Vital Care PT - August 2019




(623) 544-0300

What Were My Two Favorite Subjects in School?


Vital Care Patients ENTER TO WIN Find the misspelled word in this newsletter and call 623-544-0300 for your chance to win a $10 GIFT CARD! CALL 623-544-0300 Contest is for past and present Vital Care PT patients only. If you’re a parent, then you probably experience a multitude of feelings every year when you realize that it’s time to start preparing for the kids’ first day of school. You might feel stressed trying to fit in a few more summer activities before the warm weather wanes. You might feel sad thinking about how empty the house will be while the kids are off filling their brains with the stages of photosynthesis and proper grammar placement. You might even feel relieved knowing that you no longer have to find ways to expend their energy. If you’re anything like me, you’ll likely experience all three feelings at once. When it comes to school, my kids are exactly like me. While they are excited to see their friends every day, they aren’t particularly looking forward to all the homework, exams, and study sessions. In fact, if you ask them

what their favorite class is, they’ll tell you — just as I did when I was their age — that P.E. is far and away the best. While I wouldn’t necessarily call myself a superstar athlete, athletic activities have always come naturally to me. In elementary and middle school, I looked forward to P.E. all day. Even then, I had the typical Type A personality that made me extremely determined. In school, this translated to trying to be at the top of my class no matter the task. For example, I remember in fifth grade when students were required to take those physical fitness exams, which required you to do a

situp test, sit and reach test, and then run the mile. While I always excelled at the situps and the flexibility part of the exam, I couldn’t seem to finish the mile fast enough to get me on the Presidential List. At the time, this was apparently really important to me because I got special permission to run the mile again. I ended up running it four separate times until I finally ran it fast enough to get the Presidential List certificate. Once I was in high school, I continued to sign up for P.E. as my elective class, even after my freshman year when it was no longer considered mandatory. I also took dance and systematics. Systematics is a weight training class in which I was one of three girls with 22 boys. This is where my love of exercise and

weight training began. I learned a lot about the human body and the way it functions, and I was passionate about the material, so I actually enjoyed going to class. Plus, I just love being active, which has translated into the work I do today. I always knew that I’d never succeed at a job that forced me to sit still, and, with all the exercises I get to do alongside my patients every day, I know that I never will. So, if you ever feel worried when your kid tells people their favorite class is P.E., you can rest assured they’ll still turn out okay!

–Andrea McWhorter | 1

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A Sport for All Ages Becomes a Craze Among Older Adults THE INCREDIBLE RISE OF PICKLEBALL

You’ve probably heard of pickleball, especially given its rising popularity in the United States and Canada, but you may be wondering what the big deal is about this relatively new fad. Pickleball is an awesome, low-impact sport that people of all ages can enjoy. It’s great exercise and great fun, and it’s the perfect game for family get-togethers. Pickleball originated on Bainbridge Island, Washington, in 1965. It was the creation of three fathers — Joel Pritchard, Bill Bell, and Barney McCallum — who needed to come up with something to keep the little ones entertained and out of their hair. Soon, however, it became popular among the adults, and they ended up spending more time on the court than their children. “Frankly,” McCallum says, “the kids got pushed out.” Since its early days, pickleball has transformed from an ad-hoc game to a full-fledged sport, complete with official rules, equipment, and leagues. Despite the more formal structure in place today, pickleball is incredibly easy to pick up and play. Investing in some paddles and balls won’t cost more than $100, and you can easily convert a tennis or badminton court for pickleball. One of the appeals of pickleball for older adults is that it is not excessively strenuous. It also doesn’t have the steep learning curve and high barrier to entry that sports like tennis or golf do. Due to the nature of a pickleball, Success Stories Those of us who have had the benefit of living fairly healthy and injury-free lives struggle to understand the frustration associated with chronic pain. Even if you suffered a couple of sprained ankles or broken fingers playing pick-up softball with your buddies as a kid or teenager, those injuries would typically heal within a few weeks, and you’d be able to get right back on the field, barely missing a beat. But there are many people out there who live with pain that affects their ability to complete the most basic of tasks like dressing themselves, talking the dog for a walk, or picking up their grandkids. That’s why Vital Care Physical Therapy exists: to help patients get their lives back! Here’s what Jeanne B. had to say about her experience working with our team. “I am beyond thrilled after working with Vital Care to get my core strengthened. Prior to the awesome care provided by Andrea and Abby, every day was a challenge. The pain I was in was quite limiting, and I struggled with bending in certain positions, standing, and even sitting. But now, with the awesome help and information I received, I have learned how to take care of my body, and my

which contains strategically placed holes similar to those of a whiffle ball, the game is much more about finesse than pure power or athleticism. While you can definitely hone your skills with practice, you’ll start having fun from day one. In addition to being a fun form of exercise, pickleball also offers older adults the chance to socialize with their peers. Leagues often lead to long-term friendships. Courts are small, and each game consists of only four players, making it easy to engage in some casual conversation or playful, competitive banter between points. If you’ve never picked up a paddle, consider joining a league or buying a set for your next family outing. You can introduce your grankids to a fun new sport — and then school them for the bulk of an afternoon.


life is much more doable. Thanks for everything! “P.S. No drugs, injections, or surgeries for me!”

