Strength Training in a Healthy Manner

Much has been written regarding the benefits of strength training. It is known that resistance training, when performed correctly, has many positive benefits such as:

  • Increases the strength of bones, muscles and connective tissue
  • Lowers the risk of injury
  • Increases metabolic rate to assist with maintaining a healthy weight
  • Reduces the risk of falls
  • Improves mental health.

A study published in the Journal Sports Medicine in 2017 concluded that resistance training “Significantly improves anxiety symptoms among both healthy participants and participants with a physical or mental illness”.  The American Heart Association recommends strength training at least twice per week.

Many people desire to engage in strength training, however current aches and pains have eliminated this possibility.  Timed Static Contraction training might be a solution to your dilemma.  TSC training involves performing isometric contractions for a duration of 60-90 seconds continuously in targeted muscles.  The duration of hold is conducted in 3 levels of intensity… 50%, 75%, 100% (without pain).  The force of contraction is slowly built up over time to allow for proper breathing technique and good posturing to prevent possible injury.  All forces involved in TSC are performed below the threshold of pain but performed in a way that leads to improved strength.  This isometric contraction is typically performed in mid-range position but can be performed in any pain-free position.  When performed correctly, Timed Static Contraction can be beneficial in many ways, including but not limited to the following:

  • more efficient and safe recruitment of muscle fibers leading to increase in muscle strengthening
  • Ability to strengthen targeted musculature without producing movements in painful joints
  • Ability to produce sufficient muscle forces to maintain and improve bone density
  • Reduce the risk of injury through the gradual building up of muscle forces overtime

The goal of TSC is to perform strength training in a safe manner that minimizes pain and injury and obtains the positive benefits of exercises.

If pain or an injury are preventing you from being as active as you would like, the therapists at Motion Physical Therapy can get you on the road to recovery. The clinic offers a variety of therapies and techniques including Timed Static Contraction training, that can assist you in achieving the benefits of strength training. Motion Physical Therapy is conveniently located in The Woodlands near I-45 and Sawdust Rd. Call us at 281-881-7099 to schedule your appointment today.

Exercise Works like a Miracle Drug!

We hear this all the time, don’t we? Exercise 3 to 5 days a week to keep your body healthy. Well, it turns out that exercise has many benefits for the mind as well as the body. Time Magazine’s Mandy Oaklander published an article called “The New Science of Exercise,” which focuses on genetic metabolic neurologist named Dr. Mark Tarnopolsky. He describes the positive effect of exercise on the human body and how exercise can truly be a leading medicine for people of all ages.

Dr. Tarnopolsky conducted an experiment in 2011 which involved mice with a genetic disease that was causing them to age prematurely. The results were shocking to say the least. This 5 month experiment split the mice into two groups where 1 group lived a sedentary lifestyle and the other group was prescribed exercise 3 times a week on a treadmill. At the conclusion of the study, the sedentary mice had fur that “had grown coarse and gray, muscles shriveled, hearts weakened, skin thinned-even the mice’s hearing got worse” (Oaklander). On the other hand, the active mice had coats that were “sleek and black, they ran around their cages, they could even reproduce”(Oaklander).

Even though this study was completed on rodents, there are obviously applications for humans. Running and strength exercises can improve skin health, eye health, and even your reproductive health, according to Tarnopolsky.  He also states that a sedentary lifestyles puts people at higher risk for many different forms of cancer, heart disease, Alzheimer’s disease and early death.

Tarnopolsky and other experts know the true scientific benefits of exercise which they consider real, measurable, and almost immediate: slower aging, better mood, less chronic pain, stronger vision, and much more. Continue reading “Exercise Works like a Miracle Drug!”

Aquatic Therapy Can Help Your Back Pain

Are you experiencing back pain? You may have previously tried land-based exercises to treat the issue, but are you wondering if there is something more that can be done? Aquatic therapy may be your solution. Research supports that aquatic therapy is effective in the treatment of back pain. The warmth and buoyancy of the water combined with the elimination of gravity eases pressure on joints and muscles. A study at the University of Wisconsin found that aquatic therapy was a positive way to improve flexibility and sleep patterns and reduce muscle and joint pain in middle aged and older adults with a history of orthopedic limitations and discomfort.

