Introducing….Ocean Kids Health Academy
Learn & Play Masterclasses
by Katie Cleary
Senior Paediatric Physiotherapist
Director of Ocean Kids Health.
A big hello and welcome to our FIRST blog post for Ocean Kids Health! Super excited for you to be here and interested in what we do, thank you for reading! Desiree and I are extremely passionate Paediatric Physiotherapists, who specialise in supporting families to help their children thrive in their development!
In this blog, I’ll chat about Physio, Ocean Kids Health, and share some exciting news on our new baby – Ocean Kids Health Academy which is coming to you very soon!
We often get asked by parents…..
Why do kids need to see a Physio, aren’t they for adults?
How can a Physio help my baby or child?
Interesting questions for us too!
Little kids aren’t playing high impact sports yet, so aren’t having as many major injuries e.g. ACL tears that need rehab, chronic back or neck pain (like us adults) that needs management or having hip replacements....so why might kids need to see a Physio?
Kids are physically SO different to adults (obviously) and we support them in developing or improving their abilities to move, play and learn! For our babies, we treat (help to improve) anything abnormal e.g. clicky hips, tight necks (torticollis) flat heads (plagiocephaly) motor delays (e.g. late to sit, crawl, walk).
This is just scratching the surface of what we do! We also help babies and children with neurological conditions e.g. Cerebral Palsy and Genetic conditions e.g. Downs Syndrome learn how to move and build their strength! We also love specialising in helping support children with connective tissue disorders e.g. Hypermobility syndromes and hEDS across home, school and in the community. And, of course, we manage all childhood injuries to help kids get back to doing what they love to do - play!
As kids get older, they may have difficulty playing, running, climbing, bike riding and doing all those things they want to do for a multitude of reasons! Think of us... (Paediatric Physios) as like a detective that works out why kids are having difficulty moving - e.g. Is it strength related, a motor planning issue, due to underdeveloped sensory systems or from another underlying, undiagnosed condition?
Once we identify the underlying problem, we know how to solve or improve it, or refer on for further investigation when needed!
Cool right? We think so. We’re lucky to do what we do, it’s amazing!
The Evolution of Ocean Kids
Ocean Kids Physiotherapy was established in 2015 as a little mobile service helping kids and adolescents at school, home and in the Victorian community. Over the past 7 years, Ocean Kids services and team has grown exponentially! We’ve evolved, developed specialised interest areas and expertise in key areas of therapy, opened two large clinics and have extended our services to include; a now well established and amazing team of Exercise Physiologists (the largest in Victoria) with the help of our legendary Exercise Physiology Director and great friend, Ben Hall.)
What is a Paediatric Exercise Physiologist we hear you ask?.......Don’t worry, we’ll cover that in detail in an upcoming blog, so stay tuned!
Ocean Kids Health = Will be our brand new name (launching soon) for our entire Ocean Kids business and services. (Physiotherapy, Exercise Physiology, Hydrotherapy, Intensive Therapy, Community based therapy and our Academy).
Kids Health really encompasses what we're all about at Ocean Kids. Supporting children to do all the things they want to do, and live happy, healthy and active lives!
Watch this space in 2023 for more details on our new name and specialised services!
During COVID, we remained open to support our families with babies and toddlers in our clinics. There were many of Victorias key services that closed in lockdown, such as face-to-face appointments with Doctors and Maternal Health nurses. As we were an essential service, we helped to see these little babies presenting with a range of different issues from Plagiocephaly, Hip Dysplasia, motor delays and so much more! There was such a high demand for our Physiotherapy services and families were travelling from all over Victoria for their babies to be seen and wanting digital sessions from rural areas, so we put our thinking caps on….
How could we help more parents with babies at home than just our local community?
Des had an amazing idea. Let’s make a digital learning series on ZOOM, Learn and Play!
Learn and Play consisted of 6 weekly 1 hour sessions over 6 weeks and was made available for all families who were expecting or had new babies. In these sessions, we sat down with families from all over Australia to provide education to support them at home, then to answer their key questions on their baby’s development to support them during what was such a tricky time for us all.
Our Learn & Play series was the first digital Physiotherapy learning series of its kind in Australia, designed to support new parents. We ran the series 5 times over COVID and supported over 2000 families, which we were so happy to be able to help!
The feedback we had from families was that:
We also had many health professionals reach out to us, asking us to watch our Learn and Play series to help their clients in their local communities.
Then…….our next idea!
Ocean Kids Health Academy was born!
So what’s the Academy all about?
Academy = A place of study or training in a special field.
The founders of our Ocean Kids Heath Academy are:
Desiree Frigenti – Senior Paediatric Physiotherapist
Katie Cleary - Senior Paediatric Physiotherapist
Ben Hall - Senior Exercise Physiologist
Nick Callanan - Paediatric Physiotherapist & Physiotherapy Education Lead
Our Ocean Kids Health Academy is our new education branch of Ocean Kids Health,
• Digital Courses (parent and professional masterclasses)
• In person courses (for health professionals working with children)
• Education & Training supports including webinars
Over the past 9 months, we have been developing our Academy’s first Program – Learn & Play Masterclasses! We have developed these masterclasses for you (our wonderful parents of young babies) and allied health professionals wanting to upskill in key areas affecting baby development, to do all in the comfort of your own home!
Our masterclasses are online learning short courses, jam packed with accurate, useful, sleep saving tips and expert advice on the key areas we treat in our clinic. Each masterclass is loaded with practical video examples with real babies on ‘how to’ to help you with your baby at home e.g. how to do tummy time, how to swaddle your baby and how to play with your baby. Each masterclass takes between 60-90 mins to complete and you can take your time and re-visit when you need to practice the next skill with your baby!
Learn and Play Masterclass Topics:
• Thrive at Home with your newborn
• Your Premature baby
• Tummy Time
• Infant Reflux
• Plagiocephaly (Babies with Flat heads)
• How to play with your baby
We’re in the final stages of getting our Masterclasses ready for you to launch! Good news, these will sit on our brand new website to make it super easy to access!
Are you a new mum, dad or carer?
Or are you a health professional, looking for expert guidance and accurate advice?
We got you.
Thank you so much for reading about what we’ve been up to, cant wait to share more with you soon!
With warm hugs and big high fives,
Katie and Des
Ocean Kids Health Team