Perth Paediatric Therapy Services introduces yoga for young people with pain

2017 HESTA Primary Health Care Award finalist, Nicole Pates, set up Perth Paediatric Therapy Services to empower children, teens and their families through pain education and getting kids back to doing what they love. Nicole is creating a team with different skills to improve the lives of young people with pain.

Nicole, why did you introduce a Yoga for Pain Practitioner to your multi-disciplinary clinic?
I was chatting with colleagues at the International Symposium for Paediatric Pain about the lack of community pain services for kids. Many of our patients have tried general yoga and ended up in a boom-bust situation (where they do a lot when they feel good, then stop completely when they don’t feel so great). I knew we needed something more specialist. A fellow physio mentioned Yoga for Pain Care Australia as a fantastic and specific training program in Yoga for Pain and I just had to look into it.

Yoga for Pain Practitioner Theresa Venz is now offering yoga for children and young people at your clinic. What important qualities does Theresa have?
Theresa’s bright smile and gentle nature are very reassuring for kids who fear movement. With her understanding of pain, sense of humour and flexibility, it keeps the kids motivated and engaged, making Theresa a key part of our team.

What do you hope yoga will offer kids you work with?
Many children and teens we see have been less active for a long while due to pain or fatigue. As well as a gentle introduction to movement, yoga has countless physical benefits for children – flexibility, strength, coordination and body awareness. Yoga also embodies the values of our pain management philosophy in consistency, pacing, relaxation, mindfulness and meditation.

What is the biggest challenge your team faces working with children in pain?
Convincing children, teens and their parents it is safe to move despite pain. Yoga can be a safe and accessible starting point to help young people understand their body and tolerance of movement.

Theresa’s 4-week Yoga for Youth with Pain course runs at Perth Paediatric Therapy Services Wednesdays, 4.30-5.30pm November 22 – December 12. If you haven’t attended the clinic previously you’ll need to make an initial appointment prior to starting.

To find the right Yoga for Pain Practitioner for your clinic email [email protected].



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