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Blog Injury Rehabilitation Uncategorized

Do You Have Arthritis? Here Is What We Encourage You To Do

If you think you have arthritis, know that you do, AND especially if you’ve been told that there is nothing that can be done- you need to watch this video!

Not All Pain is Arthritis

We know it’s easy to jump to conclusions and self diagnose yourself with having arthritis. But there are so many other things that can be causing your pain! Your pain could be coming from muscles, tendons, ligaments, bone, fascia, nerves, etc. And MOST pain is coming from compensation patterns and imbalances. When muscles are tight or other muscles aren’t working, it pulls the joint in a funny way causing pain and causing wear and tear. So, consult with your healthcare provider before jumping to any conclusions.

Arthritis Can be Improved

And even if you know for sure that you do have osteoarthritis, it still doesn’t mean that you are doomed to always be in pain. As I explained above, because most pain stems from imbalances, and imbalances can be corrected! Therefore your pain can be either reduced or eliminated! That’s right… having arthritis does not mean that you will always be in pain!

Fun fact, if you were to do an MRI on a group of healthy and pain free individuals… you will likely find arthritis somewhere! But just because it shows up on a scan, does not mean that it will be causing them pain ( nor does it mean that it is going to get worse over time).

What is Arthritis

Just to be clear, we are speaking about osteoarthritis here ( not rheumatoid arthritis). Osteoarthritis is simply a wearing down of the cartilage within a joint. It is degeneration or ” wear and tear” but as I mentioned earlier… this is not a death sentence. Many people have degeneration within a specific joint and never even know it because they don’t feel any pain.

What Can Be Done

Athletic Therapy can help to resolve the imbalances and compensation patterns that have caused the pain within a joint. We will do a complete whole body assessment to pin point where the problems. And then, we will come up with a game plan to resolve them. This will likely include hands on techniques, stretches and strengthening exercises.

Check out some of our client success stories HERE

Not sure about us just yet? That’s ok. We know that it can be hard to know who to trust in the health care system and we never want you to feel rushed in to making a decision if you just aren’t ready.

Subscribe to our Youtube channel or follow us on instagram or facebook for more helpful tips for your injuries or aches and pains.

Ready to start feeling better? Request to speak with one of our therapists to hear about what we can do to help!

Categories
Blog Injury Rehabilitation

Are you Frozen? Get out of the Physical and Mental Circle of Pain.

Dog looking out the window not wanting to go outside. Frozen. Excuses. Not wanting to be in pain

No, this is not another opportunity to complain about the weather or a Disney audition. We know that the world around us has changed drastically, yet it still feels like we are dealing with a lot of the same old problems. Pain, tension and feeling exhausted. Now add fear and uncertainty, which are huge triggers for anxiety, and we get a lot of frozen people. Stuck. Overloaded with information but unable to take action. Often our mental health and physical pain change together. As a result, your body seems to feel worse when you’re stressed. We need to talk about how we are going to use this time as an opportunity to conquer your pain and gain control of your mental health. This will contribute to making you a stronger person once this is over. Now grab a piece of paper because life is about to change.

Why Are You Frozen?

There is often a sense of hopelessness when we feel like we have tried everything or there is too much information going around. Maybe you have tried different forms of therapy and it did not seem to make a difference or you felt like you were being told to stretch all day every day in order to feel better. Pain still comes back and you’re frustrated. Although some of us may have more time than ever to do all these exercises, there is now an endless abundance of information and everyone seems to have an opinion on everything. This can be overwhelming and prevent you from taking action. I am here to tell you not to worry so much about doing everything perfectly and just DO something. My inner perfectionist is screaming but no one can truly change without being a bit uncomfortable.

How Do we Defrost?

Woman not taking time to defrost her windows in the winter. Mental circle

8 Steps to Conquer Your Pain and Regain Your Health

  1. Mindset

    Still don’t have the time or the energy to complete an overhaul on your life? That is ok! We could go through a lot of different exercises and talk about how there are endless methods to make you feel better but we’re going to start small. First, we have to get in the right mindset for change.

    Our brains adapt and change based on how we think, behave, and feel. This is an intro to neuroplasticity which shows new neurons and synapses form in response to our current habits and experiences. That is a topic for another day. I want you to write this down. “I will do one thing each day for myself because I deserve it”. Great! Even small changes can make a huge difference. Wayne Gretzky said “you miss 100% of the shots you do not take.” You do not have to be an athlete to understand he did pretty well. So focus on the small successes, like getting up and stretching between Netflix episodes or getting up every hour to move just because you can. Also check out our blog on how to maximize your TV time, without pain!