Another study tested whether aquatic therapy was more effective in treating chronic low back pain compared to land-based exercises. Two groups of patients with chronic low back pain were compared. One group participated in pool-based exercises for a month, while the other group did exercises given by a Physical Therapist at home for a month.

While there was a “significant improvement after treatment in both groups (1),” the statistical analysis revealed that the improvement was significantly greater amongst the patients that participated in the aquatic exercise group. Continue reading “Aquatic Therapy Can Help Your Back Pain”

Healthy Eating & Exercise Tips to Survive the Holiday Season

In the midst of the holidays, the excitement of family, friends and parties can derail the healthy habits of even the most disciplined individuals. Over a lifetime, holiday weight gain can really add up. The National Institutes of Health find that holiday eating can accumulate at a rate of 1-2 extra pounds every year. A few tips are included below to help you prevent weight gain and stay happy and healthy during this festive time of year.

It is key to be aware and selective of your food intake, especially as many will attend several holiday events with buffets or beautiful spreads of high fat party food. If the party you are attending encourages guests to bring a dish, bring a healthy option for yourself such as hummus and veggies. Be selective at the buffet, and fill your plate with healthy fruits and veggies before moving on to the less healthy options. Once you fill your plate, engage in conversation with other party guests and move away from the spread of food. Eat slowly and only eat until you are 80% or comfortably full. Overeating can cause stomach upset and Continue reading “Healthy Eating & Exercise Tips to Survive the Holiday Season”

Pretty Heels but Not So Pretty Feet

There once was an old woman who lived in a…high heel? Okay, so that’s not exactly how the story goes, but if it did, that would be the crankiest woman in the world. It is proven that it’s four times more likely that women will suffer from foot or ankle pain issues than men, due to the shoes they wear. A shoe with just a two inch heal can actually cause a 57% increase in pressure on the forefoot. Every woman knows that sometimes beauty comes with a price, but how much are you willing to pay?

Though sometimes difficult to understand, knowledge about your own anatomy and potential issues can be very beneficial. The forefoot, midfoot and hindfoot are the three subdivisions that make up the foot. In addition to the 26 bones, the foot and ankle use tendons, muscles and over 100 ligaments to work normally. The foot is similar to a machine, so if an issue occurs with one area, it can affect the entire foot and even other leg joints. Injuries to the foot can range from purely irritating to even debilitative at times.

I am sure most of you have heard the phrase “Women are from Venus, men are from Mars.” It is weirdly true, even when it comes to feet. Everything about a woman’s foot is smaller; the metatarsals, the toes, the ball of the foot, the arch. Continue reading “Pretty Heels but Not So Pretty Feet”

The Plague of Neck Pain

To the surprise of many, 90% of the population will have symptoms relating to spinal pain at least once in their lives. Recent studies have linked neck pain with the increased use of technological devices such as smartphones, tablets, and iPads. Neck pain can develop from poor posture often associated with these devices and can originate from joint, discs, or soft-tissue dysfunction. However, neck pain can also occur due to stress or traumatic injuries such as a motor vehicle accident.

Some of the key symptoms of neck pain is headaches and/or upper back as well as shoulder pain. The neck consists of ligaments, tendons, muscles, cushioning discs, seven vertebra, and has a relatively wide range of motion. The signs and symptoms of neck pain usually vary in severity and can include:

  • Sharp, shooting pain
  • Dull, achy pain
  • Numbness
  • Tendernes and burning pain in your shoulders
  • Tingling in the arms and hands

Light stretching performed at home can help to relieve your neck pain as well as strengthen and correct your posture. However, a physical therapist is able to identify the source of your pain, and can create a therapy and exercise regime that is tailor made for your individual diagnosis. At Motion Physical Therapy, our primary goal is to help you move past your neck pain and get back to enjoying your life. Our physical therapists have more than two decades of experience and will perform a thorough, comprehensive neck evaluation on each patient. Additionally, a variety of methods can be used for neck therapy and can include:

Continue reading “The Plague of Neck Pain”

New Scoliosis Treatment Program in The Woodlands

Motion Physical Therapy is now offering conservative management of adolescent idiopathic scoliosis in The Woodlands. Scoliosis is a three-dimensional spinal deformity that requires a specialized approach to address the unique curve pattern of each patient. Adolescent idiopathic scoliosis is the most common type of scoliosis. It has no definitive cause, but usually occurs in children after the age of ten.

