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5 Tips to Avoid Snow Related Injuries This Winter

Living in New York’s Capital Region means a cold, snowy winter – which means shoveling. Although the snow is beautiful, shoveling it isn’t as pretty. If done improperly, it can be dangerous and lead to serious pain due to the twisting, bending, and tossing of snow. However, with the right technique and equipment, it can be a breeze!

Nobody wants to experience snow-related injuries. Here are some ways to prevent that from happening:

1. Do a Proper Warm-Up

Before shoveling, warm up your muscles. Give your body 30 to 45 minutes to ‘wake up’ before heading outside. Your neck, shoulders, and lower back are the muscles that experience the most damage from shoveling, so be sure to stretch and warm up those areas before starting.

2. Bundle Up

In the winter months, your muscles are forced to work harder to make up for the lack of warmth. Bundling up with a sweatshirt and heavy winter coat, along with gloves, scarves, and hats will prevent your body temperature from dropping and forcing your muscles to work harder.

3. Have the Right Equipment Handy

By investing in the proper equipment, you are basically investing in your body health! Snow blowers are great tools to limit physical strain during snow removal, but can be expensive. Ergonomic shovels are budget-friendly alternatives that can help you prevent injury. There are many options in the market, but experts say to stick with plastic shovels with steel or aluminum tips. Using the right shovel will help prevent back strain and other injuries. 

When it comes to clearing off your car, use an ice scraper that is comfortable to hold, and the right size for your car. Are you interested in receiving a FREE ice scraper? Leave us a review on Google or Facebook, show one of our staff members, and receive an ergonomic friendly ice scraper! Please note, only previous and current patients or their legal guardians are eligible to participate.

4. Lift With Your Legs, Not Your Back

The most common mistake people make when shoveling is lifting with their back. Avoid painful back-related injuries by using your legs to lift and toss heavy snow. Make sure to go slow and if necessary, work in shifts to avoid over-exerting your body.

5. Handling an Injury

Don’t ignore your pain! If you notice anything abnormal during or after shoveling, stop immediately. If you are experiencing ongoing, persistent pain, schedule an appointment with one of our experienced physical therapists or chiropractors so we can evaluate your situation and get you on the right, drug-free treatment plan!

Please note, this blog was written with information from MarthaStewart.com and Health.com.

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Get Fit in 2021 With These 5 PT-Approved Exercises

Get Fit in 2021 With These 5 PT-Approved Exercises

What a better time to start your fitness journey than at the start of a new year? The New Year always gets people motivating and moving, whether that means creating a fitness resolution or amping up a current goal. Although you have the motivation to start this journey, do you have the time? Did you know that many people don’t complete their New Year’s resolutions due to lack of time?

Here are 5 Physical Therapist-approved exercises that are easy to work into your schedule and help you get fit in the New Year!

Cervical Forward Bend

While standing with feet shoulder-width apart, slowly bend the head forward, with chin toward the chest. Bend until you feel a gentle stretch in the neck. Hold for 7-10 seconds.

Mid Back Stretch

While standing with feet shoulder-width apart, extend both arms straight out in front of you, parallel to the ground, with hands palm down in fists. Push fists forward as if you are punching the wall, but hold in that position. Hold for 7-10 seconds.

Side Stretch

While standing with feet shoulder-width apart, slowly run your left hand down the side of your left leg until you feel a gentle stretch to the spine and the opposite side. Hold for 7-10 seconds. Repeat with the right hand running down the right leg.

Spinal Stretch

Stand with feet shoulder-width apart. Slowly bend forward until you feel a gentle stretch to the lower spine to the base of the tailbone (top of tailbone) Hold for 7-10 seconds.

Lower Back Stretch

This incredibly easy exercise is a great way to stretch your entire back! While kneeling with an exercise ball in front of you, slowly lean forward and roll the ball until you feel your muscles stretching. Hold for 5 seconds and repeat 5 times.

As always, if these stretches cause or increase pain, discontinue and call our office.

If you want more of a challenge and are able, we recommend Thera-Ball exercises. Did you know that you should buy the correct sized Thera Ball for your height? Stop by our office to purchase the right one for you, for only 30 dollars, or make an appointment with one of our therapists for a customized Thera-Ball exercise plan that is right for you.

