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Quality Private Physiotherapy: Making an Impact

We have a very exciting line up of speakers for you at our Physio First 2018 Conference, packed full of clinical applications, the latest research interpreted by expert researchers and clinicians in a wide range of subjects and conditions that we see every day in our clinics.

“Lots of ‘use on Monday’ knowledge”

We are pleased to announce that international speakers Dean Watson, whose specialist areas are cervicogenic headache and migraine; and Michael Shacklock, who will share his years of expertise in neurodynamics will be joining us from Australia. Many of us will have Michael’s best-selling textbook Clinical Neurodynamics on our bookshelf!

Closer to home we look forward to listening to Professor Annina Schmid who researches the pathophysiology and management of entrapment neuropathies; Dr Lorenzo Masci - Consultant in Sport and Exercise Medicine and lead Sports Physician for London Wasps Rugby will share his expertise on managing difficult tendinopathy. Anju Jaggi, Consultant Physiotherapist specialising in shoulder dysfunction and pain, Dr Ruth Jones on pelvic floor function, Chris Mercer Consultant Physiotherapist and past chair of the MACP on spinal masqueraders and last but definitely not least the University of Brighton update on Data for Impact.

In each of their specialist areas our 2018 speakers are making an impact on physiotherapy research and practice. In the healthcare market place we as Physio First members need effective clinical and business skills to make an impact too with Quality Private Physiotherapy.

Once again we will be offering an extensive trade exhibition where you can meet the exhibitors at our Friday night buffet and take part in the great competitions on offer. We will also be holding our Saturday night buffet event a little differently this year so don’t forget to book your tickets.

Come join us and make an impact at Physio First Conference 2018!

Speaker line-up

Lectures taking place...

We have an inspiring line up of speakers, and it's designed for us physios in private practice, by us!  So there should be plenty of stuff you can apply in to your caseload on Monday morning. It's £340 for members for the whole weekend (£395 non-members), or £225 for just the Saturday or Sunday, and you are accessing fantastic speakers, a trade show, and the unique buzz of the event all under one roof! 

Founder of the Watson Headache Approach

Dean Watson

Dean Watson’s vision is that a skilled examination of the upper neck is genuinely accepted as a legitimate, routine practice when investigating headache and migraine conditions.

Dean is the Founder of the Watson Headache Approach, which is now recognised internationally for its unparalleled diagnostic accuracy and uncomplicated innovative clinical reasoning.

He has presented and taught internationally since 1995, and because of his unique experience with over 8,000 headache and migraine sufferers, continues to be sought after as Clinical Consultant at the Watson Headache Clinic as well as Educator and Professional Mentor for the Watson Headache Institute.

Dean is currently finishing his PhD research program at Murdoch University in Perth, Western Australia, which has, according to some, resulted in the most significant cervical manual therapy headache research in decades. Find out more about Dean and his approach here

Neurodynamic Solutions Director/Instructor

Michael Shacklock

Michael received his graduate qualification at the Auckland School of Physiotherapy, New Zealand, in 1980.  

He worked in public hospitals in the medical, surgical, paediatrics, orthopaedics, geriatrics, intensive care and burns areas around New Zealand before being employed in private practices, treating spinal and sports injuries in Nelson with Michael Monaghan and Auckland with Margaret Franklin.  

In 1985 he moved to Adelaide, Australia, working at the Royal Adelaide Hospital and private practices around Adelaide.  He completed a Graduate Diploma in Advanced Manipulative Therapy in 1989 and converted this to a Masters degree at the University of South Australia in 1993.  He was awarded a Fellow of the Australian College of Physiotherapists for his monograph and international best seller text book, Clinical Neurodynamics, Elsevier, Oxford, 2005.  In addition to his neurodynamics book, he has published two other books, Moving in on Pain (Elsevier) and Biomechanics of the Nervous System: Breig Revisited.  He also authored, co-authored and mentored numerous research studies, editorials, commentaries and clinical papers in international peer reviewed journals articles which have garnered many international awards, including Visiting Professor of the Faculty of Medicine, Barcelo University, Buenos Aires (see academic activities on ResearchGate).  

