Melissa Davidson

Keynote Speaker, Women’s, Men’s and Pelvic Health

Dr, Specialist Physiotherapist, NZ

    Dr Melissa Davidson is a registered Specialist Physiotherapist in Pelvic Health with the Physiotherapy Board of New Zealand and is the current President of the International Organisation of Physical Therapists in Pelvic and Women’s Health.

    Over the last 32 years of clinical practice Melissa has worked in hospitals and private practice in New Zealand and Canada. Her initial focus was in musculoskeletal and respiratory practice where she gained Post Graduate qualifications in manipulation (Canada) and in acupuncture (University of Otago). However, a significant injury in the early 2000’s required refocusing her career. Melissa reignited her undergraduate interest in pelvic health and being a life-long learner completed a Post Graduate Certificate in Pelvic Floor (University of Melbourne). This raised further questions about clinical practice and led to her commuting between New Zealand and Australia to gain a research masters in pelvic health from the University of Melbourne. Melissa then completed her PhD in Bioengineering at the University of Auckland, combining bioengineering and physiotherapy practice while studying changes that occur to the pelvic floor muscles during pregnancy.

    Working together with different research disciplines outside of the physiotherapy silo has resulted in a wider appreciation of how research in many different fields can have a positive effect on clinical practice. It also has the bonus effect of challenging preconceived ideas and routine practices that may occur clinically. Her love of learning and pushing boundaries is continuing, with the focus now on encouraging and training musculoskeletal physiotherapists into the field of pelvic health thereby increasing the number of physiotherapists qualified and confident to treat pelvic health dysfunction worldwide.