Laurie's Blog


05 Jan 2019

The gift of ignorance!


Here’s a crazy thought!  It was passed on to me by my business partner. I had just said how I wanted to help one of our staff therapists with her hip pain, but that I was far less knowledgeable than some of the therapists she had already seen for her issue already.  My business partner said, “Well, ignorance is sometimes a good thing.”  I raised an inquisitive eyebrow!  She went on to say that she had heard a radio program where they were talking about ignorance and how it can be a blessing.  Sometimes new discoveries are made when scientists don’t know that their experiment isn’t ‘supposed’ to work.


I googled “the gift of ignorance” and was led to the following website:  

I want to quote the beginning of the article:


“Science is always wrong,” George Bernard Shaw famously proclaimed in a toast to Albert Einstein. “It never solves a problem without creating 10 more.”


In the fifth century BC, long before science as we know it existed, Socrates, the very first philosopher, famously observed, “I know one thing, that I know nothing.” Some 21 centuries later, while inventing calculus in 1687, Sir Isaac Newton likely knew all there was to know in science at the time — a time when it was possible for a single human brain to hold all of mankind’s scientific knowledge. Fast-forward 40 generations to today, and the average high school student has more scientific knowledge than Newton did at the end of his life. But somewhere along that superhighway of progress, we seem to have developed a kind of fact-fetishism that shackles us to the allure of the known and makes us indifferent to the unknown knowable. Yet it’s the latter — the unanswered questions — that makes science, and life, interesting.”


So, this makes me think about advances in physiotherapy, conditioning, canine rehabilitation, and everything we do!  Here are some examples:

  • Vibration platforms – who thought of that and in using them in rehab?!  (P.S.  I sense another Four Leg training video on this one!)
  • Vestibular rehab – postural movements to move crystals in the inner ear, then balancing exercises (with and without visual import)! Amazing that it was tried and tested in people and amazing that physical therapists tested it in dogs… and it worked!
  • Blood flow restriction training – tie a band around your appendage and exercise! What!?!
  • Shockwave therapy for lumbosacral disc disease – I heard that they were doing it at Fitzpatrick Referrals in the UK when I was touring the facility.  I tried it on my cases.  Love it!  Recommend it!  But there is still no research to back it up!
  • High Intensity Interval Training or Plyometric Training – People had to test this out in order to know how this would work!
  • Cranial Electric Stimulation (microcurrent applied to the brain via the ears)!  Seriously a thing!  And it works well for pain!  
  • Actually, any of our physical modalities really are amazing scientific experiments gone right!


It also makes me think about being creative in your therapy choices in general, about trying new things, about using the best available evidence.  (It’s called evidence informed practice versus evidence based. It makes way more sense! We can’t know everything already!)   It’s about experimenting (yes, we still have to ensure safety!).  And it’s about simply trying!  Try something new!  Learn something new!  Do something different when faced with a challenge! Use that inquisitive brain of yours!


There you have your inspiration for the week!  Go boldly forwards and have a good one!

Cheers!  Laurie


Tags: gift of ignorance , breakthroughs , try new things , learn new things

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