When Life Throws You a Curveball – Part 2

As the country (NZ) wraps it’s head around the second wave of COVID-19; it would be easy to allow feelings of disillusionment, anxiety and frustration to kick in. Here’s some tips on how to keep your cool over the coming weeks in level 2 and 3.

Everyone has their own war stories, be it self isolation, work stress, cancelling dream holidays, wedding plans disrupted, and running out of toilet roll. It doesn’t matter who you talk to, what their age is, the dreaded C word is the first thing on peoples minds.

If the latest announcement has sent you in to a spin, here’s some simple hacks to keep your body and mind on track.

Nourish your body by making sleep, exercise and good nutrition a priority

When under stress it is really easy to let go of the well-being basics but I want to encourage you to make sleep, exercise and fueling your body a priority starting from today!.


Easier said than done I know but start with these simple hacks and if you want more in depth suggestions, keep an eye out on my social media platforms and website www.freshcoaching.me/blog

Turn off electronic devices 1.5 hours before bed

Dim the lights 1.5 hours before bed

Consider taking tart cherry juice before bed

Listen to a guided meditation or sleep cast

Take electronics out of the bedroom. Go back to a good old fashioned alarm clock or even better a light therapy alarm clock (simulates sunrise so you wake up naturally instead of a blaring alarm clock sound!)

Make your bed time routine as consistent as possible with the same bedtime.


We are born to move! Don’t over think it. Use Mel Robbins 5 second rule to get you off the couch and outside. (Literally count down from 5-1 and kick yourself in to action) Remove potential excuses. Get your exercise gear out so you trip over them getting up in the morning. Put it in your diary and make the commitment to yourself that you will move that glorious body of yours! Arrange a baby sitter or find the perfect youtube video ahead of time.

Fuel your body

You know what’s right for your body and if you listen, your body will give you signals to let you know what is working and what isn’t. Instead of giving you a comprehensive list of what to eat, here’s my offerings to you.

  1. Stick to 3 meals a day.
  2. Use your common sense when it comes to what to eat. Good, wholesome food. Unprocessed and as close to nature as you can get!
  3. Always sit down to eat.
  4. Chew your food fully.
  5. Slow down and taste your food!
  6. Only eat at the dinner table. (This hack will stop you eating unnecessary calories throughout the day)

Be a role model

Kids pick up on energy and conversations. Funny how they can’t hear you when you ask them to put their school bag away but when you’re talking to your partner or friend about something they pick up on every word. It’s our opportunity to be a role model by holding fact based conversations, keeping drama to a minimum and pointing out the good in a situation. Show them articles of the medical teams working on the front line. Statistics of those who have recovered. Monkey see, monkey do. Looking after your mental and physical health, doing good for others and sticking to the facts will go a long way in keeping the children in your life calm, secure and connected.

Practice acceptance

My friend Henry Fraser (inspirational guy, check him out www.henryfraser.org) uses the phrase ‘accept and adapt.’ The term is also widely used in the military where at any given moment the best made plans can blow up and they are left thinking of their feet with life or death decisions to make.

Practicing acceptance is very different to giving up. It is a choice. It is empowering. It makes life much easier to tolerate.

I have long been a migraine sufferer and learning the art of acceptance has been a revelation for me in terms of how I handle them. Gone are the days where I get an attack and fight it, get cross with my body, stress about missing work, letting clients down and the the kids eating toast for tea. By letting go, accepting that what will be will be, being open to the possibility that it’s just a migraine allows me to go in to a calmer space, less resistance, less stress and ultimately less pain.

This is true of so many scenarios in life. I see clients pushing their problems up hill. Feeling the résistance with every step , almost as if it has to be difficult in order to be worth it.

Think of a situation that you are resisting. How much precious time are you spending dwelling on it? How much of it can you actually control? How much freer would you be if you took a breath, and let it go?

Know that you are not alone

Opening up may seem alien to you but the chances are other people are feeling similar feelings to you. Opening up to people that you trust can be one of the most helpful things you can do. If you feel alone and would like free support from a trained counsellor, MIND have a 24 hour helpline. Simply text or call 1737 and someone will be there to talk.

To read Part 1 click here

Written by Anna Veale at Fresh Coaching. Visit http://www.freshcoaching.me to connect with Anna.

When Life Throws You a Curveball – Part 1

As the country (NZ) wraps it’s head around the second wave of COVID-19; it would be easy to allow feelings of disillusionment, anxiety and frustration to kick in. Here’s some tips on how to keep your cool over the coming weeks in level 2 and 3.

