FIFA 11+ For Kids Program

Sporting injuries in children and adolescents have often been thought of as an unfortunate but largely unavoidable risk of growing up playing sport. However, recent research suggests that we can drastically reduce this risk with the implementation of the FIFA 11+ and the FIFA 11+ for Kids programs.


What is FIFA 11+ for Kids?

FIFA 11+ For Kids is a scientifically developed exercise program that aims to reduce the occurrence and severity of injuries in children aged 7-14 years of age. It is recommended the exercises are used as a warm up at every training or game. It aims to be fun for kids but at the same time teaching them fundamental and sport specific motor skills and as a consequence also improves performance.

How does it work?

The program focuses on a number of key areas including:

  1. Spatial orientation, awareness and anticipation, especially while dual tasking to minimise unintended and unexpected contact with other players or objects.

  2. Body stability and movement coordination.

  3. Appropriate fall techniques to minimise consequences of any unavoidable fall or tackle.

How effective is the program in reducing injuries?

A large European randomised controlled trial involving over 4000 kids aged from 7-12 demonstrated approximately a 50% injury reduction in teams that used the FIFA 11+ Kids as a warm up. More specifically match injuries were reduced by 31%, training injuries by 40%, lower extremity injuries by 41%, overall non-contact injuries by 55% and severe injuries by 56% (1).


Why are there different prevention/warm-up programs for different age groups?

Typically, there are different injury profiles seen in skeletally mature athletes compared with adolescents and then children. Younger footballers tend to experience more fractures, bone stress and injuries to the upper body and fewer strains and sprains.

How long does it take and how often should it be used?

Approximately 15-20 minutes once the players are familiar with the exercises and at least twice per week to be effective.

How long does it have to be performed to reduce the risk of injury?

Approximately 10-12 weeks, the key to its success is consistency.

Take home message

With the football season largely done and dusted for another year, now is the time to plan for the season ahead. By implementing a simple warm up routine many tears and appointments with doctors and physios can be easily avoided in our little footballers.




3. Trial to Assess the Efficacy of '11+ Kids': A Warm-Up Programme to Prevent Injuries in Children's Football- Multinational Cluster Randomised

4. A new injury prevention programme for children's football--FIFA 11+ Kids--can improve motor performance: a cluster-randomised controlled trial-



We are super excited to announce that Craig Harris will be joining the team at Flow Physio Co Sutherland from Monday 15 October, 2018.

Craig brings a wealth of knowledge and experience and has worked with people from all walks of life during his roles at sports physiotherapy clinics in the Bankstown area, the Eastern Suburbs and at Westmead Private Rehabilitation Hospital.

Additionally, Craig has gained extensive experience working with adolescent athletes in the NSW Schoolboys Rugby Union side, South Sydney Rabbitohs Junior program and with Trinity Grammar School.

Craig understands the importance of an individualised treatment approach, incorporating his strong hands on skills with progressive exercise prescription to enable prompt recovery, optimal performance, quality of life and longevity.

How to manage hip and knee osteoarthritis - What's the latest?


Did you know that Australians living with Osteoarthritis is expected to rise from 2.2 million in 2015 to almost 3.1 million by 2030?

So what can you do about it?

The Royal Australian College of General Practitioners recently updated their guidelines for management of hip and knee osteoarthritis.

Little to our surprise, the interventions that come with strong recommendations based on available evidence for managing these conditions include EXERCISE and WEIGHT MANAGEMENT.

What is Osteoarthritis?

Osteoarthritis the most common form of chronic arthritis that is characterised by joint pain, stiffness and swelling, and mainly affects the hands, knees and hips.

Osteoarthritis frequently occurs in people aged over 55 years, however younger people can also be affected.

What are the risk factors?

Risk factors for OA include:

  • Joint injury

  • Being overweight or obese, and

  • Older age


How can you manage Osteoarthritis best? What does the evidence say?

Lifestyle, lifestyle, lifestyle. We are seeing a recurring pattern here. In short, regular exercise and weight management are the interventions that are strongly recommended for people living with osteoarthritis.

Regular exercise is strongly recommended as a key factor for relieving pain and improving function in people with knee and/or hip osteoarthritis. This includes muscle strengthening exercises as well as walking and Tai Chi.

Weight management is strongly recommended for people with knee and/or hip OA who are overweight or obese.


How can you get help to develop an exercise program for osteoarthritis?

An exercise program that is tailored specifically to you and your level of function is a key aspect of helping to manage osteoarthritis. It is not a once size fits all approach, particularly when it comes to proper programming for strength and cardiovascular endurance. This is where the help of a physiotherapist or exercise physiologist will help. 

The RACGP suggests the following;

Clinicians should prescribe an individualised exercise program, taking into account the person’s preference, capability, and the availability of resources and local facilities.

Realistic goals should be set. Dosage should be progressed with full consideration given to the frequency, duration and intensity of exercise sessions, number of sessions, and the period over which sessions should occur.

Attention should be paid to strategies to optimise adherence.

Referral to an exercise professional to assist with exercise prescription and provide supervision either in person or remotely may be appropriate for some people.

Exercise has many other health benefits that can assist in managing lifestyle diseases and optimising health. See post here.

What does it all mean?

In conclusion, what this means is that there is plenty that you can do in order to optimise your function and quality of life. Exercise, particularly strength training and weight management are strongly recommended in the management of osteoarthritis.

Getting advice from a physiotherapist or exercise physiologist will help in getting started on the path back to better health.



What is an over-active pelvic floor? Women's Health Wednesday

Pelvic floor post.jpg

This week charlotte, our women's health physio in sutherland, explains AN OVER-ACTIVE PELVIC FLOOR?

Like any muscle in the body it is important that the pelvic floor can both contract and relax.

If you think of your bicep muscle this needs to be able to contract to pick something up and relax to put something down. Imagine if the bicep was contracted all day long, it would be really hard to use your arm functionally and your bicep muscle would not work efficiently. Especially when strength is needed, the pelvic floor is the same.

Some women have pelvic floor muscles which have difficulty relaxing and remain constantly contracted. This however does NOT mean they are strong, imagine how tired they would be when you need them! 



What are the symptoms of an over-active pelvic floor?

Symptoms will vary from person to person, but often include:

  • Pain with sex

  • Pain with using tampons

  • Pain with pap-smears

  • Pelvic or back pain

  • Difficulty emptying bladder or bowel (constipation)

  • Incontinence

  • Increased sensation of needing to urinate


Who is at risk of an over-active pelvic floor? 

People who tend to have a higher risk for an over-active pelvic floor include:

  • People with an overactive bladder, this is due to always needing to squeeze their pelvic floor to minimise leaking

  • Strong athletic women with strong outer core muscles

  • People with anxiety

  • Sedentary work/life style (poor posture can shorten the pelvic floor muscles)

  • Mouth/chest breathers


What is the treatment for an over-active pelvic floor?

Our initial treatment will always look at the way you breathe!

If you imagine your core and trunk muscles as a box, your pelvic floor is the base of your core with your transverse abdominus being the walls and your diaphragm muscle (breathing muscle) being the ceiling.

It is really important that all aspects of your core are working efficiently. If you are always breathing through your mouth, with a chest pattern of breathing the pelvic floor does not have a chance to relax.

Diaphragmatic breathing or “belly” breathing is essential as this allows the pelvic floor to descend and relax. 



Can I still do pilates with an over-active pelvic floor?

Yes! However more focus should be on the strength of your muscles (not including your pelvic floor initially) therefore you should not actively contract your pelvic floor during initial pilates sessions. 

As symptoms decrease, we start to add in a graded strengthening program for you pelvic floor