R u OK Day. Dr Matthew Franz talks….

Getting a perspective on Mental Health + Anxiety – By your Melbourne Osteopath, Dr Matthew Franz at City Osteopathy

In light of R U OKAY Day, I though I would share a bit of a personal experience that may help others:

ANXIETY… it’s time we talk

“The unwanted guest party at the party.”

Before I begin to discuss this issue, I want to mention that I’m not trying to preach to the choir but rather open the dialogue about something. It’s something that as a male we aren’t very good at talking about or discussing. My intention is thus, to provide a personal perspective on this issue and how it can affect our overall health.

I like to describe anxiety, as the unwanted guest of the party. Just imagine you are having a party with all your friends and family and then an unwanted guest comes in. Someone who flips your tables, eats all your food and is just being annoying. At first you try to tell the guest to leave, you try locking them out and you spend all your time trying to force them out of the party. However, they tend to find a way back in and they continue to find a way to annoy and stress you out on a consistent basis. Finally, you feel like there is nothing you can do. This is how I describe anxiety.

For many, anxiety can take many different forms and experiences. In particular for men, we have a tendency to not speak up and hide away from it. This can lead us to gain even greater stress, on top of an already busy life for both women and men. The tendency to “push on” and not accept that we have to deal with it, is something that is prominent in today’s society.


A recent study by the ABS found anxiety is the most common mental health condition in Australia. On average, 1 in 4 people – 1 in 3 women and 1 in 5 men – will experience anxiety (1)

From an osteopathic perspective, anxiety can play a major role in influencing recovery from an injury. In relation to injuries and sport, it was found, that anxiety can lead to an increased risk of injury occurrence, delay and obstruct injury rehabilitation and the return to sport process.(2) This affects the way we feel and our tendency to do the sufficient rehab. It can also affect us getting better, which then plays a larger role in the way we feel about ourselves.

From personal experience, it was a coping mechanism that enables me to get the things that I need to stay on top of in my everyday life. I was only able to get a better understanding of what my anxiety was when I was able to accept that it is normal and to find ways to address it.

NORMALISING, is one small step in the process of understanding it and that takes time. The first step is to be comfortable with it. I believe in particular with males, this is the hardest part, it’s where we tend to put up our bravado up and not do anything about. One our society today, it is actually OKAY to have anxiety as part of your life.

“So what is next?”

A tip that is often spoken about, is talking to someone about it. This someone can often help and in the long run it does. Sometimes it may be a friend or family, or even a health professional, a stranger, who offers you a qualified perspective on what you are dealing with. Seeking the help that is needed to address your anxiety is the hardest hurdle to face but it’s also the best one. This then allows you to take a step back and address what is going on. It allows you to have that breathing space to control and manage your anxiety.

I hope my thoughts and new perspective helps those who are dealing with anxiety, like it did for me.

For those that would like further information there is some helpful resources at:





  1. Australian Bureau of Statistics. (2008). National Survey of Mental Health and Wellbeing: Summary of Results, 2007. Cat. no. (4326.0). Canberra: ABS.
  2. Ford, J., Ildefonso, K., Jones, M., & Arvinen-Barrow, M. (2017). Sport-related anxiety: current insights. Open Access Journal Of Sports Medicine, Volume 8, 205-212. doi: 10.2147/oajsm.s125845

Pilates Change in Prices

We have not put our Pilates prices up at City Osteopathy for 3 years and you will find we are probably the cheapest place in town for Melbourne Pilates with such personalised classes, added bonus being mainly run by Osteopaths  As of September 2019 we will be implementing the following change of prices:


Intro pack $340 – $90 initial, 5x $55 classes

5X group class pack $275 – 5x $55 classes

Pay as you go $60 per class

Solo classes $100 per class


Please note we have a strict 18 hour cancellation policy of $25. Failure to arrive to our classes two weeks in a row (without notification)* will mean your class time is forfeited.

*discussed with your teacher – illness/leave exempt.


