Jane Harris is a highly-regarded Chartered Physiotherapist with over 35 years’ experience. Her early career was largely hospital-based before Jane established her successful private clinic in Maidenhead 20 years ago.
Her extensive and varied background has also included working as physiotherapist to the England Lacrosse team, both the British and Jamaican Bobsleigh teams, and the Army.
Jane began as a junior at Frimley Park Hospital in 1981, after training at Middlesex School of Physiotherapy in London. It was at Frimley that she specialised in the musculo-skeletal side of physiotherapy and in particular the Cyriax principles of treatment. James Cyriax is acknowledged as the father of orthopaedic medicine. Jane pursued her interest in Cyriax and attended lectures under him when she moved to what is now known as North Hants Hospital, Basingstoke, where she became a Senior Physiotherapist.
Here, she also began treating Ankylosing Spondylitis (a form of arthritis that mainly affects the back) and set up an exercise class for sufferers outside of hospital hours. It is still running 30 years later.
She also had a season with Basingstoke Town FC, until a new manager was appointed, ‘realised I was a girl and got rid of me, replacing me with the old sponge man again!’
Jane travelled to the USA as Physiotherapist to the England lacrosse team before working as a civilian at Gibraltar barracks and The Army PTI school, where she established a small Physiotherapy department to treat the sappers going through their basic training as well as the future Physical Training instructors.
It was followed by a season with the British Bobsleigh team, starting in East Germany and finishing at the Calgary Winter Olympics site. Jane also treated the Jamaican Bobsleigh team, who were without a physio, a year after their 1988 Winter Olympic exploits which inspired the film ‘Cool Runnings’.
Back closer to home, Jane was appointed Senior Physiotherapist at Wycombe General Hospital in outpatients. During this time she studied the Mckenzie approach to treatment, employing his self-help programme to treat spinal problems. It is named after New Zealand physical therapist Robin McKenzie.
In 1992, Jane moved on to St Marks Hospital in Maidenhead as the Superintendent Physiotherapist, in charge of all outpatients, and gaining managerial experience while increasing her clinical knowledge in the musculo-skeletal area. She completed the first course by the Australian Mark Comerford who bought the concept of muscle imbalance to the UK.
After the birth of her two sons, Joshua and Sebastian, Jane built up her private practice in Ray Mill Road East, Maidenhead.
She has continued to study new techniques for the benefit of her patients. They include Doug Heel’s Be Activated concept, a great treatment for all, which de-stresses the body and activates it to work to its maximum potential and the work of leading clinicians such as Shirley Sahrmann and Joanne Elphinston.
* Jane also runs Pilates classes, and one-to-one sessions on request. She was taught by the APPI (the Australian physiotherapy and Pilates Institute).