Physical Therapy and Injury Prevention
By Jordan Ribota PT, DPT, DN Cert.
AzOPT Buckeye Physical Therapist
Most people think of attending physical therapy following an injury or surgery. However, physical therapy can also be best utilized in preventative care. Just like you see your primary care physician annually for a health check-up, see a licensed physical therapist annually for a mobility check-up!
During a mobility check-up, a physical therapist will identify any limitations and dysfunctions before they become larger and more costly issues. For example, we can find strength and mobility deficits to avoid joint injuries or balance deficits that may result in a major fall. By identifying these early, we can often prevent it from happening by creating a personalized plan of care to strengthen and improve those deficits.
Athletes commonly utilize physical therapists. Every professional athlete is screened for injuries and deficits before each season. Whether you are an amateur, recreational, or high school athlete – shouldn’t you be screened prior to each season? If you’re in a running sport, think about what you would do differently if you know a lower extremity deficit could potentially lead to an ankle sprain, meniscus injury or a dreaded ACL tear? Or if you’re an overhead throwing athlete and need a proper balance of arm strength and arm mobility to avoid throwing injuries? Just the smallest of deficits could lead to major complications that has real financial and time loss. A preventative screen could identify these deficits in order to address them before they become problems.
AzOPT offers FREE movement assessments at all of our locations. During this screen, you will meet with a licensed physical therapist who will ask questions about your activity level in order to appropriately select the best tests. We will measure your range of motion, flexibility, strength, balance, and specific muscles and joints in order to identify any pain, limitation, or dysfunction. Based on these results, we will develop a personalized plan of care that may include further physical therapy, home exercises, and/or a referral to an orthopedic specialist.
Contact an AzOPT location near you to schedule your FREE movement assessment before an injury or surgery derails your year!