“I pledge allegiance to the patients of Empire Sports Physical Therapy
and to the values on which it stands.
Many treatments for different injuries, comprehensive
with effectiveness and individual care for all”
I believe that the best way to be a Physical Therapist is to actually CARE FOR MY PATIENTS. I believe that is the best way to be part of the community and help people in life...not just in there injuries
I am constantly asked ,“What’s the best exercise for back pain?” “What can I do for this neck ache?” “Can you give me an exercise to fix my knee clicking?” The answer is “Yes, I can, but I can’t be sure it’s going to help.”
If I gave everyone an exercise to answer these questions, I’d just be GUESSING…albeit an educated guess, but still a guess.
Let me answer some of your questions about what I mean:
“So, why do you say it would be a guess?”
Each and every patient I see has had a different journey to come see me. Everyone will be going on their own way when they leave our office.
As cryptic as it sounds, it’s true. There is so much information needed to come to a diagnosis that a quick and general answer to these questions can be a disservice and may actually make you worse.
There are minimum 10 things that cause sciatica (which is just one of 7 main presentations of back pain), a hundred muscles that effect your neck, and an entire leg that effects and contributes to your knee clicking.
As someone who has spent his entire adult life not only helping people eliminate their aches and pains, but helping people like you get back to the activities they love with a minimal risk of re-injury and minimal downtime, I have come to the conclusion that quick fixes don’t help anyone…not you, not me…no one.
So, guessing what to do to make a permanent difference in your life without properly assessing everything that got you here and that is going on now is something that can make you worse, or only help enough to make you think you good enough that you don’t go deeper into fixing the real problem.
“So, how do you fix the real problem?”
Now, that’s a little more complicated of an answer…
It takes TIME—time to listen to how this problem happened, how long it has been going on, when it bothers you, and what the problem is stopping you from doing in real life…time to do a thorough examination to determine a real clinical diagnosis…time to explain to you what is going on, what will fix it and how long it will take to fix your specific problem…time doing hands on care…time to give the appropriate exercises and supervise the correct form…and time to fully strengthen to not allow it to come back—all with an expert clinician that will give you all the time that you need.
That expert clinician needs to treat YOU…not your diagnosis, not what the textbook says, not just what the research says…YOU and everything that that comes with. Your history, your goals, other injuries, how you deal with the problem and all the physical deficits that caused the injury and were caused by the injury. All of which, effect the exact plan of care that you need.
Some people need to be stretched, some don’t. Some need to be strengthened, some don’t. Most need a combination of stretching, strengthening, stability training, balance training, postural correction, and many more…but ALL need to be treated like an individual.
You and the person next to you in the office can be coming to our office for the same body part, but should be doing completely different things.
“How do you know what’s right for me?”
Through the years I’ve been a PT, all the time spent with patients, numerous studies read, and loads of excellent clinicians opinions taken, I have come to one conclusion on how to figure out what is right for you…
…Do the exam and put all the information together to find the best treatment for you.
Yes, follow the exact plan taught in PT school…No, there is no shortcut.
We discuss the history, check the range of motion, check the strength, do special tests, and watch you move…then we take the results and find the problems…and fix the problems.
If during your exam we find that you are limited in your ability to lift your arm overhead, we work on that…can’t bend your knee to squat down to the bottom shelf, we give you more motion. Whatever the exam tells us is how we find what’s right for you.
Then, as your treatment progresses, things change…you gain that motion or strength, are able to walk better, or can bend down better, so we adjust the program to what is now right for you.
“And how many visits do I need?”
Another…that depends kind of question.
The number of visits total is completely up to what we find on the exam. Then, during the the course of your rehab, you may progress faster than was originally planned, and it may change.
The number of visits you need is dependent on what’s found during your first visit, how severe the symptoms are, how long they have been going on, how quickly your motion and strength come back, and your goals. If you want to run the marathon, it’s probably going to take longer than someone who wants to go up stairs without pain.
It also depends on you…how well you continue to progress independently with your home program, you make changes to your daily activities to correct the underlying cause of the problem, and your tolerance to treatment in the office with us.
“So, what you’re saying is you don’t know?”
Yes and No.
Yes, I don’t know what exercise to give you based on a general complaint or a diagnosis.
You are MUCH MORE than a diagnosis or a complaint of pain. You have something that is hurting and limiting your ability to LIVE WELL.
And No, if I spend some time with you discussing what the problem is, what the problem is stopping you from doing and assessing how you move, I can develop a plan that is JUST FOR YOU! We will only ever give you information that we are sure will make a difference in your life. We are here to help YOU…not a general injury, ache or pain.
So we as a company and neighbor always treat you as an individual, our neighbor, and our friend, and give you ONLY the types of treatments that will help YOU, because you are the only YOU.