Ski Season Tips

How to Stay Injury Free During Ski Season

 

 

1.   ITS ALL IN THE CORE

From the premier league footballers we work with, to post natal mummies, we aim to strengthen ALL of our physiotherapy patients and clients core in the same way- making it as strong as physically possible.

Why? The answer is simple, having a strong core, that activates and funcitons in all positions enhances sporting physical performance and prevents injury.

To ensure correct ski technique you need to learn how to activate your deep core muscles. Having strong deep core muscles (tranversus abdominus) will decrease vulnerability to injury, particluarly as ski conditions become more difficult.

Correct deep core activation can take some time to master, and maintaining it throughout sporting performance can be challenging; particularly as fatigue kicks in.

To start – locate where your true core is, master the art of activating it correctly, then practice makes perfect.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p8O04WLXFt8

We should be aiming to consciously engage the core muscles throughout the day. This will help strengthen the deep core. This technique, can be completed in standing, when you’re sitting at your work desk, walking – basically anywhere!  These small, frequent muscle engagements add up to great results.

 

2. IMPROVE YOUR ANKLE MOBILITY

Current research shows that the majority of serious ski related injuries are sustained to the knees, some of which are serious enough to require surgery.  Some of the worst we’ve seen in clinic have involved significant surgery to both knees at the same time!

Many of these injuries have been directly linked to excess pressure being placed through the knee joints, due to a lack of ankle mobility. It makes sense when you think about it, but without the correct guidance from a qualified instructor, and constant reminders for beginners, a lack of bend in the ankle joint can be enough to end your ski trip early due to serious injury.

A lack of ankle mobility can be as a result of:

1.   Poor ski form.

2.   Badly fitted ski boots preventing ankle dorsi- flexion (into the bent toes up position)

3.   Tightness in the calf muscles

4. A historically stiff ankle joint

To help with the above:

1.   ALL BEGINNERS – Get ski lessons. If you have invested in a trip to the slopes and all the gear to go with, don’t cut the last corner. Lessons will teach you correct form from the get go and keep you safe This will allow you to progress more quickly and join your friends on the slopes feeling confident and safe.

a. Get your boots fitted by a specialist to help maximise ankle mobility. If you’re renting boots spend some time at the rental shop learning to fasten your boot correctly and ensure they fit well.

b.            Stretch your calf muscles! Don’t forget there are 2 muscles that make up the calf area, the solues – often neglected lies under the main gastrocnemius muscle, gastrocnemious and the Achilles tendon all need attention.  A great way to test your ankle mobility is to complete the following test (and you can measure your progress as your ankle mobility increases)

Knee to wall ankle mobility test:

         –  Stand facing the wall and place the toes of one foot next to the wall with the knee touching the wall

         –  Move the foot as far away from the wall as possible, without the knee losing contact with the wall

         –  Measure the distance of toes to wall on both feet Less than 6cm is considered tight This will either be due to a tightness in the gastrocnemius/soleus (calf) muscles or an ankle mobility deficit. A calf stretching routine is recommended with repeated testing as above. Should the mobility not improve in 2 weeks, an assessment with a Chartered Physiotherapist is recommended to assess the ankle.

3. HIP FLEXIBILITY

The hip joint is a ball and socket joint, which is highly mobile with the ability to move freely through a wide range of movement.

Skiing puts a significant pressure through the hip joints. The hip joint’s ability to both sustain and control this pressure whilst powering through turns smoothly is paramount.

Without full functional range of movement in the hips, the chances of sustaining an injury are much higher due to poor ski form and the way this lack of mobility impacts on other joints.

To prevent a hip related ski injury:

Hip stretching/ range of movement programme

It is important to work through all ranges of motion when stretching out the hips. If you are not experienced with hip stretches, consider attending yoga classes or an assessment with a Chartered Physiotherapist

Deep tissue release/sports massage

Should the stretching programme not provide sufficient benefit, you may require myofascial or deep tissue release around the hip joints to help increase the extensibility of the local muscle groups.

4. CONTROL THE HIPS- It’s time to get those glutes FIRING!

Lateral muscle activation & strength is important to ensure skier symmetry, and prevention of skiing in an A frame (otherwise know as snow plough). As a beginner you are taught to ski in snow plough to ensure your safety and also to help build your confidence.

