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Principal Physiotherapists

Ruth Todd

  • Physiotherapist
  • B.App.Sc. (Phty)
  • Member APA
  • Member CFA

Special Interests

  • Continence and Pelvic Health Men and Women
  • Cancer Rehab
  • Paediatrics
  • Dance

Ruth graduated in 1987 from Sydney University and has gained a wide range of experience across the areas of Rehabilitation, Women’s Health and Continence therapy, Breast Cancer Rehab and Paediatrics. More recently Ruth has pursued a special interest in dance injury management and prevention. 

Ruth provides clinical leadership role in the areas of Paediatrics, Women’s Health and Continence, Pregnancy care, Ante natal and Postnatal classes and Dance Injury management. 

In addition to her membership of the Australian Physiotherapy Association Ruth has been a member of the Continence Foundation of Australia for the past 23 years.

Ruth is available Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Fridays.


Elizabeth Ward

  • Physiotherapist
  • AHTA Accredited Hand Therapist
  • B.Sc.
  • PGD (Phty)
  • Masters Public Health
  • Masters Health Science (Physiotherapy)

Special interests

  • Wrist instability
  • Complex trauma
  • Paediatric elbow and wrist injury

Graduating from Physiotherapy in 1984, Elizabeth worked in the public sector for 10 years as a senior orthopaedic and intensive care therapist, and with Ruth and Michael, opened Coastal Physiotherapy Clinic in September 2000.

Liz has been working in hand rehabilitation for 25 years. She graduated with a Masters in Public Health in 1995. She also completed a Masters of Applied Science (Physiotherapy) with a major in hand therapy in 2003.

Liz is a Life Member of the Australian Hand Therapy Association (AHTA). In 2007, she was elected Vice President of the AHTA, and served 4 years in this role.

Elizabeth provides clinical leadership to the practice in the areas of Hand Therapy, splinting and Orthopaedic Physiotherapy.

Elizabeth is available Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays.


Michael Ward (FACP)

  • Specialist Musculoskeletal Physiotherapist (as awarded by the Australian College of Physiotherapists 2009)
  • B.App.Sc.(Phty)
  • PGD (Manipulative Therapy)
  • M.App.Sc (Manipulative Therapy)

Special interests

  • Back and Neck pain
  • Shoulder Injuries

Michael is a Specialist Musculo-Skeletal Physiotherapist, having been admitted as a Fellow of the Australian College of Physiotherapists. Prior to this, he completed post graduate studies in 1988, his Post Graduate Masters in 1996.

He is an Independent Consultant to WorkCover as well as the Motor Accident Authority, providing advice on best care for injuries sustained at work and car accidents.

With a wealth of experience, Michael heads up the Musculo-Skeletal team and provides mentorship to physiotherapists both within and external to the practice.

His research interests include adaptations to persistent pain as well as rehabilitation of spine and other persistent pain syndromes with manual mobilisation and retraining of the muscle system.

Michael is available Thursdays.




Professional Team

Karen Ritchie

  • Occupational Therapist
  • AHTA Accredited Hand Therapist
  • B.App.Sc. (Occupational Therapy)

Special interests

  • Hand Therapy
  • Burns and Plastic Surgery Rehabilitation
  • Handwriting assessment

Karen is an Occupational Therapist with over 28 years’ experience, having graduated in 1989. Karen has extensive experience in the treatment of hand and upper limb injuries, and also has an interest in burns and plastic surgery rehabilitation through her time working at St Vincent’s and Concord Hospitals before transferring to the private sector.

Karen is an Accredited Member of the Hand Therapy Association and works exclusively in the area of Hand Therapy.  

Her areas of expertise include acute hand trauma care and post hand surgical rehabilitation, and hand splinting.

Karen is here Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays.


Jamie Exton

  • Bachelor of Health Science (Physiotherapy)
  • Masters of Health Practice (Acupuncture)

Special interests

  • Orthopaedic Rehabilitation
  • Hand therapy
  • Acupuncture
  • Chronic Pain

Jamie has over 20 years experience working as a musculoskeletal/orthopaedic physiotherapist in New Zealand, UK and Australia. 

He has completed a Masters in Health Practice in Acupuncture and uses this skill to treat a wide variety of musculoskeletal disorders including myofascial pain, joint pain and arthritis.

He is the senior orthopaedic physiotherapist, as well as an Associate member of the AHTA and is undergoing a programme of study to become an AHTA Accredited Hand Therapist.

Jamie also has a keen interest in chronic pain disorders, seeing individual patients in clinic.

He is also currently involved in a research project with CSIRO on the use of activity trackers and Total Knee Replacements.

Jamie is here across the week.


