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Moving Spirit for
 the Immobile

hysiotherapy is a branch of medicine dealing with a large number of immobility and  pain conditions, with a variety of techniques to maintain and/or restore a patient’s health. In the process, it helps the patient to promote his own emotional comfort level too.

Physiotherapy is concerned with identifying and maximising the movement potential of patients, including those with a congenital physical disability. Physiotherapy can help relieve pain and maintain mobility and independence.

Most musculo-skeletal problems are caused by wear and tear resulting from poor posture, sedentary habits or lack of exercise. We seldom realise that we ourselves invite problems for our healthy body. The body is designed to tolerate repeated movements or sustained postures up to a point, but after it reaches a critical level, the rate of wear and tear increases. At the extreme end of the spectrum, patients will have severe musculo-skeletal, neurological or nerve root pain problems. Physiotherapy helps them to overcome such chronic pain problems. Physical exercise therapy, under the watchful and caring eye of a physiotherapist, is widely used for back, neck, upper limb and lower limb complaints.

Apart from chronic back pain, stiff neck, stiff joints, spondylosis, slipped disc, broken bones and sprains, gynaecological problems, conditions associated with old age and physical disabilities also require a rehabilitation programme, which is part of physiotherapy. Most people are not aware of the term “occupational hazard”. If you sit or stand for long periods of time, you undergo certain postural changes, which if neglected lead to varying degrees of pain. Different exercises and movements are required depending on each individual case. Guidelines that we think might be detrimental for one may not be so for another because each body has a different genetic make-up. Thus the physiotherapy programme is tailored to suit each individual need. Physiotherapy exercises can be very simple at times. Patients do not even identify them with heavy physical exercise. The brain’s control over the body influences the change in habits that often helps to remove the pain problem.

The Godrej Colony Dispensary has a dedicated team of doctors in Sunita Dave, Parag Dave and M.G. Bhatia (whom I had consulted for penning this piece, apart from consulting my good friend Dr. Paresh Thakkar), who look after the patients with a set of rehabilitation programmes tailor-made to suit their individual needs. Many of us may not be aware of the professional services in physiotherapy that they provide but must have taken advantage of the same as and when necessary. I for one can vouch for this from my personal experience.

A classic case I can cite is that of my maternal uncle who had sustained 65 per cent electrical burns, most of them on his chest, due to accidental electrocution. He was treated with the most modern techniques of physiotherapy by Godrej doctors during his rehabilitation programme, for right wrist drop and right radial nerve palsy. The patient, who was in shock and in a critical state, is today making phenomenal progress, nothing short of a miracle, thanks to the doctors’ empathy with and understanding of the patient’s psyche.

Life these days is such a powerful package of momentous activities that one missing link in its fragile chain is overlooked by all of us. That missing link is exercise ____ so vital for strength of body and mind! And, God forbid, if we were to need the assistance of a physiotherapist, rehabilitation will be that much more prolonged and painful just because we continue to betray our body’s demand of half an hour’s moderate exercise. Let us not forget that exercise increases rather than saps energy and also has a well-recognised tranquillising effect on mind and body.

Nariman Bacha
Personnel Administration



“It is good to have things which money can buy, but it is better to have things which money cannot buy. Comfort and even luxury can be bought with money, but no amount of money can buy good human values, which have to be acquired through sincere efforts. Happiness is generally equated with wealth, the acquisition of which in today’s materialistic world is unfortunately given the topmost priority, unmindful of the means by which it is begotten.

“The beauty and wonders that Nature provide us in abundance are woefully taken for granted. If we had to pay to see the gorgeous miracles in Nature, then perhaps we would appreciate Nature more. Blessed and privileged are those who can enjoy the glory of a sunset or dance to the melody of a songbird or marvel at the sight of a butterfly emerging from a cocoon ____ and all this for free!”

Pheroza J. Godrej

Extract of a message for a youth symposium organised by the Theosophical Order of Service on 24 October, 2003 at Deolali.