As you progress your ski ability, you will be taught to ski parallel, which basically means your skis move in unison, parallel to each other, rather than in an ‘A’ frame.

Your instructor will teach you to progress to parallel skiing, as Skiing in an ‘A’ frame not only causes inconsistency between turns due to asymmetrical skis, it also puts excess pressure on the knee joints, thus increasing chances of injury.

To prevent ski injury due to a lack of hip control:

Lateral chain strengthening programme

The lateral chain includes the glute medius and minimus (outer butt muscles) and the opposing adductors of the thigh (the inner thigh muscles on the opposite leg)

Experienced skiiers will be aware of the importance of correct knee tracking to prevent injury. For those less experienced, BEWARE of the valgus knee drop (falling in of the knees). This is one of the most common causes of knee ligamentous injuries, with a higher prevalence in women due to wider hips, increased Q- angles (angle between the hip and the knee) & diminished hip strength. Strong glute muscles and lateral chain will help prevent valgus drop and keep you safer on the slopes.

https://www.precisionmovement.coach/gluteus-medius-exercises/

5.   RECOVERY- The easy bit, ish!

Muscle soaks. They are a great way to help manage muscle soreness and rid the body of lactic acid and toxins.  Look out for soaks containing magnesium, sodium, and bromide which you can find in clinic (we use the BetterYou range of amazing products for recovery)

Don’t shy away from foam rolling your muscles and stretching to help your body recover and prepare for skiing the following day. If you’re unsure of what to do on the foam roller:

Finally, hydration and good food. Like with all exercise you need to fuel your body pre and post workout. That includes hydration too, it’s so important to ensure you are drinking plenty of water before, during and after your days on the slopes. In terms of food – you should aim to take on carbohydrate and protein before and after your time on the slopes.  The two work well in unison to help the muscles prepare and recover from the demands placed upon them.  Aim to take your fuel on board 45-60 mins before you hit the slopes and again within that timeframe après ski for optimal effect!

 

If you need any help with; how to prevent injuries, build up strength in weak areas, sports massage or physiotherapy treatment for an injury, give us a call for advice and/or to book in for an appointment!

Posture and Back Care for The Workplace

Categories:Uncategorized

Postural tips and advice for the work environment

Here are some postural tips and advice for the work environment.

Lower back pain is a problem!

As many of our working roles will require us to be sat at a desk or in a seated transport for prolonged periods of time. Lower back pain and subsequent disability have become a prevalent issue.  It is estimated that 80% of individuals will experience an episode of lower back pain on at least one occasion in their lives.  Lower back pain is the highest cause of disability worldwide and deserves our attention in how we can try to prevent it!

For those already suffering, you can get in touch for some help to settle any pain.  For everyone else, here are some that can be incorporated into your daily routine to help prevent neck and back pain!

Quick postural tips and advice for the work environment

Regular Breaks: Ensure you have frequent breaks throughout the day. This doesn’t need to be away from your desk,  simply standing up at regular intervals throughout the day, making a quick drink or taking a few steps to the bin/printer.

Range of Movement Exercises: These can be performed whilst at your desk such as: rolling the shoulders, turning the head side to side, shoulder shrugs and pelvic tilts , helping to keep the local muscle groups alert and active.

Ergonomic and Desk Based Assessment: An ergonomic assessment at work will assess your posture and keep it to an optimum throughout the day.

Prioritise Physical Activity:  Ensuring you make time for focused exercise is important.  You can take a walk at lunch time, park a little further away from work than you normally do, take up a team sport, join the gym etc etc.  Body strength, endurance, stability and flexibility throughout your spine and trunk, can significantly lower the risk of developing problems whilst stationary at work during the bulk of the working week.

Postural tips and advice for the work environment

At Resolve Physiotherapy, we have an extremely experienced team of musculoskeletal physiotherapists who can assess, diagnose, and treat postural problems including back and neck pain.  We can also advise and treat to help prevent you from experiencing postural issues whilst at work.

Call us on 0121 2930237 for some further information on what we can do to help!

Frozen Shoulder

Categories:Uncategorized

What is Frozen Shoulder?

Frozen shoulder, AKA adhesive capsulitis, is a condition where the shoulder joint becomes stiff and sometimes painful. The lining of the shoulder joint, called a “capsule”, is normally a flexible structure that permits extensive range of movement at the shoulder. In the case of a frozen shoulder, the joint capsule becomes contracted and inflamed, resulting in limited range of movement and pain with movement, normally at the limits of range.

