The Newcastle Aquatic Centre is proud to have our own, exceptional in-house Physiotherapy Practice:
The Newcastle Aquatic Physio (NAP) has a smart team dynamic, combining the integrity and expertise of long-standing team members with the fresh thinking sparked by a new generation of physiotherapists. NAP is the perfect team to complete the package of fitness and well-being services that we, the Newcastle Aquatic Centre proudly provide.
Introducing the team …
BE (ChemEng), BAppSc (Physiotherapy)
Charlie is the owner and Principal Physiotherapist of Newcastle Aquatic Physio.
Originally graduating in Chemical Engineering from Newcastle University in 1986, he worked in large industries for several years before moving onto Physiotherapy. He graduated from Sydney University (Cumberland College) in 1991 and worked in several Newcastle practices before opening Merewether Physiotherapy in 1994. Charlie was the visiting Physio at the Hunter Valley Private Hospital and was asked to move his practice there permanently in 1995 when they completed major extensions. We remained there for the next 12 years as Shortland Physiotherapy & Hydrotherapy.
Charlie has post grad qualifications in Chinese Acupuncture and Hydrotherapy, but has a special interest in amputees, stroke and multi-trauma rehabilitation. Building our new complex has understandably been a career highlight, but “Darling” and the 3 children are his first love and passion.
Having been born with salt water in his veins, Charlie spends endless hours searching for the perfect wave all year round, but the Winter does see him leave the coast and head south for the ski fields and some snowboarding. Charlie does not do ball sports and cannot catch.
What does he enjoy most about work at Newcastle Aquatic Physiotherapy? “Definitely my super intelligent and friendly staff."
AssDip (Helath Science), BAppSc (Physiotherapy)
Jason gained his degree in Exercise Science from Southern Cross University in 1990 before moving onto Physiotherapy. He graduated from Sydney University (Cumberland College) in 1994 and joined our Practice in 1995, whilst we were based at the Hunter Valley Private Hospital.
Jason left us for a few years to travel abroad and then worked up and down the coast of NSW before settling back in Newcastle. We were very happy when he decided to come back to our Practice in 2010. Jason enjoys all aspects of Physiotherapy, but has a special interest in stroke rehabilitation.
When he is not working, surfing is his passion and he has travelled extensively both here and overseas chasing the perfect wave. The Cronulla Sharks also have a special place in his heart – but they often break his heart as well.
What does Jason enjoy most about work at Newcastle Aquatic Physiotherapy, “The great crew and facilities”.
Lucia graduated with Class I Honours from Sydney University in 1994. She worked in the hospital system after uni, before a working holiday took her overseas for several years. She joined Shortland Physio in 2000 on a full-time basis, then changed to part time after the birth of her first child in 2005. Baby number 2 joined the clan in 2008. Lucia now works for us 2 days per week in addition to lecturing for Newcastle University’s Physiotherapy course.
Lucia’s special Physio interests include orthopaedics, musculoskeletal problems and sports injuries. We can always rely on Lucia to present our inservice education as she regularly attends the continued education seminars offered by the APA.
An accomplished netballer, Lucia represented Newcastle for many years and has also played representative touch football. Although her sporting career has been put on the backburner since having kids, she still bike rides, runs and competes in the occasional triathalon when time permits.
Lucia obviously enjoys working at Newcastle Aquatic Physio as she keeps coming back. When asked why, she says it’s the “friendly staff and patients and access to the pool and gym”.
BAppSc(Physiotherapy), CertIV TAE Workplace Training & Assessment
Janelle is one of our longest serving Physiotherapists and has been with us since 1996. She has had an absence or three over this time when she had her two children and also when the family moved to Temora in southern NSW.
Having graduated from Sydney University in 1987, Janelle worked her way through the physio ranks to become the Deputy Head of Physio at the Royal Newcastle Hospital. She was also the recipient of the Johnson & Johnson Award for her paper on Neurological Physiotherapy, which was published in the Australian Physiotherapy Journal.
Janelle has stepped back from the practice in recent years to concentrate on teaching the Physiotherapy Aide course at TAFE and the aged care assessments/manual handling presentations in nursing facilities.
In her spare time she loves horse riding, travelling and relaxing with the family. Janelle enjoys the relaxed, professional atmosphere at NAP and keeps the place jumping on Fridays when she is here.
Sarah Colston BAppSc (Physiotherapy)
Sarah has returned to Newcastle after a stint in Sydney. She has been in and out of the workforce after having two children and relocating to Newcastle to be closer to family. She completed Physiotherapy at Sydney University in 2003 and worked extensively within Aged Care facilities throughout Sydney. In 2010, Sarah was the Chair of the Palliative Care Committee at a large facility in addition to conducting the hydrotherapy, aqua fitness, geriatric and rehab programs.
Sarah, at present works 4 days and Saturday mornings. She teaches two of our aqua fitness classes and our Back & Core classes
So far she is enjoying the lovely environment at NAP and looks forward to the varied caseload we have on offer.
Michelle has been with the Practice right from the start back in 1995 when Charlie had both Merewether Physiotherapy and Shortland Physiotherapy & Hydrotherapy. She works for us as our Practice Manager, but has also worked for herself as a Massage Therapist since 1994.
Michelle enjoys the diverse range of personalities that make up the clientele of Newcastle Aquatic Physiotherapy but it’s the great working relationship with the staff that keeps her here after 20 years – and the wonderful sport of “Charlie wrangling”.
Her Career Highlight? “Opening this new practice in 2007 and watching some inspirational patients achieve their goals.”
Our receptionist/administrative assistant Belinda joined the Practice in 2005. A busy mum of three, she brings her caring and nurturing skills with her on a daily basis as she deals with our patients on the front line. As an avid book lover and voracious reader, Belinda knows what's hot on the best read lists.
Another long term employee, she enjoys watching the clients achieve their goals and is amazed at the level some clients have climbed to out of sheer hard work and determination.
What is her new outlook on life? “Live, laugh and be happy.”
Harry Finlay-Jones Administration
Harry has been assisting at the practice intermittently since the end of Year 10. He is currently in his second year of Nursing studies at The University of Newcastle in addition to his casual shifts at the Practice. Harry is an avid surfer and musician, with a particular love of the "Hillbilly" sound. He also teaches music and surfing in his "spare time" Harry has garnered a very loyal fan base since he returned in 2016, with many disappointed clients missing his smiling face when he is on Uni placement or attending to his love of the 3 day music festival.