Everyone has their own war stories, be it self isolation, work stress, cancelling dream holidays, wedding plans disrupted, and running out of toilet roll. It doesn’t matter who you talk to, what their age is, the dreaded C word is the first thing on peoples minds.

If the latest announcement has sent you in to a spin, here’s some simple hacks to keep your body and mind on track.

Check in with yourself

How are you feeling? Learn to notice the subtle signs your body gives you throughout the day. Tight chest, butterflies in your tummy, lump in throat, shallow breathing. These signs when unnoticed can generate negative thought patterns which in turn exacerbate the physical symptoms.

Once you recognise your stress signals, take the time to stop and breathe. 5 slow deep belly breaths will take your body out of it’s stressed state and you will immediately feel restored. TOP TIPS: If your mind is too busy, give it something to do. Count backwards from 100 as you breathe slowly and deeply in and out through the nose. To enhance your feeling of wellbeing, make your exhale longer than the inhale. Breathe fully and deeply in to the tummy.

What are you thinking? We see what we perceive. Be aware of your thoughts and ask yourself ‘are they are true?’ and ‘are they helpful?’ With a minimum of 60,000 thoughts running around in our mind on any given day, it makes sense to acknowledge our thoughts and give the unhelpful ones the boot. Call yourself out when you think or say something negative. Is it true? Is it helpful? How would an optimistic, objective bystander see the same situation? TOP TIP: We all come with our own map of the world and see things in different ways. Many of our beliefs are created as a child. When you catch your thoughts, use it as an opportunity for a clear out. Are these beliefs outdated? Are they even yours? If so, what new beliefs can you substitute? If you want something or someone to change, go inwards and ask yourself how you could see things differently. There is no space for judgement here. Just a brilliant opportunity for growth.

Check in with others

Get out of your head and be of service. How good does it feel when you do something for someone else? Boost your feel good hormones by showing kindness, gratitude and thought to others around you.

I just called to say I love you: Pick up the phone and check in with your family, friends and neighbours’. Actually sit down and fully engage in the conversation. Notice how grounding this is for you both.

Pay it forward: On a recent road trip I stopped in to the BP garage and ordered a cup of tea. When I went to pay, the cashier said that someone had paid for it on my behalf. I cherish my tea, but THIS CUPPA was even more special. I took each sip with a grateful heart to the person that paid it forward on to me. Find a way to pay it forward to a stranger, friend or colleague and feel incredible knowing that someone out there will be filled with gratitude BECAUSE OF YOU.

Stay tuned next week for Part 2 “When life throws you a curveball”

Written by Anna Veale from Fresh Coaching http://www.freshcoaching.me

The Power of Prevention

The Power of Prevention

You’ve probably heard me mention time and time again that prevention is the best cure and I am sure I sound like a broken record. However, with this current climate, there is no better time to discuss how massage can prevent poor injuries or getting unwell physically, emotionally and mentally.

Most commonly, clients book a massage when they are experiencing pain, are overstressed or have twinge a muscle due to extreme tightness. My goal is to create awareness of the benefits of massage and empower people to have a preventative mindset towards health. Firstly, I am going to dissect massage into 4 main sections.

  1. Physical Benefits
  2. Mental Benefits
  3. Emotional Benefits.
  4. Lastly, I am going to go into more detail around how massage contributes to enhance immunity and how it improves what we can’t necessarily physically feel directly.


Physical Benefits:

During exercise we create tension through shortening our muscles called “concentric movements” A simple example is a bicep curl. As we curl the dumbbell towards our bicep, we are shortening the muscle in order to lift the weight. This occurs throughout our body with a wide range of movements. Once the muscles are shortened, we then need to stretch it out in order to lengthen the muscle back to normal length to prevent injury. If we were to keep the bicep in a concentric state, when we perform a simple day to day movement like reaching for something, we will not have a good range of movement and the likelihood of us tearing the muscle becomes high. Therefore, sports and deep tissue massage is an essential injury prevention tool that improves flexibility and mobility throughout our joints, due to lengthen muscles.

Muscles knots – Muscle knots occur through a build up of muscle fibres within the muscle after use. They can be uncomfortable, painful and restrict movement, which can result in injury through not being able to move the muscle correctly or adapting the exercise and engaging other muscles that are perhaps not as strong. During massage the Massage Therapist can work out the knots using various techniques or make it a lot smaller for it to disperse itself. You will feel an amazing amount of relief once the knot has been worked on.

