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Doctor and Patient


Physiotherapy is beneficial for every cancer type and in every stage of the cancer journey. Physiotherapy involvement can be simple, such as providing education about treatment, managing side effects or pacing activity to reduce fatigue. Or it can be large, such as rehabilitating after invasive surgery, maintaining a quality of life with bony metastases or neurological rehabilitation during brain cancer.


Physiotherapy is much more than massage and exercise. We provide a wide range of services, working closely with oncology medical teams to provide safe, effective, and holistic treatment. Read through our services below to see how physiotherapy may be relevant for you. If you have any questions, please get in touch to speak to one of our physiotherapists. 

When should I see a physio?

Physiotherapy is appropriate before, during, after treatment and in palliative cancer.

BEFORE treatment has commenced, you can start physiotherapy known as prehabilitation. This is a relatively new concept which involves building fitness before treatment. Treatment is often hard on the body, reducing fitness and daily capacity, but there is good news. See the graph below and note that a higher level of fitness pre-treatment carries through the treatment phase resulting in a higher level of fitness post-treatment.

We understand the period between diagnosis and treatment is a whirlwind of life changing medical appointments and information, so we help people find enjoyable and achievable ways to build their fitness.

DURING treatment, in many cases it is possible to continue exercising at a low level. Evidence shows that any exercise is better than none, enhancing the effectiveness of treatment and reducing side effects. Our physiotherapists work with the wider medical team and provide safe and enjoyable exercise programs

AFTER treatment has been completed, physiotherapy is known as rehabilitation. This is the more commonly known aspect of physiotherapy, but it encompasses more than most people realise. The services described below explain some of what we do, including supporting people with ongoing advanced cancer.


Our Services


As treatments for cancer improve, people are living longer with ongoing cancer. Living with advanced cancer looks different for everyone and our physios are trained to support you to live well. We also assist in palliative care and believe in beginning early to maintain quality of life for as long as possible. We can provide:

  • Education about what you can expect as the disease progresses

  • Safe rehabilitation to improve strength, mobility, fitness and function, including exercising with bone metastases 

  • Neurological rehabilitation in brain cancer

  • Strategies for non-pharmecutical pain relief

  • Strategies to maintain function in clever ways for as long as possible

  • Support to connect with local communities and support networks

  • Support in navigating the health systems and services


Our physiotherapists run exercise classes incorporating strength, aerobic fitness, balance, flexibility, Pilates, gym and body weight exercises. Programs are created with the participant and designed specifically to meet their needs and goals.

Classes run for 45 minutes in our fully equipped clinic gyms. Small class numbers allow our Physiotherapists to closely supervise each participant. Participants complete either an individualised program or a circuit with modifications for individual abilities. These classes provide the chance for socialisation with other people who may be experiencing similar symptoms and may also include an education component on various topics.

When there is sufficient demand, we offer more targeted exercise classes for specific cancers such as:

  • prostate cancer

  • breast cancer, or

  • metastatic cancers


Fatigue is a common side effect of cancer and cancer treatment that may become prolonged and require specific management. Our physiotherapists use a combination of education, sleep training advice, breathing exercises and graded exercise programs to manage fatigue.


Our cancer rehab physiotherapists work with other lymphoedema specialists, such as lymphoedema nurses and the medical team, to assist in the management of lymphoedema. Management may include lymphatic massage, garment measurement and monitoring. 

We are looking to expand our services for patients who have lymphoedema in the Limestone Coast with our cancer rehab physios undertaking extra training in this area. Please contact us to discuss your needs and whether we can assist you.


Pain is a common symptom of cancer and cancer treatments. Analgesic medication, prescribed by your medical team, is only one treatment option for pain. 

Our physiotherapists can provide support with: 

  • Education about pain

  • Hands-on therapy including massage

  • Exercise, particularly if the pain is due to stiffness and inactivity

  • Mental tricks including mindfulness or

  • TENS, a non-invasive electrotherapy analgesia.


Gynaecological cancers, such as cervical and prostate cancer, radiotherapy and some types of chemotherapy can cause pelvic floor dysfunction. Our pelvic health and continence physiotherapists can help if you are experiencing symptoms involving: incontinence, vaginal dryness, pain with intercourse, erectile dysfunction or menopausal symptoms. Just like the rest of the body, the pelvic floor and pelvic organs can be rehabilitated. Often it can be very simple strategies and exercises that make a big difference to your symptoms and quality of life.

Our PINC & STEEL certified physiotherapist Chelsey is a pelvic health and continence physiotherapist. She works with men, women and children who are experiencing pelvic health concerns. Good Country Physiotherapy’s Senior Pelvic Health Physiotherapist, Naomi Gill, also works closely with our cancer team to provide services to a range of patients. Together, Chelsey and Naomi work with other health professionals in the region, including general practitioners, continence nurses, gynaecologists and surgeons.


Cancer-related surgery can be extensive and result in scar tissue, limited mobility, weakness and pain. Rehabilitation post-surgery includes:

  • Scar management to prevent adhesions and improve flexibility

  • Hands-on treatment to ease stiffness and pain

  • Exercise therapy to regain strength and endurance

  • Specific physiotherapy to restore the function of muscles and nerves traumatized by surgery and

  • Education on the signs and early management of lymphoedema.

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