Sport-Specific Training, Exercise & the Physical Therapist

Sport-Specific Training, Exercise & the Physical Therapist

**Members can stop into the SMART Clinic for a FREE injury assessment at any of the 5 Elite Sports Clubs locations.**

Several months ago we addressed the question “When Should You Consult a Physical Therapist?” Today we would like to discuss the role of physical therapy can play in your exercise program as well as the advantages working with a physical therapist connected to your health club offers.

Are there any pointers that a Physical Therapist can give you about executing your exercise program?

Yes, a Physical Therapist can help ensure each resistance exercise you perform is safe and effective by guiding you through proper form and technique as well as helping you determine the appropriate number of sets and reps for your fitness level. Proper technique during exercise will help prevent back, neck, shoulder and knee strain. If you need help making modifications to exercises, adjustments to fitness equipment, tennis form, swim stroke or a position in your group exercise class ask a physical therapist, Elite trainer and/or class instructor. No need to be shy, we love helping and we swear we don’t bite!

Is it best to find a Physical Therapist that is also connected with your health club or does this matter?

Working with one of the Physical Therapists at your health club is advantageous for several reasons:

  • Safe transition into an exercise routine at the gym. Working through Elite Sports Clubs locations gives us first-hand knowledge of all the available equipment as well as the types of exercises in each group ex class.
  • Collaboration with Personal Trainers and instructions. This close working, collaborative relationship allows us to communicate any and all limitations, restrictions and/or injuries you may have with club staff to develop appropriate exercise  modifications and progressions.
  • If you’re unsure of or having difficulty with a particular exercise  a physical therapist is always nearby ready to help.

Should someone active in sports, like tennis, or basketball etc., consult a Physical Therapist? Are there particular sports that benefit more from consulting with a Physical Therapist?

Yes, we can help prevent sports injuries related to muscular compensation and overuse. When training for a particular sport certain muscle groups tend to become more developed than others. For example, if you’re an avid tennis player, the muscles on your dominant side are likely much more developed than those on your non-dominant side – we call this a muscular imbalance. Your body reacts to these imbalances by making your stronger, dominant side work even harder to compensate for your weaker non-dominant side.  Over time, the increased stress and strain placed on your muscles, joints and ligaments during compensation can lead to an increased risk of injury.

  • If you’re injured or recovering from an injury we also help provide bracing and taping solutions to provide additional support while you train for and play your sport.
  • If you’ve suffered from sports injuries in the past you’ll certainly want to consult with a Physical Therapist as you’re more susceptible to reinjury.
  • If you’re involved in sports with higher than average injury rates such as; skiing, basketball and sports that demand high velocity arm movements such as tennis, volleyball or baseball. A Physical Therapist can work with you to help minimize your risk of injury in these sports.

Give some examples of when someone should see a Physical Therapist during their exercise or sports regiment. For example, if their knees or back start to ache during a workout. Give some solutions to these concerns.

Knee and back pain is a common problem, especially this time of year as people are ready to get outside and back in shape.  Here’s an example of when you should see a Physical Therapist during your exercise or sport regiment:

  • If during or after your workout you experience any discomfort or swelling.  This could be due to improper technique, exercise intensity that was too aggressive or inadequate recovery time between workouts. An evaluation with a Physical Therapist should reveal factors that lead to the injury such as; inadequate flexibility, range of motion, strength or coordination.  After evaluation and diagnosis the Physical Therapist should be able to treat to reduce inflammation and swelling followed by a treatment plan developed to promote recovery.

Remember, members, we’re always here to help, educate and rehabilitate so you can get back to what you love doing! Stop into a SMART Clinic for your FREE injury assessment at any of the 5 Elite Sports Clubs locations.

 By Kurt Alt, PT. and Sandy Moloney, MPT of Elite’s SMART Clinic

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