Physiotherapy Toronto Blog

Hamilton Physiotherapy

It's that time of year again... spring is in the air, birds are chirping and fair weather runners like myself start to strap on their running shoes again! Whether you are delving into training for your next race, or just running for your personal goals, here are some tips to help you avoid injury.

1. Slow and steady wins the race. Progress slowly.  Do not increase any element of your training too quickly. 10% per week is a good amount of distance to increase per week. Give yourself an extra week or two in your training schedule... you may need it for recovery.

2. Do more runs, not less. You are better off to do four runs of 20 min runs in a week instead of two 40 minute runs.

3. Only change one element per week. Do not add hills AND intervals in the same week.

4. If you feel an injury coming on, take a step back. Go back to the amount of running you were doing before the injury started and stay there for a week or two. If the injury doesn't go away, it might be time to seek professional help.

5. Stretch and strengthen. A good base before your running season of glut, hamstring, hip flexor and core strength will go a long way and maintaining that strength throughout  the season will really help keep you injury free (and running better!). Anyone who runs needs to incorporate some stretching into your program too.  

6. Keep a healthy weight. Of all the factors associated with running injuries overtraining and a higher body mass seem to have the highest correlation with injury. On the flip side, a low BMI has also been associated with an increase in stress fractures and spinal injuries in women. Stress the HEALTHY in healthy weight!!


Rebecca is a 4 time half marathoner and a Registered Physiotherapist with specialist training in running injuries.  Appointments with Rebecca can be made at our Athlete's Care Hamilton location.

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Happy Family Day

By ADMIN on February 17, 2017

Happy Family Day from your Athlete's Care Family

Athlete's Care Sports Medicine Centres will be closed on Monday February 20th.

 

Toronto Physiotherapy

 

Toronto Sports Medicine

 

 

 

 

 

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Sport Dietitian Toronto

Ingredients

•  2 Medium, ripe avocados
•  4oz Semi sweet chocolate chips
•  3 tbsps Chocolate protein powder
•  2/3 cup of Soy milk
•  ¼ tsp cayenne pepper (optional)
•  1 tsp honey (optional)

Directions

1. Put chocolate in a microwavable bowl. Microwave in 15-second bursts and stirring the chocolate so that it doesn’t burn.  Repeat until chocolate is fully melted.
2. Halve and pit the avocados and place in a food processor with the rest of the ingredients, blend until smooth.
3. Remove Mousse from food processor and refrigerate for a minimum of 2 hours before serving. 
4. Enjoy!


Provided by Athlete's Care Registered Dietitian and Sports Dietitian Ben Sit.  Appointments with an Athlete's Care Registered Dietitian can be made at our Yonge & SheppardYonge & EglintonKing & Yonge and Liberty Village locations.

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Our Toronto physiotherapy clinics are focused not only on treating musculoskeletal injuries and conditions – we'd like to help you avoid them too. We may be enjoying a lovely late spurt of warmer weather, but we all know that winter's just around the corner, and with it comes rain, snow, ice, and the risk of slips and falls. No matter what your age or conditioning, falls on the sidewalk, concrete steps or asphalt present a very real possibility of injury, including sprains, tears to ligaments and muscles, and even broken bones.

Needless to say, slip and fall injuries in the winter can throw a pretty large monkey wrench into your spring training plans, not to say making the winter just that much more difficult to weather. As we get older, degenerative issues like arthritis and other conditions can affect stability and balance, making navigating winter weather even riskier.

An Ounce of Prevention

Exercises can help you to improve your balance and stability no matter what shape you are already in. It's one of the best and most proactive ways to help prevent winter falls. Falling comes about as you lose your balance, and when that happens, you'll tighten your muscles in response. Poor musculature typically means falling. Strengthening specific muscle groups will help you to be able to regain your balance so you can avoid falling in the first place. 

Your exercise regimen should be tailored to your condition, and level of activity, and your Toronto chiropractor or physiotherapist can help you to come up with a routine that will best suit your current needs. 

Here are some ideas and principles to consider.

Movement generally involves the legs, hips, and gluteal (butt) muscles, so strengthening these is the key to maintaining balance. Some recommendations:

  • As regular exercise, Yoga and T'ai Chi are excellent ways to promote and improve overall balance.
  • Swimming is an excellent overall muscle conditioning exercise and targeted movements in the water can really help tone lower body musculature. Ask your Toronto physiotherapy specialist for suggestions on what will work best for you.
  • Balancing exercises which includes standing on one leg, or balancing on your toes.
  • Knee curls and leg extensions are also good ways to improve muscle tone and balance.
  • Walking slowly and deliberately heel to toe, with the heel of one foot meeting the toe of the next for about 20 steps.
  • Back and side leg raises work the hips, thighs, and buttocks all at once.
  • Squats, first with both legs, then the more challenging one-legged squat, also improve balance as they work your lower body muscles.
  • The abdominal muscles, which govern overall balance, are also crucial to maintaining balance. Any exercise that strengthens the midsection or core muscles will help you regain your balance. Depending on your individual situation, Pilates can be a great choice.