  2. Make a list

    So you have 99 problems and living the dream isn’t one. I get it! What I want you to do is write down 3 things that you are not enjoying on a day to day basis. Nagging neck pain? Headache? Digestive issues? That low back and hip tension you’ve had for 20 years. All the different things that you would be better without.

  3. Pick Your Priority

    Too many of us have an all or nothing mentality. That means if I can’t go to the gym I can’t work out or if I eat one cookie I might as well have 50 cookies. Remember, start small. I know you are super motivated and ready to conquer the world right now but let’s be realistic. What happens when you become more busy? This is something I want you to stick with. From your list lets focus on what would improve your life the most. What is limiting you?

  4. Find your Resources

    Context is key. If you are dealing with an injury it is important to have exercises that are tailored to you. This is where you might need extra help from your Athletic Therapist to discuss what exercises might be best for you at this time. Although there is a lot of great content out there, there is also a lot of misinformation which can be part of the reason why you became stuck in the first place. When in doubt, reach out! Check out our free content on Instagram and/or blog for injury-specific exercises. Therapists are also available for a Telehealth appointment.

  5. Make a schedule

    One of the reasons people do not complete what they set out to do is because there is not enough time. This may sound silly but researchers have found that one common thing most successful people in the world share is that they have a plan. We’re talking goal setting and a schedule down to 5-minute increments. Now I do not expect that from you, at least not yet. What I want you to do is write down a time each day that you can commit 30 minutes for yourself. Studies show the brain does best with at least 20 minutes per day of activity.

  6. Keep it Interesting

    Be willing to change it up. A lot of the time just moving is going to clear up a lot of different aches and pains. I am not saying that specific exercises are not needed to address your pain but sometimes we get bored. Above all, always resort to some kind of movement. Fun fact, exercise has some of the best supportive research in comparison to a lot of fancy machines used in some clinics. Try going for a walk or dancing with your kids. This is still going to help you with your goals.

  7. Add more Components

    30 minutes go by fast. Can we add another 5 minutes throughout the day for some you-time? I think so!

  8. Do Great Things

    This step is in here as a pat on the back because I already know you are going to do awesome!

Added Tips For Success

  1. Limit your screen time and interaction with the news. Check your screen time usage on your phone. I am sure we are both concerned about the amount. Try to designate only 1 hour to social media or to stay up to date with the news. Have to work on a computer? Every 20 mins look at something 20 feet away for 20 seconds and stretch out. The great part of limiting your usage is you will have more time to take care of yourself and help improve your mental health.
  2. Drink more water! I know this is old news but water plays an important role in every system of your body and most of us don’t get enough of it.
  3. Set a timer so you stick to your schedule
  4. Get your rest! No system works alone. If you are tired how is your body supposed to have the energy to heal?

I am Still Lost.. Now what?

It is ok to feel lost at times as long as it is brief and not accompanied by feeling alone. Contact your Athletic Therapist and they will help you come up with a game plan to get you back on track. If you haven’t heard about our telehealth appointments check out this blog. For more information or to find out how we can help with your injury, ask to speak with a therapist below.

Written by Carly Kolesnik

Certified Athletic Therapist

Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist

Competitive Edge Sport Therapy

403-252-6222

Info@cesporttherapy.com

www.competitiveedgesporttherapy.com

Categories
Blog Competitive Edge Sport Therapy Injury Rehabilitation

Gettin’ on my Nerves!

The nervous system is an interesting interconnected system. Even though our injuries may not present with the normal burning and tingling sensations that generally stem from a nerve injury there can still be a restriction. This creates neural tension in the system, and can sometimes make us feel “weaker”.

What Do Your Nerves Do?

Your nerves have three properties that they need to achieve, including slacking, tensing and gliding. When one of these three properties gets affected we start to see compensations start to arise. If your nerve is constantly being pulled on (getting tensed) it can’t slack, and on the same note, it’s probably not gliding very well either. Nerves can get stuck in what we call, an “interface”. Now you’re probably thinking what the heck is an interface? This means that there is a restriction whether it be a joint, muscle, or ligament, somewhere along the nerves pathway that is blocking the full gliding properties of the nerve through its full range of motion. For example, if you’re having some unexplained foot pain and there has been no direct injury to the foot it may be because there is a neural restriction that has been caused further up the kinetic chain. This is why your therapist will ask you how is your low back or hip because, if we look at the full length of the lower extremity that is the likely spot where that problem could have started from, so we are doing our due diligence to find the root cause!

What Technique Works Best?