If an injury has occurred massage increases blood flow, which will target the injury and start the healing process

Mental Benefits:

Mental health is described as being our ability to process information. Massage is essential when it comes to our mental clarity. Not only for athletes, but for the everyday person. Each day we process large amounts of information, which takes a toll and becomes overwhelming. During massage we give ourselves permission to lie within our thoughts without being distracted by anything. Massage is a sensory stimulation that releases chemicals into our body which allows our mind to relax and in turn focus mentally. Having a relaxed mental state decreases our stress levels and promotes overall health. From a sporting perspective there’s a certain amount of mental stillness one needs to have in order to perform at their best and focus. Massage therefore will be a positive tool to achieve results.

Emotional Benefits:

Emotional health is described as being our ability to express feelings, based on information you have received. Since ancient times massage has been used to promote emotional healing. Massage allows us to take time for ourselves, it’s a promotion of self-care and encourages us to be vulnerable. Now more than ever we have a lot of pressures in life and with the current climate we are all in limbo with our work, families, health and lack of control. This has naturally caused us to have added emotional stress. By taking the time for a massage you are taking care of your body and mind and allowing your mind to rest and focus solely on the massage treatment. Studies have described that certain areas of the body hold emotions, for example, “hips hold anger” and once the hips are released the anger decreases. People have described feeling “emotionally lighter” as they leave the room.


Immunity Benefits:

Now more than ever we need to focus on our immunity. Massage decreases our stress hormone, cortisol. When cortisol is high it supresses our immune system and we often pick up viruses or colds during that time. White blood cells defend the body from disease, and they increase during massage. High levels of inflammation in the body are known to be associated with depression, cardiovascular disease and asthma, massage lowers the inflammation in our body. As you can see, massage plays a huge part in terms of our immunity.

If you have any questions on this please send us an email on reception@buretaphysio.co.nz or give us a call on 5761860.

“Prevention is the biggest cure”

Written by Elly Hunt – Massage Therapist

The Bureta Physio Story

In 2004 my husband Sean (then fiancé) and I decided that after four years living overseas it was time to think about returning home. We had had an incredible time including some great work opportunities and had made the decision to buy a physio practice back in NZ. We looked into Hawkes Bay, Nelson and Tauranga as after two years in Ireland we were pretty keen to return to some sunshine and were keen on the lifestyle these areas could provide us with. After looking at a few practices we came across Bureta Physiotherapy which was at the time owned by a long-standing Tauranga physio named Trish MacKenzie who was getting ready to retire. Funny how things work out but after a few phone calls and emails we agreed that this was the one for us and on our travels home through South America we purchased the clinic sight unseen but confident that it was the right move for us. We had ten days between moving back to NZ and taking over the clinic which was a whirlwind – buying a car, finding a house to rent, organizing all that was needed to be a “grown up” in NZ as I left the day after I graduated. At the same time we were organizing our upcoming wedding so life was busy to say the least!

We took over the clinic in what was then the sleepy suburb of Bureta in the quiet retirement city of Tauranga. Wow what a different place it is now. There were a couple of part time physios that stayed on for a few months but other than that it was just me, some patients and lots of coffee breaks for hot chocolates and gossip mag reading at the gift shop that had opened up next door. We had green walls, hideous speckled carpet, the most uncomfortable bench seat in reception, bars on the treatment room windows, no air con in sight and one computer that was barely used as we still drew up columns in the diary every week for appointments but it was a brilliant place to begin this journey. Notes of course were all by hand and life was pretty “old school”. Whilst this was the case it was a great starting point in a handy location with some other new shops opening up alongside us – Simon from the Pharmacy was new too and the Doctors hadn’t long relocated from Brookfield. Marcel came on board in the new year and we have had the absolute privilege of having him as a senior part of our team ever since. Unbelievably over 15 years he seems to be the only one who hasn’t aged so he knows the secrets for sure.

Over the following 7 years the clinic grew steadily.  I completed my Masters in Auckland and had three awesome kids and the challenges of a being a working Mum and a business owner began. We were lucky to have some steady staff members along with the new grads and young staff who have come and gone on their own journeys over the years. All of whom have taught me many things about being in business, being a boss and being part of a team. Over this time we outgrew our original clinic and needed more space. This is a little of the story of the last 15 years as over this time we have continued to outgrow our space and have been creative about how we solved these issues. Needless to say the clinic now is a far cry in many ways including physically from where it was in 2004.