As your balance improves, you will be able to modify the movements to accommodate your conditioning. You can throw in elements like balance cushions or foam rollers to ramp up the challenge level.

How you move can be important too.

  • As you walk on uneven ice, snow and other uncertain ground, the best strategy is to use a kind of shuffle that sees you bending your knees slightly as you walk to help absorb the rough surface.
  • Move uphill sideways, or on a diagonal, rather than heading straight up a snowy slope.

Call one of our Toronto physiotherapy clinics today to make an appointment for a consultation with a chiropractor or other sports medicine specialist to talk about your exercise regimen for the coming months.


References:

https://www.unitypoint.org/livewell/article.aspx?id=c4f6e368-6a48-4608-871e-181ed20cfaca
https://nihseniorhealth.gov/exerciseandphysicalactivityexercisestotry/balanceexercises/01.html
http://www.livescience.com/25795-4-ways-to-avoid-winter-falls.html
http://www.active.com/fitness/articles/7-exercises-to-improve-balance

 

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Low Back Pain: Management and Prevention

By ADMIN on October 25, 2016

Low back pain is one of the more common conditions treated by our Toronto physiotherapy professionals. The human spine is a marvel of engineering that combines strength and flexibility. The lower back in particular is a nexus of nerves, bone structures and connective tissue. That means an issue in your lower back can translate into problems with legs, the hip area and more.

The lower back is susceptible to injury because of the kinds of movements that we perform. Twisting and any sudden movements can cause that intricate web of muscles, ligaments and connective tissue to stretch or tear. Along with sudden injuries, poor posture over time and repetitive stress can also result in similar issues.

Low Back Pain Management & Prevention

What you can do

As the saying goes, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Here are some ways you can protect your lower back against all too common stress and strain injuries.

  • Improving core strength in concert with back musculature improves protection of the lower spine. It's important to balance the back and abdominal muscles to avoid actually creating additional strain.
  • Lifting heavy objects correctly means leveraging your strong leg muscles to take the strain off the back.
  • If you play sports, pay attention to proper technique and stance. Proper technique is designed to be both efficient and safe, and should protect the lower back as well as your body overall.
  • Stretch your hamstrings, especially if you are moving after sitting for a long time. The lower back can become compressed.

Managing low back pain

If you have suffered an injury or chronic condition that resulted in low back pain, it can be one of the more challenging ailments to manage. Moving in any direction can involve lower back muscles and hinder recovery as well as prolong the injury and pain. Naturally, each case is different, and your Toronto chiropractor or physiotherapist will create an individualized plan for you. These are some tips and treatment options you can expect.

  • Get treatment early. Everyone can experience lower back pain once in a while due to over exertion. If your symptoms persist for more than four weeks, then you need professional help.
  • In the case of sudden injury, use cold packs within 72 hours, and then alternate hot and cold packs. The packs can't touch your skin directly -- wrap them in a towel before applying.
  • Stay as active as you can. Your Toronto physiotherapist or chiropractor can advise you on any limitations that you may have to observe, but other than that, it will help you to keep moving rather than sitting or lying down for long periods of time.
  • Medications may be necessary and there are a wide variety of options available.
  • Massage therapy is useful in cases of chronic low back pain. Often, loosening the musculoskeletal structures alone can provide temporary relief of pain.
  • Spinal manipulation by your Toronto chiropractor can also help to ease chronic pain in many cases.
  • Depending on the underlying cause, Fascial Stretch Therapy or FST, which manipulates the connective tissue that runs throughout the body, can provide temporary or even permanent relief.
  • Medical Acupuncture can be useful in some cases.

Treating low back pain involves a complete evaluation of not only your condition but your lifestyle too. Let our Toronto physiotherapy and chiropractic professionals help you devise an individualized plan to treat and manage your low back pain or any other sport or movement related conditions. Call one of our many clinics throughout the GTA today.


References:

http://www.spine-health.com/blog/7-tips-protect-your-lower-back
http://nationalpaincentre.mcmaster.ca/documents/LowBackPainGuideline.pdf
http://www.spine-health.com/blog/7-tips-protect-your-lower-back
 

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