A technique I like to use to help with relieving neural tension is Neuromeningeal Manipulation. What exactly is that? It’s a technique used to work directly on the nervous system, specifically with the meninges of the brain, a structure within the brain tissue. The nervous system is a complex system which starts at the top level so, often we find that issues of the lower body are highly connected with the head. This specific technique works with Whiplash related injuries and areas that have a neural restriction as it relates to chronic and acute injuries. One of the main structures I focus on while using this technique is the Rectus Capitus Posterior Minor, a small muscle located at the base of the skull that connects directly to the dura that runs the length of the spine. It can be nicknamed the RCMP because it generally will tell you where the trauma occurred and helps direct the method of treatment. It will detect the “bad guy”, the cause of the injury, whether it be focused at the head or at the lower extremity. This technique is effective for a variety of injuries including concussion, whiplash injuries, nerve related injuries, headaches/migraines, and chronic injuries (shoulder, low back, hip, etc.); to name a few. If this sounds like you then, don’t let those nerves be a pain!

If you’ve got some nerve (pain) or maybe just an unresolved injury get the help you need! After all, we want to help you feel your best and help you glide through life with ease!

 

By Michelle Gaudet

Certified Athletic Therapist CAT(C)

Competitive Edge Sport Therapy

info@cesporttherapy.com

(403)252-6222

Categories
Athletic Therapy Blog Foot or Lower Leg Injury

Home Treatment for Foot Pain

Plantar Fasciitis can be a very debilitating injury that can limit activity and may cause you to take time off work. Plantar Fasciitis is an inflammation of the plantar fascia ligament that runs along the bottom of your feet.  It is caused by an excessive stretch, overloading or strain to cause micro-tears in the tissue. Plantar Fasciitis can be triggered by excessive pronation, inflexibility of the longitudinal arch or tight calf muscles along with other biomechanical faults or muscle imbalances.  

Symptoms

Symptoms may include heel pain, foot pain, stiffness and tenderness on the bottom of one or both feet. Symptoms can be particularly worse in the mornings.

Treatment

Treatment incorporates ice massage, rest from aggravating activities, anti-inflammatory medications, soft orthotics or shoe change, stretching and strengthening programs, correcting biomechanical imbalances and manual therapy. Assessment and treatment in the clinic will look at the entire kinetic chain, including hamstrings, hips, pelvis, spine, etc.

While you wait to come into a sports therapy clinic, you can manage your symptoms and start your rehabilitation with these at home exercises:  

  • Rolling bottom of your feet with a golf ball, lacrosse ball or frozen water bottle
  • Towel toe curls – Lay a towel on a flat floor, place toes on one end of the towel, crunch toes moving the towel towards you. To progress or challenge yourself, place a small weight or can of soup on the towel to increase the resistance to you toe crunch.

 

 

 

 

 

  • Calf stretching with a straight and bent knee against a wall

 

Looking for help with an injury, aches or pains? Give us a call at 403-252-6222. We are dedicated to identifying and resolving the root cause of your complaint. No band-aide approach here. We can’t wait to see you and get you back doing what you love!

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Athletic Therapy Blog

Treatment is Only Half The Battle

Wouldn’t it be amazing if that nagging pain could be healed in one treatment, without any additional work needed at home! There can be drastic improvements over a treatment, of which some last for a few days and some for a few hours. However, the majority of the time the work done by the therapist is only one of the necessary components to heal an injury.

 

Why Injuries Happen

Injuries can happen for a variety of reasons. They can occur from an overloaded muscle that is working too hard and results in a strain; such as a sports injury. They can also occur from being in postural positions that are not as biomechanically strong. Majority of postural compensations are chronic issues that reflect on habits. In order for those habits to be changed, it needs to be done on a consistent basis, which is mostly during time spent away from the clinic.

How to Make Changes

Well, do you remember those exercises that your sports therapist gives to you at the end of your treatment? The ones that they say are important? Well, that is a great place to start! As boring, time-consuming and tedious as the exercises can be, they were given for a reason. It is most optimal to keep a rehabilitation program thorough but manageable, so you should not need to spend hours on the exercises. But do expect to commit around thirty minutes, depending on the severity of the injury.

In contrast to chronic issues, acute injuries that had a rapid onset (like that hamstring strain for a sprinter) still require exercises. As an athlete, it is important to continue training in ways that do not aggravate the injury. So, if you have a lower-body injury, then your therapist will be giving you exercises that will contribute to your conditioning and aid recovery. Those exercises are still important, especially if you want a faster return to competition.

