Two Great Exercise Band Exercises for the Shoulder

These are two of my favorite exercises to give to people when they come in for shoulder work. If you’re lifting heavy, they can be done as part of your warm-up. If you’re lifting light, they can be done as part of your work out. They are great for pre season and in season overhead sports like baseball, softball, tennis etc. I do them to keep my shoulder from hurting during softball season. I like them because they work many muscles around the shoulder and upper back at the same time. Lots of bang for your buck here so without further ado… Continue reading →

Learn To Do A Pushup

PushupOne thing that women struggle with is upper body strength. I think everyone, man or woman, should be able to do a pushup. Especially if you play a throwing sport because of the demands made on the shoulder during throwing. So if you can’t do a real, on the floor pushup, these tips should help.

My first set of workouts I posted includes pushups. If you find this task impossible, I’m going to teach you how to make it possible.

If you can’t do a pushup on the floor, it’s time to find a spot where you can do one. The on your knees girlie pushups are useless, so don’t even try it. Doing pushups from your knees will never transfer into doing them on the floor.

I’ve trained lots of people to do pushups again after all kinds of shoulder injuries including surgery and this method always seems to work, so let’s get started. Continue reading →

Do You Have Chronic Pain After An Ankle Sprain?

One of my secretaries at work came to me a couple weeks ago and asked me about her ankle.  She had sprained it years ago and was continuing to have pain and wanted to know what she could do to stop it.  The problem here was that she decided she wanted to be a runner and when she tried to increase her mileage, her prior ankle sprain became a problem causing her to have severe pain and muscle spasms around her ankle.

Strangely enough, at the same time, I was seeing a 13 year old girl who had sprained her ankle a year ago and continued to have pain with every day activities like walking and climbing stairs.  This young lady could not participate in any sports.

I thought both of these stories would be relevant here and that you guys could learn something from them. Continue reading →

Why I Hate Knee Immobilizers

You’ve probably seen them.  If you haven’t been sentenced to wearing one, you may know someone who has.  Or you’ve seen someone walking around in one at school or at the store.  I’m talking about the knee immobilizer.  This is the ugly blue or green foam thing that they strap around your knee in the emergency room after a knee injury.  It has metal uprights that run along the sides of your knee that are supposed to give you support and prevent your knee from moving in any direction.  The whole thing runs from your mid thigh to your mid calf.  You usually get this with a complimentary pair of crutches.

When I talk about this, it’s important to understand that I’m only referring to acute knee injuries you might present to the emergency room for.  This does not include post operative care.  If your surgeon has you in a brace that immobilizes your knee, there’s a damn good reason for it and you should follow doctor’s orders.  But, rest assured, it won’t be the ugly thing I’m discussing here.  It will be a different brace meant to immobilize your knee for a period of time, but can be unlocked to allow movement when appropriate.

The emergency room staff sends you home with this thing with no other instructions but to follow up with your doctor.  Sometimes you’ll just go see your primary care provider (PCP) and sometimes they’ll be good enough to hook you up with an appointment with an orthopedist or sports medicine physician.  Either way, you’ll inevitably wait a few days to see them, all the while being stuck in the really awesome looking and fashionable knee immobilizer.

As you may have noticed by the title of this article, I hate these things, and it’s not just because they’re ugly and uncomfortable.  I have a few additional reasons that I’ll outline below and I’m sure I’m not the only one who hates them. Continue reading →

Do What Your Physical Therapist Recommends

I’m going to get on my physical therapist soap box for this post and talk about why it’s important to comply with what your physical therapist tells you to do.  I work with patients of all ages and activity levels and it always amazes me how many people come to physical therapy for help with a certain problem, but don’t think they have to actually do anything about it.  They think I’m going to wave some sort of magic wand and fix their problems without them having to invest any energy into helping themselves.  This applies to sedentary individuals and athletes alike.

The only people that seem to avoid this category are the older folks of my grandparent’s generation that had to work hard for everything they had.  Unfortunately, that excellent work ethic seems to be dying along with the people of that generation.

Here’s the thing…if you’re not going to go home and do anything I ask you to do that I think will help you, you’re not likely to get better and you’re wasting my time, your time, and taking up space on the schedule from someone that might want to help themselves.  Sure, there are the people that will just feel better with time, but who knows how much time that will be and physical therapy might be giving them ways to help themselves in the future or to prevent the injury from returning.  Too many people just aren’t invested in their own health. Continue reading →