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21st March 2022
Let’s learn a bit about our Biomechanical Podiatrist, avid-traveller, and boss-lady Hayley
Hayley, tell us a little about yourself
Hi there! I grew up in sunny Mackay, spending my childhood on either a touch footy or hockey field. I’ve always been involved with sport and physical activity which meant Podiatry was a logical career choice. After completing my degree in Brisbane, I made my way up to Cairns to start my career. After a short stint I jumped at the opportunity to open my own clinic in Townsville, that was 15 years ago!
Travelling overseas to diverse countries has always been my passion. I love leaving life behind and immersing myself in the wonder of different cultures, food, people and landscapes. Since Covid I’ve replaced travel with hiking adventures around Aus but can’t wait to get back overseas!
I still love to keep fit - mixing things up with yoga, functional training, running and hiking.
So you’ve been a Podiatrist now for 17 years – what is it about the profession that keeps you so interested?
I love that I get to help people every day. And not just by reducing their pain. As Biomechanical Podiatrists we help keep people moving, which in turns improves every aspect of their life. I have continually kept upskilling in my profession, partly to keep myself engaged and challenged, but also to be able to provide varied treatment options for my patients. I still have the feeling of satisfaction every day in my job!
You’ve been in business now for 15 years – what keeps you going after this long?
15 years is a long time! For the first 8 years I was a sole practitioner, but as the business grew this was impossible to maintain. Thanks to having Chris & Emma on my team, I now have a great work/life balance, spending 3 days treating patients and 2 days working ‘on the business’. Many business owners after this long have stepped away from treating completely, but I still love being a Podiatrist. Plus, I would probably annoy my reception team too much if I had more spare time 😉
To stay focused as a business owner for so long you need to have a strong WHY. I have a few WHY’s which keep me going:
Firstly, I’ve always been very focused on the type of Podiatry I’m passionate about and good at – which is Biomechanical/ Musculoskeletal Podiatry. We’ve constantly upskilled and invested in this area and for the last 4 years we have only offered Biomechanical Podiatry. Becoming a specialist clinic has allowed me to acquire two highly experienced Podiatrists because of the challenging work we get to do each day. Owning my own business means that I can manage patient care exactly how I want to.
Secondly, my business is the vehicle which allows me to support my other passions – local, global and environmental. After visiting Africa in 2011, I supported an orphanage in Bulawayo. Foundation Podiatry is involved with Shoes for Planet Earth, Share the Dignity and soon to come on board with Youth Reset, a not-for-profit initiative to empower young children in Townsville to make positive choices.
What is the most rewarding patient outcome you’ve achieved as a Podiatrist?
I have a few that come to mind. One was a lady who had chronic posterior tibial tendon dysfunction (adult acquired flat foot deformity) and midfoot arthritis. She was in chronic pain, unable to exercise, had to reduce her work hours as she could not spend long periods on her feet. Her relationships were suffering, and she was becoming depressed. Across an 8-week period we managed to reduce her pain, improve her function and get her life back. Extremely rewarding!
Having myself had numerous sporting injuries requiring surgery and an inflammatory back condition, I am accustomed to dealing with pain and rehabilitation. I feel like my personal experience is part of the reason I like to think ‘outside the box’ when it comes to managing my patients with chronic pain.
Can’t go past a Red Thai curry.
What is the most risky/vulnerable/ perilous experience you’ve had overseas?
Hmm… few too many to count. But the first one that comes to mind is riding on the back of a motorbike in Delhi coming back from the Taj Mahal, thinking to myself this is darn crazy but so awesome! Couldn’t wipe the smile off my face for days 😉
Most important question ever ....... Next travel destination
Think it’s time to get back to Africa and this time climb Mt Kilimanjaro!
Tired of living with chronic pain? Ready to regain an active lifestyle?
Hayley is available on Monday, Wednesday and Thursday.