Jess Bell is an absolute staple on the Physioplus Team. Not only does she positively contribute to the development of new courses, she also monitors the discussions happening in the Physioplus forum. Jess, thank you for all you do to support the Team, the course Tutors and the Physioplus online learning platform. Your efforts are helping countless professionals gain new knowledge and share ideas. Fantastic job!
Time active with Physiopedia: 2 years now.
Current role with Physiopedia: Learning Architect and Forum Manager for Physioplus.
Where did you go to university/college? Bachelor of Science (B.Sc.) in Physiotherapy from the Auckland University of Technology (AUT) in New Zealand and a Master of Arts (MA) from Auckland University.
Where do you work? Auckland, New Zealand in private practice.
Describe your role: Currently, I work very part-time as a musculoskeletal physiotherapist (PT) in private practice and spend the rest of my working part-time writing courses and managing the forums for Physioplus.
What is the most rewarding part of being a PT? I really like how varied life is as a physiotherapist. Every day in clinical practice, you meet people from all different backgrounds, who have completely different issues and goals. Figuring out what motivates people and helping them get back to doing what they want to do is definitely the most rewarding part of being a PT for me.
What are some of the more challenging aspects about being a PT? I think that as PTs, we spend a lot of time working autonomously, even if we’re part of a broader team. Because of this, you often have to think really quickly about how to solve a problem, but also you have to be able to identify when you do need additional support and know how to access this.
What are some of your professional passions? I love learning and evidence-based practice (EBP) – it feels really great when you can confidently implement something new into clinical work and see results. That’s what I love about working at Physiopedia. I am constantly learning new and interesting things which I can apply in practice and share with others.
What are a few of your personal passions? At the moment, I spend pretty much all my spare time with my family. We all love being outdoors and exploring new places. So pretty much every weekend, we’re walking, scooting or biking somewhere or going to the beach – whatever the weather. And when I get time, I also like drawing / painting – mostly digitally.
What would be your advice to a newly graduating PT? It can be a bit overwhelming when you first start managing a case load of patients. I think it’s important to remember to stick to the basics that you learn at school – particularly when it comes to assessment. If you do a good assessment, your treatment will flow much more easily. I think the most important thing is to always work with your patients and find out what drives them, as this will guide your management and make your interventions really relevant to them. You can learn so much from your patients.
Where do you see yourself in 5 years? Hopefully still learning and enjoying what I do!
What are the best things about being a Physiopedia volunteer? Working at Physiopedia and Physioplus is perfect for me. I’ve always really loved writing and researching anything and everything. At Physiopedia, I’m able to combine these interests with physiotherapy. It’s also really great to be able to share this information with other PTs and professionals and use it in my own clinical work.
How has being a Physiopedia volunteer helped your professional development/career progression? I learn so much writing Physiopedia pages and Physioplus courses. I basically am able to access all my professional development in one space – it’s great!
What are your hopes and aspirations for Physiopedia? I think Physiopedia is such a great resource. I just hope it continues to grow and be a resource that all PTs know they can come to for up-to-date and relevant, clinical information.
What is your favourite Physioplus course? I have done so many courses now, so it’s hard to pick, but I think the spondyloarthropathy programme by Christopher Martey really stands out for me.