In 2008 I started working with the NZ Blackferns and the following 9 years for me work wise were a mix of business, clinic and International Sports Physio opportunities. I loved every minute of it – the challenges, the learnings, the people and the experiences. I never could have imagined how much I would learn and grow both professionally and personally over this time. Thankfully with husband Sean, my Mum and an awesome family supporting me along the way. The NZ Womens Sevens programme grew and grew and it became obvious I could no longer be a lead International Sports Physio and a sole owner of a growing business despite the awesome staff we had onboard. It was time to look for help. One person came to mind and unbelievably as they say the rest is history. Blair and I went to University together 13 years earlier. We had not seen or spoken to each other since other than catching up at a conference but through social media I tracked him down hoping he might be keen to return home. Post the Christchurch earthquakes it was a turning point in his family’s life and after working through the process Blair came onboard heading back home with his wife Sheree and two young kids. Over the following years there were new things to learn. How to let go of solely holding the reins, how to maximise the talents and skills of someone else knowing they had strengths where I had weaknesses, compromise and above all communication. It has taught me so much more and the clinic would certainly not be where it is today without the partnership we have had over the past 7 years. We have been incredibly fortunate over this time also to develop an amazing team of senior staff both therapists and reception. A team who enjoy being challenged to remain leading edge, a team who enjoy time together inside and outside of work despite our differences and a team that love what they do and the satisfaction they get from seeing our patients achieve their goals, whether everyday activities or competing on the world stage. Blair and I are passionate about the evolution of our profession and are both involved in governance in Sports Physiotherapy in order to ensure we assist in the growth of our profession both locally and Nationally.

We have been through the global financial crisis and now the COVID pandemic. Both of these along with the regular shortage of experienced physiotherapists in NZ have challenged us without a doubt. What I have learnt from these situations in particular is that change is the only constant in life. We must grow and adapt if we are to survive and not only survive but thrive. As one of only a handful of Physiotherapy Specialists in NZ I am confident in my ability and the ability of our team to provide amazing care to our patients that is not solely focused on a reactive model of physio, which is the historical model in NZ but on a proactive model that focuses on the health and wellness of our community and how we can work to support and ensure they achieve their goals.


Originally from Tauranga and attending Otumoetai college,  it was time to start University. Jacs and I initially met in the deep south of Otago when we began the scarfie days of our undergraduate physiotherapy degree. We graduated in 2000 both going different ways not knowing that in some years we would be back working together.

After Uni my journey took me to Christchurch working in Private practice with a sadly now departed Guru of Physiotherapy ( Graeme Nuttridge) including working with Canterbury Cricket and local rugby teams before heading off together with Sheree overseas to London.  After five years in London Sheree and I decided to return home, coming to Christchurch and picking up where we left off with Canterbury Cricket and moving up through the ranks of Canterbury rugby with a promise to buy into what was at that time the South islands most extensive physiotherapy practice. After several events in Christchurch, including going through the canterbury earthquakes and the canterbury practice buy not coming to fruition it was becoming apparent life had other plans for Sheree and I. Jacs, and I met up at a conference, and a couple of months later I got a call from Jacs to consider moving back to Tauranga. Sheree and I with our two children decided to move North which at the time meant walking away from my positions in Canterbury Cricket and Rugby.

I started at Bureta Physio in 2013 and became a co-owner with Jacs the following year.

Management of physiotherapy practices is nothing that we get taught a University, and the jump from clinician to management is not to be underestimated. Luckily Jacs has been there and done (most) of it before.  It didn’t take long until we fell into stride with understanding each other’s strengths and weaknesses. We have managed to grow Bureta Physiotherapy to be the most extensive Physiotherapist practice under one roof in the Bay of Plenty. We offer a diverse range of not only physiotherapy but also health and wellness solutions for individuals and groups. Each year this business goes from strength to strength supported by our hardworking and dedicated team of clinicians and administrators. We are blessed as a clinic to have a great bunch of people working for us all as equally important in delivering on our clinic values. Jacs and I have the moto “work hard – play hard” and that’s what keeps the practice energetic and vibrant. When you walk through our door, you can feel the energy, and our vision was always to have a professional and dynamic health practice.


