Physical Therapy Services

Physical therapists, under the referral and medical direction of physicians, work closely with patients to aid in the recovery process after an injury or surgery. Using a wide variety of equipment and therapeutic modalities, they can help develop a plan for patients to improve long-term health and rehabilitate injured bones, muscles and tendons. Reducing pain, restoring mobility and improving overall levels of function are physical therapists’ top priorities.

A successful PT regimen will not only hasten the healing and rehab process for an injured or repaired part of the body, but it should also ultimately help strengthen the site to lessen the likelihood of future injury. The goal is to eventually return a patient to a similar level of activity as they experienced prior to injury. Initially, a physical therapist might employ modalities aimed at reducing swelling and gradually restoring range of motion. Later, proprioception exercises allow a patient to restore function and balance as they “re-learn” the sense of how neighboring muscles and bones work in tandem with the rehabilitated part of their body. For an ankle or knee injury, as an example, this might mean balance exercises standing on one foot that help improve coordination and strength.

Campbell Clinic specializes in orthopaedic and sports medicine physical therapy services, including spine rehabilitation, sports injury rehabilitation, post-operative care, aquatic therapy, orthotics/splinting, pediatric and geriatric orthopaedic rehabilitation and work injury management. Physical therapy is offered at all five of our locations (Germantown, Medical Center, Southaven, Spine Center and Collierville).

Importance of Core Strength in Runners

Just how important is core strength for runners? Very. With running season gearing up, it’s important to note the proper techniques while training for a race.

An individual’s core provides stability for the entire body. More stability leads to less of a risk for injury. Core muscles activate before any physical movement can actually happen. Those with stronger core muscles are likely to create stronger, more precise movements, leading to better overall athletic performance.

Development of core muscles all starts with breathing. While running and exercising, you should practice breathing deeply into your diaphragm, instead of practicing short breaths through your chest. Correctly breathing through your diaphragm will cause your belly to extend. This increases muscle tension, which leads to a strengthened core.

Planks “Crunches” work out your outer abdominal muscles, and therefore will not do the trick in strengthening inner core muscles. You need exercises that will build strength deep in your core. Practice the five core strengthening exercises listed below regularly to ensure heightened athletic performance and increased core strength.

  1. Squat with Pulldown: Attach a band overhead. Hold both handles. Step back so you feel tension in the band when arms are outstretched. Keeping arms straight, inhale as you lower into a squat. Exhale and lift your pelvic floor. Continue to exhale as you return to standing while pulling the handles to your hips. Inhale and again squat, returning your arms to the starting position. Repeat five to 10 times.
  2. Ski Jump: Stand with neutral posture. Lean forward from your ankles and shift your weight to your forefoot. Feel your rib cage glide forward. Your pelvic floor should remain untucked. Exhale and inhale. Repeat a few times.
  3. Towel Pull: Stand with neutral posture, and place your right foot on a towel. Inhale and feel your belly rise and pelvic floor soften as you slide your right foot out. Exhale and lift your pelvic floor. As you continue to exhale, pull the towel back. Repeat five to 10 times on each side.
  4. Weight Shift: Begin on all fours. Inhale and feel your belly expand and pelvic floor soften. Exhale as you lift your pelvic floor. Continue to exhale as you rock forward, sending your shoulders past your wrists. If you get an exaggeration of the curve in your lower back, you’ve gone too far. Reset with an inhale. Repeat five to 10 times.
  5. Reverse Jumping Jack: Stand with feet wide and arms over-head, forming an X. Inhale; feel your belly rise and pelvic floor soften. Exhale as you lift your pelvic floor. Continue to exhale; jump your feet together and lower your arms. Step back out; repeat five to 10 times. Progress to full-speed jacks.

For more information and to see demonstrations of these exercises, click here.

To make an appointment with a Campbell Clinic physician, please give us a call at (901) 759-3100.

This blog was adapted from Runners World: New Exercises for Strengthening Your Core.