Kath Gallaher

  • Physiotherapist B.Sc (UNSW)
  • PGD Phys (USyd)

Special interests

  • Lymphoedema Practitioner

Kath has a wealth of experience across broad areas of practice, working in her own private practice before taking a break to have children. She commenced her current role at Coastal Physiotherapy Clinic in 2008.

Kath fills a senior role in in-patient physiotherapy services. She is also a certified Lymphoedema Practitioner.

Kath sees Lymphoedema patients in Thursdays.



Cat Hayden

  • B.App.Sc. (Physiotherapy)
  • Grad Cert. (Pelvic Floor Physiotherapy)

Special interests

  • Pilates
  • Pre and post-natal Physiotherapy
  • Pelvic Health

Catherine (aka Cat) graduated from Sydney University in 2003. Since graduation she has worked in both public and private sectors throughout Sydney, Darwin the UK and the Central Coast.

Catherine also completed a certificate IV in Pilates Instruction which gave her an in depth knowledge of posture and core stability. This enables thorough assessment and treatment of pelvic dysfunction, shoulder girdle pain and other postural dysfunctions.

Catherine has a Graduate Certificate in Women’s Health Physiotherapy through Melbourne University.


Katelyn Clarke

  • Bachelor of Physiotherapy (U. Notre Dame)
  • Certificate in Polestar Pilates

Special interests

  • Pilates
  • Pre and post-natal Physiotherapy
  • Paediatrics

Graduating from Notre Dame University in W.A. in 2012, Katelyn works with both our inpatients and outpatients. She has a particular interest in Paediatrics including musculoskeletal, orthopaedics and neurodevelopmental physiotherapy.  

Katelyn recently completed a Certificate in Polestar Pilates, and enjoys working in antenatal and postnatal physiotherapy.

Katelyn is here Monday through to Thursday.



Michelle Strong

  • B.App.Sc Physiotherapy (University of Sydney)

Special interests

  • Shoulder rehabilitation
  • Orthopaedics
  • Sports injury

"Shell" (as she is known to us all) graduated from the University of Sydney in 2013. She enjoys working in all areas of physiotherapy practice, particularly orthopaedics and casting.

She has recently completed further study on shoulder treatment, and enjoys casting of fractures.

On weekends she likes to go hiking and spending time at the beach with friends.


Ed Alarca

  • Masters of Physiotherapy
  • Bachelor of Nursing

Special interests

  • Orthopaedics
  • Sports injury
  • CrossFit

Ed commenced work at Coastal in 2015 and combines his love of CrossFit with musculoskeletal physiotherapy and sports physiotherapy.

Ed's diverse skill set gained from his roles in Emergency Nursing, Sport rehabilitation and involvement are greatly valued in our team approach.

In his spare time you may also find him in his challenging role in the Emergency department as senior RN at Gosford hospital.

He works at Coastal Physiotherapy on Tuesday and Thursday.


Judy Donoghue

  • Physiotherapist
  • Hand Therapist
  • B.Sc.
  • PGD (Phty)

Special interests

  • Casting and Splinting
  • Orthopaedics

Judy looks after our surgical clinics and also works in Hands. She is a skilled plasterer, honed out of many years’ experience, and loves to pass on her knowledge to others, including the GP’s!

She is also our chief organizer, and keeps us and the surgeons on our toes. Judy is also a wonderful cook having been a caterer in a past life.


Hannemari De Jager

  • BTech Sport and Exercise Technology 
  • BTech Biokinetics 
  • BHSc Physiotherapy

Special interests

  • Pelvic Health
  • Pre-/post-natal physiotherapy and Mastitis
  • Men's health (incontinence, pelvic pain, pre-/post prostatectomy)

Hannemari worked as an Accredited Exercise Physiologist/Biokineticist in Hong Kong and South Africa for more than 10 years.  During this time her interest in Women's Health was ignited.  In 2012 she commenced her Physiotherapy degree in New Zealand, closely followed by her Women's and Men's Health training in Australia.

With more than 10 years of experience in injury rehablitation Hannemari strongly believes in using exercise to help people achieve their best physical health.  Other treatment modalities that she uses is  manual therapy, intergrated dry needling and Clinical Pilates as complementary treatment to exercise prescription.  She especially enjoys working with post-natal women to help them return to exercise and sport.  Furthermore, Hannemari has extensive knowledge in working with runners to assist them in running injury free.


Michael Enright

  • Bach App. Sci. Physiotherapy (ACU)
  • Bach. Business 
  • Sports Trainer

Completing his Studies in 2018, Michael has special interests in Treating Sports Injuries particularly Knee and Shoulder Rehabilitation. He has previously worked alongside Queensland Rugby Union and Baseball. On weekends you will find him surfing or rock climbing locally.

Michael is available Tues evenings or alternate Saturday Mornings.



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