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 #8: Luisa Coluccio
Luisa has been with us now for 10 months. She comes to us dual qualified as an Accredited Exercise Physiologist and a Registered Occupational Therapist. Impressively, she obtained her Masters degree in Occupational Therapy while working full time!
After 3 years working for herself privately under Medicare and within the compensable schemes, she broadened her scope taking an assessment role with the Federal Government. There she worked within a multi-disciplinary team to assist welfare recipients, ensuring people are getting the support they need. Now, back in EP land she’s appreciating supporting clients achieving results and seeing them function better!
Why did you choose the Exercise Physiologist career path?
I’ve always had an interest in sport and how the body works. I remember when I was younger, having no issues with viewing gruesome sporting injuries and thinking the body was awesome in how it could recover!… Funnily enough, I now watch an injury occurring!
I had looked into EP very early on in high school and was excited when I got into Human Movement following year 12.
What are your Ninja Exercise Physiology skills?
I really enjoy working with clients experiencing post-cancer fatigue and supporting them back into an exercise routine to build their endurance and physical stamina. Cancer hit close to home, so helping others who are cancer survivors is therapeutic for me.
Do you exercise?
My exercise routine has always been important. It is something that has varied from fitness classes to running, to heavy resistance-based training.
I’ve had injuries where specialists have told me I wouldn’t be able to undertake any of these activities… but I’ve proved them wrong with exercise and conditioning!!
For the past few years I’ve been doing hot yoga – my favourite form being Hot Vinyasa, a strength-based routine with quick movements in a 40 degree heated room in 80% humidity. I do this 2-3 times per week.
This year I have also gotten into reformer pilates which I try to do once weekly. The jump-board cardio classes are a killer!
I also walking/running combo for about an hour once a week which tends to be enough for me.
Tell us about your most inspirational client
My most inspirational client is a relatively new one. She has dedicated herself to her program since April 2019, and in doing so, she has gained so much function.
She is the sole income earner for her family, is responsible for the majority of house chores and is highly involved in her local community. Despite persistent pain, she attends the gym three times per week and continues to become stronger so she can return to work.
Yes, we have had to have some pacing chats, mostly involving the need for her to have a bit of a rest, at least a cup of tea and a sit down between some tasks so she doesn’t overdo things too much. So she does this now, which helps her with all she has to do.
She has recently started a TAFE course for re-skilling and hopes to be back in work by 2020. She does not let anything get in her way, and because of that, she is inspirational to me.
Food – Cotolette (Italian chicken cutlets – my mum’s is the best of course!)
Exercise – High resistance weights. I was amazed with the level of the strength I was able to build in my own body.
Fact – Bananas are classified as berries!
Fiction – The Notebook
Exercise Myth Buster – Women will get bulky lifting weights (Not!) – so many of my friends didn’t believe it, so I proved it within myself.
Have you learnt anything new recently?
I have been doing some reading on peripheral neuropathy. I learnt the importance of increasing cardiovascular fitness to improve circulation to the periphery. Incorporation of balance/proprioceptive training to help increase blood flow!
Do you have a life outside of Exercise Physiology?
Yes – life is extremely busy, I make sure I am doing as much as I can.
I have a very close family, with nieces and nephews that I love hanging out with, and it’s important for me to spend time with family as we easily ground one another.
I love travelling and aim for an overseas trip every 1-2 years, but also enjoy experiencing my home state of SA and finding new wines, cafes, and distilleries.
Most of my winter is dictated by AFL scheduling and I’ve been a supporter and member of the Port Adelaide Football Club since my teenage years. Being a Port supporter is an interesting experience – the highs, the lows, the frustration – but we’re all a big family with an intangible bond across all supporters.
What are your goals for 2019?
My main goal was to explore Japan as much as possible, and I did this earlier this year with my partner. We fit in as much walking, train rides, and exploring as possible, and enjoyed every minute of travelling through Japan.