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Tag: injury

We are growing again!

Added on August 4, 2016 by BodycentralPT

We are growing again!
It's back to school time for everyone and soon we will all be in full-swing "work" mode. Summer vacation is coming to an end. All summer long we have been working diligently on improving and expanding our services and footprint in Tucson!
 
On August 22nd, we will open our 5th location- The Bodycentral Physical Therapy Sports & Concussion Center.
 
This facility in Marana- 3601 W Cortaro Farms Road will be a great addition to our practice. If you have been to the Ultimate Sports Asylum location, then you have an idea of what this facility will be like. It is an open floor plan with high ceilings- equipped like a professional sports facility with rubberized flooring and a turf area for running, jumping, agility drills....well, you name it.
 
This location also has private treatment rooms and it features a concussion rehabilitation center. This specialized area will be used for our concussion evaluations and treatment programs that need a special environment. The decor in this facility is pretty amazing as well...I don't want to give away all the details because I want you to come for the open house party. Let's just say it will be pretty cool.
 
We are excited to be able to better serve our Marana and Northwest Tucson patients - and I'm sure you will be happy to have us closer to you to save the driving time!
 
Stay tuned for more updates.
 
Dr. Tonya Bunner (Co-Founder/CFO) and I want to say a heartfelt "Thank you" to all of our past and current patients- it is because of you that we do what we do. Also thank you to the medical community that has supported us over the years. We are blessed to be a part of Tucson and this great southern Arizona region.
 
Jennifer
 
Jennifer Allen,PT,DPT,OCS,SCS,CHT
Co-Founder/COO Bodycentral Physical Therapy
 
 

 

 

Baseball and Softball Injuries-Don't Let Pain End Your Career!

Added on April 13, 2016 by DrJAllen

Baseball and Softball Injuries-Don't Let Pain End Your Career!

I've heard it all too often "If I had just listened to my body and got help, I might have made it in MLB."

Ask Blake Eager his story and he will tell you "I wish I had this type of evaluation and treatment available to me when I was pitching". Blake pitched for the NY Mets organization and had a career ending injury. Currently he is coaching with Hills Baseball and works with Bodycentral Physical Therapy to keep pitchers healthy while improving performance.  He also works with the Baseball and Softball Sports Physical Therapists at Bodycentral with video analysis of pitchers.

Too often we are seeing more and more career ending injuries that could have been prevented if they had been treated in the early stages. There are many things that can cause injury in baseball and softball players, but overuse tends to be the creator of most long term problems. Some of the things we know about pitchers in particular:

1) Bad Pitching Mechanics have been linked to overuse and breakdown injuries- Players should get a good foundation at a younger age so as they mature and start throwing harder, their bodies are in optimal alignment with pitching. Simple things like a stride length that is too short can cause problems in the elbow and anterior shoulder. A pitching coach that understands the optimal pitching mechanics is essential.

2) Weakness in the Rotator Cuff and Scapular Muscles- Let's face it- There's nothing "natural" about the pitching motion. It's a whirlwind of stressors on the body that requires a huge Braking system. Pitchers create momentum and have to slow it down and stop it as the pitch is released. This requires massive amounts of strength and control. If the rotator cuff (muscles in the shoulder) is weak or out of its perfect ratio in regards to strength, then the pitcher is asking for trouble. Weakness in the shoulder blade muscles also is a major disadvantage. You wouldn't want the brakes to go out on your car---that would cause a crash or massive destruction. The same is true in the rotator cuff and scapular muscles- these are the brakes. If these are too weak or aren't working to their potential--- the pitcher is headed for a crash....or Tommy John surgery or worse. Working with a PT specializing in baseball and softball injuries is key to find these specific issues and get them corrected!

3) Training and Throwing Schedule is Out of Control- More is better right? Pitch more, get better, faster...WRONG. More is better works for cheese on your pizza....but with pitching, more can be just that...More. More pain, More breakdown, More overuse injuries. A balance must be achieved between work and rest so the body can recover. Pushing through fatigue or pain is a bad idea. Throw one more pitch today----lose that Major League career tomorrow. Getting a balanced pitch and recover plan is essential.

4) Weakness in the Lower Body and Core- Show me a pitcher with elbow pain and I'll show you a pitcher that has lower body weakness. Pitching starts with the control and strength in the legs and transfers to the core. Pitchers with lower body weakness break down sooner and pitching mechanics suffer. If you have a pitching related injury, you need the entire body evaluated (Not just the part that hurts). Patients look at me crazily at times when they have shoulder pain and I'm testing the Left hip strength.....it's related...truly.

