Managing Director and Principal Physiotherapist
Damian has worked as a physiotherapist with elite sport for over 20 years including being involved at three Olympic Games with the Australian team. He has previously worked at the Australian Institute of Sport and in recent years has worked with Olympic and World Champion athletes in triathlon, cycling and endurance sports. He was physiotherapist for the Australian Volleyball team from 1997 to 2013. More recently Damian has been highly involved in injury management and performance in cyclists and triathletes and he is widely acknowledged as one of the most experienced Bikefit professionals in Australia. He has a particular interest in injury prevention and performance enhancement in athletes and has himself competed in cycling, triathlon, adventure racing and beach volleyball at a high level.
Dr Merv Travers (PhD)
Clinical DirectorMerv is a brilliant physiotherapist who has completed a PhD in lower limb biomechanics and tendon loading at Curtin University, where he has also tutored for the past 5 years. Merv has a Masters of Manipulative Therapy and was physiotherapist to the Western Force Super Rugby Team for the 2011 and 2012 seasons. His research has focused on the lower limb as a spring which has specific application to both injuries and performance in running and jumping athletes, particularly those with tendon pain. Merv is highly skilled in all areas of physiotherapy, but has a particular interest in the diagnosis, management and rehabilitation of long-standing and complex injuries in running and collision sport athletes. As Clinical Director, Merv runs the education and monitors the clinical skills of the team at Star Physio. He also heads up our Strength and Conditioning Team, an area where he has published research and been awarded his Level 2 ASCA qualifications, giving him an extraordinary education and a unique skill set.
Dr James Debenham PhD
Research and Rehabilitation Director
James has a Master’s in Manual Therapy has completed a PhD investigating the biomechanics of the lower limb and the internationally acclaimed spring theory. His research has focussed on tendon issues in the lower limb including achilles tendinopathy and the role of chronic pain in long-standing sports injuries. James has worked with a number of elite sporting clubs and organisations In Australia and the UK. He has presented his research internationally at the World Tendon Congress and is highly sought after for his knowledge in this area. When he is not working at Star Physio, he is a senior lecturer at the University of Notre Dame School of Physiotherapy and is heavily involved in research. He is also one of the best triathletes in WA, competing in the Ironman World Championships in Hawaii in 2014 and currently training for the Kona 2017. His education and experience give James unique expertise in the treatment of complex and long-standing sports injuries, especially in endurance athletes, and his ability to accurately diagnose and identify causes of injury in running athletes is second to none.
Exercise and Rehabilitation Director
Nigel completed his undergraduate degree at the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland and has a Masters’ degree in Manipulative therapy from Curtin University. He is currently undertaking a PhD in tendon injuries and rehabilitation and is a clinical tutor on the Curtin Manipulative and Sports Post-graduate Programs. He has worked extensively with elite level athletes from Rugby to Triathletes and is an expert in exercise rehabilitation. His PhD study gives Nigel a high level of expertise in management of tendonitis and overuse injuries Which can be applied to athletes and spectators alike.
Alex heads up our team looking after the Western Australian Symphony Orchestra and brings his experience as a high level musician to the position. He has completed a postgraduate Master’s in Sports Physiotherapy and has worked with elite level football and has been the travelling physiotherapist with the Australian Women’s Volleyball Team and the State Softball Team (WA Flames). Alex has a particular interest in rehabilitation post injury for a swift return to work or sport. He has also worked at Bethesda Private Hospital in pre and post-op rehabilitation, having close contact with some of Perth’s most respected orthopaedic surgeons. Having treated patients from all walks and having been a high level sportsman himself, Alex has the empathy and knowledge to back his assessments and give the best possible treatment.
PhysiotherapistTara is an experienced physiotherapist who also lectures part time at Curtin University, where she has conducted research into knee injuries. Prior to embarking on a career in physiotherapy, Tara was a professional international volleyball player. She captained the Australian Women’s Indoor Volleyball Team before moving to a successful career on the beach including partnering 5 time Olympian and Sydney 2000 Gold Medallist Natalie Cook on the World Beach Tour. She now combines this with her physiotherapy skills to look after the Western Australian Volleyball Teams including their injury prevention and conditioning programs. Having played a professional career managing injuries, Tara is passionate about helping people to continue to do the things they love, whether it is high level sport, or walking the dog!
PhysiotherapistSteve completed a Bachelor of Physiotherapy degree at the University of Notre Dame and has post graduate training in strength and conditioning. He has a strong interest in musculoskeletal treatment, rehabilitation and conditioning. Steve runs Conditioning and Rehabilitation sessions for individuals as well as for small groups at Star Physio including our popular Cyclefit classes-specific cycling strength and flexibility classes for cyclists and triathletes which participants are seeing fantastic improvements in both injury resilience and performance. He is a keen amateur boxer and also works as a boxing trainer at “Spring into Fitness” in Fremantle. Steve has particular interest in assessment and treatment of acute injuries in contact sport athletes including recovery from the initial injury and preventing re-injury.
Physiotherapist and Exercise PhysiologistBrett Buist is an experienced private practice physiotherapist and accredited exercise physiologist holding degrees in both areas. This combined knowledge of manual therapy and exercise is emphasised in his treatment for many musculoskeletal conditions. He is also currently undertaking post-graduate study in Sports Physiotherapy. Brett is a physiotherapist for the WA Football Commission’s State U16 Football Academy and previously assisted the ACE Cricket Academy with their athletic screening/monitoring of fast bowlers. Brett is also specifically trained in rehabilitation of vestibular related balance issues. His interests include treatment and rehabilitation of knee injuries including post-ACL reconstruction and the conditioning of elite junior sportspeople. Brett also lectures at University of Western Australia in the School of Sports Science, Exercise and Health. Outside of work he is a keen cyclist who has completed multi-day charity bike rides.
Physiotherapist and Exercise Physiologist
James Lewin has dual qualifications as a physiotherapist and exercise physiologist. He has recently presented research into bikefitting for injury at the Sports Medicine Australia Conference which we also expect to be published internationally this year. He is a previous WA State Half Ironman Champion and was 2013 WA Triathlete of the year and has raced professionally locally and internationally. His passion is assisting cyclists and triathletes to achieve their ideal position on the bike, whether for comfortable cruising or high speed racing. His long history as an elite athlete requiring the management of numerous injuries over the years also puts him in an ideal position to care for amateur and elite athletes with injuries.
Physiotherapist and Exercise PhysiologistKate Luckin holds a double degree in Physiotherapy and Exercise Science. She is an experienced clinical physiotherapist with the additional rehabilitation skills from her exercise degree. She also lectures at Notre Dame University where she is involved in research into performance and injury in athletes. Kate is experienced in Bikefit for Triathletes and Cyclists and is trained and experienced in Retul Bike fitting systems. She has a particular interest in helping female athletes with “comfort” issues on the bike. Kate heads up our Womens’ Conditioning Classes for Cyclists and Triathletes. On top of this Kate is an elite triathlete who has qualified for the Hawaii Ironman World Championships for 2015!
Shirley Simpson, Karissa Martin and Yvonne Rash