Any questions please don’t hesitate to contact us at:


Introducing our Amazing Pilates Instructors

Hoda – Over the years she has been an active promoter of well-being and healthy life-style and has helped dozens of people in their Pilates journey. Her goal is to inspire, motivate and improve the overall health of her clients.  As a dedicated instructor, she will maintain a keen eye on the finer details encouraging you to reach your fitness and health long-term goals with a holistic approach, whether you want to feel stronger, flexible, pain-free, improve your sports performance, or improve your quality of life.

Clair –  Clair has a particular interest in chronic pain, and strives to be the health professional to break its cycle. For this reason, she is very passionate when it comes to identifying lifestyle factors that are contributing to a client’s condition, and formulating a management plan that addresses these through education, ergonomic advice and rehabilitation.

Nia – Nia is an active person, and a lover of the outdoors, and brings an interest in natural movement and a broad understanding of health to her work.  Driven to provide best care across a wide spectrum of client complaints and lifestyles, Nia adapts an individualized approach and care to each person.   

Bronwyn – Bronwyn has a nutrition and rehabilitation background and has worked with many sporting teams over the last 10 years. She understands the biomechanics of movement, posture and lifestyle on health and wellbeing.  Bronwyn likes to incorporate Pilates into every day, be in balance exercises or challenging coordination as well as flexibility and strength training whilst tailoring specific exercises to each individual.

The Most Common Services Offered by Osteopaths in Melbourne

image of a Woman having chiropractic back adjustment

Osteopathy treatments are strategically designed to help the body achieve balance and help it achieve its full potential. Joint and muscle mobility are essential to improving one’s flexibility, agility, and strength. The presence of pain in joints and muscles slows down progress and harms overall functionality.

If you desire to lead a healthier life without restrictions, it’s best to address these aches and pains with the help of the best osteopath North Melbourne has to offer.


What happens at a routine visit at an osteopathy clinic at Melbourne CBD?

A preliminary assessment will be conducted by a registered osteopath before any treatment is recommended. An osteopath looks at the bigger picture; assess general body condition, mobility as well as investigate probable causes that lead to the development of symptoms.

After thorough assessment and observation, a skilled osteopath will determine the root cause of any discomfort, pain, and restrictions. Once a diagnosis has been made, a North Melbourne osteopath will then formulate a manual therapy treatment or a combination of several osteopathic treatments to promote permanent relief for patients.


Here are some of the common treatments that are provided to patients at an osteopathy clinic in North Melbourne:

  • Hands-on osteopathy treatments including stretching, mobilization exercises, massage, and manual manipulation.
  • Dry needling therapy that introduces needles on trigger points to provide relief from muscle pain and stiffness.
  • IASTM or Instrument Assisted Soft Tissue Mobilisation is a common osteopathic treatment that addresses myofascial restrictions. This therapy was crafted to enhance mobilization. With the help of specialty instruments, IASTM delivers relief to scar tissue formation and myofascial adhesions.
  • Myofascial release is a hands on manipulative technique that involves the application of pressure on restrictions found in myofascial connective tissues. The goal is to restore optimum mobility and alleviate pain and discomfort.


If you show symptoms and are looking for osteopathic treatments, book an appointment by calling 03 9663 5450 today.

How the Best Osteopath in Melbourne Treat Shoulder Pain and Injuries?

image of a Man having chiropractic back adjustment

Shoulder pain is typically ignored until the pain and discomfort becomes unbearable. We tend to forget to listen to our bodies and end up with injuries that can permanently affect the quality of our lives.

In the case of shoulder pain, bodily abuse combined with wear and tear can result in pain and decrease the range of motion, which limits the ability to achieve our full potential.

In this article, we will discuss some of the common causes of shoulder pain and how a visit to a reputable osteopathy clinic in Melbourne Victoria can treat this condition and prevent future injuries altogether.


What causes shoulder pain and injuries?


  • Muscle weakness due to lack of mobility and exercise
  • Placing excessive levels of stress on tendons
  • Mistakes on techniques leading to muscle misuse in workout and sporting activities
  • Lax shoulder joint capsule
  • Wrong posture and sleeping position
  • Repetitive movements that involve overhead positions


When should you see an osteopath?