So What can you do if you want to pitch faster, get better at the craft.....but also decrease your chances of injury?

Bodycentral and Blake Eager have combined forces to provide the components for this recipe to success. Kenzie Fowler has joined forces with Bodycentral for Fastpitch Softball Players that want the same--- better performance, and decrease risk.

The Elite Baseball and Elite Softball Programs available at Bodycentral Physical Therapy Include:

1) Injury Treatment- If there has been an injury, our Sports Physical Therapists with treat the area prior to any performance training. Most of this is eligible for insurance coverage. Hands on treatments like instrument assisted soft tissue mobilization, joint mobilization, dry needling and other strategies are combined with rehabilitation exercises.

2) Injury Prevention Strategies- Our team of Sports Physical Therapists and Conditioning Specialists combine to provide preseason risk screens for teams. We recently screened players in Canyon View Little League as part of the safety program in their league. Strength training, and other strategies are included in these packages. Many of these services are provided free to organizations on a first come- first serve basis. Please email Jennifer Allen for more information or to have your group screened. mailto:jen@bodycentralpt.net

3) The Elite Plan- This is the big one. This is for reducing injury risk and improving overall performance. This is what you would expect to see at the professional level of play. This includes video analysis of pitching, a full Medical Musculoskeletal head to toe evaluation as well as a strength and conditioning program developed specifically for the athlete. These evaluations are baseball and softball specific, and will highlight problems associated with pitching. With this evaluation, we find the areas that are potential trouble makers and get that addressed before they contribute to injury. Blake Eager and Kenzie Fowler are involved with this evaluation process so they bring Player and Coach insight into the Plan. They evaluate pitching from the coaching perspective and give players specific drills to improve in this area.

For More Information on these programs or to sign up-  mailto:info@bodycentralpt.net

Dr. Jennifer Allen is a Board Certified Sports Specialist and heads the Baseball/Softball sports medicine team at Bodycentral Physical Therapy. She is the creator of the Elite Baseball and Softball programs at Bodycentral Physical therapy, and lectures in the areas of Biomechanics and Baseball/Softball injuries. She worked with the Arizona Heat Women's Professional Fastpitch Softball team in Tucson, AZ, and currently volunteers as the Canyon View Little League Safety Officer. For more information visit: http://www.BodycentralPT.net

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What is a Running Biomechanics Gait Analysis?

Added on June 4, 2015 by DrJAllen

What is a Running Biomechanics Gait Analysis?

Gait analysis is a systematic way to look at running or walking biomechanics. This generally includes the use of multiple high- speed video cameras and computerized software programs that can slow the videos down for the evalutor to look at mechanics frame by frame. Specially trained evaluators look at what happens at each joint in the body with each phase of the gait cycle. Simple things like a larger than normal stride length can cause problems from hamstring and ITB pain, to heel pain and plantar fasciitis. By looking at all the little motions and how they come together as a whole, a trained evaluator can use these movement patterns and deviations to determine where breakdowns are occurring in the body. Combining the musculoskeletal (strength, flexibility & balance) findings with the video biomechanics analysis gives a wealth of information that can be used to create a "Blueprint for Success" for each individual. Each runner or athlete is different- and their programs should be specifically designed for their unique issues. This is definitely not a "One Size Fits All" type of program.

In addition to video analysis, a good running or walking evaluation should include a head to toe musculoskeletal assessment for flexibility, strength, and balance. Each joint should be evaluated to look for stiffness and limited motion, as well as hypermobility- or too much motion. Shoe wear and current orthotics should also be evaluated for wear patterns and to make sure they are providing adequate support to the runner or walker.

There are many injuries that are often caused, at least in part, by poor biomechanics. Runners and athletes whose sports require a high level of running and jumping can benefit from a high quality gait analysis to avoid overuse injuries.

The following are a list of common injuries that may be in part caused by poor biomechanics:

 

  • Shin Splints
  • Plantar Fasciitis
  • Achilles Pain/Tendonitis
  • IT Band Problems
  • Low Back Pain or Sacroiliac Pain
  • Hip Pain
  • Knee Pain

A specific strength, flexibility, & balance program, good biomechanics, and the appropriate shoe wear are important for healthy running and walking activities. Training regimens that increase mileage too quickly, or ones that do not allow adequate rest between bouts of training- or training for multiple races without rest can also contribute to chronic aches and pains.