He is a reviewer for, and is on the International Advisory Board of, Manual Therapy journal, United Kingdom and is an Associate Editor of the Journal of Manual and Manipulative Therapy, USA.  His special interests are neurodynamics, measurement of mechanical function of the nervous system, pain and musculoskeletal function. 

Michael is an active clinician, has 35 years of experience in treating patients and is recognised as an international leader in the diagnosis and treatment of musculoskeletal disorders with a neural aspect.

Consultant Physiotherapist

Anju Jaggi

Anju qualified from the University of East London in 1992 with a honours degree in Physiotherapy.

She started at the Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital, Stanmore in 1996 and developed an interest & passion for shoulder dysfunction. For the last 15 years she has been working closely with Senior Orthopaedic Consultants specialising in the Shoulder & Elbow. Anju has a particular interest in shoulder instability with published work and is currently leading on a multi-centred randomized placebo controlled trial (Does Surgery have any added value in atraumatic shoulder instability vs physio alone) as well as sitting on the British Shoulder & Elbow Society (BESS) sub-committee looking at National guidelines for management of shoulder instability. She presents both nationally & internationally as well as running her own shoulder courses.

Anju will be presenting a lecture on shoulder instability: interlligent rehabilitation as part of our 2018 conference where delegates will understand the current evidence base for exercise therapy in the shoulder, and the multi-dimensional elements to movement control.

Post Doctoral Research Fellow

Annina Schmid

A/Prof Annina Schmid is a Consultant Musculoskeletal Physiotherapist and a Neuroscientist affiliated with the Nuffield Department of Clinical Neurosciences at Oxford University in the UK. She qualified as a Physiotherapist in Switzerland in 2001 and obtained a Master in Manipulative Physiotherapy from Curtin University of Technology in Perth, Australia before completing a PhD in Neuroscience at The University of Queensland in Brisbane in 2011.

Annina’s research is an exciting and unique combination of basic and clinical science which is aimed to improve our understanding of the mechanisms of neuropathic pain and entrapment neuropathies to ultimately improve management of these patients. Annina has presented her work at leading international and has published her work widely including publications in leading clinical (e.g., Brain, JOSPT, Eur J Pain) and basic science journals (e.g., eLife, Nature Genetics). Dr Schmid’s research contribution is recognised by the award of several grants, awards and competitive fellowships including the prestigious Neil Hamilton Fairley Fellowship from the Swiss National Science Foundation.

In addition to her research activities, Dr Schmid teaches postgraduate courses related to pain and neuroscience internationally. She also maintains a weekly caseload as a specialist musculoskeletal Physiotherapist.

Consultant Musculoskeletal Physiotherapist

Chris Mercer

Having chaired the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy back pain guideline group and was a member of the Whiplash Associated Disorder guideline group, Chris has a number of roles under his belt.

He is also currently a member of the Royal College of Physicians Occupational Health national back pain audit group, the CSP Professional Practice and Service Delivery Committee and the national research funding stream, and the Research for Patient Benefit Programme.

He is an active member of the MACP and was part of the organising committee delivering the IFOMPT confernce in Glasgow in 2016.

Chris' lecture

Red flags- warnings or signposts?

By the end of this session delegates will be able to understand the role of red flags in MSK practice - how to use them to support clinical reasoning and clinical practice.

Who should attend this lecture?

Anyone involved in MSK physiotherapy should benefit from the session

Lecture aims

  • Explore the evidence for red flags and to discuss how we can best use them in clinical practice

Skills delegates will gain

  • Evidence based information on the use of red flags in practice

Practical application

These are relevant to everyday practice with all patients

Areas for further reading can be provided upon request

This lecture supports our members in becoming or continuing to be QAP/QAC by providing evidence and support of safe practice in MSK, supporting good clincal governance.