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Why Movement Matters

Why Movement Matters

Physical therapy, which treats diseases and injury through physical methods such as exercise and stretching, is often thought of as guided exercise to rehabilitate your body; however, there is much more to physical therapy than you may think. Because October is National Physical Therapy Month, we are diving into what physical therapy is and why movement is an important piece to your overall health.

Physical therapy is different from other forms of treatment, and physical therapists use their skills and expertise to improve their patients’ daily lives through drug-free treatment.

When recovering from most injuries or chronic pain, physical therapy is often one of the first steps you can take towards a full recovery. Most patients think they know how to move properly…until their treatment starts. Your physical therapist will chat with you about your medical history, your lifestyle, and your current exercise routine so that they can create a customized treatment plan and help you set achievable goals.

“The unique quality of the physical therapy staff at ACPT is that treatment is not cookie-cutter,” says physical therapist Joe Trimarchi. “Our patients are not just a number on an assembly line, so treatment is individualized and customized to each patient based on their particular needs.”

Whether you are young and have a sports injury or an older adult with chronic pain, there is a treatment plan that will help improve your ability to function in your daily life! 

The ability to properly move – and doing so without pain – not only benefits your physical health but also your mental health.

Injury and chronic pain can negatively affect your mental health. For example, daily chronic pain can cause some people to feel trapped and hopeless. Because physical and mental health are so strongly connected, physical therapists use a holistic approach to their treatments that considers both of these factors. This holistic treatment can help you feel more in tune with your body and as though you’ve regained control of your life.

Joe Trimarchi, PT explains, “quite simply, movement is life. The more you can move, the better your physical and mental functioning. What I love about being a PT is that we help patients help themselves, without having to resort to drugs or surgery. We can see patients transform right before our eyes.”

Content in this article was written with information from AZUSA Pacific University, Brain Center Southpoint, and The Orthopedic and Sports Medicine Institute.

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Seniors, Keep Moving! Staying Active Through Physical Therapy

Seniors, Keep Moving! Staying Active Through Physical Therapy

As you grow older, your joints and bones age too. This could cause you to lose strength, stability, and movement. However, physical therapy can slow that process and keep our bodies in motion. 

Physical therapy can help older adults maintain and reestablish their independence, especially those who are managing long-term illnesses.

Falls are the most common reason why most aging adults require physical therapy treatment. Physical therapy improves functions you tend to lose as you grow older, such as flexibility, strength, balance, and mobility. Customized physical therapy programs ensure older adults can address specific and personal areas of concern while also increasing levels of function and preventing future injuries.

So, why should aging adults seek physical therapy treatment?

  • Reduce & Eliminate Pain
    Therapeutic exercises and manual therapy delivered through a custom regimen helps to restore joint and muscle function.
  • Improve Mobility
    Stretching and strengthening exercises will improve standing, walking, and moving ability.
  • Improve Balance
    Reduce the risk of hurtful falls through a custom exercise regimen to safely and carefully increase your balance to improve coordination.
  • Manage Medical Issues
    Address pain and discomfort from illnesses such as arthritis and osteoporosis.

Understanding the benefits of physical therapy is important to removing discomfort about making your first appointment; however, it is beneficial to know what to expect when you arrive at our office. 

Our team of physical therapy professionals begins your appointment with a consultation and evaluation so we can fully understand your current condition and health history. After we have discussed those, we will create a custom treatment plan based on your level of function, the amount of pain you feel, your strength, and your lifestyle.

Whatever your condition may be, we guarantee your experience at Albany Chiropractic & Physical Therapy will be positive! We pride ourselves on providing you with the highest-quality treatment. Contact us today to schedule your physical therapy consultation. 

Content from this blog post came from ASC Care.

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4 Reasons to Treat Student-Athlete Injuries with Physical Therapy

4 Reasons to Treat Student-Athlete Injuries with Physical Therapy

Sports injuries are common among athletes – both professional and high-school student-athletes. However, as a high school athlete, your injuries are a bit different because your body is still growing. The growth of bones, tendons, and muscles don’t occur at the same rate. Sports injuries not only affect your physical activity but also can cause stress, anger, and fear so it is imperative you take appropriate measures to tackle and prevent injuries.

