People of The Point: Jesse & Garth Roberts
With June having both Youth day and Father’s Day, there is no better choice for this month’s People of The Point than the dynamic father and son duo from Atlantic Chiropractor.
Here, Dr Garth Roberts and his son Jesse, tell us more about themselves, each other and their passion for helping people.
Jesse, please introduce your dad to our readers.
Garth Roberts: The seasoned yet less sophisticated Dr Roberts! (Cheeky, we love it! )
To sum up my father is an impossible task.
First and foremost, he is a father of five – 3 daughters and 2 sons. ‘Family first’ must be the deepest-rooted lesson that he has ingrained in me and I see it motivating his every action.
My father is the captain of two busy practices in Sea Point and Claremont and has looked after various professional sports teams in his career. He has been in practice since 1996 and has developed special interests in sports medicine, nutrition and Chiropractic paediatrics, all of which are disciplines he has completed post-graduate studies in. His focus is on facilitating health and well-being by correcting spinal misalignment and posture, as well as providing the appropriate rehabilitative exercises, ergonomic and lifestyle advice. Years of practice and experience have enabled him to develop strong interprofessional relationships and recognize timeously the need for referral where appropriate.
Having lived most of his life up the road, on Avenue St. Charles, you could say my father is a Sea Point local. Winning an SA Champ Karate title for his weight class, he’s a lot tougher than he looks and played rugby for his local club, Hamilton’s up until the age of 50. He says he’s quit after the last fractured rib but somehow, I doubt this and expect he will be touring with the old crocks again soon.
His patients describe him as incredibly kind, empathetic and caring.
His children describe him as quite the hard-ass… he always says that we should “trust him and that we’ll thank him one day”!
He likes to describe himself as my younger, better looking, brother… We understand each other, both more and less than either of us will ever know.
Jesse, what is your favourite memory with your dad?
Difficult to choose a favourite, but I do recall quite an entertaining story. A time when I was being lectured about something. I don’t know what it was, but I was in trouble.
I had been messing around in my father’s office and changing the height settings on his chair. Next thing, Dad walks in and begins to lecture me about something that had happened earlier that day. Obviously, in my mind, it can’t have been my fault!
Anyway, as the lecture was reaching its climax, my father decides to take a seat, misses his chair completely and bangs his head on the table. You can imagine what happened after this… Let’s just say I haven’t changed the height settings on that chair since!
What do you think is this most inspiring about the youth of today?
In a world that is changing exponentially, the youth have no choice but to be highly adaptable. I believe that generations of the future will reflect the rate of change around them and naturally, a stronger, more flexible and less fragile society will follow. Society evolves and adapts with technology and I think that we can expect humanity to change dramatically over the next few decades.
Garth, please introduce your son.
My son, Jesse, is a newly graduated Chiropractor and has recently joined the Atlantic Chiropractic Health Centre and the Claremont Chiropractic Health Centre as an integral part of the multidisciplinary health team. His up to date education, combined with the passion, ideals and no compromise approach to health care makes him a refreshing and vital addition to the practice.
Jesse has a keen interest in sports medicine and is currently engaged in a comprehensive postgraduate sports science qualification. Jesse enjoys family life and is a strong role model for his younger siblings.
Garth, what is your favourite memory with your son?
The first time Jesse learnt to ride a bicycle on the Sea Point promenade was one of my favourites, despite a little old lady giving me dirty looks, neither of us was going to give up until he had mastered it!
Garth, what do you think is the most important lesson we can learn from our fathers?
Fathers have many equally important lessons to give their children but being kind to others as well as yourself is probably right up there. Learn from the past, keep an eye on the future, but most importantly live in the present.
How did you get into the Chiropractic field?
J- I was exposed to the lifestyle, I wanted to help people, and I’ve never looked back!
G- Playing my rugby for the Hamilton’s RFC U21 `s on the wing (many years ago), with especially tight hamstrings which were becoming a chronic issue, my physiotherapist eventually referred me to a chiropractor for a second opinion. Needless to say, the rest is history, the issue was related to my lower back and sacroiliac joints and responded well to the combined treatments of physio and chiro. I was impressed with the philosophy of the chiropractor, he had a very holistic approach, addressing health on all levels, with mental and emotional wellbeing as important as the physical.
What’s the best part of your job?
J- The other day I was driving to help someone’s mother who lived nearby the practice and was in too much pain to leave her house. Suddenly I was overwhelmed with emotion… I am truly so lucky and grateful to call this my job! The ability to facilitate healing and improve someone’s quality of life is truly a gift.
G- Relieving pain is always a rewarding part of the job but educating/teaching patients re their ergonomics, posture, nutrition, exercise and approach to stressors, and seeing how lives change for the better, is what keeps me passionate about my profession.
What do you do when you are not at work?
J- I like to keep as active as possible. During the week, I am fortunate enough to have BUC gym 20 meters away from the practice and the Cape Town traffic at that time is all the motivation I need to stick around for a bit of exercise before heading home.
My weekends are jam-packed with friends, family and a surf/hike/adventure if I’m lucky.
To escape, I often mission to our little getaway cottage on the Bains Kloof mountain pass. Solar power, mountain water, braais, stars and waterfalls can do wonders for the soul.
Having studied in Durban for 7 years, I find any excuse I can to visit the special Durbanites in my life. Once again, we try to escape down the south coast for the soul-healing surfs, bonfires and stars.
G- I have a busy family life and my children participate in surf lifesaving at Clifton Surf LSC, where I am actively involved as a coach. I am keen for any outdoor activity and enjoy both mountain and sea. Recently we have filled in the pool at the Claremont practice and have created an organic vegetable garden, many hours have been spent getting the gutters to fill up all the strategically placed JoJo’s.
Do either of you partake in any sport, please elaborate?
J- Currently, as I have recently started practising, I am all-in Chiropractic with the occasional surf and five-a-side soccer game. I have tried my hand at most sports and I hope to balance things out a bit next year by getting back into lifesaving. I’m also keen to sign up for another triathlon this year if I can learn to manage well enough.
G- Although I still play the odd game of over 35`s Old Crock`s rugby for Hammies, I am getting a little slow to avoid the tackles of younger, faster players, probably time to hang up the boots. We all love the sea and don`t miss an opportunity to sail, kite surf, SUP, surf, or ski. Jesse is a keen surfer, and although I am hopeless, it is always fun to go to Muizenberg with the whole family and laugh at each other’s expense
What hobbies do you have or share?
J- Reading, writing, painting, guitar and surfing. Anything that ‘switches-off’ my mind really.
G- Both Jesse and I share a common interest in continued education and enjoy attending seminars and conferences together. Jesse is part of the medical team at Villagers Rugby Club, where I also serve in an advisory capacity. After being part of the Hamilton’s RFC medical team for 10 years, I am expecting some raised eyebrows on Derby day from our Hammies friends when we turn out in our Villager RFC kit.
Lifesaving and sea rescue is something both Jesse and I share a passion for, Jesse having been a member of Llandudno LSC all his life. I have always supported the NSRI and until recent years was an active rescue swimmer and crew member, I am likely to continue to coach the Clifton LSC Nippers until my youngest daughter is through that chapter in her life.
An absolutely inspiring combo, if we’ve ever seen one. Thank you so much to the Roberts boys for taking the time out of their incredibly busy schedules to talk to us.
Here’s wishing all the Dads a very happy Father’s Day and all the children a fantastic Youth Day.
Till next month,
The Point Team x