. I studied anatomy as a part of my last degree and I have learnt way more from the way he teaches. The trainer led classes have been fantastic as well, the trainers are so super supportive and knowledgable. Looking forward to the next few months Tegan
01:29 12 May 20
I recently singed up to a 6 week anatomy course held through Breathe Education. I thought the content was great, they didn't overload you with too much information and they left a decent amount of time to ask questions. Would definitely recommend Breathe to others.
23:05 11 May 20
Could not recommend more - Raphael and team went full steam ahead to bring Pilates teachers and anyone who wanted to join an in-depth anatomy course. It was so well planned, laid out, and very welcoming.
05:52 11 May 20
I studied to become a Pilates Instructor with Breathe Education over 5 years ago now. My learning experience then was one I will never forget, the educators were so engaging and knowledgeable. The wonderful thing about Breathe Education is they don't stop offering assistance and advice once you have completed your course, they are there for you along the way. Since the completion of my course I have done numerous workshops with them and am currently doing a Live course on Zoom, Anatomy, Biomechanics & Physiology (seriously loving it!) which is run by Breathe Founder & CEO Raphael Bender. Raph knows his stuff, his knowledge astounds me, he is right across it all and shares this knowledge with such passion, explains things so succinctly and makes the learning experience such fun, you just want to soak up as much information as you possibly can. Thank you Raph and the team at Breathe Education, it's been and continues to be a blast :-)
04:23 11 May 20
03:29 11 May 20
Can not recommend breathe education enough I have done my diploma with them and recently been studying the anatomy. I thoroughly enjoy how they teach and interact with there students :)
22:17 10 May 20
09:30 10 May 20
I've been working in Fitness for over 30 years including roles as an international trainer and presenter in Group Fitness. I hold a cert IV in fitness, and now a Diploma of Clinical Pilates - as well as a TAE. I'd completed pilates course prior to Breathe, but found Breathe deliver a more "whole - istic" (misspell intended) to pilates. What I love is that Breathe provide the science behind why they teach us the way they do, and show you how to research stuff for yourself. They encourage you to be curious, and to challenge rather than just accept. The level of course information is high, the faciliators professional and so giving of their time. Their courses prepare to you so well for success in many opportunites in the industry. I now work at Physiotherapists doing rehab work, as well as in studios teaching group classes, and my own small group of clients that I train one on one, or in small groups. But, I love that they show they care about you and your success way past completing your courses. I was recently given the opportunity to partake in the new anatomy content - for free as an already qualified Breather - and to be given the chance to upskill by Breathe was invaluable. Anatomy - whilst I love it - is tough to remember when you don't use it all the time, and this refresher and upate was timely and also, helped to geet my creative juices flowing in differnt ways. When people ask me who they should do their pilates course through, I always recommend Breathe.Thank you Raph and all the guys at Breathe.
01:05 10 May 20
I did my Cert IV with Breathe and am now doing the anatomy, physiology and biomechanics course and have absolutely loved it. I appreciate the time and effort that goes into teaching evidence based practice and the instructors are amazing and are always happy to help.
20:08 09 May 20
Raphael Bender's presentation of his Intro to Anatomy Physiology and Bio mechanics has been superb. The information presented is clear, easy-to-understand and Raphael provides an engaging, inter-active learning environment with participants from across the globe. He injects real life examples into his training modules which helps the participant assimilate the information being taught.
19:48 09 May 20
I have been attending the online Intro to Anatomy, Physiology and Biomechanics online workshop with Breathe Education. I have found the teaching outstanding, Raphaels' knowledge is inspiring and I have gained so much valuable, appropriate and effective information. Highly recommended.
07:14 09 May 20
I took the anatomy course through zoom and it was brilliant. Raphael has a great lecture style and makes the material interesting - not too technical but also not too basic either. He’s also very patient with answering all questions. The ppt slides and session recording are shared with all participants afterwards so if you missed something you can reference back. Highly recommend this course for all fitness professionals.