If you are experiencing pain that comes and goes, or pain that is nagging and you cannot figure out the cause-- this type of evaluation may be right for you.

If you have pain (even after trying all those exercises you found on the internet), this type of evaluation may be right for you.

Dr. Jennifer Allen is a Physical Therapist, Board Certified Clinical Specialist in the Areas of Orthopaedic and Sports Physical Therapy, as well as a Certified Hand Therapist. Sports Programming at Bodycentral Physical Therapy includes Biomechanics assessment, video movement assessment, Injury Prevention, and individual and team performance enhancement. For more information visit www.BodycentralPT.netor call 520-325-4002.

Biomechanics analysis to ensure healthy running and walking activities

 




 

 

Hip Injuries in Baseball & Softball

Added on April 29, 2015 by DrJAllen

Hip Injuries in Baseball & Softball

When we talk about overuse injuries in baseball and softball, we generally discuss upper extremity conditions. Although those injuries are the most common, we are seeing more awareness and discussion of injuries to the hip.

How Do Injuries to the Hip Happen?

The activities of batting and throwing place high demands on the hips and put them at risk for injury. For instance with overhand pitching, during the wind up phase, a flexion and rotational force is placed on the hip. During the cocking phase, the hips are further apart and more loading stress is placed on them. As the pitcher moves from acceleration through the follow-through phases, the hips go through additional loading and rotational stresses. With Softball pitching, rotational forces occur in both the hips as the pitcher moves from a static standing position through the follow-through phase.

With Batting, during the stance or coiling phase, torque is placed on the back hip. As the batter moves through acceleration and follow-through, additional rotational forces are placed on the hips.

These are all normally occurring stresses that are just part of the games of baseball and softball. With normal stresses, there is a potential for injury. The potential for injury increases with the following risk factors:

1) Poor Biomechanics- Improper technique with any of the phases of batting, throwing or pitching can cause increase pressures and torque in the hip

2) Deficits in Mobility or Functional Movement- limitation in movement in any of the joints of the Lower body or Spine can contribute to increased problems in the hips

3) Deficits in Strength & Endurance- Weakness in the muscles of the hips or general "core" muscles can cause instability and result in increased pressures in the hips with activity. Fatigue can also play a part in these types of injuries- Arm fatigue is monitored for pitchers to alleviate the possibility of upper extremity problems, but we should also be monitoring lower body fatigue. If the lower body is weak or starts to break down, pitching accuracy will suffer and may be the first sign of fatigue.

4) Deficits in Proprioception/Balance- strength and flexibility are important, but being able to have balance on one leg and being able to shift weight and control motion is an important aspect in injury prevention. With poor balance, or awareness of body position, joints may move beyond their limits or may place undue strain on soft tissues that support them

5) Joint Abnormalities: abnormalities inside the joint may predispose players to certain types of joint "impingement" or pinching with movement. Repeated strain at these end ranges of motion can create pain and inflammation

Symptoms of Hip Injury

Symptoms of hip problems may be subtle at first and may just be tightness in the hip or buttock area. Other symptoms may include groin pain or aching into the thigh. As symptoms worsen, pain may be experienced at night or with the first few steps after sitting for a prolonged period. These symptoms are a sign that something is wrong in the area- the player should seek medical advice at the onset of these symptoms.

 

Screening for Risk Factors

A comprehensive baseball or softball program should include Pre-season screening, followed by preseason and off-season corrective actions to address any problems or deficits found during the screening process.

An ideal screen should include the following:

1) A regular pre-season Physical

2) Biomechanics Assessment- video assessment in slow motion during hitting/throwing or pitching

3) Flexibility & Strength screening

4) Screens of Specific Functional Movement Patterns

5) Balance & Stability Screens

The best injury treatment advice is to Avoid injury in the first place. Prevention strategies are the Key to keeping players healthy during their careers- if that is Little League Baseball...or all the way through the Majors.

Treatment for Hip Related Injuries

There are many conservative Physical Therapy treatments available for these types of hip injuries. Hands-on techniques, or manual therapy are an important part of rehabilitation as well as specific exercises to fix any muscle imbalances that may exist. Prior to returning to play, video biomechanical analysis is vital to look at throwing, pitching and hitting. This will help identify any mechanical or technique issues that could be causing problems in the hips.

