How Can Physical Therapy Help?

How Can Physical Therapy Help?

We are introducing you to our resident Physical Therapist Ciarán Aherne. We will give you an insight into how Ciarán works and how he may be able to help you.

Ciarán qualified from the Institute of Physical Therapy in 2010 with a BSc in Physical Therapy and Applied Health Science. He is a member of the Irish Association of Physical Therapists (IAPT). Ciarán is also an APPI certified clinical and pre & post-natal Pilates instructor.

Ciarán treats a wide variety of musculoskeletal complaints including backache, neck pain, pregnancy-related pains, all types of joint or muscle injuries alongside sporting injuries. Ciarán has treated people from a variety of sporting backgrounds including basketball, soccer, Gaelic football, hockey, badminton, athletics and rugby.

What is physical therapy?

Physical Therapy is a patient-centered approach focusing on the manual treatment of soft tissue – muscles, tendons, ligaments and fascia. Therapists use highly skilled, hands-on techniques to diagnose, prevent or treat underlying conditions and problems.

It is based on health science principles and works alongside other health care practices. It is suitable and effective in both the treatment and prevention of a wide range of conditions.

Its safety and flexibility mean it is suitable for almost every patient – where it can make a contribution to alleviating pain and discomfort. Physical Therapy recognises and values the healing properties of touch. It has proved to be a very safe, non-invasive treatment.

Each treatment is individually tailored. Conditions treated include but are not limited to the following: sports injuries, back & neck pain, joint problems, stress-related conditions (e.g. tension headaches), repetitive strain injuries, joint sprains/strains (e.g. ankle sprain), pregnancy-related pain/injuries, post-pregnancy issues (e.g. abdominal separation).

Conditions treated include but are not limited to the following: sports injuries, back pain, neck pain, shoulder problems, whiplash, stress-related conditions, tension headaches, joint strains, tennis elbow, golfer’s elbow, frozen shoulder, fallen arches, ankle sprain.

What will happen on my first visit?

Ciarán will carefully note your history and complete a thorough physical examination. An individualised treatment plan will be devised which may include exercises and/or appropriate changes to lifestyle and work practices.

Ciarán will discuss the following with you:

  • Your medical history
  • Your current problems/complaints
  • Pain intensity, what aggravates and eases the problem
  • How your daily activities or your functional limitations are impacted
  • Your goals with physical therapy
  • Medications, tests, and procedures related to your health


Ciarán will then perform an objective evaluation which may include some of the following:

Palpation – touching around the area of the pain/problem. This is done to check for the presence of tenderness, swelling, soft tissue integrity, tissue temperature, inflammation, etc.Ciaran Ahere Range of Motion (ROM) – moving the joint(s) to check for the quality of movement and any restrictions.
Muscle Testing – checking for strength and the quality of the muscle contraction. Pain and weakness may be noted. Often the muscle strength is graded. This is also part of a neurological screening.
Special Tests – may perform special tests to confirm/rule out the presence of additional problems.
Posture Assessment – the positions of joints relative to ideal and each other may be assessed.

Ciarán will then list the problems you have, and how to treat those problems. A plan is subsequently developed with your input. This will include how often you may need to see Ciarán, home programmes, patient education, short-term/long-term goals, and what is expected after discharge from therapy.

Booking your appointment

To book an appointment with Ciarán or any of our clinic’s therapists please call 01 677 9859 or email info@the-elbowroom.com.


About the author: Lisa Wilkinson

Lisa Wilkinson

Lisa opened The elbowroom in February 2003. Mother to Tuilelaith and Sean, director of The elbowroom and with a crew of over 60 staff, she is a busy bee. Lisa leads a team committed to bringing health and vitality to all of her clients. Lisa currently teaches in our yoga training programs and oversees pregnancy yoga and mum & baby yoga. Lisa works hard developing healthy food choices for Yin & Tonic @ The elbowroom. She specialises paediatric and pregnancy with workshops, yoga therapy, and craniosacral therapy.

The elbowroom has an extensive range of classes for all ages and abilities. We offer such an eclectic mix to enable you to find something that will suit you. If you need any advice, please contact our class advisor who can point you in the right direction.