07:00 09 May 20
Raph, the business CEO, is a down to earth person and his personality and values are reflected in all aspects of the business. The courses are practical with immediate application in the real-life environment while keeping a high standard of the knowledge presented. I have attended different courses through Breathe Education and there is clear evidence of constant renewal and innovation. In-line with the newest scientific discoveries in human movement their courses present up-to-date, curated information. I highly recommend Breathe Education as a leader in Pilates education.
06:46 09 May 20
The Breathe Team is very supportive and encouraging during the course. I love the support, connection and ongoing workshops even after the course completion. Highly recommended.
Silvia P Rodrigues
02:59 09 May 20
Great training with lots of science based information presented. Raphael finds a way to present anatomy in a way that is accessible and interesting! Highly recommend!
02:23 09 May 20
It's easy to be overwhelmed by the breadth and depth of anatomy. Yet Raphael makes it accessible, interesting and, dare I say, fun in his Intro to Anatomy course. He is generous and incredibly knowledgeable and inspiring as a standout presenter and expert. Thank you.
Helen workout 2016 Ismail
18:26 08 May 20
As a beginner in the pilates world and looking for a stronger foundation i was able to understand and learn clearly at a achievable pace with Ralph.Reinforcing and learning through his usage of slides, real life body references and the skeleton model was a good balance and I really appreciated the opportunity to take the anatomy course!
10:00 08 May 20
08:14 08 May 20
A beautiful non judgemental space to learn. Can't recommend highly enough!. I'm a better teacher for it and a more efficient student too.
06:49 08 May 20
The Breathe Edu team go above & beyond! They provide the most rewarding learning experience, filled with knowledge, practical & technical know how plus deliver everything with simplicity & fun ! They truly care about their students & equipping them with all that they need to be successful post their course. Thank you Breathe!
06:46 08 May 20
I have only accidentally stumbled across Raphael Bender's Breathe Education Anatomy online workshop on Facebook and I must say, I am very glad I did. Raphael put so much great effort into the visualisations and explanations to make it easy to follow. He is a true inspiration. Thank you so much for putting this amazing anatomy workshop's together!
06:03 08 May 20
I have completed Cert 4 with Breathe Education.The campus has positive and safe environment for learning and I was encouraged to find my own voice.Thank you all my instructors and everyone helped me to finished the course.It was challenging but fantastic journey.
Leah Rie M
05:52 08 May 20
Raphael's anatomy sessions are enlightening! I truly appreciate that he has been sharing his profound knowledge.
05:51 08 May 20
I would definitely recommend Breathe Education to others looking for an informative and interesting pilates course. I love that I have learnt about the most up to date scientific research and recommendations in the area of exercise, injury and persistent pain.I also really enjoy staying connected with the team via the multiple learning options they offer even after the course has finished.Big thumbs up to Raphael and the fantastic team at Breathe!
05:32 08 May 20
I completed my Cert IV with Breathe Education last year and found it to be a fantastic course. I learnt so much and at the right speed too, not too fast or slow. Felt very supported along the learning journey and they also have a great fb page, other additional learning postings and workshops. Would highly recommend with a big 'thumbs up'.
05:24 08 May 20
I've been doing Breathe Education Anatomy Refresher course online! Raphael is a wealth of knowledge and years of practical application to share ,teach and inspire others. Why would u study elsewhere? ! 🤩
Jasmine Elder This
04:37 08 May 20
Breathe Education provide a top quality, up-to-date with the latest science Pilates course. The Perth teachers for the face to face components of the course (Rachel and Pippa) were extremely knowledgable, helpful and are wonderful teachers. Breathe also have a fantastic Facebook community that continues to inspire me with continued learning (often for free). I have been nothing but impressed with my Breathe experience highly recommend their training.
04:35 08 May 20
I can't speak highly enough of my experience with Breathe Education. I received a very thorough education in my own Pilates certification program but Raphael and his team brought it to the next level. I'm truly amazed at how how Raph can make what seem to be complex concepts very intuitive and help me better understand so much more about my clients. Thank you!!