Dr. Jennifer Allen is a Physical Therapist, Board Certified Clinical Specialist in the Areas of Orthopaedic and Sports Physical Therapy, as well as a Certified Hand Therapist. Sports Programming at Bodycentral Physical Therapy includes Biomechanics assessment, video movement assessment, Injury Prevention, and individual and team performance enhancement. For more information visit www.BodycentralPT.netor call 520-325-4002.


 

 

 

 


 

COMMON SOCCER INJURIES AND PREVENTION STRATEGIES

Added on March 28, 2015 by DrJAllen

COMMON SOCCER INJURIES AND PREVENTION STRATEGIES

COMMON SOCCER INJURIES AND PREVENTION STRATEGIES

Soccer is one of the most popular sports in the world, and is becoming more and more popular in the United States. With close to 27 million players in the United States and Canada alone, understanding injuries in this sport is vital. FIFA (Federation Internationale Football Association) began tracking injuries to soccer players in 1998. Since then several other organizations have followed suit and have begun taking a look at how many and what types of injuries are most prevalent in the sport.

A study by the Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) suggests that in professional soccer, a 25-player team can expect close to two injuries per player during any one season. Researchers state 70% of those injuries are lower extremity in nature, 15% are head and neck injuries, 8% are in the trunk/spine, and 7% are in the arms/upper extremity. Out of these injuries, they state 80% are player to player contact in nature and the other 20% are non-contact injuries.

Common injuries seen in the lower extremities include: MCL (Medial Collateral Ligament) Knee injuries, Achilles tendon and Ankle Injuries. ACL injuries are also a concern and are a serious injury, but are not seen as frequently as the other injuries listed. Common injuries to the head and neck include concussions (1/3 of all head injuries), and sprains, strains of the spine. Groin injuries are one of the most common muscle injuries in the sport. Injuries in this area can be adductor muscle strains, pelvic instability, or sports hernias. This can be a challenging injury to deal with as a player as many of these injuries turn into chronic issues.

Sports Physical Therapy & Injury Prevention

Rehabilitation of injuries should focus on a global approach to treatment. If the injury is to the knee, Therapists need to focus on not only the function specifically of the knee, but also on the flexibility, strength, and neuromuscular control of the entire lower extremity. They must also make sure there is stability in what we traditionally refer to as the "core", which includes the abdominals, spine, and pelvis. Treatment should include Biomechanical Analysis of the lower body, and can include video analysis of movement, which helps identify break down in mechanics which can result in re-injury.

Concussion return to play is a staged program aimed at returning the player safely to play as they progress through a series of stages. These include full rest, working on aerobic capacity, strength, and progression to sport specific play, returning to non contact activity, and then resuming full sport activity. Based on current recommendations, this process should be a minimum of seven days. At any of the stages, if symptoms return, the player does not progress to the next level.

Injury Prevention techniques involve many approaches:

-       FIFA has instituted the FIFA 11+ Injury Prevention Program that includes a warm-up, preventative exercises, balance and agility exercises

-       Dynamic Warm Ups- These are active warm ups aimed at getting the body ready for activity. We no longer advocate jogging, then doing passive stretching before an event. Dynamic warm ups improve performance as well as decrease injury rates

-       Biomechanical Analysis and Player Specific interventions- each individual player is different, and each player has weaknesses, tightness and biomechanical problems that may dispose him or her to injury. Using video analysis and functional screening tools, Therapists can identify areas of potential injury and intervene with a custom program for the individual player.

-       The medical profession has begun to gather helpful information in the area of concussion and is identifying risk factors for concussion. At this time, we are developing concussion prevention activities based on the most current research, which includes core strengthening, postural control retraining, and specific cervical spine strengthening.

References:

Ekstrand J, Hagglund M, Walden M. Epidemiology of muscle injuries in professional football (soccer). Am Journal Sport Med. 2011;39:1226-32.

Jones N. Update: Soccer injury and prevention, concussion, and chronic groin pain. Current Sports Medicine Reports. 2014: 319-325.

Dr. Jennifer Allen is a Physical Therapist, Board Certified Clinical Specialist in the Areas of Orthopaedic and Sports Physical Therapy, as well as a Certified Hand Therapist. Sports Programming at Bodycentral Physical Therapy includes Biomechanics assessment, video movement assessment, Injury Prevention, and individual and team performance enhancement. For more information visit www.BodycentralPT.netor call 520-325-4002.

 

 

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