Consultant in sports and exercise medicine

Lorenzo Masci

Dr Lorenzo Masci has undertaken extensive and vigorous specialist training. After completing orthopaedic residency in Australia, he completed a four-year full time specialist Sports Medicine training program with the Australasian College of Sports Physicians. He then moved to London in 2007 to work as a consultant in the elite and private setting.

Dr Lorenzo Masci works as a specialist consultant in various elite sporting environments. He is currently the lead Sports Physician for London Wasps Rugby. He was a consultant for Australian Open Tennis Tournament from 2001 to 2007. He was the lead Sports Physician for the Melbourne Storm Rugby League from 2005 to 2007. He was also part of the Sports Physician team at Fulham Football Club from 2008 to 2010. He has also worked in elite Australian football, weightlifting, judo and swimming.
Clinical interests include overuse tendon disease and iliotibial band friction syndrome; hip and groin disease; diagnostic ultrasound and ultrasound-guided injections including cortisone, Platelet-rich plasma and hyaluronic acid and non-surgical treatment of osteoarthritis. Dr Lorenzo Masci is actively involved in research in Sports Medicine. He completed Masters in Sports Medicine (Research) at the University of Melbourne on low back pain in young active individuals achieving a high distinction. He is currently involved in Achilles and Patella tendon research and has published scientific papers with Professor Hakan Alfredson, who is an eminent world expert in tendinopathy. He is one of only a handful of doctors to use UTC (Ultrasound Tissue Characterisation) as part of the management of tendon disease and tendinopathy.

Principal Lecturers

George Olivier & Liz Bryant - University of Brighton

George will be joining us from the University of Brighton to discuss his data research on one of our big five member benefits, our Data for Impact scheme. Data for Impact reports provide feedback on patient outcomes to use to target your CPD training and will ultimately enable our members to reach their Quality Assured Practitioner title. This lecture will be relevant to sole practitioners and those with clinics.

George is a Principal Lecturer at the University of Brighton, lecturing mostly on medicinal and pharmaceutical chemistry and has an interest in quality issues surrounding the use of plants when used as medicines. He is a pharmacist by training and, for more than 20 years, has been using electronic methods for learning, teaching and assessment involving the online gathering and interpretation of data. George has worked on the DfI projects and its predecessors since 2005.

Liz Bryant has also been working since 2005 on DfI related projects as a Research Fellow in the Centre for Health Research at the University of Brighton. She is also Research Lead/Senior Research Fellow at Chailey Heritage Clinical Services, part of Sussex Community NHS Foundation Trust.

Chartered Physiotherapist, Clinician and Researcher

Ruth Jones

Dr Ruth Jones is a Chartered Physiotherapist, clinician, researcher, lecturer and writer with over 30 years experience. She works clinically and consults to elite sports bodies and athletes including the Football Association and professional teams. Ruth is also a speaker at national and international conferences and workshops related to movement, pelvic floor function and pain.

Along with co-editor Leon Chaitow, Ruth has produced the book Chronic Pelvic Pain and Dysfunction: Practical Physical Medicine, published by Elsevier in 2012.


Venue and accommodation

The East Midlands Conference Centre, Nottingham, NG7 2RJ

For the 13th consecutive year, Physio First's annual conference will take place in Nottingham - a central location for all major motorways, train links and the East Midlands Airport/Birmingham International Airport are both within easy reach.

Accommodation costs

Orchard Hotel discounted rates
Standard single occupancy £66 inc VAT
Standard double occupancy £75 inc VAT
Executive single occupancy £86 inc VAT
Executive double occupancy £95 inc VAT


The above prices are for bed and breakfast rates only. To speak with the hotel about alternative rates or if you have any requirements for your accommodation, please contact the hotel directly on 0115 876 0900. To find more information about the EMCC, please visit our venue page


Ticket prices/discounts

Bringing your associates/friends?