Causes of Frozen Shoulder

There is often no distinctive cause. There have been reported links with those who suffer from diabetes, high cholesterol, heart disease and can be triggered by an impact injury to the shoulder and potentially cardiac surgeries. The condition mostly affects people aged 40-60 years old and is more common in women than men.

Symptoms of Frozen Shoulder

There are three distance stages to a frozen shoulder:

Stage 1: Freezing Stage

The shoulder starts to become painful. Increasingly so when reaching out for things. Shoulder movement decreases and pain worsens at night.

Stage 2: Frozen Stage

Pain may start to decrease however, the shoulder joint becomes stiffens and movement is now very limited.

Stage 3: Thawing Stage

Shoulder movement gradually increases with pain continuing to fade away. The shoulder joint returns to a more “normal” condition.

Physiotherapy for Frozen Shoulders

Physiotherapy for frozen shoulder can support and speed up recovery.

Techniques to reduce pain, stiffness and restore range of movement include:

  • Mobilising and stretching the joint capsule
  • Massage
  • Prescriptive exercise
  • Electrotherapy
  • Radiotherapy at thermal levels to increase tissue extensibility allowing increased ROM
  • Advice on pain relief and methods to reduce day to day pain

At Resolve we would use a combination of these methods at key stages to reduce your pain, increase movement and get you back to the activities that you enjoy as quickly as possible.

Posture and Pain

Categories:Uncategorized
Postural problems? Poor posture can lead to many problems.... 

The musculoskeletal system of the human body is a very finely tuned piece of mechanical engineering – similar to the engine of a car! Every structure has its set place and function and for normal movement all of these structures have to work perfectly together. If one of these structures, typically a muscle, is over used then an imbalance between the structures will follow and this can lead to injury and pain, from the high performance athlete to the sedentary office worker. 

The correct spinal alignment, pelvic and shoulder girdle stability is essential in allowing the body to cope with gravitational and other internal/external forces and the muscles to work in balance. From the base of the skull down to the pelvis the spine should form a gentle S shape, however in the modern world of “desk jobs”, computer and phone use and long distance travel, most people spend long periods of their day sitting in poor postures. This changes the mobility of joints and effects the length, strength and timing of muscles and will eventually cause decreased movement, inflammation and pain. 

It is essential therefore to ensure that you work to maintain a good posture. 
Here are a few hints to ensure that you do this! 
1. When standing, try to “tuck in” your bottom and gently tighten your abdominal muscles. 
2. Do not stand with one hip out i.e., have your weight evenly distributed between your two feet. 
3. Avoid low seats and seats that tip you backwards, try to always sit in an upright chair that supports your back. 
4. Avoid being in one position for longer than 20 minutes. 
5. Try not to cross your legs when sitting. 
6. Ensure that computer, keyboard and mouse are in the right position and right height. If you spend long periods at your desk you should have an ergonomic assessment. 
7. Don’t drive for long periods without a break. 
8. Try to do 30 minutes of walking, cycling or swimming a day. 

At Resolve Physiotherapy we can carry out an assessment of your posture before you have pain to identify any potential problems.  You give your car a regular MOT, look after your body the same way and prevent injury!

Body Fat…What’s the Best Way to Measure it?

Categories:Uncategorized

Loosing fat without losing muscle is imperative to most if not all of us, specially those in the athletic world?

Accurate, consistent methods of measurement are key in tracking your athletes to ensure training programmes are effective.  So, how do you accurately and consistently track if you are losing fat, muscle, or both?

The most common methods of how most people measure body fat percentage are explored below.

While these methods vary in accuracy, the key to assessing #bodyfat levels is consistent, recorded measurements over time (repeatability) so that you can effectively track your progress

1. Calipers

The “skin fold” method measures body fat percentage by pinching a fold of fat then measuring the thickness with a body fat calliper.  The reading is given in millimetres and  compared to a chart according to age and gender to arrive at a given body fat percentage. There are many t-types of caliper tests, which range from single to multi site tests.

