What to expect on your first visit
During the first assessment, your physiotherapist will get to know your child and your family through play. You can treat this like a play date! They will want to find out all about your superhero’s personality, including their likes and dislikes, how they communicate, what motivates them, their superhero strengths, and what they need help with. You, as a parent or carer, will be asked questions about your child’s birth history, medical history, general health and social interactions. We apologise in advance if we are repeating questions you have been asked before! Alternatively, if your child has any reports or medical documents you can provide, some of this stage will not be necessary.
During the initial assessment, your physiotherapist will observe your child through playing and having fun! They will use toys and games to encourage certain skills and movements and will be busy writing in their notebook during this time! Lots of our superheroes like to join in and help us with the writing stage! After this, when your child is happy and comfortable with their new friend, your physiotherapist will carry out some hands-on assessments to establish your child’s range of movement, muscle tone and strength. This is usually done with lots of distractions, sometimes singing, or our team’s favourite sensory toys!
Exercises (and play!)
When your physiotherapist has finished their chatting, observations and assessments, they will have an idea of an exercise programme. These exercises will be explained in detail; their benefits, what is tricky about them and which parts are fun, and how they will help your child to take part in their favourite activities! Your physiotherapist will discuss and agree some goals with your child (if possible) and your family, and these will be set for a four-to-six week period, depending on your child’s skills and your preference.
Our physios are very experienced with equipment and will recommend any appropriate and useful items which may help with your child’s physiotherapy programme. They will direct you to the best stockists with the highest tried and tested customer service, and value for money. Our favourite pieces of equipment can be used for multiple different activities, look good in your home and take up a small amount of space!
If required, your physiotherapist will advise you on any further referrals. This may be orthotics, a paediatrician for tests, an orthopaedic surgeon for x-rays, or other therapists. If this is necessary, our team know some great professionals across the whole of London, both private and NHS, and will direct you to the most appropriate people. Our team can also write these referrals for GPs to forward, to speed up the process.
If your child has a team of professionals working with them, your physiotherapist will ask for their details and your consent to communicate with them. It is excellent practice to work as a team, and lots of specialties cross over. You will be asked to consent before any communication occurs, and will be included in all liaison. Sometimes it is useful to have joint programmes and goals with other therapists or with NHS therapists, for a streamlined and collaborative approach to your child’s care. If your child has appointments such as orthotics, orthopaedics, or paediatrician reviews, your physiotherapist may request to provide reports or letters for these, to attend, or to speak on the phone. This enables us to discuss any queries and work as a team for the best outcome for your child. For regular orthopaedic appointments, our team will always provide a range of movement and progress update report.
At the initial assessment, further physiotherapy intervention will be discussed or recommended. All superheroes and their families are different, some children like to complete their physiotherapy with their parents, carers and siblings. And others like to work with their physio friends at Bumble Bee Physio on a regular basis. We will never pressure any families into regular physiotherapy, and we pride ourselves on educating and empowering parents to work with their children on their physio programmes.
Programmes and reports
Your superhero’s programme and report will be emailed or posted to you, or both, depending on your preference. We have our very own talented illustrator who creates bespoke beautiful diagrams which are easy to follow, age appropriate and inclusive. Our physiotherapists will also send you videos of exercises where requested, and most of our exercises can also be found on our YouTube channel and Facebook page.