Common shoulder injuries can be characterised by a sharp or shooting pain, or duller pain in and around the shoulder joint. There are also reports of dull pain felt between the tip of the shoulders and neck region and can even refer down into the arm.

The pain and discomfort are typically felt when shoulders are lifted up or in most arm movements. Shoulder pain and injuries when left untreated may result in a feeling of numbness or a tingling sensation down along the arms and hands.

How can osteopathy help individuals who suffer from shoulder pain and injuries?

The most common shoulder injuries are those inflicted on the rotator cuff due to damage of shoulder muscle tendons. Frozen shoulder and impingement syndrome are also common conditions treated at osteopathy clinics in Melbourne.

For these shoulder injuries, osteopaths will provide manual manipulation of shoulder joints, surrounding soft tissues, shoulder blade, upper back and neck. Mobilisation and articulation techniques are also employed to loosen up soft tissues which in turn alleviates shoulder pain and stiffness.

The osteopathic treatment created for individuals with shoulder pain and injuries is geared towards pain relief, enhancing the range of motion, and improving the overall functionality of the shoulder region.


Call us at 03 9663 5450 to book an appointment so you can get relief from shoulder pain and injuries fast!

Effective and Safe Osteopathic Headache Treatment in Melbourne

image of a Young woman is suffering from a headache

All of us have suffered a headache at some point in our lives. Headaches that are recurrent in nature are undeniably debilitating and can affect our overall quality of life.

Despite the prevalence of headache and migraine, the majority of people do not seek medical attention for long-term cases. Most people turn to painkillers and similar medications for treatment, if you take enough and are sensitive this can very easily  then affect other organs like our liver and digestive tract, causing more long term health issues.


What causes headaches?

There is still limited understanding of the ultimate cause of headaches. In most cases though, the mechanical causes of headaches are often ignored even though they are a very common cause.. This includes muscular tension that centres on the neck and shoulder regions and tight joints in your neck, jaw and upper back are common triggers of headaches and migraines. The sudden onset of headache may be a primary symptom of a joint-related condition around the neck region.

Stress and chronic fatigue have also been identified as factors that lead to headache recurrences. When the underlying causes of headaches are not managed properly, the frequency of headaches increase over time.


How does osteopathy treat migraine and headache?

Typically, an osteopathic practitioner will ask a series of questions that initially may seem irrelevant to a patient like you. It is necessary to answer all questions truthfully so that an osteopathy professional can formulate a safe and effective management plan for you. The answers you supply to an osteopathic doctor will also help him determine whether an osteopathic treatment plan will be suitable in your case.


Patients are typically asked about the following things:

  • When the headache started to occur
  • The location of headache pain and other affected regions
  • The quality of pain and daily patterns
  • The severity and duration of headache episodes
  • Potential headache triggers
  • Specific movements that may aggravate the headache
  • Any other symptoms that may accompany headache and migraine such as vision changes and stiff neck to name a few.


Traditional diagnostic procedures such as neurological examination and x-ray may also be ordered by an osteopathic physician before they formulate an effective treatment plan for you.

If your headache or migraine is triggered by a musculoskeletal condition, a plan needs to be put in place to manage it.

Some of the most popular forms of Osteopathic Manipulative Treatment (OMT) for headaches and migraines are as follows:


  • Manual therapy has proven to be helpful for chronic headaches and migraines. Potentially even more so than prescription medications such as amitriptyline, and with fewer side effects.
  • Gentle soft tissue massage and manipulation of the neck and upper spinal joints can alleviate a headache.
  • Lymphatic drainage techniques, trigger point therapy, and acupuncture is also promising OMT treatment modalities that provide relief among patients suffering from chronic headaches and migraines.
  •  Stretching exercises may also be recommended by an osteopathic physician as well as recommendations on proper posture for in-home practice.


If you suffer from headaches and want to know if osteopathy can treat your condition do not hesitate to contact us on 03 9663 5450.