Physical therapy has been proven to be one of the most effective methods to deal with sports injuries, especially because of the customized treatment each patient receives. Here are just some of the ways you can benefit from physical therapy treatment:

Guidance

ACPT’s physical therapists are well experienced when it comes to sports injuries. They can offer overall advice on how to prevent injuries as well as sport-specific tips. If you’re already battling injuries or soreness, a physical therapist will also guide you on ways to quickly recover.

Proper exercises

Through physical therapy, you can learn the best exercises and the ones that are right for you. This helps prevent new injuries and manage existing pain. A physical therapist will evaluate the level of your injury and offer you tailored exercises to help you recover fast.

Returning to sports activities

So many high-school student-athletes make the mistake of returning to full sporting activities when it is not the right time. Even though your body looks as though you’ve fully recovered, and you want to return to playing, doing so may eventually result in another injury. Seek the advice of your physical therapist who knows the severity of your injury and wait for their green light to return to the game.

Preventing future injuries

Preventative care is very important for every athlete. After all, you don’t want to get another injury immediately after your rehabilitation! A physical therapist can recommend the best protective equipment to prevent injuries depending on the type of sport, such as shin pads and orthotic shoe inserts, as well as exercises to help strengthen your weak areas and prepare you for games yet to come.

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Dog Owners More Likely to Meet Fitness Benchmarks

It turns out our furry friends have more to offer us than companionship and unconditional love. Multiple studies show that dog owners are generally healthier and more likely to meet national fitness benchmarks than non-owners. 

According to the American Heart Association, dog owners are 54 percent more likely to get the recommended level of physical activity each day. 

 

In general, pet ownership has proven to lead to a number of great health benefits associated with happiness, reducing stress, and lowering blood pressure but dogs are special. Because they need exercise and often demand it from us, they have a persistent way of urging us onto a path toward more exercise and better health.

A 2013 study published in the Journal of Physical Activity & Health showed that dog owners take an average of 2,760 more steps per day compared with those who don’t have dogs. This amounts to 23 additional minutes of moderate exercise per day. Another more recent study published in 2017 by BMC Public Health backs these numbers. 

According to the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC), adults should get a minimum of 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise (i.e., brisk walking) each week. And of course, achieving such benchmarks help individuals improve and maintain long-term health – both physical and mental wellness. 

Walking is one of the best physical activities nearly anyone can do. Taking a dog out for a walk often makes the activity more enjoyable and feel less like exercise – less like a chore.

 

Approximately 54.4 million U.S. households own at least one dog, based on stats from the Humane Society of the United States. 

Pets require lots of love, care, and responsibility, and simply having one isn’t going to immediately put you on a path toward a healthier life. There are too many other factors to consider. However, if you love animals and could use some added motivation to get outdoors, dogs have a way of coaxing people in that direction.

If you’re a dog owner who has pain or a physical limitation holding you back from walking or playing with your furry friend, you should consider visiting us at ACPT. One of our great physical therapists can provide a full pain and/or movement assessment with an eye toward getting pet owners (and would-be pet owners) back on track to more active, pain-free living. 

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Exercise Ball Lumbar Strength Program

SUPINE TRUNK ROTATION

While lying on your back with an exercise
ball under your lower legs, slowly roll the ball
side to side to gently rotate your back.

Repeat 10 Times
Hold 3 Seconds
Complete 2 Sets
Perform 1 Time(s) a Day

 

 

PRAYER STRETCH

While kneeling with an exercise ball in front
of you, slowly lean forward and roll the ball
forward until a stretch is felt.

Repeat 5 Times
Hold 5 Seconds
Complete 2 Sets
Perform 1 Time(s) a Day

 

 

PELVIC TILT – SITTING

Sit on a large exercise ball and place your
hands on your hips. Next, arch your low back
and then flatten it repeatedly. Your pelvis
should tilt forward and back during the
movement. Move through a comfortable
range of motion.

