Recovery from Chronic Pain

An evidence-based approach to understanding and recovering from chronic pain | taught by Dr Nick Penney
  • 8 Videos
  • 13 PDFs
  • 26 Audios
  • 10 Presentations
  • 30.0 hrs

Course Curriculum

This course is also available with personal tuition from Dr Nick

Anxiety Relief
10 x $95.00
Personally Guided Recovery from Ongoing Pain

Course description

This program of recovery helps to redirect the time and energy we spend struggling with ongoing or persistent long term pain and illness always trying to 'fix it' by learning about what pain really is, and why and how it is generated when faced with the threat of actual or potential tissue damage. Armed with this knowledge about pain and its relationship with our stress response system, the first part of the course teaches you how to counteract the stress response by learning the 'relaxation response'. Once this has been mastered the course covers all the different factors that can prevent recovery and ways to get around these 'obstacles' using mindfulness skills training, and practical exercises. The process allows you to recover more fully, take control of your situation and reconnect with what brings joy and value to your life. A large review of the science behind mindfulness training in 2015 concluded that:

'The science supports the use of mindfulness in the adjunct treatment of symptoms in cardio-vascular disease, chronic pain, cancer, anxiety and depression, and in prevention in healthy adults and children' (Gotnik 2015).

The case studies on the web site come from the personal stories of some of our patients who had tried everything else that medicine and alternative medicine had to offer. There is an advert out here in New Zealand at the moment for a popular brand of pain killer, the punch line being 'when pain is gone, life takes it's place' my program works for the exact opposite of this! 'When life takes its place, pain is gone'!

Often when we are stuggeling with pain or mood disturbance our system tells us we should 'rest and wait to get better'. Good advice when we have the flu, not such good advice if we have been waiting for months or even years for the pain to subside so we can get back on with our lives. The mind can disable us trying to conserve energy and can give us the entirely wrong message about our pain. This can often be reinforced by the advice we are given or a seemingly serious sounding label or diagnosis from a health professional. Sarah and Jocelyn's stories highlight just how debilitating these labels can be, and how much they were able to influence and control their own pain using Dr Nick's techniques.

It takes time to reprogram the system, and slow and steady wins the race. The program is designed to spread over 3 months, progressing week to week as you feel ready to move on. Carrying on with the exercises beyond this time will allow for further and continued improvement.

Dr Nick

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Dr Nick Penney
Dr Nick Penney
Course creator
  • Dr Nick Penney holds a PhD in Musculoskeletal Medicine from The Australian Centre of National Research on Disability and Rehabilitation Medicine, School of Medicine, University of Queensland.
  • His research focussed on the Biopsychosocial model of pain and the obstacles to recovery from low back pain.
  • This understanding that the 'whats going on' in our lives is highly predictive of our ability to recover from pain led to training in Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy with Professor Mark Williams to compliment his own mindfulness practice.
  • Dr Nick is also vocationally registered in Pain Management in New Zealand and a member of The International Society for the study of Pain (IASP).