Welcome to Advance Physical Therapy, Inc. Newsletter

Happy Fall! As soon as September ends and October begins, we are "roller coastering" towards the holiday season. Once again, there never seems to be enough time to get everything completed. The rush and stress of the holidays can bring on more stress and less time for ourselves to decompress. The odd thing is that this common theme is a viscous cycle that we fall into year round. Our mental stress leads to cumulative strain on our bodies that we are not aware of until it's too late.

We have a solution that has been effective in minimizing our clients' risk for injuries while maximizing their mental well being. Our annual pre-injury and preventive screening program provides clients the answers to avoid potential injury pitfalls. In this article, we will highlight our preventive screening program, preventive fall program and vitamin absorption strategies.

To Your Health,

Advance Physical Therapy, Inc.
Benefits from Your Annual Physical Therapy Check up
Why would you need an annual exam by your physical therapist? Shouldn't I wait until I have a problem?

Consider these cases:
  • Robert and his wife Amanda just moved from the East Coast after having their first child and both are interested in resuming a workout routine now that their lives are settling down into a normal routine.
Or this one:
  • Sharon finished a cycle of chemotherapy after a cancer was removed from her right lung. She is eager to begin a resistance exercise program to regain muscle mass.
Or this one:
  • 45 year old Tom is frustrated that the last several attempts to get back into an exercise routine at his gym have been thwarted by injuries-first Achilles tendonitis, then a herniated disc. He is wondering if he can ever get back to running and lifting weights like he used to.

Each case points to the uncertainty many of us have about whether our bodies, or more particularly, our movement systems, are ready for the sports and activities we select.

In this article, we will list and describe some of  the reasons why an annual exam performed  by your physical therapist is a smart idea whose time has come.

1. Movement analysis
Physical therapists are experts in movement analysis. They are uniquely qualified to examine the components of the movement system, including muscular, skeletal, neurological, and cardiopulmonary systems. They understand what is required for any activity and can quickly and definitively determine where the "weak links" are in the kinetic chain.

2. Pre-injury or preventive screening due to trauma
The outcome of an annual exam would likely result in the identification of a movement error. For example, you are a new participant in "Body Pump" at the gym and heeding the advice of the instructor to start slowly, but how do you know when it's okay to step it up? In this case, the physical therapist will test the strength and readiness of your rotator cuff and shoulder blade muscles, gluteals, quadriceps and ankles. All are areas that are commonly weak or overwhelmed by other muscles in a group exercise class, setting one up for an injury.

3. Pre-injury or preventive screening due to improper static positioning
You will learn how to move properly, which not only makes exercise more efficient and less injurious, but it will change the way you think about positioning yourself for work, too. For example, we know that the discs of  lumbar spine withstand tremendous compressive forces while in a sitting position. During your annual check-up, your physical therapist can help you rethink your positioning with the intent of delaying age-related spinal degeneration, or at least easing that morning stiffness!

4. Pre-injury or preventive screening due to improper movement patterns
Following up on the last point, the intent of the annual check-up is to teach you movement strategies that protect your joints from excessive wear and tear. Knowing how to squat, bend over, climb stairs and hang up clothes, for instance, teaches movement patterns. Examples of pathologies that result from improper use of the joints in these simple movements include herniated disc, osteoarthritis of the knee, shoulder impingement and rotator cuff tears.

At Advance Physical Therapy, we believe that everyone, starting with the very young, can benefit from an annual exam. Whether you're having a problem or not, let us "check up" on you! Give us a call today and we'll make sure you are ready for the activities of tomorrow!
 Is Your Body Absorbing Vitamins?

You’re health conscious. You’ve got protein powder, fish oil, COQ10, a daily multi-vitamin, etc. You take these supplements every day; they don’t just sit in your kitchen cabinet. But how much of these supplements are you actually absorbing and how much are literally going down the toilet?

There are two main factors that affect the way your body absorbs nutrients. The good news is both can be altered by your actions.

