Blog

Lift Weights Without Injury

Posted by on Mar 3, 2016 in Blog | 0 comments

Now that winter has set in it is a good time to focus on strength training at home or at the gym. I was inspired to write this yesterday when I was at the gym lifting and was watching other people workout (or try to). I noticed that many people who are working out clearly have had no instruction on technique and are doing more harm than good to their bodies. Here are some basic points when it comes to weight lifting: 1. Posture is critical! During all lifts it is important to engage the core muscles in order to protect the spine. 2. All lifts should be done slowly and controlled. 3. All lifts should allow the muscles to elongate and contract fully; short, partial lifts are not effective. 4. Trying to combine multiple movements into one lift is a recipe for disaster! One needs to know the primary muscles used in a lift and focus on those. 5. A good warm up is important in reducing risk of injury. 6. Heavy lifts are not as effective as controlled lifts. 7. Always strengthen opposing muscles; back vs chest etc. A good rule of thumb is that for every lift that pushes there should be a lift that pulls. 8. Three sets of 8-10 are most effective to produce muscle growth with the last few reps difficult to do while maintaining good form. Muscle can be gained at any age but it is important that the older one is the more careful one is when lifting. Don’t get in a hurry and get sloppy with form as your next workout will be with your Physical Therapist or Chiropractor! When in doubt spend a few dollars and get instruction from a certified trainer; it will be money well...

Read More

Beat the Winter Blues

Posted by on Feb 9, 2016 in Blog | 0 comments

Beating the Winter Blues Here we are in the middle of winter! This can be a time of diminished activity due to cold, icy weather and early sunset. It is important to keep moving during this season or else we may be prone to increased stiffness, pain and even depression. Last month we talked about the importance of exercise for overall good health; this month we will continue that idea but will focus on the topic of degenerative arthritis. As we age our joints become stiffer due to a decrease in joint fluid. This decrease is a natural part of aging but is accelerated by decreased joint movement and mobility. Joint fluid is replenished by the literal pumping motion of joints as they move. It makes sense then that a joint that is not moved will lose fluid more quickly. If you have degenerative joint disease especially in the knees, hips or spine you will want to keep moving. Good exercises that are low load on the joints include: swimming, elliptical machines, cycling, rowing and brisk walking. Generally, any exercise that moves major joints through a full range of motion without impact are good. If you are not sure about a particular exercise talk to your Doctor or Therapist. These exercises should be performed for at least 30 minutes 5 times per week at an appropriate heart rate (see last months blog). Stretching is also critical for good joint mobility and is best performed after you exercise for 30 minutes. Get good instruction on this as you do not want to risk an injury. If joints seem stuck and hard to move a visit with a Chiropractor or Physical Therapist would be in order. Exercise is proven to combat depression by increasing endorphins and a general feeling of well being. This is obvious to anyone who has been confined to bed can tell; it is much better to be moving than sitting still for prolonged periods! So this winter get away from the TV which is depressing in and of itself and off of the couch for just a few minutes a day and move your body. You will feel and perform much better and will literally slow aging in the process! Winter is not that...

Read More

New Year, Better You!

Posted by on Jan 25, 2016 in Blog | 0 comments

New Year – New You! 2016 is going to be a great year! It is going to be a year of getting into shape mentally and physically for us at Performance Plus Rehabilitation Centers. Our core belief that a healthy mind is necessary for a healthy body which in turn produces a healthy life and community begins as will this article: with an emphasis on the mind. I am challenging you as well to make 2016 the year that you do not allow the past or the perceived future to steal your focus on the NOW. We must learn to live in the present with all of our energy and attention. This means that we are focused 100% on what we are doing whether it be our work, spending time with our families and friends, and every routine task of our daily lives. I am also challenging you to be as physically fit as possible and this begins with a basic understanding of the three primary areas of fitness: cardiovascular fitness, strength and flexibility. Cardiovascular fitness comes from doing exercises that increase the heart rate for prolonged periods. Cardio exercises such as swimming, running, cycling, rowing and cross country skiing are good examples of effective exercises. To get the most benefit these types of exercises should be performed 5 times per week for 30 minutes. A good rule of thumb is to perform these exercises at 65-75% of your maximum heart rate which is roughly computed by subtracting your age from 220. High intensity intervals are also effective but should only be done once a good base of fitness is built up. Strength training should be done by absolutely everyone over the age of 30 to minimize the effects of aging such as muscle loss, bone density loss and slowing of the metabolism. Strength training should be done 2-3 times per week for 30 minutes. Body weight exercises are effective if weights are not available. Always remember the core and focus on keeping it strong! Stretching exercises also should be performed after doing a cardio or strength workout. Stretching keeps joints and muscles healthy and flexible even as we get older. Before you start any new exercise program be sure that you get a checkup from your Physician as well as Chiropractor to be sure that you do not have a condition that would be aggravated by exercise. I also recommend getting professional help in setting up an exercise program if you have never exercised before. I know that 2016 will be your best year ever if you choose to focus on the now and decide to become physically fit – there are no negative side effects...