In 2017 Bureta Physiotherapy won the Customer services awards. “It takes a lot of bravery to go into business, continue in business and grow – sometimes against the odds – and then to enter something like the awards where you are putting yourself on the line and opening up your business to the scrutiny of outside judges and their feedback,” said awards co-ordinator Anne Pankhurst.

“These businesses are true heroes in our community, and we want to acknowledge them for their bravery in putting themselves forward, as well as their initiative.”


At present Bureta Physio has just under 20 staff. What the future holds for the practice is exciting. While we have been in COVID 19 lockdown the work has not stopped – out physiotherapists are all consulting virtually, and Jacs and I have been working on the new Bureta Physio business initiative. Stay tuned.

Below is a section of photo over the years.

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Exercise During Pregnancy

If like me you are stuck at home and pregnant during this isolation period, you may be looking for pregnancy-appropriate exercise to keep you busy, fit and healthy. Exercise during pregnancy can help with:

  • Promoting muscle strength, tone and endurance.
  • Back pain, constipation, bloating and swelling.
  • Improving mood and energy levels.
  • Improving sleep.
  • Prevention of excess weight.
  • Reduction of gestational diabetes risk.
  • Shortened labor and reduced C-section risk.

As a rule, research suggests that if you are pregnant and have no contraindications to exercise, you should be aiming to meet the general physical activity guidelines for adults aged 18-64 years, which are:

  • 150-300 minutes of moderate intensity per week, OR
  • 75-100 minutes of vigorous intensity exercise per week, OR
  • A combination of the two above.

If, however, you were previously inactive or you are in the higher BMI weight range, you should be starting with 15-20-minutes of moderate exercise 3-4 times per week and building up to 30-minutes as able.

It was previously thought that if you are pregnant you should not be exceeding a heart rate of 140 beats per minute, however specific heart rate limitations are no longer recommended.

When it comes to the type of exercise, there are plenty of great options, including:

  • Walking, swimming, or stationary cycling.
  • Pregnancy-specific yoga and Pilates.
  • Strength-based gym classes or home-based strength workouts.

If you were a regular runner or participated in impact sports pre-pregnancy, you can also continue this as comfort allows. However, running is not something I would recommend starting during pregnancy.

Specifically, it is also super important to work on lower abdominal and pelvic floor strengthening during and post-pregnancy. Exercises such as kegels and transversus abdominis strengthening are a fantastic start, and as physiotherapists we can prescribe a home-based program for you specific to your fitness level and needs.

There are also certain exercises that should be avoided, particularly after the first trimester, which include sit-ups or other abdominal exercises that compress the abdomen or stress the rectus diastisis. Further, if you are experiencing aches and pains resultant from your pregnancy, exercise is a fantastic tool to help increase strength and stability and reduce pain.

For specific assessment and prescription of appropriate home based exercises, get in touch with one of our physiotherapists on 07 576 1860 or email reception@buretaphysio.co.nz.


Is your ‘new work office’ a pain in the neck?

Is your ‘new work office’  a pain in the neck?- Quick Tips to Avoid Back & Neck Pain Whilst Working From Home during Covid-19.

With the unprecedented times we currently face, many of us find we are working in a different environment at the moment- One not designed for sitting eight hours a day….

Quick Tips from your friendly Physio:

  1. Comfort is key! Set up your workspace well- invest in a wireless/plug in keyboard & mouse. And even treat yourself to a laptop stand (or a stack of books works just as well).
  2. Take regular breaks- AWAY from your workspace; grab a glass of water, check on the kids or you could even do one of those stretches your physio prescribed you!
  3. Sit less!- be creative with cardboard boxes to make a standing desk, stand during online meetings or webinars, walk during phone calls.
  4. Use your Lunch Break to get MOVING! Even if you can’t spare half an hour to hit your daily activity quota, get creative- Walk Up & Down the Stairs, March on the Spot, or grab a ball and head outside with the kids.
  5. Whenever you feel uncomfortable- get up and stretch! Some examples below to try.

Levator Scapulae Stretch:

Gently take your nose towards your right armpit. Place your right hand on top of your head and apply slight over pressure into the stretch.
Hold here maintaining a gentle stretch for 10-20 seconds.
Repeat to the other side


Mid-Back Rotation:
Cross your left leg over your right leg, placing your right hand on the top knee.
Rotate the body to the left, looking over your left shoulder.
Hold here for 10-20 seconds

If you’re doing these things and still struggling with pain, KEEP CALM AND CALL YOUR PHYSIO! We are open for Online Video Consultations.

