All posts in The More You Know

FIT FOR GOLF

…adding years to your golfing life, and life to your golfing years!

Believe it or not, golf season is almost here! So it’s time to start thinking about what can be done to help improve your game and get your body fit for golf this year.

The one thing most golf enthusiasts agree on is that they are striving for a better swing. There are those lucky few who are born with natural abilities, but fortunately for the rest of us a great swing is also something that can be developed and cultivated.

Building a strong core, and conditioning your obliques, back and shoulders is one of the best ways to help build golf specific strength and mobility, and optimize your rotational power.  A physiotherapist can help you build an exercise program that focuses on strengthening your core.

As it pertains to golf – spine and abdominal fitness not only improves performance and controlled motion, but decreases the risk of injury as golfers execute the repetitively hazardous action of the swing. A warm-up is also very important as we prepare our muscular engines for several hours of activity.

Physiotherapists are frequently involved with numerous clients experiencing stiffness, weakness, and/or pain in their spines, shoulders, elbows, knees and ankles. There are many exercises, manual techniques, and modalities that our therapists use to improve the physical health of these areas of concern. Strength and mobility in these areas is extremely important for a healthy and happy golf season.

Registered massage therapy for golfers may be used as a corrective, preventative and rehabilitative therapy. It helps in the return of soft tissue to a pain-free and improved functional range of motion. Massage can also assist the lymphatic system by eradicating toxins such as lactic acid. This hands on therapy can reduce tightness that may lead or cause postural imbalances, reduce muscle spasm and scar tissue, and create body awareness and a general feeling of well-being.

For more detailed information about treatments contact our clinic.

More

BACK & NECK PAIN

Back and neck pain are among the most widespread reasons patients seek treatments such as physiotherapy, massage therapy and chiropractic care.

Back pain in particular is one of the most common medical problems, affecting 80% of people at some point during their lives.

Physical therapy for back and neck conditions focuses on the structures that support the spine and its joints including muscles, tendons, and ligaments.

VARY YOUR POSITION: Sitting at computers all day puts increased pressure on your spine. After 30 minutes of sitting make sure you walk around to keep the flow of blood and fluids to your spine. If you work primarily at a desk, make sure your work station is set up properly to encourage optimal posture. Your physiotherapist will prescribe suitable and safe stretches and provide tips on how to correctly position yourself in front of your computer.

STAY FLEXIBLE: Optimal spinal health means having flexibility in all directions. If your thorax (upper-mid back and ribcage) has limited rotation movement, more load and stress can be transferred to your low back, neck or other body parts. Check your rotations by sitting in a chair with your arms crossed across your stomach; you should be able to run equally to the right and left and see behind you easily. If you have an asymmetry between the right and left directions, or reduced motion, your physiotherapist can assess the reason why, mobilize your spinal joint, and give you exercises to maintain your thoracic mobility – essential for a healthy low back and neck.

CHECK YOUR CORE: You need to have optimal control of your deep spinal muscles (core). If you’ve had an episode and are experiencing neck or back pain, your therapist will provide a thorough examination of your spine, provide manual therapy and other treatment techniques to help you regain any lost mobility and relieve your pain. They will instruct you on how to achieve ideal postural alignment and prescribe exercises that will support your spine.

CORRECT YOUR POSTURE: Be aware of habitual postures and positions (such as always sitting on one side of the couch, slouching with your feet on the coffee table, carrying your bag/purse always over the same shoulder, sitting cross legged, or with one foot underneath your bum, and leaning usually on the same elbow et.) Habitually poor postures may indicate weaknesses in certain muscle groups or stiffness with the body. Your therapist can assess reasons why you may adopt these positions and how to correct them.

Here are some Ergonomic tips to help keep your back & neck healthy!