04:26 08 May 20
Breathe Education has been one of the most fun, interactive, comprehensive and encouraging learning experiences I have ever had. I like that there are constant studies being evaluated to help educate us on how the human body functions. Every one of the staff I have had the pleasure of interacting with so far, have been so lovely and helpful, and it is obvious that they all passionate about their chosen field. For me, that speaks volumes and also has helped me to engage in my own passion for Pilates! I couldn't recommend Breathe Education enough, seriously. It's awesome!
04:17 08 May 20
04:09 08 May 20
Breathe Education launched me right into the Melbourne Pilates scene and I do not regret the Cert IV, Diploma, workshops and side courses I have undertaken with them. Raph and all the team are so encouraging, keep it real, support and genuinely care about what they do and who they share their knowledge and life lessons. My experience with them made me fully realise this was absolutely the right new career path for me and I could not have opened my business or be so well connected without them. Raph has such a passion and way of explaining anatomy (and most anything really) in such a clear way, it's impossible to not learn from him (despite the occassional "nerd out" moments he has hahaha). Love the lifelong friends, industry and ongoing support network that has come with making one of the best decisions in my life. Thank you Breathe :)
03:59 08 May 20
Breathe Education have looked at the exercises developed by Joseph Pilates, and looked at current science about exercise, guidelines for exercise, and how this applies to various co-morbidities and age groups, and developed courses to impart the practical application of Pilates as a whole body exercise. The Diploma of Clinical Pilates was exceptional. The CEO Raphael Bender has created this knowledgeable, inclusive, caring and generous team. The current COVID-19 crisis is a good example where they have worked tirelessly to continue all education, and make innovative ways for each student to continue PLUS for graduates have facilitated meetings and webinars (zoom) to inform, connect and encourage a way forward through this crisis. Raphael always goes above and beyond, and the whole team reflect this. I cannot recommend Breathe Education highly enough!
03:57 08 May 20
Absolutely enjoyed the anatomy online course from Raph! Insightful, easy to understand and thorough, even when done virtually! He also gives his all to answer questions at end of the session. Much love from Singapore! Would love to visit your studio one day =)
03:00 08 May 20
I can not recommend Breathe Education enough; they have super helpful, supportive and incredible in the courses they offer. I recently completed my Certificate 4 in Matwork/Reformer in Perth and the instructors I dealt with both in person and over the phone were very friendly and nothing was too hard. The courses themselves are very interactive and the information is up date; to the point that if there is no evidence to support what we are learning anymore than they adjust the course so it is relevant - this happened during my course which to me showed how hard they work to endeavor their client/students are gaining the best knowledge possible. This is great company to learn new techniques or train for a new career with. Will definitely continue to learn with Breathe now that I am teaching!
02:48 08 May 20
Amazing teachings for anyone interested in truly having it all make sense. Finally we have a platform of delivery that is not overwhelming and paints a picture in your memory to remember more than I’ve ever before had from any other training. I’ve done so many courses with delivery never covering enough of the why? You need the how and the why and the engagement with the ability to reflect and review. This course doesn’t miss a thing...It’s clear yet not overwhelming. Enough drip fed information in each session to retain and from week to week compiled in an order that leaves you excited for the next weeks lesson. I highly recommend this educational training and courses to anyone, and so happy to have trusted and found this. I can’t wait to invest in more knowledge for myself and my clients. Best online with live interactive fully supportive training I’ve ever entered into. Value for money, exceptional lecturing with clear teachings to suit all learning styles.. All notes to download means no taking your own notes and risk of disengaging. I’m simply loving this course.. ❤️ thank you Raph 🙏🙏Leisa DawnNorth Qld Australia 😊
02:45 08 May 20
I decided to take advantage of the lock down period and take part in an anatomy course run by Raph from Breathe Education. The sessions are thought provoking, backed up by science and the way the subject matter is taught is engaging and easy to follow.Raph's passion for comes through in his teaching, and I have thoroughly enjoyed expanding my knowledge of Pilates and anatomy.
02:34 08 May 20
I'm really enjoying the online anatomy course with Raphael Bender. Despite having done a few courses - I've learned so much from the presentation and content which has been delivered from a different & creative angle. Raphael has been very generous with his diverse knowledge. Thank-you very much Breathe Edu.