Evidence-Based Physical Therapy – What You Need to Know

 

In physical therapy, accuracy, and consistency are of the utmost importance. To be effective, therapists tailor each PT program to the needs of a given patient. Those needs, of course, vary widely. Still, most situations that require PT can be grouped into existing categories with corresponding PT programs. And one of the key ways that many of today’s practices are ensuring consistency and efficacy is by basing therapy on authoritative information. Continue reading “Evidence-Based Physical Therapy – What You Need to Know”

Do Active Seniors Need A Personal Trainer Or Physical Therapist?

It’s important to maintain exercise, especially as you age. As physical therapists, you may be seeing more active seniors looking to stay fit after injuries or orthopedic surgery.

But active seniors who are keen on keeping their bodies fit may be signing up for gym classes or doing routines that are no longer safe. Think of all those Zumba classes or senior weight training classes. Who knows if the instructors are aware of their medical conditions and past injuries.

This can lead to serious injury. Continue reading “Do Active Seniors Need A Personal Trainer Or Physical Therapist?”

An Introduction to Stroke Rehabilitation

On average, someone has a stroke every 40 seconds in the United States. It’s the third leading cause of long-term disability, and the path to rehabilitation can be an arduous one. Question is, when a stroke hits home, what happens next? Continue reading “An Introduction to Stroke Rehabilitation”

Training Seniors Using Unweighting

There’s a harsh reality that we all face as human beings: the older we get, the less capable we are of doing the things we used to do with ease. A walk up the hill can leave us winded, it takes us longer to recover, and exercise brings with it an increased risk of injury.

Gone are the days when mobility and stability were taken for granted.

But it doesn’t have to be this way! Many of these challenges have less to do with old age and more to do with the physical inactivity that often accompanies old age. Exercise, though, can be one of the keys to healthy living for seniors. That’s because a regular exercise regimen can lead to improvements in cardiovascular health and blood pressure, bone strength and weight control. Other benefits include improved sleep cycles, better mental health, and better balance overall.

Still, many senior citizens find the prospect of regular exercise daunting. For this, we call on our good friend unweighting. Read on to learn how unweighting technology can help bridge the gap between seniors and regular exercise. Continue reading “Training Seniors Using Unweighting”

Do Active Seniors Need a Personal Trainer or Physical Therapist?

It’s important to maintain exercise, especially as you age. As physical therapists, you may be seeing more active seniors looking to stay fit after injuries or orthopedic surgery.

But active seniors who are keen on keeping their bodies fit may be signing up for gym classes or doing routines that are no longer safe. Think of all those Zumba classes or senior weight training classes. Who knows if the instructors are aware of their medical conditions and past injuries. Continue reading “Do Active Seniors Need a Personal Trainer or Physical Therapist?”

Age, Obesity, And Arthritis: How To Help Patients Overcome All 3

Remember when normal wear and tear was the main culprit for knee osteoarthritis?

With a growing obesity epidemic, joint degradation—and pain—often come from excessive weight, according to a September 2010 study in research journal Current Opinion in Rheumatology. This is particularly true in 40- to 60-year-old age group of men and women.

The trifecta of age, obesity, and osteoarthritis is actually now a triple threat, which can rack your patients’ lives with chronic pain and make your job doubly hard. Continue reading “Age, Obesity, And Arthritis: How To Help Patients Overcome All 3”

Hospital Associated Deconditioning: Resistance Isn’t Futile!

It’s a well-worn story: grandma or grandpa has a fall or perhaps comes down with the flu, and this acute incident leads to a “quick” hospital stay. What begins as a seemingly minor mishap, however, can quickly snowball into a nightmarish scenario of major functional decline as a result of hospital-associated deconditioning, or HAD.  Continue reading “Hospital Associated Deconditioning: Resistance Isn’t Futile!”

Losing 70 Pounds to Keep a Promise

 

Meet Candace Brown

Click to see an interview with Candace and her therapist Susan from the Central Vermont Medical Center

Candace Brown promised her late husband, Walter Brown, that she would run the Boston Marathon.  Before he died, Walter had served as the official starter for the race for 22 years.