Call 075761860 OR email: kim@buretaphysio.co.nz to book your appointment TODAY.

Written by Kimberley Pilbrow

Safe Running Practices


With the potential of more time in your day the opportunity to get outside and go for a run may be tempting, to keep you active and help keep the boredom at bay. So, with many of us looking for ways to make the time pass by keeping active now is a great time to increase our knowledge around safe running practices to help keep us active without the injuries.

Important points to keep in mind when venturing out for your run:

Good Shoes:

While the type of equipment needed to be a runner is relatively limited, this is a great place to start especially if you are just starting out on your running journey. Whether your workout involves running, walking, sports or gym equipment, a shoe is a must. Good shoes are those that provide good shock absorption, cushioning and structured support and overall must be comfortable for you – COMFORT IS KING!


Don’t over stride, keep your leading leg as close to under your hips as possible. With a shorter and faster stride, you can help reduce the stress associated with the impact from longer strides and become more efficient in your running. When looking into specifics around strides it can be said that a cadence (this is the number of times your feet hit the ground) between 170-180 steps per minute could correlate with more ideal running form, with an increase in cadence found to reduce the loading through the hip and knee joints. This is easily measurable with free aps on your phone or simply counting foot landings in 15 seconds and multiplying by 4. Everyone has their own natural cadence but if you are having issues or are unsure about yours and want more information let us know – janelle@buretaphysio.co.nz.


Ensure you are maintaining good relaxed posture through your upper body. Your shoulders should be relaxed, loose, and low, not high and tight. Your head is heavy, and where it’s positioned will dictate how hard your neck and back muscles will have to work to support it, therefore it is important to keep your eyes focused on the track ahead.



As a runner it is important to mix up those km’s by incorporating alternative training styles, in particular strength training. Although this may not be your method of choice for training the benefits this will have on your overall performance and injury risk will surely get you interested.

To start with we have the glutes… a.k.a buns of steel! Strong glutes = more powerful stride, running itself has minimal activation of your glutes so alternate forms of strength training is an important way to build your glutes. This aids in stabilisation of your pelvis, minimises the compensation of other muscles and helps reduce your risk of injury. Other areas of focus to aid in injury prevention and to enhance performance are everything from your core to your big toe.



This is individual to everyone whether you are a veteran marathon runner or just starting out.  We all need to be conscious of our running load, as up to 80% of running injuries are related to tissue overload. This is due to rapid changes in training load, whether this be terrain based, distance or frequency. Therefore, showing the importance of load management in your training, through focusing on consistency and only increasing your running mileage when your ready and comfortable (and pain free!). If you are new to running, ensure you start with walking and walk/runs to help recondition your body to prepare for the higher demands of running and ideally start with alternate days only.

Running and Covid19….

No virus can stop a runner from running…. This being said we must all be adherent to sticking within our bubbles, only running within a close proximity to your home and ensuring you keep your distance from the other people out and about in your area. With the current uncertainty and changes to our daily routines it is an important time to remember to keep active through incorporating 30-60 minutes of varied exercise into our daily lives and looking out for one another.

And remember a healthy runner beats an injured runner every time.


If you want any more information on above or how we can help you achieve your running goals give us a call on 5761860 or email me on janelle@buretaphysio.co.nz.

Sleep Hygiene



If there is one thing I could say to our community right now in order to stay or get healthy is to prioritise SLEEP. The World Health Organisation deems sleep the foundational of the three pillars of health, with diet and exercise being the other two. Studies show that between a third and two thirds of the Western World do not get enough hours of sleep per night.

Sleep has a significant impact on the reduction of both illness and injury and is one of the few interventions that can help prevent both contact and non-contact injuries. Performance research shows us that adequate sleep improves our accuracy, sprint and reaction times as well as the perception of strength and effort. It also has a huge impact on mental health. The brain recalibrates during sleep. It is no surprise then to find out that mood swings, paranoia, depression, anxiety and dementia are all linked to poor sleep.


Now back to current times and COVID 19 where prioritizing sleep is important in strengthening our immune system in order to fight off illness particularly when our body is under stress – which currently is more likely to be mental than physical but the body doesn’t have the ability to alter its responses to this.