Pros:

  • Fairly accurate
  • Cheap
  • Dependable (when skilled at measuring)
  • Repeatable

Cons:

  • Variability of measurement (the exact fat fold site needs to be used every time)
  • Multisite tests require an experienced administrator
  • For people who are 35+ pounds overweight, fat may not fit within caliper, thus reducing accuracy

 



2. Bioelectric Impedance Analysis

Bioelectric Impedance Analysis, or BIA, determines the electrical impedance, or opposition to the flow of an electric current through the body.   This is now a common feature on readily available bathroom scales.

Muscle has high water content, and is highly conductive, while fat has lower water content and is not highly conductive.  Based on the strength of the impedance calculated according to height and weight metrics, the BIA scale will estimate fat-free body mass and body fat percentage.  Because the BIA test is based on body water balance, your state of hydration can impact the level of accuracy.

Pros:

  • Very easy to administer
  • Inexpensive (most weight scales around $50 or even less have BIA)

Cons:

  • Questionable Accuracy
  • Variability of results dependent on hydration level

 

3. DEXA Scan

Dual Energy X-ray Absorptiometry a.k.a DEXA is commonly considered the gold standard of body fat measurement because it’s based on a three-compartment model that divides the body into total body mineral,  lean mass, and fat tissue mass.

DEXA also allows us to identify the distribution of body fat for analysis.  The procedure uses a body scanner with low dose x-rays, so it’s completely safe, and takes about 10-20 minutes.

Pros:

1  Very accurate

Cons:

  • Expensive
  • Not readily available/accessible to all

 

4. MuscleSound

Using images captured from 7 specific sites on the body by #ultrasound imaging the layer of #fat beneath the skin is measured from the images and analysed by cloud based software,  fed through a validated algorithm that has been honed to optimise validity and the results are available within minutes.  #Musclesound determines the percentage of fat at each of the sites measured and produces a report that illustrates the percentage of site specific fat content allowing fat distribution to be analysed in much like DEXA.  A study by Pineua at al (2009) found that ultrasound estimates of body fat percentage were correlated closely with those of DEXA in both females and males and that the use of a portable ultrasound device produced accurate body fat and body fat percentage estimates in relation to the fan-beam DEXA technique.

body-comp-features_see-tissues-1030x840

 

Pros:

  • Non invasive
  • Minimal influence from external factors i.e hair/humidity
  • Quick
  • Affordable
  • Repeatable
  • Accurate
  • Easy to read reports generated automatically

Cons:

I’m struggling to find any if I’m honest!

body-comp-features_site-measurements-1030x840

Conclusion:

All these methods rely on algorithms to convert a measured parameter into an estimate of #bodyfat percentage, so none of them are 100% perfect.  Algorithms have variation based on how the underlying assumptions and formulas apply to different populations.  The most accurate measure discussed here DEXA which is expensive and difficult to access for most.  MuscleSound has several advantages over and above other standard methods of measurement and offers the user a highly accurate measure, detailed readable report and repeatability which can be applied to the individual and team athlete.

 

If you are interested to learn more about #Musclesound and its application please get in touch. We are now offering #BodyFat scanning at Resolve Physiotherapy.  For your appointment you will need to be prepared to undress to a degree, please wear shorts and ladies a suitable sports bra.  The appointment will take no more than 15 minutes and provide you with a full printed report to show your site specific distribution of fat, the percentage fat at each site and your overall body fat percentage!

 

Please call us on 0121 293 0237 to book your 7 point #Bodyfat Scan!

 

 

Inflammation

Categories:News & Stuff

What is Inflammation?

 

Inflammation is a complex biological response that occurs in the body’s tissues as a response to harmful stimuli such as pathogens, damaged cells or irritants (Ferrero 2007).

The inflammatory response is a defense mechanism designed to protect us from infection and injury.  Inflammation often gives rise to sensations of pain due to the; pressure the increased fluid within a space puts on nerve endings and/or the chemical irritation produced by the process.  Discomfort is usually temporary and settles as the inflammatory response passes.

 

We need inflammation in order to heal.  The purpose of the process is to localise and eliminate the injurious agent and to remove damaged tissue components so that the body can begin to heal.  The inflammatory response involves changes in blood flow, an increase in permeability of blood vessels, and the migration of fluid, proteins, and white blood cells (leukocytes) from the circulation to the site of tissue damage.  An inflammatory response that lasts only a few days is called acute inflammation, while a response of longer duration is referred to as chronic inflammation.  Inflammation in excess can cause harm.  Tissue destruction can occur when the regulatory mechanisms of the inflammatory response are defective or the ability to clear damaged tissue and foreign substances is impaired.

