My time at Personal Best: From Tim

by | May 4, 2023

Having graduated from university in late 2020, it was an important period to reflect on where I wanted to commence my career as a physiotherapist. It was evident that the horror stories of being swamped by a full caseload of patients Day 1 in private practice without any support wasn’t what I wanted or what university prepared you for on completion of the degree.  Instead, I needed the ability to build foundations for the long game if this is going to be a profession I remain in, which I certainly hope it is!

Upon discussions with Nathan it was evident that he was both a passionate and caring physiotherapist and mentoring was a value we equally shared.  After a few conversations back and forth and a further visit to the practice, I knew this was the right decision for me. Moreover, the tree change would provide both career development and the opportunity to have proximity to the Victorian alpine region at my doorstep.  With my affinity for the outdoors I was excited by this prospect!

Nathan was in contact with me early January with resources which were to be used later that month when commencing the role. This included an outline of the first six weeks of the mentoring program for a new graduate at Personal Best.  Having the timetable and resources available early on was reassuring for what was ahead and how soon I would be supported to begin to see and treat patients 1 on 1.

Over the coming few months, with the support of the wonderful team at Personal Best, I was beginning to find my feet in my role as a physiotherapist.  Early enrolment in courses to support and manage patients with spinal pain provided me with the tools and understanding of a framework to manage patients and provided some further context with the material Nathan provided in his mentorship.

The first 12-18 months had its difficulties with COVID pandemic and the effect it had on the weekly diary.  Subsequently, to maximise the quieter moments, some days were focused around doing additional self-directed learning or doubling with Nathan when the diary was quieter.  Whilst COVID made it difficult to build momentum with treating patients I had other tasks that could be granted my attention.

The highlights of my time here have been:

  • Co-hosting the Community Workshops on our 3-5 most common conditions. This is a great initiative where we invite members of the community to learn more about the conditions we regularly treat and understand what role physiotherapy plays in their management. The dynamic between an engaged audience and sharing of knowledge from presenters makes for a fun and rewarding experience for all involved, with occasional humour thrown in for good measure.  Additionally, the positive affirmations from Nathan throughout the time instilled confidence in myself.  This has been fantastic in developing my public speaking skills, a valuable life skill which admittedly I knew I could do with some work upon starting!
  • While putting the clinical pieces together where patients don’t fit a typical clinical picture, I rarely felt that I couldn’t support a patient towards the next step in their rehabilitation journey.  With case studies available or support as needed from the senior physiotherapists, we could unpack the case and reason ways in which the future treatment session may be delivered to continue to seek great patient outcomes.
  • A mixed and diverse caseload, where there is a variety of ages and problems we service and no single day is ever the same.  In addition, having a range of other services such as workshops and small group classes adds a buzz of variety to the weekly diary.
  • Moving into the new space at Nilmar Avenue has been a great upgrade to implement our small group strength classes and be able to provide further value for those that want guidance in their home exercise programs or gym programs beyond what we could offer previously.

While I will fondly miss the fantastic team I was privileged to work with, I know that my next chapter is imminent.   I want to thank the team and patients at Personal Best that trusted me in their care throughout my time at Personal Best!

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