– Jeanne B.

If you’re dealing with chronic pain that leaves you unable to live your life the way you want to, don’t hesitate to come in and meet with one of our physical therapists. We don’t want you to spend another minute in pain. Give us a call at (623) 544-0300 to find out how we can help you today!

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Due to years of anecdotal evidence, the vast majority of people associate back pain with colder weather. As a result, most people also believe higher temperatures provide relief for chronic pain. While this may be true for some, many others

attest that the warm summer heat actually causes them more pain. While scientific research has yet to identify a concrete connection between weather and pain, patients across the country report that humidity, heat, or even barometric pressure can make a difference in their pain levels — for better or for worse.

In addition to high temperatures, several other seasonal factors can trigger back pain and bring your summer fun to an abrupt halt.

ACTIVITIES (OR THE LACK THEREOF): Due to these high Arizona temperatures, many people put a halt to their summer activities. The heat may have made you forgo your daily walk or swimming routine, or perhaps being busier hosting family barbecues or celebrating summer holidays has left less time for regular exercise. While it’s easy to slow down during the summer, finding new ways to maintain exercise can help reduce back pain. Consider moving your outdoor walk to the mall, Walmart, or Target or taking indoor group fitness classes at the rec center instead. TRAVELING: These summer months might be the best time to take a vacation. Unfortunately, all that traveling generally involves sitting in a plane or car for hours on end, which can be very hard on your neck and back. Proper posture and ergonomics while driving and scheduling time for exercise in your vacation itinerary will help you avoid potential pain and make the most of your vacation. If you have any questions regarding posture, driving ergonomics, or exercises you can do while on vacation, give us a call. We can do an evaluation and a couple of weeks of physical therapy before you leave on vacation to get you going on a home exercise program and posture education. We also recommend attending our Back Pain and Sciatica Workshop here at the clinic on Aug. 10 at 10 a.m. There’s no cost to attend, but we do ask that you RSVP to reserve your spot. Call us at 623-544-0300 to ensure your back doesn’t slow you down this season.


Inspired by Bon Appétit Magazine


• 2 medium ears of corn, shucked • 1 jalapeño or Fresno chile, seeded and thinly sliced • 1/2 red onion, diced • 1 large tomato, cored, seeded, and finely chopped • 1/4 bunch cilantro leaves, sliced • Juice of 1 lime • Kosher salt, to taste


1. Heat a cast-iron skillet to high. Char corn, turning occasionally, for 10–14 minutes until kernels begin to blacken in spots. 2. Using a sharp knife, remove corn kernels from cobs and transfer to a large mixing bowl. 3. With a wooden spoon or potato masher, gently crush corn to release starch and juices. 4. Add jalapeño, onion, tomato, and cilantro. Mix to combine.

5. Top with lime juice and season with salt. 6. Serve alongside your favorite tortilla chips. | 3


(623) 544-0300 Fax: (623) 544-0239

14545 W. Grand Ave., #108 Surprise, AZ 85374



Andrea’s Favorite Subject in School: P.E. PAGE 1

Why You Should Play Pickleball What Our Clients Are Saying! PAGE 2 Roasted Corn Salsa Learn How to Prevent and Heal Back Pain at Our Workshop! PAGE 3

The Art of Stargazing PAGE 4

Helping Humans Slow Down and Look Up THE ART OF STARGAZING

Modern humans are stuck in a routine of expected and constant industriousness. But with all this rushing, people often drag themselves home at night with no energy left to enjoy the most splendid show nature has to offer: the wondrous night sky. Most people go through life looking straight ahead, but if they would stop and peer skyward, they’d bear witness to a massive, unexplored frontier made up of the moon in all its phases, burning stars sailing through the sky, constellations with epic origin stories, and meteor showers bright enough to warrant sunglasses. If you’re looking for a hobby to help you slow down and appreciate the world around you, stargazing is a great option. Here are some tips to get you started. 1. The Higher, the Better If you’re a city dweller, meander a little way out of town or try to find a tall building to keep the light pollution to a minimum. 2. Extra Set of Eyes While novice stargazers often want to immediately throw their money at a new telescope, astronomy experts recommend starting with binoculars instead. You’ll need to identify several anchor planets or constellations to help you navigate the sky before using a telescope.

Utilize Assets Put your phone to good use by downloading apps like Stellarium, Starwalk, and Google Sky Map. Each of these apps offers a unique benefit for aspiring stargazers. For


example, Starwalk lets you point your phone at the sky to see stars, constellations, and planets in real time based on your location.

4. Mark Your Calendar In 1972, beloved singer-songwriter John Denver wrote about a meteor shower he witnessed during a camping trip in Colorado. He describes the scene by singing, “I’ve seen it raining fire in the sky.” The “fire” he recounted was actually the Perseids meteor shower, the most recognized shower on Earth. This astrological wonder takes place every year from July 17 to Aug. 24. During this time, viewers should be able to see shooting stars associated with the Perseids, but the shower reaches its maximum rate of activity on Aug. 12–13 this year. Grab some friends and family, and head outdoors to put your newfound stargazing knowledge to work.

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