The culture of progression, passion and authenticity behind Specialised Health drives all of us to provide quality Exercise Physiology services in the compensable space. We support claimants in achieving their return to work and life goals through specialist exercise and lifestyle prescription while recognising the importance of open communication with all parties involved in the rehab process. We share knowledge with a passion and are made up of exceptional individuals.
As a part of my role, I get to pry into the lives of these individual’s and share them with you! Biara Webster, Exercise Physiologist and Content Manager, Specialised Health
STAFF SPOTLIGHT #3: James Danos
Melbourne based EP James Danos joined Specialised Health 4 months ago. He holds a Bachelor of Applied Science (Exercise and Sport Science) and a Masters of Exercise Physiology. He is also the proud competitor of the 2014 Ironman Triathlon, in Port Macquarie.
Why did you choose the Exercise Physiologist career path?
I originally enrolled in Exercise and Sport Science because I have always loved sport, exercise and movement. I am a self-professed “people watcher.” Combine this with a genuine real desire to help people, I found myself down the path of Exercise Physiology.
Now as an Accredited Exercise Physiologist I get to practise my strengths of educating through conversation in combination with exercise provision. I get to guide people in re-discovering what their body is capable of.
What are your Ninja Exercise Physiology skills?
My current focus of interest is around pain management. In particular, pain education addressing the client’s inherent beliefs and fears around why they still experience pain. Whether pain improves or not, it’s rewarding to see their physical function increasing without pain exacerbation.
Do you exercise?
I do try to practice what I preach with a combination of cycling and gym work. Currently I am riding 1-2 times per week usually around the velodrome for around 40kms (broken into a couple of races) and a road ride of around 50-100km on Sunday. Plus, I get to the gym to do weights 2-3 times per week.
Tell us about your most inspirational client
I first moved down to Melbourne from Sydney a few years ago for a private clinical EP role. One of my first clients as an EP was a lady who had been through treatment for bowel cancer. As a result of the cancer she had developed chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy and osteoporosis. Fast forward three years and she has hardly missed an exercise session, regularly attending the gym 4-5 times per week. She is thus far in remission and has pushed her DEXA reading into the osteopenic range! (I.e. increased her bone mineral density). She is a regular source of inspiration for me.
Food – Schnitzel. Every time. No Biara, “a Parmi” doesn’t count.
Exercise – Track bike riding – it’s a high paced workout made especially difficult when not riding regularly.
Fact – The body is made to move. We are so often told to rest and recover but often the best thing we can do (for almost every sort of condition) is to move more. Especially for pain management (to a limit).
Fiction – I love the Matthew Reilly novels. They are so full of action and are very difficult to put down!
Have you learnt anything new recently?
Since I started with Specialised Health in January I have been on a constant learning curve. As a team we meet up over Zoom (a teleconference platform) every fortnight to discuss clinical and managerial aspects of our work, including case studies. I feel these have been hugely beneficial to my learning: hearing other practitioners’ direction and justification of treatment has opened my eyes up to new ways of dealing with clinical presentations.
One area I have learned so much about recently has been around the use of Heart Rate Variability for the management and improvement of fatigue. As fatigue is a subjective response and highly individualised, it is great to learn about tools which can give day-to-day, objective feedback on the body’s response to various tasks. By measuring HRV we can more effectively increase a persons’ capacity by ensuring the graduated approach is within a tolerable range for their body.
NB James and Loyal Readers! I’m glad to hear James is passionate about taking on this challenge! Fatigue is a trending topic with a high prevalence. We are getting more and more fatigue cases through Income Protection. In fact, Fatigue and what we are doing in the space is next month’s feature! So, stay tuned!
Back to the Interview… Do you have a life outside of Exercise Physiology?
Other than exercising myself, I spend time with my partner and as she is back at uni we do really enjoy the downtime we have. She has never really been the sporty type however was the one to suggest that I DO a half marathon…
When I get a chance I love to see stand-up comedy (Melbourne International Comedy Fest is one of the best times in Melbs!) and theatre shows (I’m SOOOO looking forward to seeing Harry Potter!!) Whenever we can I love to break out the board games with anyone who wants to join. We’ve recently bought Ticket to Ride.
Your goals for 2019?
I am aiming to get to South Korea this July to race a fixed circuit and not fall off/finish. Plus, I’m training (well, will start running soon) to run a half marathon in October. Hoping to finish in under 1hr 45min
James is based in the Northern suburbs of Melbourne and can be contacted on email@example.com