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Feb 15, 2018

On today’s show I have my pilates buddy from down under, Raphael Bender. We’ve decided we have these evil twin powers, he’s the pilates dude and I’m the yogahealer. His company is Breathe Education, the largest pilates company in Australia. He has a master’s degree in clinical exercise physiology, and he knows so much about pain science. He’s writing a book on it (it’s not out yet).

In this episode I talk to Raphael about my wandering joint pain. It’s super fun. Listen in, and I promise you that you will have insights about where your pain comes from. Also, share this episode with those you know in pain so they can learn.

The goal isn’t to live a pain free life.


I rap with Raphael Bender about:

  • Why you want to know the story behind pain
  • Where practitioners go wrong in trying to help patients/clients with pain
  • A case study of an opiode abuser unlocking her pain puzzle


What you’ll get out of tuning in:   

  • The surprising easy wins in lessening chronic pain
  • What role empathy plays in unlocking the pain puzzle
  • How to listen and receive clients so that deep trust is built




Related podcasts:


Show Highlights:

  • 2:33 – Pain has physical, emotional, and cognitive components. A holistic view is becoming more and more supported by scientific findings.
  • 6:39 – Tune in here for the other points that need to be considered in understanding the roots of pain.
  • 14:45 – When we ask clients for their story and listen, we create space to deeply receive their truth and reflect back to them in a powerful way.
  • 21:59 – We can’t solve someone’s learned helplessness, but we can use certain tools to help clients empower themselves


Favorite Quotes:

  • “Until the 1960s there was this mechanical conception of pain as being an inevitable consequence to some kind of damage to some part of the body. From the 70s til now, we have a more complex and nuanced understanding of what pain is” – Raphael Bender
  • “We know exercise is good and everyone should be doing it, but it only accounts for 20% of the symptoms of pain” – Raphael Bender
  • “We solve the puzzle together. I don’t tell you what’s going on.” – Raphael Bender


Principal Trainer Breathe Education

MA Clinical Exercise Physiology (Rehab)

PAA Principal Trainer

Raphael Bender is a PAA Principal Trainer and holds a Master’s Degree in Clinical Exercise Physiology (Rehabilitation).

He has a particular interest in clinical Pilates, and especially evidence-based approaches to working with persistent pain, which he has studied with Peter O’Sullivan in Australia and Bill Miller in the USA.

Raphael is Principal Trainer for Breathe Education, a PAA Education Body based in Melbourne, and delivering evidence-based Pilates courses nationally.