The physiotherapy service provided at the Friary Hospital has been enhanced recently with the ‘signing’ of a specialist who this time last year was working for a Premier League club.
David Annison has been at the Friary since the turn of the year, but for the previous six years he was a musculoskeletal physiotherapist working for his hometown team of Sunderland AFC.
David, 30, gained a sports science degree at Leeds University and it was there that he met a tutor who lectured in sports injuries and instantly became interested in sports physiotherapy.
David later completed a masters-accredited degree in physiotherapy at the University of Huddersfield, where he met an influential physiotherapist involved with Halifax Rugby League Club. “I went along to Halifax and for two years was fortunate enough to help with the pitch-side management of injuries and subsequent rehabilitation back to full fitness”.
“I became head physio for Halifax and worked in the NHS in Huddersfield in a musculoskeletal role, while I was there my CV was spotted by Sunderland Football Club. I was invited for an interview; got the job and was there for six successful years.”
David, who also runs two GP clinics for patients in the more remote parts of the area, says that the types of injuries elite sportsmen have do tend to be different to those he sees at the Richmond hospital and therefore have to be treated differently.
“Professional footballers suffer from repetitive injuries as they are training every day and playing 90 minutes of competitive sport once or twice a week so their muscles go through a much higher volume of load which cause different injuries to those I see here. My patients are usually older than the sportsmen but that being said you still need to assess the patient and give them advice and exercise to restore normal function.
“Expectations are the same though. Whether you are an elite sportsman or a patient, you want to return to full fitness as soon as you can. Within the Premier League setting you are fortunate to see patients every day, but you have to be careful not to over-treat the patient and that relates to any patient.”
“It’s very much about understanding the best way to treat the problem. When patients say ‘no pain, no gain’, you have to educate the patients as to when to ‘push it’ and when not to. It’s about delivering the right care, at the right time”.
The physiotherapy service has also been boosted by a very kind donation by Mr Alan Rowley. Mr Rowley handed over an exercise bike and a Roger Black rowing machine for the benefit of patients undergoing rehabilitation at the Friary Hospital.