  • Chest out, chin in, stomach tight with standing, walking, lifting and bending
  • Standing: Keep one foot in front of and more elevated than the other
  • Sitting: Use lumbar support – and sit up straight.
  • Sleeping: while lying on side: keep the bottom leg straight; top leg can be bent or rested on a pillow
  • Bending: use a ½ kneeling position when putting dishes in dishwasher, getting laundry out of washer and/or putting items into trunk/cart etc.
  • Lifting: Keep the object being lifted close to you; get down under it

If you are suffering from neck or back pain, schedule a visit with one of our therapists to assist in your recovery. Early attention to mobility issues, injury prevention, and injury treatment will help ensure long term physical health.

References:

http://my.clevelandclinic.org

https://chipperfieldphysio.ca

More

WHAT IS A PRP INJECTION? & Osteoarthritic Knee Pain.

After an injury your body sends proteins in the blood to act as messengers to help regulate the healing. The proteins involved in this process are derived from cells called ‘platelets’. When you have an injured area, the platelets are activated and gather at the injury site to release beneficial proteins called “growth factors”.

Platelet Rich Plasma or PRP injection is where a small amount of your own blood is taken, then put through a separation process to create the highest concentration of platelets or growth factors. These growth factors are then injected into your specific injured area to aid and enhance healing.

The entire injection process takes less than 30 minutes. The increased levels of growth factors have the potential to improve signaling and recruitment of cells.  This concentration of platelets (growth factors) can be 5-10 times greater than usual.

Since this injection is using your body’s natural properties, side effects are rare. Some insurance companies cover this procedure. Contact your insurance provider for coverage information on your plan.

Famous athletes such as; Tiger Woods and tennis star Rafael Nadal have received PRP injections for various problems such as sprained knees and chronic tendon injuries. Some athletes have credited PRP with their expedited return to competition.

Ask your clinician if PRP may be a healing option for you.                                    

We can refer you to a Doctor for consultation.

 

This New Year get active and stay ahead of Osteoarthritic Knee Pain.

physio-image-004

Osteoarthritis, commonly known as the wear-and-tear arthritis, is a condition in which the natural cushioning between joints and cartilage wears away. When this happens, the bones of the joints rub together resulting in pain, swelling, stiffness, decreased ability to move and, and in some cases, can lead to bone spurs.

Osteoarthritis is the most common type of arthritis, and the knee is the most commonly affected area. Unfortunately almost everyone will eventually develop some degree of osteoarthritis.

CAN YOU DODGE THE OSTEO BULLET?

Age. The ability of cartilage healing decreases as a person gets older.
Weight. For every extra pound you carry, your knees feel three to five pounds of pressure. You don’t have to be ideal weight, but every pound counts.
Heredity. Genetic mutations can make a person more likely to develop osteoarthritis
Gender. Women ages 55 and older are more likely than men to develop osteoarthritis
Repetitive stress injuries. Some jobs that require activities such as kneeling, squatting or heavy lifting are more likely to increase osteoarthritis of the knee because of the constant pressure on the joint.
Athletics. Athletes that play soccer, tennis, or long-distance runners may be at higher risk for developing osteoarthritis of the knee. However, regular moderate exercise programs can strengthen joints and actually decrease the risk of osteoarthritis.  

SPOT THE SIGNS

  • pain that increases when you’re active, but gets a little better with rest
  • swelling
  • feeling of warmth in the joint
  • stiffness in the knee, especially in the morning or when you have been sitting for a while
  • decrease in mobility of the knee, making it difficult to get in and out of chairs or cars, use the stairs, or even walking
  • creaking, crackly sound that is heard when the knee moves

FIGHT THE PAIN

The primary goals of treating osteoarthritis of the knee are to relieve the pain and return mobility. Your health care provider or therapist can help you determine the type of treatment that works best for you. Treatment plans will typically include a combination of the following:

  • Exercise.Strengthening and stretching the muscles around the knee makes the joint more stable, more flexible and decreases pain.
  • Weight loss.Losing even a small amount of weight, if needed, can significantly decrease knee pain from osteoarthritis.
  • Physical Therapy.If you are having trouble with daily activities, physical therapy can help. Physical therapists teach you ways to strengthen muscles and increase flexibility in your joints.
  • Pain relievers and anti-inflammatory drugs. Over-the-counter choices can help with pain such as acetaminophen(Tylenol), ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin), or naproxen sodium (Aleve). Don’t take over-the-counter medications for more than 10 days without checking with your doctor.
  • Injections into the knee. Steroids are powerful anti-inflammatory drugs that help with pain management. These injections replace the damaged synovial fluid in your knee with a natural substance that protects, cushions and lubricates the joints. These injections allow for better mobility and help to reduce pain.
  • Braces. There are two types of braces: “unloader” braces, which take the weight away from the side of the knee affected by arthritis; and “support” braces, which provide support for the entire knee and allow you to keep moving.
  • Surgery. When other treatments don’t work, surgery  is a good option.
More

AVOID SLIPS & TRIPS

Winter Safety Tips

As the temperature drops, the number of slips and falls rise. Winter’s wet and icy conditions are dangerous and it’s important to take the right precautions. Slips and falls during the winter months cause hundreds and thousands of injuries each year in Canada. While it is a threat to children, the adults and elderly have a much longer, harder fall – and are more likely to break things. A simple break or muscle sprain can cause a lot of pain and suffering, and for the elderly it can be life threatening. So in order to ward off any time in the hospital or emergency room take note of these slip and fall prevention tips:

  1. Wear the right shoes.We see plenty of broken or sprained ankles from women walking in heels on a warm summer day, so in the winter heels would probably be your worst option. Men are not off the hook here either. Men’s dress shoes typically have flat bottoms with no tread. You might as well be walking on sleds. The right footwear should, and is, your best defense against slipping and falling. Try to find something with rubber bottoms with a good thick tread that will grip the snow and ice better.
  1. Walk like a penguin.When walking on snow and ice take shorter slower steps. You want as much surface area of your feet to be in contact with the ground as possible. If you come across a patch of solid ice, shuffling your feet can be your best option as it will give you the most stability.
  2. Know how to fall.When carrying a briefcase, lunch bag, or your children you are just asking for trouble. If you were to fall this now eliminates one or both arms from helping absorb the impact. Most deaths from falling on ice occur when the person hits their head on the ice. This also means keep your hands out of your pockets and gloves on. While you may injure your arms or shoulders you will protect your head.
  1. Be cautious everywhere. Walk near something you can hold on to like handrails or a fence. Grab sturdy objects when possible… and your friend or child IS NOT a sturdy object. You will likely pull them down with you. When getting out of a car, hold on to the door until you find out just how icy it is. Test the ground before you hop right out.

Even if you follow all these tips and precautions we still cannot guarantee that you won’t have an encounter with the ground sometime this winter. But the better you prepare the less likely you are to slip and fall.

For those of you with balance issues already, your job is harder still. If you have not yet had physiotherapy to help you with your balance issues, or if you’d like a therapist to assess your balance concerns, please call us to book an evaluation.

If you have already taken a hard fall, let one of our Physiotherapists help you recover and get you back on solid ground.

More

MEN’S HEALTH MONTH

Movember is Men’s Health Month

movember

The state of men’s health is in crisis. Men experience worse longer-term health than women and die on average six years earlier.

  • 1 in 6 men may be diagnosed with prostate cancer, and 1 in 2 men may be diagnosed with some form of cancer by the age of 85.
  • Prostate cancer rates will double in the next 15 years.
  • Testicular cancer rates have already doubled in the last 50 years.
  • Obesity has taken centre stage as a major risk factor for chronic disease and almost 2/3 of Canadians are considered to be overweight or obese.
  • 1 in 8 men experience depression and three quarters of suicides are men.
  • Poor mental health leads to half a million men taking their own life every year. That’s one every minute.
More