Now, what are you going to do with that wonderful sheet of paper with your exercises on it? Frame it and put it somewhere that you will see it every day as a reminder.

Written by Harley Thwaites,
Athletic Therapy Certification Candidate

 

Categories
Athletic Therapy Blog Competitive Edge Sport Therapy Injury Rehabilitation

Muscle Soreness vs. Injury Pain

As your Athletic Therapist, we ask about your pain a lot. We use your pain scale as a diagnostic tool, to help us create your individualized treatment plan, as a progression marker and as a guide to create the most effective rehab exercises for you. But there are two general types of pain you may be feeling, one good and one bad.

The type of pain you may be feeling that is actually telling us we are going in the right direction and that you are doing your exercises properly is called delayed onset muscle soreness or DOMS for short. This is the type of pain that you experience after a workout, the type of soreness that you feel in your quads after leg day or that makes your arms feel like Jell-O after an upper body work out. The rehab exercises we give you in the clinic are generally targeting one muscle group of individual muscle that may be weak or that may be firing incorrectly therefore the soreness you feel after doing your exercises may feel like they are in a very precise location. We do not want you to mistake this soreness for injury pain. This soreness is good and means you are doing your exercises properly and working the correct muscles we want you to.

The soreness that comes along with DOMS usually appears the day after you exercise that muscle and gets to its worst on day 2 after the exercise. This pain comes from tiny micro-tears in the muscle fibers. This is a normal process that must occur to build muscle. These small tears send messages to the brain that the muscles weren’t quite strong enough and they start to build more muscle.

On the other hand there is injury pain. This type of pain can range anywhere from a dull ache to a sharp stabbing pain and could feel very pin point or could feel like it is coming from a larger area. This type of pain potentially indicates that some type of tissue is damaged. This type of pain is sometimes associated with inflammation where you will see swelling or feel heat in the area. This is the type of pain we are interested in to keep our treatment plan on the right track.

 

Sometimes it is hard to tell the difference between the two but here are a few ways to tell the difference. Muscle soreness will get worse if you use the muscle that is sore. It will also feel worse if you stretch that muscle, it may feel very tight and you might have less range of motion than normal. Muscle soreness is usually not felt when you are at rest and not using or stretching that muscle. Muscle soreness usually comes on within several hours of the workout or exercise and is at its worst 24 hours after. After these 2-3 days the muscle soreness should subside. If your pain doesn’t fit into this category it is most likely coming from your injury!

Written by Brodie Lefaivre, Certified Athletic Therapist

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If you are struggling with an injury that just won’t go away, try something new. Book in to see one of our Athletic Therapists to get you feeling 100% and back to the activities you love. Call or book online!

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Back Pain Blog

The Many Faces of Sciatica!

Hola readers!

Sciatica is one of those elusive things that every adult thinks they know what it is, knows someone who has struggled with it, or has dealt with some type of it in the past.

So what really is sciatica anyways?

True sciatica is caused by compression on the sciatic nerve, and is marked by numbness, tingling, burning, aching, sharp, searing, or fiery pain in the low back and down the back of the leg.

That’s great and all, but how do I fix it?

Well, that’s a complex question, such a complex question that I’ll only be able to touch the surface. So read on and enjoy! 🙂

Sciatica is an umbrella term. It is a label given to a variety of symptoms from a variety of causes. So if you tell a practitioner “I have sciatica,” there is no one way to fix it. This is because the label of “having sciatica” simply describes the symptoms you feel, not what is causing them. And even beyond that, there is a large spectrum of things that fall under sciatica, so it likely doesn’t even really describe your symptoms that well. An example we can all relate to is a tooth ache. When we say we have a toothache, that describes the symptom we feel, not what the problem is. The dentist does not “treat our toothache,” nor do they diagnose us as having “toothache.” Rather whatever is causing that ache. Maybe a cavity. And then furthermore, how they treat the cavity may vary.

preston palette 2

Sciatica is a symptom, not a diagnosis!

Because of that, we need to find what the issue is. Why is your sciatic nerve feeling the need to give you sharp searing pain down your leg?

Likely it’s compression. Nerves hate compression. But maybe it’s traction? How do you know, until you test it?

Our therapist Micah uses techniques learned in Europe to test whether the nerve is under tension or compression, and which way it’s being pulled or pushed. Then the challenge is to follow that back to the structure causing the issue. We want to correct the biomechanical imbalance that is irritating that nerve. This could be a muscular imbalance, this could be a misalignment issue, or it could even be an issue with something called your tentorium cerebri. This is a fancy name for the suspension system of your whole nervous system. You see, all your nerves are connected. It is one solid piece. That means that if your wrist is taking up all the tension on the nervous system, the leg will have no slack to be able to take up. This can cause over stretching of the sciatic, leading to pain. The tentorium (or tent for short) is what takes up the tension and gives it out to your whole nervous system. If it doesn’t function properly, your nerves will have no mobility. No mobility makes them more likely to have issues.