In this blog we focus on the inflammatory response to injury and chronic disease.

 

Symptoms of Inflammation

The four cardinal signs of inflammation:

  1. Redness – caused by dilation of the small local blood vessels
  2. Heat - from increased blood flow through the area and is experienced only in peripheral parts of the body such as the skin
  3. Swelling – due to the accumulation of fluid outside the blood vessels
  4. Pain – from distortion of tissues ad chemical components of inflammation

A fifth consequence of inflammation is the loss of function of the inflamed area, a feature noted by German pathologist Rudolf Virchow in the 19th century. Loss of function may result from pain that inhibits mobility or from severe swelling that prevents movement in the area.

Injury

Trauma to the body causing damage to the tissue, for example from a tackle, collision or from an awkward fall will begin the process of inflammation. However, quite commonly tissue injury is as a result of overuse, also known as microtrauma.

Chronic Inflammation in Joints

Have you ever noticed your joints are more sore in cold weather or more stiff in the morning?  This is a sign of chronic inflammation and can be associated with osteoarthritis.

Osteoarthritis is a degenerative disease causing joint pain and stiffness and can affect any joint. People often notice it’s harder to get out of bed in the morning or that they experience joint soreness after adopting static postures such as sitting for prolonged periods.

Although osteoarthritis cannot be cured… It CAN be helped!  At Resolve Physiotherapy we can help alleviate the pain from the inflammation, improve joint mobility and provide exercises to strengthen the joint – stronger joints are known to degenerate more slowly than weaker joints!  We will advise how best to manage your arthritic joints long term.

Muscle Soreness

After training at a level/intensity that you are not used to, you will notice some soreness in the muscles for up to 72 hours.  Soreness occurs due to muscle damage (not all damage is negative!) especially following eccentric exercise and plyometrics.

‘DOMS’ (Delayed onset muscle soreness) appears to be a product of inflammation caused by microscopic tears in the connective tissue elements that sensitize nociceptors and thereby heighten the sensations of pain.

To improve your recovery after training you should try to train consistently and gradually increase the intensity of your training on a steady schedule.  Ice baths after training for 15minutes will aid muscle repair.  Foam rolling each muscle group, twice for one minute each can help reduce soreness.  Regular sports massage after training sessions help reduce inflammation and lactic acid build up.  At Resolve Physiotherapy our sports therapists provide sports massage treatments to help prepare you for and recover after training sessions.

 

Nutrition to Fight Inflammation:

CAAT anti cancer diet

Omega - 3

Found in oily fish such as mackerel, herring or for ve

getarians in plant oils such as walnut, algal oil, flaxseed oil and hemp oil.  Taking fish oils daily as a supplement can help if you struggle to eat a diet rich in the above foods.

Always consult a nutritionist before taking supplements

Magnesium 
Optimal magnesium levels are linked to lower levels of inflammation which in a study of chronic kidney disease patients also linked to lower death rate (King 2009).

Magnesium can be found in dark leafy greens such as raw spinach or nuts and seeds.   It can also be taking as a supplement.  Magnesium can be taken trans-dermally (through the skin) you could try putting magnesium flakes in the bath after a workout.

BCAA’s

Branch-chained amino acids are a group of three essential amino acids: leucine, isoleucine and valine.  Found in high concentrations within dairy, meat and eggs, these amino acids are renowned for their role in muscle growth and strength promotion. Body builders and other athletes significantly benefit from their anti-inflammatory properties. These amino acids reduce recovery times following intense workouts, reducing muscle fatigue and breakdown.
You don’t need to be a bodybuilder to benefit!  Research has suggested that BCAA supplements can help reduce inflammation in patients suffering from liver disease 7diabetes and depression, amongst others. While research continues into possible treatments for chronic inflammation using BCAAs, the preliminary results are positive.

Non essesnital Amino Acids

Glutamine, abbreviated as Q and Glycine (G) , are non-essential amino acid involved in an array of biochemical processes both with anti inflammatory properties.  Most animal proteins are rich in Q, along with beans, spinach, cabbage and parsley. Foods rich in G include poultry and lima beans.

