Propel Physiotherapy’s 2019 Year in Review

//Propel Physiotherapy’s 2019 Year in Review

Propel Physiotherapy’s 2019 Year in Review

If you asked us to sum up 2019 in a one word, we would have to say “transition.” In a year of transition, we had to say goodbye to several colleagues and friends; and we welcomed many new colleagues in turn.

We feel fortunate to be able to say that through some pretty difficult times, we were able to grow as a collective, and continued to deliver the quality of service that our clients deserve.

The irony is not lost on us that working in the rehabilitation business, part of what we do is to help others to adapt to change. Sometimes change can be scary, but with the right people surrounding you, it becomes a time where you really discover your own resolve and resiliency. We have had the example of so many inspiring clients to draw on when we need it most; for that we are eternally grateful.

When we look back on major themes we focused on in our newsletters, on our blog and through our social media channels, they were inspired by current hot topics and international health movements, but most importantly, we were inspired by the people we work with every day. And, so we tried to provide content we with relevant evidence-based information, important messages and a source of inspiration to our clients.

Spinal Cord Rehabilitation

At Propel Physiotherapy, we combine our knowledge and passion for working with people with spinal cord injury with cutting-edge treatments and technologies. This enables us to provide high-quality comprehensive care in both our clinics and out in community settings.

Body weight supported treadmill training is considered one of the newest evidence-based clinical approaches to locomotor rehabilitation, enabling task-specific training, thereby inducing activity-dependent neuroplasticity. We examined the evidence for body-weight supported treadmill training in neurological rehabilitation in an article authored by registered physiotherapist David Friesen; and assistive devices for SCI rehabilitation in an article put together by one of our University of Toronto Physical Therapy interns Laura Sawula.


We highlighted a case study by registered physiotherapist Alanna Holz from our Pickering clinic, in which she and the client developed meaningful goals for spinal cord injury rehabilitation despite his fatigue, pain and weakness. The results from this case study and similar client cases has shown us that an active physiotherapy program can be applied to clients with severe injuries and complex histories, in order to push the client towards their optimal abilities.

Parkinson’s Disease

Although there is no cure for Parkinson’s Disease, physiotherapy and exercise can play a key role in mitigating the symptoms of Parkinson’s Disease and health impacts associated with this condition.

We took a closer look at the evidence that suggests exercise slows the progression of Parkinson’s Disease in this article by registered physiotherapist Claire Chittick. And registered physiotherapist Kathy Mileski covered the physiotherapy and exercise-based interventions that help symptoms of Parkinson’s Disease; and are an essential component in the treatment of movement-based disorders at Propel.

This year we launched an exciting new group exercise class in our Etobicoke clinic, PWR!Moves for people with Parkinson’s Disease. The skill training program is aimed at slowing and stopping the progression of Parkinson’s and is one more important tool to help Propel Physiotherapy meet our goal of helping our clients maintain or restore skills that help them live life optimally.


Finding the right exercise routine can be challenging for anyone. Having a physical disability can make the challenge even more daunting because not all gyms are designed with disability in mind. We have had the opportunity to use many facilities in the GTA as part of our community physiotherapy services and working with clients with disabilities. We listed some of the accessible gyms and pools in Pickering and surrounding communities we have used in this blog.

The act of participating in a sport can contribute to improving overall physical wellness, and it also provides a mental outlet for people recovering from injuries that have longer-lasting effects. One of our clients and sponsored athletes Tiffany Gaudette talked firsthand about the role of sport in her spinal cord rehabilitation journey in a post earlier this year.

Some common issues and concerns we see in the middle age set is overuse and repetitive strain injuries from practicing one particular sport as well as age-related conditions.

We began by addressing common cycling injuries and exercises to prevent them and then registered physiotherapist Hoong Phang put together a detailed cross-training program for cyclists with seven videos that feature him demonstrating the exercises.

Exercises to Prevent the Most Common Cycling Injuries

While osteoporosis can affect people at almost any age, it is most common among Canadians 50 years of age or older. One of the things we can do to prevent or delay the onset of osteoporosis is exercise. Kinesiologist Sabrina La Rosa put together general exercise prescription guidelines with an exercise program for osteoporosis prevention.

Movement is the foundation for our rehabilitation programs and take that seriously. We want to make exercise and physical activity as accessible and enjoyable as we can for our clients. The benefit of group exercise, especially when done in a therapeutic setting, is that it can help make regular exercise a more achievable goal.

That’s why we offer a variety of group exercise classes at our Etobicoke clinic, including our functional balance and posture class and yoga therapy. We also added bootcamps and our PWR!Moves Parkinson’s Disease exercise class to our schedule this year.