In order to ensure you have a good night’s sleep both sleep rhythm and sleep drive is needed. Sleep drive is the need for sleep ie how tired you are. This can be challenging in the current situation if you aren’t getting as much physical exertion into your day as normal but for many this drive is increased simply from the mental stress of the lockdown and the uncertainties surrounding this. Sleep rhythm is ensuring you have regular sleep and wake times. This is why when you have a night out or stay up late to watch that extra movie even though you feel exhausted you don’t sleep as well.

In an ideal world the majority of adults get around 7.5 hours sleep as a minimum as each sleep cycle is approximately 90 minutes and we need 5 of them for a full night’s sleep. This does vary with age. Our children should be getting more as their requirements are greater, given they are growing and the elderly may need less.

Genetics play a part. Early birds or lions make up only 15% of the population. Usually those that are list makers, many CEO’s and those in management make up the large proportion of this group. They are asleep early and up early.

Wolves or night owls on the other hand are categorised as generally being creative personalities, high risk takers, often introverted even if they are extroverted in public life i.e. actors’ musicians authors. Ideally sleep to your rhythm, this gives you the best chance to achieve a good night’s sleep.



But its not all about quantity.

Sleep is about quantity and quality. Poor sleep is linked with a large number of physical conditions and diseases including increased blood pressure, heart disease, reduced immune function, diabetes, ncreased intensity of pain when pain is felt, weight gain, poor decision making, lower testosterone and lower libido in females.

Most likely it is the relationship between sleep and decision making and reaction times that are likely where the link to injury prevention comes in – more sleep better reaction time and decision making.


Food, Vitamins and sleep

Metabolism is affected negatively by sleep deprivation as metabolism slows down. Increased stress results in increased cortisol release which results in increased appetite BUT slower metabolism and therefore fat deposition. We are also more likely to overeat when we are sleep deprived as leptin decreases and this is hormone that tells us we are full.


People who are sleep deprived lack vitamin C and Selenium which affects immune function. Things you can try and do to help with this are to put citrus in your water and eat mushrooms or Brazil nuts to boost these vitamins.  B vitamins are essential for good sleep and serotonin levels so eat food rich in B vitamins such as broccoli.

Magnesium helps boost the quality of sleep as it helps regulate your circadian rhythm.. Ensure meals and snacks contain greens, nuts, brown rice and other grains. Bananas are loaded with magnesium so are awesome for sleep.

A lack of vitamin D can cause poor sleep quality. Getting out and about in the sunshine particularly at this time of the year when the sun isn’t too hot(whilst staying within your bubble!) is the most useful way of ensuring adequate Vitamin D.

Salmon is one of the best foods for sleep as it helps melatonin production.

For those that suffer with restless legs – ensure iron intake is sufficient as this is often a cause or part of the picture– eat plenty of spinach, red meat and other iron sources at the same time as consuming vitamin C (ie orange juice) as this increases your iron absorption. Ensure you don’t consume tea or coffee near these meals as these both affect your body’s ability to absorb iron.


Supplements and sleep

Melatonin is not good for insomnia; it is for jet lag. It affects the rhythm. It’s a sleep regulator not initiator so really useful for shifting sleep rhythm where appropriate. A lack of melatonin causes shallow sleep, insomnia or regular awakenings so is the other time where it is useful. 1-1.5mg is ideal amount – many are taking far too much/too higher dose. It takes 90 minutes to work so needs to be taken 90 minutes before sleep or blood plasma levels aren’t sufficient to work. Take for right reason, at right time in right amount!


On return to normal life

If post lockdown you continue to struggle with sleep go see your GP for an assessment of this. You may require some blood tests to check your levels of Vitamin D, melatonin, iron and magnesium. If this doesn’t give you any answers we can help. Learning strategies to deal with poor sleep can be really useful and one of the most effective with this is correct breathing patterns and breathing exercises to ensure your parasympathetic nervous system is engaged and your body and mind is therefore able to wind down and sleep.



For those who struggle with sleep if you are going to stress about sleep and your lack of it you aren’t likely to get a good night’s sleep so it’s somewhat of a “catch 22”. So where do you start?

Number 1 – PRIORITISE SLEEP – do you really need to watch that movie? Watch one more episode on tv? Play around on your phone when it’s just before bed time?

Know that one nights poor sleep won’t cause you significant issues in the long term. Changing your sleep patterns is a process like any other aspect of improving health and wellness. It takes a plan and the implementation of it.

Sleep hygiene is where to start! If you have any questions on this please send us an email on reception@buretaphysio.co.nz or give us a call on 5761860.