In addition to ensuring an adequate intake of BCAAs, Q, G magnesium and omega-3 fatty acids, there are other supplements that can help combat inflammation. Vitamin D, zinc and curcumin (a nutrient within the spice turmeric) are all particularly beneficial. Regularly taking dietary supplements containing these natural anti-inflammatory agents can combat the deficiency that most people experience.

Probiotics can make a big difference in fighting inflammation. For many people, a combination of inactivity, poor diet and stress can lead to an unhealthy gut.  Chronic inflammation is often linked to an unbalanced gut flora. By detoxifying the body with a high potency, good quality probotic, it’s possible to start effectively treating inflammation.

Just like the treatment of most physical ailments, maintaining a healthy lifestyle is very important. You can have a positive impact on your health through drinking plenty of water, exercising regularly, getting adequate sleep, and avoiding stress whenever possible.

 

If you need help or advice with anything discussed above – call Resolve Physiotherapy on 01212930237 and we will be happy to help.

 

Plantar Fascitis – What Is It And How Physiotherapy Can Help!

Categories:Injuries, Physiotherapy

What Is This Heel Pain?

The Plantar fascia is a thick band of soft tissue originating on the sole of the foot from the medial part of the heel, attaching at the base of the toe joints.  The Plantar Fascia supports the arch of the foot, tensioned when we weight bear on the foot during standing and walking.

 

Under normal circumstances, your plantar fascia acts like a shock-absorbing bowstring, supporting the arch in your foot.  If tension on that bowstring becomes too great, it can create small tears in the fascia.  Repetitive stretching and tearing can cause the fascia to become irritated or inflamed.  The body tries to heal itself creating scar tissue, however this is weak and again when the plantar fascia is put under too much stress the scar tissue tears causing pain and inflammation. This becomes a chronic cycle of degenerative injury, ineffective repair and re-injury causing pain and loss of function.

 

Common activities/reasons that can increase incidence of plantar fasciitis include:

  • Poor underlying biomechanics of the foot and ankle complex
  • Muscle weakness around the foot and ankle
  • Unsupportive footwear
  • Running on hard surfaces
  • High impact sports e.g football/basketball
  • Jobs where you are required to walk/stand for long periods of time

 

Presentation

  • Plantar Fasciitis accounts for 80% of heel pain (N.I.C.E. guidelines June 2015).
  • Slow insidious onset gradually worsening over time
  • Intense pain during the first few steps after waking or after a period of inactivity
  • Lessening pain with moderate foot activity, but worsening later during the day or after long periods of standing or walking
  • Painful gait pattern/limping
  • Tenderness of the heel
  • Reduced ankle movement when pulling toes upwards

 

How We Treat Plantar Fascitis at Resolve Physiotherapy

 

At Resolve Physiotherapy we take a hands on approach to the treatment of your condition, treatment you can expect to receive includes:

  •  A full and thorough assessment of your heel pain – not all heel pain is plantar fascitis
  • Biomechanical assessment
  • Soft tissue massage to increase length of tight soft tissues in the local area
  • Deep transverse friction massage to provoke an inflammatory response for healing
  • Mobilisation techniques
  • Ultrasound Therapy to assist in making the repair process of the damage soft tissue efficient
  • Sports tape to off load the injured tissue and maintain tissue length
  • Active and Passive stretches to increase range of movement and tissue length
  • Strength and balance exercises
  • Assessment for custom / semi custom orthotics
  • Advice on appropriate footwear and tips to reduce symptoms
  • Provision of a progressive Home exercise programme tailored to your individual symptoms and goals
  • Education and advice on the condition to enable good understanding and self management outside of the clinic

 

Expected outcomes

Within 6 sessions of Physiotherapy treatment we aim to significantly reduce your symptoms to a manageable level if not to be asymptomatic from your Plantar Fasciitis.

We aim to get you back to your functional baseline and achieve your personal goals which will have been identified in your initial assessment.

Here at Resolve Physiotherapy we have close links to one of the top foot and ankle consultants in the country.  If after a complete course of Physiotherapy symptoms do persist we will refer on for further input to ensure that your pain is settled in the most efficient way.

