Introduction and welcome


Background and research

  • Evidence base for assessing and treating biopsychosocial obstacles to recovery in back pain
  • Understanding back pain from a psychological perspective
  • How to avoid common errors when assessing and treating back pain



Assessing psychological obstacles to recovery in back pain

  • What are they? – fear avoidance, self efficacy and thinking styles
  • How do they influence recovery?
  • Recognising modifiable obstacles to recovery
  • Promoting recovery using:
    – Motivational interviewing techniques
    – The Stages of Change model

Formulating assessment – practical session

  • General principles of assessment techniques
  • Performing a clinical assessment using cognitive behavioural principles to establish psychological obstacles to recovery
  • Case studies



Toolkit: Treating biopsychosocial obstacles to recovery in  back pain

  • Developing a toolkit of treatment approaches to address psychological obstacles to recovery
  • How to use a cognitive behavioural approach to promote recovery in back pain
  • How to manage resistance to recovery



Formulating treatment – practical session

  • General principles of treatment techniques
  • Performing a clinical treatment focusing on psychological obstacles to recovery using cognitive behavioural principles
  • Case studies

Final questions


Close of workshop

Benefits of attending

How will attending this workshop benefit you?

You will gain:

• Knowledge of the role that biopsychosocial factors play in preventing recovery from back pain and what you can do to change this

• A toolkit to successfully treat psychological factors to promote recovery

• Techniques to help employees move without fear

• Access to a flare-up plan for use when employees’ back pain becomes overwhelming

• Guidance on how to help line managers to manage employees’ back pain

• An understanding of how your day to day clinical work and outcomes can be enhanced by addressing psychological obstacles to recovery


This training is designed for:

  • OH physicians, OH nurses
  • Allied professionals working in OH, including those working in occupational physiotherapy, vocational rehabilitation, case management and mental health

No prior knowledge is assumed, and the training is designed to take into account different levels of knowledge of the participants. It will be very relevant to delegates who have attended The At Work Partnership’s Certificate in OH Case Management and Certificate in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) skills for OH professionals.


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