What we resist, persists.
What we accept, transforms
Develop and nurture your journey with Acceptance and Commitment Therapy in your NMSK practice
Facilitated by Laura Rathbone
Consultant in Psychologically-informed Physiotherapy for complex and persistent pain
Laura is an international lecturer and educator on developing a hybrid-NMSK practice which integrates ACT and psychological theory with Allied and non-Allied health and rehabilitation models for pain. She has taught and spoken on this topic in the Netherlands, the UK, Australia and the USA and her courses are often attended by medics, rehab professionals and therapists from across the healthcare field.
NEXT online/Virtual course:
6 Sept 2023 (Wednesday)
13 Sept 2023 (Wednesday)
20 Sept 2023 (Wednesday)
27 Sept 2023 (Wednesday)
Time: 9.00 - 12.00 noon (Amsterdam time)
Standard: €450 (excl BTW) Limited spaces
Student/New Graduate: €300 (incl. BTW) Limited availability: 4/4 remaining
Includes: Recorded lectures, reference-bundle, digital course manual
NEXT in-person course:
Weesp, Amsterdam. Netherlands
Are you an Allied Health BSc student that wants to join?
I hold four discounted spaces for under-graduates and graduates in the first-year after graduating from an Allied Health BSc.
€300 incl. tax
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org to find out how you can get access to this opportunity.
In this course we will explore
The Acceptance and Commitment framework
The framework of ACT beautiful aligns with the rehabilitation and therapy model for pain.
By exploring the framework and skills offered to us by ACT, rehab professionals can navigate and support their patients & clients through moments of resistance and towards values-based activities that is an important part of living well with persistent pain.
The theory of process-based therapy
ACT is not a linear process adn no-one can be taught "how-to" ACT.
To do it well we, we need to understand the stand-point of ACT and why the elements of the framework can be so powerful in supporting the transformation of a pain experience from live-destroying, to life-transforming.
To do this, you will need to invest in theoretical basis of
The philosophical roots of ACT and PBT
Embracing ACT will change you on a personal level as much as a professional level. We explore how you view the world and make sense of your role, your biases within your philosophy and how understanding different philosophical traditions will liberate your practice so that you can fully expand your scope out into being a hybrid-therapist and comfortable in the uncertainty of pain and pain-specialised care.
About ACT in the Clinic
As the healthcare and rehabilitation professions embraces the transition from biomedicalism to biopsychosocialism, clinicians are becoming increasingly interested in, and aware of, the benefits a good working-understanding of a pyschotherapeutic model can bring.
Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) has been shown to have similar effect as more traditional models of Cognitive and Behavioural Therapies at supporting people to live well alongside pain as well as showing improved adherence to treatment and improved work and social adjustment.
The experiential and reflexive nature of this course means that the skills and processes not only benefit the clinical relationship, but can also be utilised by the clinician to manage their own emotional load of woking with people experiencing pain, within a culture of increasing focus on targets and fast-treatments. Work-related stress and compassion-fatigue are emerging as common experience of NMSK clinicians and rehabilitation therapists. ACT can help to support stress-management techniques, boundaries and the skills to hold them, foster sustainability and the development of healthy clinical cultures.
This course was developed with the MSK clinician in mind and by a consultant Physiotherapist who has personal experience of, and understands the specific challenges faced by physiotherapists across healthcare settings, from acute and sports clinical settings to pain clinics and rehabilitation units.
Breakdown of learning modules
The Hexaflex was introduced as a way of modelling ACT for clinicians that would move them from linear models of therapy to a more complex model of facilitating cognitive and behaviour change.
It forms a robust and yet flexible container for the therapeutic process which can support the clinician to manage the complexity of the pain experience and, collaboratively with the patient, develop individualised values-based therapy directions that privileges the experience and knowledge held by the person with pain whilst also being evidence-informed.
You will learn how to facilitate each of the six sub-processes within the ACT framework with your patients and feel the benefits for yourself:
Self as Context
Connection to the present moment
Connection to values
These sub-processes and the behavioural and thought-experiments we create and share to build skills within, are thought to bring about the process of psychological flexibility. You will learn how to open up and invite a person to explore and experience these skills in your practice and use what you know from your professional background.
Transparent and collaborative
Traditional NMSK assessments are based upon outdated models of paternalism and biomedical reducitionism. Being a psychologically-informed NMSK therapist requires us to shift our position from being the 'expert' on what a person needs, to being an active partner in supporting them to reach those goals and needs.
Formulation is a collaborative and transparent approach to decision-making and planning that will hold the person as central in the therapeutic experience.
Change is meaningless if it only makes sense in the clinical setting. Changes that we work towards in pain care and therapy must make sense for the person in their environment and with their relationships. Formulation is a way of holding the therapeutic process close to the person.
Values vs Goals
Embracing a values-based approach to being in the clinic and your clinical practice is a challenging shift for NMSK rehab professionals that have been traditionally taught to measure outcomes within and between session on a specific goal/activity.
Values-based approaches ask us to hold the goal lightly and focus more on living within our personal values and motivations for action, and those of the people with pain that we work with.
Process-based therapy allows to shift that focus as we understand positive change to be about facilitating the process of psychological-flexibility, rather than on the therapeutic gain being inherent to the action/exercise that we may have typically 'prescribed' for recovery.
It's absolutely possible to learn to incorporate ACT into your NMSK rehab practice, but you will hit the ceiling of where this can take you quickly. So why stop at just having some techniques to do?
In this course, you will be invited to dig deeper into your philosophical biases and ask - does your current philosophy reflect and agree with your practice?
We will explore three alternative philosophical frames to fill in some of the gaps you experience when trying to work biopsychosocially within a biomedical and reductionist professional tradition.
This is often felt to be the more challenging shift experienced by clinicians on this course and the most liberating and clarifying.
We often get stuck because our practice, model and philosophy conflict. You will be supported to observe and understand this conflict as well as explore other-ways-of holding the therapeutic space.
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