 

 

 

Injection Therapy and How It Can Aid Physiotherapy Treatment

Injection therapy is a treatment option commonly used in conjunction with traditional physiotherapy. To provide relief for a number of conditions, injections are administered to intra- and extra-articular tissues, joint spaces, and painful soft tissue lesions.  At Resolve Physiotherapy, our treatments involve the use of steroids or hyaluronic acid injections, the choice depends on your presenting symptoms and condition.   The expert consultants we employ at Resolve Physiotherapy will always advise you accordingly.

This form of therapy can be used as part of a treatment programme for a range of complaints:

  • Inflammatory pain from a range of orthopaedic conditions, such as osteoarthritis and tendonitis.
  • Joint stiffness and reduced range of movement
  • Carpel tunnel syndrome
  • Bursitis

In most cases, injection therapy is not a standalone treatment, but can help relieve pain to allow your physiotherapist a ‘window of opportunity’ to treat the underlying problems of a complaint, aiding rehabilitation.  Whilst injection therapy can help to provide pain relief, this is rarely used as a first course of treatment, as the symptoms will likely return without physiotherapy exercises and treatments to help prevent further pain and problems.

injection therapy

Steroid injections

Some steroids occur naturally in the body, but man made steroids reduce inflammation in much the same way.  We can inject steroid mixtures into or around the inflamed joints to help reduce pain and ease restricted movement.  Some steroids are fast to have an effect, but for a short period of time, whereas others take longer to have an effect, but stay effective for much longer.

Steroid injections are often used for treating rheumatoid arthritis and some cases of severe osteoarthritis, gout and a range of other conditions that affect certain muscles, tendons and soft tissues.  Steroid injections help to reduce inflammation within a joint, help to provide pain relief and are often given to people during a strong flare up of symptoms that can prevent the normal function of the joints.

As steroid injections can help to ease pain and symptoms, they are most commonly used as part of a complete physiotherapy treatment package.  Whilst steroids are in effect, it is often easier for your physiotherapist to continue with other manual therapy and exercise treatments to help rehabilitate you and return the affected joint to normal function.

steroid injections

Hyaluronic acid injection therapy

Hyaluronic acid is a natural component of synovial fluid.  Hyaluronic injections are often used as part of a wider treatment package for degenerative joint conditions. Whilst steroid injections are commonly used to help reduce inflammation, hyaluronic injections are best suited to treating joints where the smooth surfaces have worn, but there is no significant inflammation.  This form of injection therapy is commonly used as part of a treatment programme for the knees, shoulders, elbows, thumbs or ankles.

The number of hyaluronic injections needed and the time in between injections will always depend on the individual being treated.  If injections are effective, they should usually start to work within a few days, with benefits that last for a number of months. Due to the large size of hyaluronic acid particles, they can stay in the joint for quite some time before they are absorbed into the blood stream.

One of the benefits of hyaluronic injection therapy is that there are very few side effects, other than the small risk of infection that is always present in any invasive procedure.

For further information on injection therapy, please call today on 0121 293 0237 or email us at info@resolve-physio.co.uk.

Clinical Pilates and how it can help you in Your Recovery

Clinical Pilates is something that many people consider when they want to aid their rehabilitation and optimise their return to full health. Pilates as a discipline is a proven method of strengthening core muscles dating back more than 100 years. This makes it an appropriate tool to use in a physiotherapy setting. What differentiates Clinical Pilates from the everyday variety is that firstly, it is undertaken by a certified and qualified physiotherapist, and that secondly, it is specifically tailored to the individual’s needs.

Clinical Pilates alone may not bring about the improvement you require, so it needs to be undertaken after clinical treatments with your physiotherapist have been implemented. Improving body tone, fitness and flexibility in this way will aid in your rehabilitation, but will also help to relieve any stress and tension that you may also be experiencing.

The Fundamentals

There are 8 fundamentals of Pilates which are:

  1. Concentration
  2. Centring
  3. Breathing
  4. Isolation
  5. Routine
  6. Precision
  7. Control
  8. Flowing movement

These fundamentals are all concerned with the approach you take with the exercises and movements and are part of each session.

So what do you do?

A Clinical Pilates session is held on a one to one basis at Resolve Physiotherapy. It consists of a series of body conditioning exercises tailored to the areas of the body that is in need of strengthening. Our certified and qualified physiotherapist will select a range of exercises that will challenge your core muscles, targeting particularly the deep postural muscles of the spine and abdomen. These muscles can lose function after a client has experienced an injury, so it is important to reactivate them. Consequently, this form of Pilates is useful in the rehabilitation of musculo-skeletal injuries and suits many of our clients. What is also worth noting is that having a targeted approach to the areas of your body that have been injured will strengthen those areas and help to prevent further injuries.