Post Season Recovery and Pre Season Training

For many winter sports, the season is coming to a close. Summer is around the corner, and we all can become a bit more lazy with our off-season training. It can be prevalent that throughout the season, we pick up a couple of injuries and niggles. This offseason training, therefore, can have more importance than we realise to reduce the risk of injury when we start up training again.
Off-season training can be seen as a waste of time due to having no sport-specific goals. However off-season training can reduce injury rates, feeling burned out, can improve quality of training throughout the year, save money from not needing treatment from health professionals, and can improve an athlete’s overall health and wellbeing. Continued training can also open windows of opportunity to focus on recovery and develop weaker aspects of your game. It can also enable us to set new routines, new workouts, and even further research that apply to their sport.
The off-season can be used as an excellent opportunity to work on your game. This time enables athletes and coaches to reflect on the season and create plans for the year ahead. Training can become mixed up, incorporating more cross-training such as gym work. Improvements can range from technique, strength, equipment adjustments, mental training, recovery, or nutritional adaptations, which gives the perfect opportunity to develop these high-level skills.
When discussing training loads, we can talk about acute and chronic workload. This can be of great value as it helps us reduce the risk of developing load-related injury when starting up training again. During the season, it can be hard to fully recover from an injury, instead of working to manage it to be able to play and train. Working on patterns of injury – (i.e. a recurrent calf injury, etc.) the offseason gives the perfect time to work on your weaknesses, so in the in-season, you can refine your strengths. A lot of the time, it is seen that before an event or the beginning of the season that training is crammed together. Therefore having a peak in acute training load can impact the efficiency of our training. In turn, preseason training goals may not be accomplished, and an increase in the risk of injury earlier in the season can be seen.
A reduction in chronic load for four weeks (i.e. rest or minimal training load) can take an additional 2.5 weeks of further training to restore the body to full capacity. The key message is it takes time to get fit; this, unfortunately, can’t be done in a week or 2.
It is highly recommended that following a season, it is essential not just to stop training. Altering and adapting from what happened during the season and working with coaches or health professionals to set new and appropriate goals to hit the ground running come next season is a valuable exercise.

Written by Braedon Catchpole.

Optimal Loading for Tendon Rehabilitation

As a physiotherapist having many clients with tendon issues, the biggest question I have is why did injury occur in the first place? Was it due to trauma, is it linked to training loads or is it something else causing effects to the tendons. Our job is to help guide you to have the best rehab getting you back into your sport or activities. This blog will discuss the importance of optimal loading for tendon rehabilitation.

Optimal loading is what physios strive to achieve when talking about rehabilitation, although due to the nature of tissue healing and recovery it can be made difficult to follow a ‘recipe’ program. Therefore we need to adapt our exercises and progress you through the rehabilitation process to get you back to the top of your game.

When deciding what rehab pathway is appropriate we must first look at what stage of injury we are in. There are two key stages of tendon injury, reactive and degenerative. A Reactive tendinopathy can be described as an acute tendon injury where appropriate management strategies would be to de-load the tendon to let the inflammatory process settle down, then proceeding with progressing tendon loading. A degenerative tendon is where symptoms have been present for a while. A good progressive loading program to increase tissue capacity and tolerance to load is needed.

The table below describes the nature of these types of injuries:

Reactive Degenerative
Symptom Acute onset of symptoms, slow to settle down Chronic – long history of symptoms
Age 15-25 30-60
Time 2-6 weeks 3-6 months
Physio management Massage, orthotics, Dry needling etc. Progressive load
Treatment Unload and reload Load,- Heavy and slow

The image below can help us understand the architecture of a tendon. As a tendon injury starts to proceed into a degenerative tendon the striation of the collagen go from being very linear and to being disrupted and become more disorganised.  This demonstrates the change that occurs and therefore it is important to have an appropriate exercise program to prevent further injury.


Here at Bureta Physio we can help guide you through your injury. We will focus on the injury itself but always ask the question to why this occurred in the first place.

Key points:

  • Depending on the type of injury, we need to work together to establish the best management strategies for rehab
  • Acute reactive tendons may need to be unloaded prior to reloading
  • Chronic degenerative tendons can take months to heal fully
  • As a degenerative tendon develops the architecture of the collagen fibres becomes disorganised. Through loading appropriately we can enable the tendon to be able to adapt to required loading and therefore allowing return to sport.

Please call us on 07 576 1860 to discuss your injury and our team will be more than happy to help.

Written by Braedon Catchpole – Physiotherapist