If you’ve recently suffered a painful injury or a surgery that limits your movement, you may be inclined to just rest and let it heal. There are certainly cases where rest is just what the doctor ordered. But it’s safe to say in cases where rest is not bringing relief and/or the injury is recurring, seeking out physical therapy is a logical response.
“When done under the watchful eye of a highly qualified physical therapist, there are so many ways that movement can bring healing,” says Ron Jegadeesh, Pilates Instructor, Physical Therapist, and owner of Pilates Fitness & Physical Therapy Center in Southfield. “Even when it seems contraindicative.” Physical therapists are trained to use a variety of treatments that help their clients gain strength and regain mobility. They do this with a focus on specific exercises and movements. Depending on the injury or area that needs healing, a physical therapist creates a custom-made strength training program utilizing machines, weights, elastic bands, and the client’s own body. He or she also works one-on-one with the client to manipulate the specific area that’s causing pain.
With a keen and thorough understanding of biomechanics, physical therapists teach clients how to use their muscles and joints correctly to reduce pain and avoid injury through this strength training.
For instance, if a client is injured playing sports or because of repetitive motions, the physical therapist observes how the client naturally moves and makes recommendations to bring the body into better alignment while in motion. Once the client has a grasp of a more efficient way to move, he or she can apply this to activities of daily living to prevent re-injury.
In addition, a physical therapist has the expertise to determine how much weight the client should bear and the proper way to do it. Then he or she can increase the weight gradually and safely as the client’s strength increases. Furthermore, they have an awareness of pain that benefits from movement, and pain that does not.
But it’s important to understand the physical therapy isn’t just weeks or months of rehab. “Many first time patients come to PT and believe the physical therapist will make them all better,” says Jegadeesh. “But when a client is discharged, we don’t see them as just a former patient. They become a part of our wellness community and we encourage them to continue moving after their treatment.”
On the road to recovery, there are bound to be some bumps. That’s just life. But these “bumps” are fewer and farther in between for clients who focus on continued wellness and keep up with a regular movement program and home exercises. In addition, that commitment to healing and movement can stave off potential setbacks. In fact, many physical therapists say they notice patients who were previously inactive become regular fitness enthusiasts after PT. That’s because once they develop the habit of daily exercise and movement, they learn first-hand how beneficial it is.
“Part of what makes our physical therapy center unique is that we also offer classes in movement techniques such as Pilates, GYROTONIC®, and GYROKINESIS®,” says Jegadeesh. “Many of our PT clients have become avowed practitioners in these modalities.” The added benefit of these movement systems is that once the client has a grasp of the foundational exercises, it enables the physical therapist to introduce more advanced therapeutics during the actual sessions. This opens the door to improving muscle memory. And since all of the exercises take body position and alignment into consideration, actions that once required effort start to become second nature. For example, exercises that were initially assigned to improve posture can become so effortless that over time, a client will be easily sitting up straight and tall without giving it a second thought.
This one-of-a-kind approach empowers clients to have continued access to rehabilitative services while taking charge of their own fitness and continued wellness. In addition, Pilates Fitness & Physical Therapy Center accepts insurance so the journey to lifelong well-being is more in reach for everyone. Are you ready to begin that journey?