Repeat 10 Times
Hold 1 Second
Complete 2 Sets
Perform 1 Time(s) a Day

 

 

FLOOR BRIDGE

While lying on the floor, place an exercise
ball under your lower legs and then raise up
your buttocks.

Repeat 10 Times
Hold 3 Seconds
Complete 2 Sets
Perform 1 Time(s) a Day

 

 

SEATED ALTERNATE ARM AND LEG

While seated on an exercise ball, raise a leg
and opposite arm. Return limbs back down
and then raise the opposite side.

Repeat 10 Times
Hold 1 Seconds
Complete 2 Sets
Perform 1 Time(s) a Day

 

 

PRONE ROLL OUT

Kneel with an exercise ball in front of you.
You should be flexed at hips and your
elbows propped on the ball.
Next, slowly lean forward and allow the ball
to roll forward up your arms while
maintaining a tight and neutral spine.
Lastly, roll the ball back to the starting
position using your arms and trunk.

Repeat 10 Times
Hold 5 Seconds
Complete 2 Sets
Perform 1 Time(s) a Day

 

 

SUPINE CRUNCH TOUCH

Start by lying on the floor with your knees
bend and holding a ball over your head.
Next, bring both your knees and ball towards
each other above your chest and touch your
knees to the ball. Then slowly return both to
original positions.

Repeat 10 Times
Hold 1 Seconds
Complete 2 Sets
Perform 1 Time(s) a Day

 

 
Print this exercise series by visiting www.my-exercise-code.com and entering code 5AN3EXG.
Patients receive a customized exercise program when working with a physical therapist. Contact us today for more information!

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Lumbar Strength Program

PELVIC TILT – SUPINE

PELVIC TILT - SUPINE

Lie on your back with your knees bent. Next,
arch your low back and then flatten it
repeatedly. Your pelvis should tilt forward
and back during the movement. Move
through a comfortable range of motion.

Repeat 10 Times
Hold 3 Seconds
Complete 2 Sets
Perform 2 Time(s) a Day

 

 

HIP ADDUCTION SQUEEZE – SUPINE

HIP ADDUCTION SQUEEZE - SUPINE

Place a rolled-up towel, ball or pillow
between your knees and press your knees
together so that you squeeze the object
firmly. Hold and then release and repeat.

Repeat 10 Times
Hold 3 Seconds
Complete 2 Sets
Perform 2 Time(s) a Day

 

 

 

SUPINE HIP ABDUCTION – ELASTIC BAND CLAMS

SUPINE HIP ABDUCTION - ELASTIC BAND CLAMS

Lie down on your back with your knees bent.
Place an elastic band around your knees and
then draw your knees apart.

Repeat 10 Times
Hold 1 Second
Complete 3 Sets
Perform 2 Time(s) a Day

 

 

 

BRIDGING

BRIDGING

While lying on your back, engage a pelvic tilt.
Tighten your lower abdominals, squeeze
your buttocks and then raise your buttocks
off the floor/bed as creating a “Bridge” with
your body. Hold and then lower yourself and
repeat.

Repeat 10 Times
Hold 2 Seconds
Complete 10 Sets
Perform 1 Time(s) a Day

 

LOWER TRUNK ROTATIONS – LTR

LOWER TRUNK ROTATIONS - LTRLying on your back with your knees bent,
gently move your knees side-to-side.

Repeat 10 Times
Hold 3 Seconds
Complete 2 Sets
Perform 1 Time(s) a Day

 

 

 

 

QUADRUPED ALTERNATE ARM AND LEG WITH KNEE ELBOW TOUCHES
“BIRD DOG ELBOW TOUCHES”

While in a crawling position, slowly lift your
leg and opposite arm upwards.
When returning your arm and leg down, do
not touch the floor but instead touch your
elbow to your opposite knee and lift and
straighten them again. Then set them down
on the floor. Next, perform on the other side
and repeat.

Repeat 10 Times
Hold 1 Second
Complete 2 Sets
Perform 2 Time(s) a Day

 

Print this exercise series by visiting www.my-exercise-code.com and entering code MGX8ZQ9.
Patients receive a customized exercise program when working with a physical therapist. Contact us today for more information!