Read More

Holiday Health Tips

Posted by on Dec 15, 2015 in Blog | 0 comments

The most wonderful time of year is here! It is a time of celebration and sharing fond memories but, did you know holiday related injuries are on the rise? Approximately 250 injuries occur each day during the holiday season according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC). The most frequent injuries reported were falls, lacerations, and back strains. While many of us are compiling lists and checking them twice PPRC has compiled one of its own. This list includes tips for injury prevention and wellness. Dr. Aaron Jones, DPT, and Director of Physical Therapy at PPRC states “the most common cause of low back pain is due to inactivity (sitting, lying, etc.) rather than physical activity in our modern society and happens more so during holiday events”. He also sees many issues related to poor lifting mechanics. Dr. Jones offers the following tips to combat low back pain: 1. Try to stand and move around once per hour. A good habit to get into is standing and moving around at each commercial break. 2. Perform simple standing back extensions once symptoms begin, not before they become unbearable. Extensions also help to reduce the pressure in the back of our spine that can lead to worsening conditions. Simple standing back extension details below: a. Place your hands on your hip (in standing). b. Lean backwards at the waist to the point where discomfort just begins or until our balance becomes unstable. c. Repeat this movement 10 times or more and you will begin to experience relief. If in fact you do suffer from a holiday related injury this season call PPRC so we can help relieve your pain and assist you on your path to wellness; in the meantime have a happy, safe holiday! PPRC is now on Twitter follow us @PerfPlusRehab for valuable...

Read More

Diabetes and Physical Therapy

Posted by on Nov 12, 2015 in Blog | 0 comments

Diabetes is a serious disease affecting millions of people in the United States. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), 29.1 Million people or 9.3% of the U.S. population have been diagnosed with diabetes. The CDC defines Diabetes as a group of diseases marked by high levels of blood glucose resulting from problems in how insulin is produced, how insulin works, or both. People with diabetes may develop serious complications such as heart disease, stroke, kidney failure, nerve disease, blindness or premature death. The CDC says most adults diagnosed with the disease (about 95%) have Type 2 diabetes. The risk for developing type 2 diabetes is associated with older age, obesity, family history of diabetes, history of gestational diabetes, impaired glucose metabolism, physical inactivity, and race/ethnicity. In addition to the serious health risks associated with diabetes, the disease also costs our nation billions of dollars in direct and indirect medical costs. According to the CDC, the estimated cost to the United States in 2012 in direct medical costs was 176 billion dollars. Indirect medical costs which include disability, work loss and premature death resulted in an additional cost of 69 billion dollars. Physical therapy can help diabetic patients obtain a higher quality of life and manage the disease better. Aaron Jones, Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) with Performance Plus Rehabilitation Center (PPRC) says “Diabetes is a disease that affects the whole body and can leave a relatively healthy individual nearly debilitated due to diabetic foot pain, balance deficits and overall fatigue. Diabetic patients often lose sensation in their feet and without proper sensation in their feet they are at a heightened risk of falls, which is a leading cause of death in older adults.” PPRC has developed a diabetic physical therapy program to help patients deal with these issues. The program uses several modalites to treat the pain associated with diabetic neuropathy including balance training, proprioceptive training, and peripheral nerve stimulation to increase circulation. Dr. Jones says, “Our program has helped many, many patients get relief from pain and improve their overall quality of life. After going through our diabetic program most people are more independent and capable of maintaining that level for an extended period of time.” For more information contact Performance Plus Rehabilitation Center at...

Read More

Chiropractic care and physical therapy work together to relieve pain

Posted by on Oct 26, 2015 in Blog | 0 comments

October is National Chiropractic Health Month as well as National Physical Therapy Month. Probably just a coincidence but I think that it goes well with how treatment for back pain should be viewed. Most low back pain is due to joint dysfunction caused by a lack of proper joint alignment, flexibility, strength and usually a combination of them all. With this in mind if someone has low back pain the combination of Chiropractic and Physical Therapy works well by addressing all of the causes. Also with this in mind it becomes easier to know how to prevent low back pain. October is a month when people tend to do fall cleanup such as leaf removal, tree trimming and all sorts of activities that require bending, lifting and twisting. Lets break down the causes of low back pain and how to prevent them. Alignment: It is critical that when bending and lifting we slow down and focus on good core alignment by contracting our abdominal muscles prior to the bend and lift. This helps keep the spinal joints in their proper alignment. Always try to bend the knees to lower the body instead of flexing the spine. Flexibility: Joint flexibility is important in all ages but especially as we age. Take the time to properly stretch the hips and low back frequently; if you do not know how to properly stretch, take the time and learn from a Physical Therapist or experienced Personal Trainer. Strength: Proper core muscle strength is critical to support the joints of the low back. Now is a good time to start a core exercise program; again if you are not sure how to properly strengthen your core muscles get professional help as improper exercise can cause more harm than good. I hope that as fall weather gets nice and you become more active you take time to consider your back health. Nothing worse than watching the leaves turn from inside your house because you injured your low back and cant get off the...

Read More