In order to keep her promise, Candace used the AlterG Anti-Gravity Treadmill to train for the 26.2 mile race, and in the process lost over 70lbs and reversed her diabetes. Continue reading “Losing 70 Pounds to Keep a Promise”

Benefits of Exercise for Seniors with Mobility Issues from Parkinson’s Disease

Parkinson’s disease is an incurable, degenerative neurological condition that causes mobility issues due to excessive tremors, muscle stiffness, and impaired balance. Research shows that a regular exercise program can improve mobility and improve a patient’s quality of life if they suffer from Parkinson’s. This article discusses an exercise program for Parkinson’s patients, but as always you should consult with your physician, physical therapist, or healthcare professional before developing your own exercise regimen if you have specific medical considerations. Continue reading “Benefits of Exercise for Seniors with Mobility Issues from Parkinson’s Disease”

Helping Patients Overcome Aging, Obesity and Arthritis with Exercise

Remember when normal wear and tear was the main culprit for knee osteoarthritis?

With a growing obesity epidemic, joint degradation—and pain—often come from excessive weight, according to a September 2010 study in research journal Current Opinion in Rheumatology. This is particularly true in 40- to 60-year-old age group of men and women.

The trifecta of age, obesity, and osteoarthritis is actually now a triple threat, which can rack your patients’ lives with chronic pain and make your job doubly hard.

However, there is good news for both you and your patients.

Older, overweight patients with knee osteoarthritis can curtail knee pain and improve joint function through regular exercise on partial weight-bearing equipment, says a January 2015 study in the Clinical Journal of Sports Medicine.

The study reveals that using the Anti-Gravity Treadmill as part of a regular walking program makes day-to-day activities easier and also increases thigh muscle strength around the weakened knee.

Here’s how to help your aging obese patients eliminate pain from knee osteoarthritis and get back to daily living.

Arthritis Exercise Benefits
Exercise plays a key role in easing joint pain and improving functionality for knee osteoarthritis sufferers, reports a June 2013 study in the medical journal Osteoarthritis and Cartilage.

However, the wrong types of exercise—particularly for those who are older and overweight—can lead to setbacks.

The wrong kind of exercise can cause patients to:

  • Worsen joint symptoms
  • Fail at adherence
  • Drop out at higher rates
  • See little impact on daily living activities

Source: Clinical Journal of Sports Medicine

Aquatic and harness-based therapies, for example, can cause abnormal muscle activation and gait patterns, along with excessive pressure on certain body parts.

However, by taking advantage of lower body positive pressure technology in the AlterG, the lower body receives uniform air pressure. This allows patients to walk pain-free, go further, and exercise for longer periods of time.

Weight Loss Exercise Benefits
For aging obese patients, exercise plays another really important role: weight loss. But it works best with the AlterG Weight-Loss Protocol.

A comprehensive diet and exercise plan reduces inflammation in the body and maximizes the body’s biomechanical abilities, says a September 2013 study in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Improvements included:

  • Average greater weight loss
  • Less knee pain
  • Faster walking speed
  • Better physical health-related quality of life
  • Less inflammation in the body

Adult Exercise Benefits

Exercise may seem counterintuitive for aging adults, since they’re more prone to falls.

Certain factors make this patient group more vulnerable, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, including:

  • Lower body weakness
  • Vitamin D deficiency
  • Trouble with walking
  • Balance problems
  • Use of medications

Add to that list weight issues and osteoarthritis knee pain, and you have a dangerous mix.

Low-impact walking is a safer mode of exercise, even for aging adults with osteoarthritis knee pain, says the Clinical of Journal Sports Medicine.

Since the Anti-Gravity Treadmill uses differential air pressure to lessen body weight—and impact on the joints—while walking, your patient’s weight is fully supported, reducing any fall risks. The only help that may be required is getting patients in and out of the AlterG itself.

Obesity, age, and arthritis all present specific problems, and together can make treatment difficult. Talk to a representative about how to make it easier to help this growing population.