Online Physio During COVID-19

Since the outbreak of the pandemic, MS Ireland has had to change and adapt to how we provide services throughout the country. We have moved some of our services online, where people living with MS can log in and take part from the comfort of their own home. Joan, avails of our services in North Dublin, below she outlines how she has found this whole new experience.

Physio by Zoom. Of all the new concepts proposed during the Covid-19 lockdown, this was a concept I had not anticipated. However, physio is so important to my MS I was prepared to give it a go. The first obvious benefit was that it could be done from the kitchen table, no organising taxis to and from IWA in Clontarf. I had never used Zoom before although our adult techie- aware offspring assured me that it was quite easy to use.


The first week was very positive. Patricia, our physiotherapist, was encouraging and helpful. In the class were some familiar faces from previous physio classes and some new people, a nice mixture. The exercises were clearly explained and demonstrated by Patricia before each one. Then Patricia sent us printed instructions in the post and that was very helpful in keeping up our efforts between Fridays! While doing all exercises every week Patricia was very helpful in reminding us that each person should do what they could comfortably manage.

When Patricia told us we were ready to progress from mainly balance type exercises to ones designed to improve our co-ordination it felt that we were moving to the honours class. She was most careful to ensure we all did our exercises safely and if we felt wobbly we were to hold on to a chair or worktop to regain our balance. I felt great encouragement when Patricia told us that she could see us making progress.


Our new routine was checking email on Thursday to get the link for Friday and remembering to put the mobile phone on the silent setting, to avoid any distractions, as soon as we were logged in and had unmuted our Zoom links. The last few minutes every week was an “ask Patricia anything about our physio queries” which was useful if any of us had a new ache after a particular exercise.

In conclusion, I would like to thank Patricia for her gentle support and Sean for doing all the organising from his favourite place-behind the scenes. Physio by Zoom didn’t just happen, it was planned and organised with a lot of time and energy involved. So Covid-19 we have discovered physio by Zoom. It would take more than a pandemic to discourage us MSers!