Pilates exercises are mat-based. They are not strenuous, and are generally quite relaxing. Many of our clients use them as a way back to their usual exercises and activities. Others enjoy them so much they choose to continue with Pilates after their rehabilitation is complete.

What do you have to bring to a Clinical Pilates session?

There isn’t much that you need to bring along with you. A mat is required but this may be provided. Otherwise you will benefit from wearing loose, comfortable fitting clothing. No trainers or special footwear is necessary.

At Resolve Physiotherapy we are highly experienced in a range of treatment options and we are able to offer our clients a series of Clinical Pilates sessions if they are suitable. If you think you may be interested in this treatment then speak to your physiotherapist or ring our friendly team for some further information on 0121 293 0237.

Reduce Staff Absence and Sick Costs with Occupational Physiotherapy

The physical and social environment of the workplace, equipment used and the demands of work duties all have an impact on staff performance and their physical and psychological wellbeing. Whether a desk-bound or manual handling role, back pain and other musculoskeletal disorders are the biggest cause of sickness absence in the workplace and account for nearly a third of the total time taken off sick from work. Suffering with aches and pains during working hours decreases levels of productivity and staff motivation, as they are less likely to be able to focus on the tasks at hand. However, for small and large businesses alike, these health issues can be prevented or minimised through an occupational physiotherapy service, implementing cost-effective practices for improved employee health and wellbeing.

Physiotherapy for enhanced business

Every day, workers put pressure and strain on their bodies, which may well lead to physical injuries and the risk of litigation for companies. Equally, injuries acquired outside of the workplace may negatively impact upon staff performance or cause increased costs of sick absence if not dealt with properly. Areas which need to be considered when accounting for ill health in the workplace include:

  • Manual handling: may cause injury such as low back pain or injury to the arms, hands, or fingers. Tasks may also involve a higher risk of slips, trips, and falls.
  • Workstation layout: whether there is sufficient space under the work surface for comfortable leg placement, whether the work surface height is appropriate for the tasks and whether the chair is properly adjusted to fit the person and workstation are all important considerations. An unsuitable layout could cause back pain or other postural problems.
  • Managing the working day: a poor scheduling of shifts or excessive overtime can place staff under too much pressure to balance shifts with domestic responsibilities. These problems may lead to tiredness or exhaustion, increasing the likelihood of accidents and ill health.

It’s essential that organisations plan for and take measures to alleviate these potential issues because, as the business as a whole needs to be resilient in the workplace to achieve success, the physical health of staff is key. Research shows that the average cost of an employee being absent from work can commonly cost between £100 and £350 per day and it can sometimes be three months before an employee with an injury receives treatment. Physiotherapy not only improves business efficiency, it allows businesses to take positive steps to reduce the high costs of ill health.

occupational physiotherapy

How does it work?

At Resolve Physio we offer businesses clinically proven approaches to treating and preventing workplace injuries in-house. Adopting physiotherapy services for the workplace enables businesses of any size to put their major asset – their staff – first, taking account of their capabilities and limitations in relation to their working environment. We recognise that working environments vary greatly and therefore tailor our approach accordingly, helping companies maintain their strong working efforts whilst reducing absence rates and injury:

  • Investing in a cost-effective physiotherapy service can help employers to treat specific injuries. Some schemes have demonstrated returns of up to £40.00 for every £1.00 invested in terms of reduced absence rates
  • Your business will benefit from an improved staff retention
  • Physiotherapy practices can prevent people from having time off work in the first place as problems can be detected and treated at an early stage
  • An in-house service improves communication between staff and HR and Health and Safety managers, as it opens up a more collaborative environment where issues can be addressed  in a practical way
  • Professional physiotherapists for the workplace can get people back to work and to normal duties as quickly as possible. They can also facilitate a managed return to work, if alternative or modified duties are required

Having this measure in place will assure that your business can return injured individuals to work as quickly and effectively as possible for a healthy, productive workforce. If you are in Birmingham and areas in and around Sutton Coldfield, and would like to find out more or discuss your requirements, please contact Resolve Physio on 0121 293 0237 to book an appointment.