GLA:D Osteoarthritis Programme

At Willunga Physiotherapy

Do any of these sound like you?

  • Have you been told that you have knee or hip osteoarthritis?
  • Has your GP or surgeon told you that arthritis is likely to happen in the future?
  • Have you been told that you are going to need a joint replacement, and thinking that surgery is your next step?
  • Would you prefer not to go under the surgeon’s knife quite yet?
  • Have you ever wondered if there are any other effective treatments apart from taking more medication?


Would you like less pain, less medication and better quality of life?


It may surprise you to know that (despite advertising) the first treatment option according to the medical guidelines ISN’T medication.

It certainly isn’t joint replacement surgery!

However, the recommended first line treatment for osteoarthritis is DRUG-FREE and SURGERY-FREE!

The problem is that these treatment guidelines often aren’t followed.

We know that it is much easier to use medication to reduce pain temporarily than to find somewhere that is going to offer trustworthy, effective and research-backed treatment options.

This is where the GLA:D programme comes in.


GLA:D is a structured programme of exercise and education provided by physios specially trained in delivering the programme.

The GLA:D programme follows the best available evidence for first line treatment of knee and hip osteoarthritis.

It was created in Denmark in 2014 in response to physios realising that the first line treatment options in the medical guidelines were often skipped.



Part of the GLA:D programme was creating a database of the results from the beginning, which helps measure its effectiveness, and build up the evidence base for the programme.

This is how we can say that the results from the GLA:D programme so far shows symptom reduction of 32%!

This is a really impressive figure, and even better when you combine it with the other outcomes including:

  • Reduced use of joint related pain killers
  • Less people on sick leave and
  • Increased levels of physical activity 12 months after starting the programme

These results are impressive by anyone’s standards. In addition, it doesn’t include any of the risks associated with medication or surgery.

The results of a well constructed programme of exercise, advice and weight loss are simply too good to ignore.

In short: don’t skip the recommended first line of attack!



When are the classes.

Tuesday and Fridays from 11am until 11:50am… NB classes are 45-50 mins.


Where are the classes to be held.

Just up the road from our clinic at Bodialign Pilates… It is a bigger space than our Pilates studio, with mirrors for good feedback to make sure we are doing the exercises correctly.


What does GLA:D involve?

The Glad program involves education sessions and exercise classes run by your Physios

The classes talk about how we can live best with arthritis, and the exercise classes I designed to build your strength and confidence in your knee/hip.


How long does it take?

The best results are achieved by attending two classes a week for six weeks… That’s a total of 12 classes.

Often it takes a little longer than six weeks to achieve the 12 classes and that’s fine.


What does it cost?

The program includes the 12 classes ($35 per class) and the education sessions being a total cost of $420.

You can claim a private health rebates on each session. Rebates vary depending on your level of cover.

What happens if I miss a class because I am isolating?

No problem, you can make up your class any time in the 8 week period from commencement.


What do I wear?

You need to wear clothing that you can move comfortably in, I

Shoes are removed so clean socks. tongue-out


Can anyone participate?

And all participants must be referred to the program by a Physio after a Physio assessment.

We need to see you in the clinic first to identify your strengths and weaknesses so we can modify the exercises specifically for you.


Do I have to register to be part of the GLA:D program?

No you don’t.

GLA:D is encouraging us as physiotherapist to help them collect data on the effectiveness of the program.

But you don’t have to register.


If I do register in GLA:D what is involved?

Registering with glad through Latrobe  University Just means you will have to fill out a survey via email at the beginning and again at the end of three months.

It will not take more than 10 minutes at either time.