Injury Prevention

Physiotherapists are often the professional you seek after an injury has occurred or after a nagging pain has become too much to shrug off. From this perspective, physiotherapy is a reactive measure to taking care of one’s physical well-being. Although this is an important role that physiotherapists play within a person’s rehabilitation and recovery, preventative physiotherapy, the component of preventative care, often goes missing.

In an effort to help our clients avoid common injuries and stay safe while performing daily activities, we penned articles on cold weather injury prevention that covers snow shoveling, ice skating and tobogganing; equipment to prevent common cycling injuries; and the best winter footwear to prevent slips and falls, among others.

Women’s Health

When it comes to women, we offer customized programs tailored to address their unique conditions and specific needs to provide effective treatment at every stage of life. This was reflected in a broad range of topics that meet our client’s needs and address their concerns.

Pediatric physiotherapist Janna Marvyn discussed the gross motor milestones for children with down syndrome and started her group physiotherapy classes for infants in our Etobicoke clinic.

Pediatric Physiotherapy Productive Play Strategies for Babies' Healthy Gross Motor Development Propel Physiotherapy

Pelvic floor physiotherapist Talia Diamond, shed light on pelvic floor physiotherapy and how incontinence can be addressed without surgical intervention, post-partum or post-trauma.

And registered kinesiologist Sabrina La Rosa provided a program of exercises to help decrease the risk of osteoporosis, an issue that affects 1 in 3 women in Canada.

Foot Health

Healthy feet are an important part of good health. We ended our year with a focus on the lower extremity of our legs. We often get asked what conditions orthotics are used to treat by clients seeking help to alleviate foot pain and discomfort. So we answered this questions by sharing some of the research surrounding custom orthotics, primarily looking at pain in the lower extremities.

One of our newest clinicians, registered kinesiologist Sabrina La Rosa, curated an evidence-based series of articles on shockwave therapy. This first article in the series discusses how shockwave therapy helps with plantar fasciitis. In the new year, we will resume the series on the use of shockwave therapy for Achilles tendinopathy and shockwave therapy for lateral epicondylitis.

Community-Based Physiotherapy

Propel Physiotherapy Pickering continues to gain traction as our physiotherapists, Alanna Holz and Sahash Marasini, make headway by providing community-based physiotherapy in Pickering and continue to work alongside other health professionals from Complex Injury Rehab in our shared therapeutic space.

Our colleague David Friesen begins his new adventure in Peterborough with his family and will be continuing to represent Propel Physiotherapy as he provides community-based physiotherapy services in Peterborough and the surrounding area; reaching as far as Lindsay, Lakefield, and Belleville.

Workplace Wellness

We launched our office wellness stretch break video series as a value-added service to our corporate clients.

We want to all of our clients that participated in its workplace wellness programs and in-services, such as Flipp, Rakuten/Kobo Toronto, Colliers Building Management, F45 Pickering, Oatley Vigmond LLP, McLeish Orlando LLP, and more! We look forward to helping you reach your health and wellness goals in 2020.

Looking Towards the Future

We conclude our year by sending our love to Derek Girard and his family, and how blessed we were to know such an amazing person. His ability to connect with our clients and make them feel comfortable during their journey to recovery is irreplaceable but will be something we carry forward into the future.

In 2020, we look forward to providing compelling, evidence-based articles and informative posts to our readers and followers. In addition, we continue to encourage feedback and, if there is a topic that you are truly interested in learning more about, please do not hesitate to contact us with your comments, questions and suggestions!

Written by

Propel Physiotherapy
Propel PhysiotherapyIntegrated Healthcare Team




PWR!Moves Parkinson’s Exercise Class with Claire

January 21 @ 4:30 pm - 5:30 pm
|Recurring Event (See all)

An event every week that begins at 4:30 pm on Tuesday, repeating until December 17, 2019

An event every week that begins at 4:30 pm on Tuesday, repeating until December 29, 2020

This Parkinson-specific exercise class will teach you how to move bigger and faster in everyday life and counteract PD symptoms! As you learn these PD-specific skills, you will be challenged physically and cognitively to do more than you think you can in a fun, supportive environment!

PWR!Moves Parkinson’s Exercise Class with Shriya

January 23 @ 2:00 pm - 3:00 pm
|Recurring Event (See all)

An event every week that begins at 2:00 pm on Thursday, repeating until December 19, 2019

An event every week that begins at 2:00 pm on Thursday, repeating until December 17, 2020

This Parkinson-specific exercise class will teach you how to move bigger and faster in everyday life and counteract PD symptoms! As you learn these PD-specific skills, you will be challenged physically and cognitively to do more than you think you can in a fun, supportive environment!

By |2019-12-30T04:59:09+00:00December 30th, 2019|Company News|0 Comments