Clinic Director & Head of Physiotherapy
After completing her studies in Physiotherapy at the University of Queensland, Dijana moved to the United Kingdom and worked as a Musculoskeletal Physiotherapist at the Australian Physiotherapy and Pilates Institute in London. Here she found her calling and passion: combining Clinical Pilates and Physiotherapy to deliver a holistic approach to wellbeing. She was inspired to one day package up this unique service and deliver it in a stylish and boutique setting in Brisbane.
Over the past 6 years, using the APPI Pilates method, she has enjoyed seeing the great results in clients with injury as well as healthy individuals wanting to achieve their diverse goals. Dijana is fully Mat Certified and has completed all her APPI Equipment Pilates training. She has also completed courses in Dry Needling, Ante and Post Natal Pilates, Pilates for Scoliosis and is currently one of APPI’s Clinical Pilates Assistant Presenters.
As our clinic director, Dijana is responsible for the business oversight with our team of directors and works to ensure the smooth running of the practice by managing the clinic staff and over-seeing day-to-day management operations.
With the use of her Physiotherapy and Manual Therapy knowledge alongside Clinical Pilates, Dijana enjoys educating her clients on correct and safe movement patterns to assist in injury recovery as well as injury prevention in clients of all ages. She particularly enjoys working with kids and teenagers helping them learn from a young age the correct posture and movement patterns.
Serge has a Bachelor Degree in Business and Law from Queensland University of Technology, and is now completing his Master of Business Administration at the University of Queensland. Although much of Serge’s career has been in the corporate world, he has poured his energies and skill sets into ensuring Forge achieves its vision for its clients, its staff team and its charitable efforts. Among these pursuits you will also see him at our studio being regularly worked by our practitioners – he loves his sports and is a sucker for punishment!
Head of Exercise Physiology
Exercise Science and a Masters in Physiotherapy. Chris recognises that
every experience of pain and or disability is unique, and he is
passionate about performing a thorough assessment and individualised
treatment for acute and chronic conditions.
Chris has experience with:
* Muscle/Joint Injuries
* Neurological Conditions
* ACL rehabilitation
* Chronic Pain
* Sports Rehab/Conditioning
* Injury Prevention
Before joining Forge, Chris spent time with Brisbane Roar FC working
with athletes as a sport science intern. He was involved in research
projects, rehab, and strength & conditioning, as well as monitoring
work-loads. Chris has also been involved with AFL and Football teams,
working as a sports trainer and implementing injury prevention programs
to reduce risks of ankle, knee (including ACL) and shoulder injuries.
Chris’s most profound clinical experiences came while working in a
neurological rehab ward in Sydney. In his time there, he worked with
patients with terminal brain cancer, severe strokes and Parkinson’s
Disease. This experience reinforced the importance of working together
with the patient, and with a team of like-minded professionals to
achieve shared goals.
Chris believes that the team at Forge is up there with the best in the
business and is excited to be able to work with a group of fantastic
clinicians who can work together in an uplifting and supportive
In his spare time, Chris enjoys playing football, and spending time
outdoors at the beach and hiking.
To see more from Chris, you can follow his Instagram @chris.hitchins_physio.
Vanessa’s experience covers a wide range of areas including pregnancy, pre/post surgeries, postural correction, chronic pain, pilates, exercise therapy, taping and musculoskeletal physiotherapy. She has also completed further study in western acupuncture, dry-needling, strapping, matwork and equipment Pilates.
Vanessa’s approach to treatment is to provide a friendly, professional and safe environment that ensures her clients understand their condition and how their treatment and tailored exercise program will improve their health.
Vanessa loves what she does and is passionate about providing her clients with the best possible care.
Accredited Exercise Physiologist and Sport Scientist
Ebony’s particular areas of interest include athletic development, cardiac and musculoskeletal rehabilitation, however she loves the diversity of clients seen in private practice and enjoys working with all healthy and clinical populations. She has experience working in these three areas with clients of all ages, having completed placements in the Rugby League Development Program at Ipswich State High School, the Heart Recovery Service at Princess Alexandra Hospital in heart failure and cardiac rehabilitation, and at Forge West End.
When she’s not at work, you can find Ebony at Yeronga Pool training hard for her next competition. She enjoys both pool and open water swimming, and competes for her club at local, state and national competitions all over Australia. She was thrilled to be selected on her first international team this year to compete at the 12th Oceania Swimming Championships in Papua New Guinea, and hopes to qualify for another Australian team in the near future. In between training and work, Ebony enjoys going to the beach and playing music with her family.
Melanie moved to Brisbane from New Zealand in 2011 to pursue her love of ballroom dancing. At the same time she began her training with the internationally recognised training institute, Polestar Pilates. She is also a qualified Barre Instructor.
Melanie has found great satisfaction in passing her knowledge on and providing a positive impact of her clients lives. She believes that everyone can benefit from Pilates and tailors her instruction to suit individual needs. She would love to see you in one of her classes in the near future and promises shaking legs, burning abs and a wonderful endorphin rush!
Bridget has seen first hand the benefits of Pilates and how instrumental it can be in either a rehabilitation program, or used as a tool to achieve health and fitness goals.
Bridget has particular interests in helping to treat, prevent and manage symptoms of chronic conditions such as cancer, neurological conditions and chronic pain.
Growing up as a dancer, Sarah has always been passionate about movement and the body’s anatomy. After introducing Pilates to her dance training her interests grew in this area. Now aspiring to deliver a holistic approach to health and wellbeing, Sarah teaches Pilates and Barre.
Sarah appreciates that every individual has their own story and is committed to building a strong rapport with her community. If you see Sarah at the front desk or teaching a Pilates class, make sure you come have a chat.
Growing up on the Sunshine Coast, Ash loves to spend her spare time at the beach with her dogs. Being heavily involved in swimming, surf-life saving and waterpolo, this sparked Ash’s passion for sport and overall ambition to become a physiotherapist.
Working in administration, Ash has a strong desire to establish a wonderful relationship with our patients and their families, striving to make a positive and healthy difference. Ash’s main priority is to become a great physiotherapist in the near future.
Make sure you come and have a chat to Ash when you’re next here at Forge West End!
Kristin graduated with a bachelor of Nutrition and Exercise Science in 2016 and is now currently completing her Masters of Clinical Exercise Physiology at The University of Queensland.
Kristin comes from a dance background and while dancing herself, also enjoys teaching jazz and contemporary. Kristin is passionate about movement as medicine and in honouring this teaches Pilates and Barre. She likes to spend her spare time outdoors, hiking, going to the beach and traveling!
Kristin loves being a part of the tight-knit community that is Forge and appreciates the integrated approach of Physiotherapy, Exercise Physiology and Clinical Pilates and how each individual brings something unique to the team. If you see Kristin taking reformer classes and at at the front desk- come say hi!
From his time at Forge and a brief stint in exercise and movement science, Pat is looking to begin a Bachelor of Physiotherapy at the Australian Catholic University in 2020. Currently working in administration, Pat is looking to apply his business learnings, whilst getting to know our clients and creating a friendly environment for the Forge community.
Growing up on the Sunshine Coast, Pat is a keen Water Polo player, having represented QUT at both a state and national level. Other sporting passions include surf lifesaving and rugby league. Look forward to seeing you at Forge West End!