Headache & Migraine Management Physiotherapists Bondi Junction, Eastern Suburbs Sydney

Watson Headache® Approach Certified Practitioner

For headache & migraine management at JW Physical Health we utilise the Watson Headache® Approach. The key feature of the Watson Headache® Approach is the temporary reproduction of and resolution of the usual pain a person experiences. If this can be achieved, there is a high probability (80% chance) of significant improvement, if not complete resolution of symptoms.

Jason, our lead physiotherapist, is a Watson Headache® Certified Practitioner. There are only a small number of physiotherapists awarded this title throughout Australia. Even fewer certified practitioners offer the service from Bondi Junction in the Eastern Suburbs of Sydney. 

Other approaches often overlook cervical afferents (neck input) yet there is much scientific research that shows the neck often plays a causal role in producing headaches and migraines. Although you may feel pain in your head, it doesn’t necessarily start there. Often, the pain you feel is referred pain from another location in your body, particularly the upper neck. We can determine if a problem in your upper neck is contributing to your condition quite quickly via a short physical assignment.

If your neck is the cause or a contributing factor to your condition we will be able to reproduce your same headache pain in a controlled and shortened manner that will not have a lasting effect. This is a bit like putting light pressure on a joint or muscle to test its sensitivity. The results of this initial assessment influence how we proceed in your unique treatment.


Physio to Address the Cause of Headaches with Tailored Management Plans

At JW Physical Health our goal is to address the cause of your pain, to provide scientifically based manual treatment of the neck to address the causes of your headache or migraine problem.

With specific physio techniques and associated clinical reasoning we are able to precisely determine which segment or segments of your body are involved in causing your headache and migraine. Once we determine these segments we can resolve the cause of your pain by addressing these causes. Creating a tailored management plan for you we remove the guesswork out of your treatment so that we can alleviate your pain.

Personalised Physiotherapy Based, Medication Free, & Non-Invasive Treatment Options Available

Our physiotherapy based treatment could be a suitable medication and radiation free alternative for you. We advocate for being non invasive. Treatment comprises predominantly of a series of non manipulative (no ‘cracking’) physiotherapy techniques applied in a systematic way to provide you with long-lasting benefit.

Types of Headaches that Our Physiotherapists Manage & Treat

You may have been diagnosed with any of the following headache conditions:

  1. Migraines
  2. Tension Type
  3. Cluster
  4. Chronic Daily
  5. Hormonal or Menstrual Migraine
  6. Sinus
  7. Cervicogenic
  8. Vertigo-Cervical
  9. Whiplash Associated
  10. SUNCT


Migraines are a condition with pain that can vary in intensity from moderate to the more severe. Typically it’s characterized by being intense and debilitating. Sometimes they can pulsate, causing throbbing pain to be experienced in a particular area of the head. Some people suffering from this condition may also experience nausea, vomiting, or increased sensitivity to light or sound. Normally these types of headaches affect only one side of your head, however, they can affect both sides. Typically they get worse with any form of physical activity. On average they last from four to 72 hours without treatment.

Tension Type

Tension-type headache is the most widespread headache disorder, with about one-third of men and slightly more women suffering the condition. Pain is normally mild to moderate, dull yet persistent, however, can vary in intensity. Tension type suffers typically experience reductions in social activities and work capacity. Typically tension type headaches are felt on both sides of the head. It is a pressing or tightening sensation rather than a throbbing headache and is not made worse by physical activity nor accompanied by nausea or vomiting unlike a migraine.


Cluster Headaches are relatively rare (about 1 in 1000 people). They are considered extremely painful. Usually, they are experienced on one side of the head only and attack in cyclical patterns known as episodes, however, they can also be more chronic. Typically men are 3 times more likely to experience these than women.

Chronic Daily

Chronic Daily Headache sufferers typically experience pain all over the head to a dull level. The term refers to almost any type that occurs frequently, generally at least 15 days per month for a period of three to six months or more.

Hormonal or Menstrual Migraine

Women can get menstrual migraines anywhere from 2 days before their period to 3 days after it starts. However, anything that changes hormone levels can cause this particular condition including menopause, premenopause and pregnancy. Pain is experienced like a migraine.


Typically sufferers of Sinus Headaches report feeling a deep and constant pain in their cheekbones, forehead, or bridge of their nose. Pain typically increases with a sudden movement of the head or head or neck strain.  Symptoms can be similar to a typical migraine.


Cervicogenic sufferers typically experience pain in their head although it develops in the neck. Often these headaches mimic the symptoms of migraine.


Typically sufferers of the Vertigo-Cervical condition experience feelings of dizziness, like they are spinning or the world is spinning around them. Most often this dizziness occurs after moving the neck. It can affect your sense of balance and concentration.

Whiplash Associated

Headaches of varying levels of intensity that occur after or are associated with neck injury due to forceful, rapid back-and-forth movement of the neck.

SUNCT: Short-lasting Unilateral Neuralgiform with Conjunctival-Injection & Tearing

Sufferers typically experience bursts of moderate to severe burning, piercing, or throbbing pain, usually on one side of the head and around the eye or temple. Pain normally peaks within seconds of onset. Sometimes it follows a pattern of increasing and decreasing intensity over a period of 5 seconds to 4 minutes. Episodes usually occur during daylight hours only.


Receive Your Own Tailored Headache or Migraine Management Plan from Our Bondi Junction Eastern Suburbs Physiotherapy Studio

Whilst all these headache types and more are recognised as individual conditions, many have overlapping signs and symptoms, which suggests a common cause. This cause, hypersensitivity in the brainstem nerves, can be identified by an accredited Watson Headache ® Approach physiotherapist and treated with its associated specialised physiotherapy techniques at JW Physical Health. If we cannot determine a problem in the upper neck and are unable to reproduce your same headache pain, we can determine very quickly if physio treatment will be successful.

Almost everyone gets headaches from time to time, and many are nothing to worry about. But if you get particularly bad and ongoing headaches that disrupt your normal daily activities, work or personal life, it’s time to seek support.