Sciatica is a symptom, for a complex dysfunction with many layers, rooted in an inability for your nerves to move freely.

I believe that everyone is different, and their body needs to be specifically tested to find and correct their dysfunctions, not use a cookie cutter approach that may or may not work.

Written by Micah Reim- Certified Athletic Therapist

Micah's Bio pic

Categories
Back Pain Blog

Athletic Therapy Success Story – Diastasis Recti and Hip Pain

This success story is a little different, I went home for the holidays, and a friend of mine was telling of her “journey” with Diastasis Recti , and anterior hip pain. Diastasis Recti is when you have a separation in the front of your abdominal wall.  During and after activity, she gets pain in her “hip flexors”.
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We found some compensation patterns through her hips, as well as a misaligned pelvis.  After fixing the patterns and correcting her pelvic alignment, she went about her daily activities. She lives quite an active lifestyle, and this has been hindering her. The next day I checked in with her again, and… she wasn’t experiencing any pain through her hips! Just a bit of muscle soreness from the changes we had made.
This is a great example of the difference between structural and functional dysfunction.  She has a structural issue; her abs don’t connect in front. However this led to functional issues.  By correcting the way she moves through her structural issues, we were able to remove her hip pain.
Just because you have a structural issue that can’t be fixed, doesn’t mean we can’t reduce or eliminate your pain. Come let us assess your structural issue to see how we can help your body cope and provide some relief!
By Micah Reim, Certified Athletic Therapist

micahs-bio-pic

Speak to our team about athletic therapy and rehabilitation.

At Competitive Edge Sport Therapy your recovery is our concern. We will provide caring and professional rehabilitation for your injury in our one hour appointments, one on one with your athletic therapist. We want to help you get back to full health and enjoying the activities you love to do.
Phone: 403-252-6222 Email: info@cesporttherapy.com Website: https://competitiveedgesporttherapy.com/

Categories
Blog Shoulder Injury

Athletic Therapy Success Story- Shoulder Pain and Poor Posture!

I am currently treating a patient who has been dealing with shoulder pain for the last 2 years. Due to a shoulder injury sustained by having improper form and strength when lifting something heavy, she has not been able to work since. After a thorough assessment it was evident the muscles surrounding and stabilizing the shoulder joint were generally weak in all ranges from not being used for an extended period of time.

In order for you to perform day to day activities, the body will function in any way it can to allow you move throughout the day. Unfortunately the body doesn’t always understand when it is using the correct muscle to perform an action. When the body is consistently in an incorrect posture, certain muscles start to become lazy and stop working, where others begin to work twice as hard and become tight. When this happens, we begin to notice compensation patterns throughout the body that can overall effect how the body functions as a whole.body-shoulder

For this client, we began working on opening up and releasing some of the tight muscles that were rounding her shoulders forward, while working on scapular stability for the back of the shoulder complex.  Once the muscles had relaxed I was able to work on mobilizing her glenohumeral joint and we noticed some significant changes with her range of motion! Her shoulders were finally sitting in the correct position to function optimally! With a thorough exercise program given (along with adherence on doing the exercises on a daily basis) she has seen amazing improvements in the strength of both shoulders in all ranges. Her main goal coming in was to get back to work and we are optimistic we will reach this goal!

Written by Kirsten Toth, Certified Athletic Therapist

preferred-kirstenSpeak to our team about your shoulder injury rehabilitation.

At Competitive Edge Sport Therapy your recovery is our concern. We will provide caring and professional rehabilitation for your injury in our one hour appointments, one on one with your athletic the rapist. We want to help you get back to full health and enjoying the activities you love to do.
Phone: 403-252-6222 Email: info@cesporttherapy.comWebsite: https://competitiveedgesporttherapy.com/

Categories
Blog Knee Injury

Athletic Therapy Success Story- Knee Pain Rehab; The Pinchy Meniscus

I recently saw a young woman who had intense knee pain. One day, she felt it shift, and could hardly move it. She went to her physician, and got x-rays and an MRI. They showed no physical damage through the knee. The doctors told her there was nothing wrong, and that she should take 6 weeks off of all activity, and all will be good.  After five more weeks of having constant knee pain, she decided to come and see me for athletic therapy.