  1. The type and quality of supplements you take.
  2. How you consume them. (intervals at which you take the supplements during the day, dosage amounts, etc.)
For example, whey protein, the most common ingredient in protein powders, can only be absorbed at a rate of 10 grams per hour. Furthermore, it takes 1.5 hours for the protein to pass through the section of intestines that can actually absorb it. So that 22 gram protein shake you drank for lunch, only gave you 15 grams.

ABC's of Fall Prevention
Happy National Falls Prevention Awareness Month! Did you know that falls are the leading cause of injury in adults age 65 and older?  It is also one of the most costly causes of hospitalizations for men and women combined according to a 2012 study conducted by the CDC. However, the good news is that falls can be prevented. While falling is common, it does not have to be an inevitable part of aging. You can begin preventing falls now by incorporating these strategies of Fall Prevention into your life.
Be aware and alert of your environment. According to the National Institute on Aging, 55% of falls among older adults occur in the home. Take a moment to survey your home during the day to target high traffic areas that may increase your risk of falling. A sample of quick fixes are:
  • Keep dark areas of the home well lit with wall plugins
  • Replace tables that may be in the middle of your path and loose area rugs that may catch your feet
  • Install grab bars in slippery areas like bathrooms, showers, and toilets
B-Balance and Mobility
Talk to us about what you can do to improve your strength and balance. Learn how you can incorporate a safe exercise and balance program into your daily routine. By targeting large muscle groups in your legs and core (abdominals and back), you can improve how your body maintains stability and support. Strengthening these muscles won’t only prevent falls, but may also enhance your daily activities like walking your dog, sitting and standing, or even going to the grocery store. A sample of home exercises include:
  • Supported squats
  • Seated or standing marches
  • Heel raises
  • Step ups and step downs
Call your healthcare provider to assess your risk of falls. Because the cause of falls are multi-factorial, report to your doctor about any changes in your vision, hearing, and or medications, as these may contribute to increased risk of falling. Your fear of falling is real, but it does not mean you are alone or that you should live with this fear. Share your fall experiences and talk about how to reduce your fear of falls with your physical therapist and your doctor. Though aging is a natural part of life, taking steps now to prevent falls can ensure a long and healthier one for many years to come.

Our physical therapy treatment plan integrates a comprehensive fall and balance program. Let us know how we can help develop a program that works for you!

Reference: National Institute on Aging, CDC, National Council on Aging

Is Your Body Absorbing Vitamins? continued...

Vitamin and mineral absorption can also be hindered by the combination you take them in. Too much of a specific supplement can result in your body not absorbing other vitamins or minerals. For example, too much vitamin A can block absorption of vitamin K. Furthermore, Calcium competes with Iron in the absorption arena, even with normal doses.

So, how can we counteract these negative effects? For whey protein, you can do a couple things to ensure that you are getting your money’s worth.

  1. You can spread out your consumption of the protein powder so that you are only drinking 15 grams of protein every 1.5 hours.
  2. You can start taking digestive enzymes to help your intestines absorb that critical protein.

It’s a little more complicated for supplements, the strategy changes depending on which ones you are taking. For example Calcium absorption is increased by vitamin D and the consumption of food. Also, brands that have been independently tested and certified either by USP or NSF actually have the stated amount of the vitamin per dosage.

These are just a few examples of how you can efficiently take supplements. A little education can go a long way, there are countless absorption strategies depending on what your specific needs are. It’s just a matter of finding out what works for you.

Reference from Natural Partners

If we can answer any questions or field any topics of interest regarding  physical therapy, health and wellness or about our programs, please contact us. We'd love to hear from you.
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2944 Broadway Street                         1208 E. Arques Avenue Suite #105
Redwood City, CA 94062                     Sunnyvale, CA 94085

(W) 650.261.0330                                 (W) 408.720.8225
(F) 650.261.0331                                   (F) 408.720.8755

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