You can save 10% on your conference ticket by booking three people together – that’s you and two of your associates or friends! You will save over £30 per booking!* Call our office team if booking more than one person on 01604 684 968. *The group discount is only applicable to all three people booking full conference (Saturday and Sunday) and the three people must all be members or non-members.

Book online and save £10 on the prices below. Bookings are open until Friday 06 April

How do I receive the 10% discount?

The multiple person discount can be used by both members and non-members for booking full conference (Friday and Saturday).

In order to receive this discount you will need to call 01604 684 965 or alternatively complete an online form and send this to

What if there is more than three of us?

The discount is applicable to three people booking together only. The three people within the discount do not need to be colleagues of the same practice.

I am a member and want to book three associates who are not members, can I still have the discount?

Yes, Physio First will honour the online discounted rate for the member and the non-member bookings will be processed collectively with a 10% discount. The same applies for a non-member booking three members. All of those on the booking will either need to be all members or all non-members as unfortunately this cannot be a mixed discount.

Prices are as follows:


Member prices


Members standard

Full conference (Sat and Sun)


Saturday only


Sunday only








Non-member prices




Full conference (Sat and Sun)


Saturday only


Sunday only








Book today to receive the best rate on your ticket!


Conference programme


Friday 27 April 2018 - education day

Five courses will take place in suites across the EMCC:



08:45   Education day registration begins

16:00  Conference registration opens                        

16:30  Conference and trade exhibition launch begins


Saturday 28 April 2018                                                                                                                                                                                                          

08:00     Registration and trade exhibition

08:45     Introduction by Education Chair, Amanda Marsh

08:50     Introduction to the PPEF

09:00    The PPEF Lecture Dean Watson - ‘Cervicogenic Headache’: useful… or an ‘intellectual straitjacket’?

09:50    Lorenzo Masci - Managing the Difficult Tendinopathy at the Coalface – combining research with clinical experience

10:40     Refreshment break in the trade exhibition hall

11:10     Olive Sands Memorial Lecture Ruth Jones - The Private Detective: A Closer Look at the Pelvic Floor in Athletes

11:55     Questions to the panel

12:25     Lunch and trade exhibition

13:00    PPEF AGM (open to all PPEF and Physio First members)

14:00    Annina Schmid - Entrapment neuropathies: challenging common beliefs with novel evidence

14:50    Michael Shacklock - Advances in Neurodynamic Mechanisms

15:35    Questions to the panel

16:00     Tea & coffee break in the trade exhibition area

16:05     Physio First AGM & Physio First revealed


Sunday 29 April                                                                                                                                                                                                           

08:00    Registration and trade exhibition

08:55     Introduction by Education Chair, Amanda Marsh

09:00     Anju Jaggi - Shoulder instability: intelligent rehabilitation brain to muscle to function                                     

09:50     Michael Shacklock - Clinical application of neurodynamic mechanisms

10:35     Coffee break and trade exhibition         

11:10     George Olivier & Liz Bryant (University of Brighton) – DfI - why should I?

11:45     Questions to the panel

12:15     Lunch and trade exhibition

13:30     Trade prize announcements

13:45    Dean Watson - Alternating headache: C2-3 Disc... innocent or guilty?

14:35    Chris Mercer - Inside-out - the role of the viscera in musculoskeletal patient presentations

15:25     Questions to the panel

15.55    Coffee break. Conference closes


Please note that our programme may be subject to change without prior notice.

All lectures will take place within the main lecture theatre.

Event Timetable

Time Topic
08:00 - 08:40 Registration and exhibition
Time Topic
08:00 - 08:50 Registration and exhibition

Venue Information

East Midlands Conference Centre

EMCC, University Park, Nottingham, Nottinghamshire, NG7 2RJ