Pedal power shifts gear for persistent pain: 2023 Pain Revolution Rural Outreach Tour

Pedal power shifts gear for persistent pain: 2023 Pain Revolution Rural Outreach Tour

They’re more often seen en masse during the Tour Down Under, but this group of lycra-clad cyclists is not chasing the yellow jersey but rather tapping their combined pedal power in a push to address persistent pain*.

In their first tour since the pandemic’s start, sponsored by UniSA and AIA Australia, and supported by Reality Health, the Pain Revolution team is cycling through Far North Queensland to share the latest knowledge, skills, and best practices to prevent and overcome persistent pain in rural communities.

Comprising a cycling team of 20 dedicated pain researchers, clinicians, carers, and champions ­– and supported by a 15-person crew ­– the Pain Revolution Rural Outreach Tour will traverse 726km between 2-8 September, giving free talks to the professional and general audiences about pain management.

The Pain Revolution team will be accompanied by the ‘Brain Bus’, an interactive health learning centre on wheels set up for the general community (across lunch hours) to explore visual, physical, and auditory illusions to help them better understand pain.

Commencing in Townsville on Saturday 2 September, cyclists will initially be doing a warmup ride around Townsville via Cape Pallarenda and Castle Hill, returning to the Townsville RSL ahead of the Public Health Seminar. The team will then travel to Ingham, Mission Beach, Innisfail, Atherton and Cairns before finishing up in Port Douglas on Friday 8 September.

Pain Revolution CEO and UniSA Professor Lorimer Moseley AO, says partnering with local health professionals is key to preventing and managing chronic pain.

“People living in rural and country areas have a higher prevalence of chronic pain but have decreased access to appropriate pain management interventions,” Prof Moseley says.

“By bringing our pain management researchers and experts to the regions, we can provide local professionals with the latest knowledge and findings in pain science, which can help inform best practice.

“By getting alongside rural health professionals and the patients they treat, we can also ensure our research stays relevant and targets the most important problems facing Australian communities.

“The Pain Revolution’s Rural Outreach Tour presents a powerful platform to showcase the significance of pain education, not only with health professionals but also with the general public.

“Our mission is to empower individuals to take control of their pain, foster hope, and enable them to lead fulfilling lives despite the challenges they face.

“The best way to achieve this is through a whole community approach so that all Australians can have the knowledge, skills and local support to prevent and overcome persistent pain.”

*In Australia more than 3.3 million people – about one in every five people – live with chronic pain.

Image: Professor Lorimer Mosely.