At Motion Physical Therapy we offer a proactive approach based upon the Schroth Method. A conservative management of scoliosis, the Schroth Method began in Germany in the 1920s. This method was developed by Katharina Schroth and focuses on strengthening and stretching exercises to de-rotate and elongate the back into a more normal posture. Further developed by her daughter, physical therapist Christa Lehnert-Schroth, it has become the standard, non-surgical approach to treating scoliosis in Germany.

Our physical therapist is certified in 3-D scoliosis treatment based upon Schroth principles. He will provide a thorough assessment and develop an individualized treatment plan based upon your unique curve pattern. Our program will utilize specific stretching and strengthening exercises and, if necessary, specialized bracing to influence your child’s condition in a positive manner. Our goals of care for adolescents with scoliosis are to: Continue reading “New Scoliosis Treatment Program in The Woodlands”

Do you have Tennis Elbow?

Living in The Woodlands keeps one extremely busy and our lifestyles have tied us to long stretches of computer use. These type of repetitive motions in a static position can place increased stress on the body. A commonly affected area is the outer elbow in which the tendons of the forearm and hand attach. Inflammation in this area is called lateral epicondylitis or tennis elbow. Tennis elbow is a condition that is caused by chronic exhaustion and strain in the muscles that lift the wrist, hand and fingers, (the muscles located on the back of the forearm), and/or an inflammatory condition of their tendons.

Tennis elbow can be felt as a hot, sharp pain at the elbow itself, or as more of an aching pain that spreads from the elbow to the hand and wrist that could indicate a more muscular cause of tennis elbow. Many physicians believe that micro tears in the tendons surrounding the elbow is the source of tennis elbow pain. The pain is usually worse with gripping of the hand with the elbow in an extended position.

What can be done regarding treatment options for tennis elbow?  Continue reading “Do you have Tennis Elbow?”

Physical Therapy in The Woodlands

Motion Physical Therapy, located in The Woodlands, endeavors to restore every patient to the highest level of human performance using cutting edge science, human kinetics and technology. Physical Therapy professionals customize treatment plans for each patient in order to decrease pain, promote function, and avoid disability. Our physical therapists can also customize fitness and weight loss programs in order to promote a healthy lifestyle and prevent injuries due to exercise.

The Woodlands physical therapists are highly knowledgeable, and bring over two decades of experience in treating patients in an orthopedic sports medicine setting. Our patients represent a wide range of abilities including professional athletes, weekend warriors, pediatric patients, and elderly community members. Physical therapy treatment specialties in The Woodlands include: patients with joint replacements, post-operative care of arthroscopic treatment, degenerative joint disease, sports injuries of the shoulder, knee, ankle and hip, foot biomechanics, spine disorders including scoliosis, TMJ, and head and neck disorders. Each patient receives individualized care and Motion Physical Therapy in The Woodlands offers a complete range of services, including: Continue reading “Physical Therapy in The Woodlands”

Low Back Pain

Motion Physical Therapy introduces our new clinic in The Woodlands, TX. Our clinic in The Woodlands is a full service physical therapy gym, including Pool Therapy, and Scoliosis Therapy. Our therapists take a holistic approach to restoring a patient’s function. This allows them to tailor the therapy program to the patient’s needs.

Our physical therapists have over 30 years of experience.  They have received specialized training and gained expertise in the evaluation and treatment of Orthopedic, Sports and Neurologically involved patients, including Cervical and Lumbar dysfunctions.

Back pain is a limiting factor for people in the United States with stats that report 80% of Americans will experience low back pain that significantly affect their daily function. Here at Motion Physical Therapy in The Woodlands, therapists take extra care on restoring function when affected by low back pain. Continue reading “Low Back Pain”