The Words Matter Podcast with Oliver Thomson

The Words Matter Podcast with David Nolan and Dr Oliver Thomson on lifting beliefs, behaviours and back pain.

Show Notes

Welcome to another episode of The Words Matter Podcast.

So we’re up now up to episode 13- and the high quality conversation just keeps coming, and this one is no exception.
In this episode I speak with David Nolan. David is an MSK physiotherapist working within the NHS at Sheffield Teaching Hospitals, in the north of England. He is a full time clinician currently spending his clinical days between Occupational Health and primary MSK care as an extended role musculoskeletal Physiotherapist at PhysioWorks in Sheffield.

As we discuss in the podcast, his research interests are around manual handling and lifting. In this episode we discuss:
  • His research looking at the views around lifting of physiotherapists and manual handling advisers and how these relation to their back beliefs. See papers here, here and here. We’ve repeated his study with osteopaths due to be published later on this year with similar findings.
  • We touch on how lifting and back pain beliefs are constructed and the common sources of such perceptions.
  • We talk about his systematic review (see here) which looked at the differences in lifting between people with and without back pain.
  • David shares his extensive clinical experience in assessing and managing lifting beliefs and behaviours in people with back pain.
You might notice a bit of interference in sound during the first 8 minutes which shouldn’t distract you from David’s incredibly valuable insights to lifting and back pain.

Find David on Twitter @DMNPhysio

If you liked the podcast, you'll love the Words Matter online course on effective language and communication when managing back pain - ideal for all MSK therapists and students. See here.

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What is The Words Matter Podcast with Oliver Thomson?

The Words Matter Podcast brings you insights, reflections and conversations focused on the latest evidence, theory, philosophy and practice of communication-focused healthcare.

Find out about the more tacit, 'softer' and personal side of clinical practice such as the role of philosophy, beliefs, behaviours, developing therapeutic relationships or the purposeful use of language with people experiencing pain from expert academics, clinicians and researchers from across the world and spanning the musculoskeletal disciplines. This podcast will help you reflect on your own current practice and inform and stimulate you to consider new ways of approaching your practice and patients, to create a better clinical experience and outcomes in people with musculoskeletal pain.

Hosted by Dr Oliver Thomson PhD, an osteopath and Associate Professor who is passionate about researching and educating clinicians on a revised narrative, communication and biopsychosocial approach to musculoskeletal therapy. If you like the podcast, subscribe and check out the online learning and resources at

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