Synergy PT Sports Med September 2017


SEP 2017

A Dedication to Community

M y career in physical therapy began in New York City. I started there not long after I wrapped up my physical therapy master’s program at the University of Miami School of Medicine. I felt New York was the best place to establish my career. I got great experience and worked with so many incredible people. It wasn’t long before I realized that New York City wasn’t the place where I was meant to be. In spending more time in Jacksonville, where I had grown up, I saw that our community was desperately underserved when it came to specialty PT care. There were people driving up to three hours out of town to get the care they needed. For me, this was unacceptable. The people of Jacksonville deserve what people living in metropolitan communities have regular access to. They deserve a better level of care and someone they can rely on for that care. I made the move from New York back to Jacksonville and made the change I wanted to see. I opened my own PT clinic. Since opening the clinic, my role has evolved. I’ve learned to balance being a business owner with being a clinician. To achieve that, I’ve worked hard to bring together a talented team of people who are just as passionate about providing the best in patient care as I am.

As I was assembling this dedicated team, I realized I had to look beyond their abilities as physical

therapists and clinicians. While their education and

experience was critical, how they communicated with patients was just as important, if not more. Communication is everything when it comes to the health and care of a patient. As health care experts, we need to know we are doing everything to the best of our ability to help each patient. We have to listen and understand the issues our patients are experiencing. My goal, then and now, has been to provide the highest level of care and to achieve what I set out to do when I created Synergy Physical Therapy & Sports Medicine. As much as I love serving as a clinician and being directly involved with our patients, I’m really passionate about developing Synergy as a business. I’ve made it my mission to expand beyond just physical therapy. People need health care that emphasizes whole-body wellness — care that goes beyond what PT generally provides. To that end, I’m exploring innovative ways to incorporate health and wellness programs into what we already do every day. Of course, this doesn’t mean I don’t work with patients. I try to plan my time as best I can. When I get down to it, nothing brings me greater joy than

working with patients and helping them achieve their own goals with therapy, whether it’s recovering from an injury, overcoming pain, or rehabilitation.

Over the years, I’ve noticed more clinicians spending less time with

patients. Physical therapy has become too fast-paced, and clinicians aren’t devoting enough time to each patient — time their patients deserve. While I do spend a portion of my time growing the business, I will never give up the time I spend with my patients. Every moment we spend with our patients is essential to their outcome. And we want to achieve the best outcome possible, because that is what you deserve.

Kira Boyd



Achieving Your Goals ... TOGETHER

Extracurricular Overload

How to Demystify Your Kids’ Jampacked Schedules

some tips to stay sane in the midst of the extracurricular whirlwind.

go further than that. Those soccer practices Jacob’s going to? There are other teammates there, and those teammates have parents shuttling them around, just like you are. Set up carpools to manage scheduling conflicts between your kids and drastically reduce the time you spend as a chauffeur. Maintain balance. This might come as a surprise, but you will have to say no to your child every now and then. Sure, simultaneous baseball, football, and soccer seasons might seem healthy and fun for your kid, but you need to consider your own needs, as well. Many parents give their children free rein over what to choose, but limit activities to one or two per season. Make sure you weigh each child’s needs equally, and keep the rules the same for each of them.

Consolidate all your scheduling, jotting, and

activity-tracking strategies into one system. You can’t afford to be scrawling “Abby piano lesson rescheduled 9/21” on the first scrap of paper you come across. That doesn’t mean you have to be hyper-organized, but it does mean that you need to keep your

entire calendar in one place, whether that place is Google Calendar, a fridge whiteboard, or the old-fashioned standby: a calendar with a lighthouse on every page. Whichever system you choose, keep it updated. Its word is law. Form parent alliances. It’s vital that you and your partner coordinate availability and who’s driving whom when, but you should

As school starts up again, so do sports, and your kids’ extracurricular ambitions pile up like the falling autumn leaves. Managing their schedules can seem impossible, but don’t let yourself get burned out. Here are


Meet Sara Tutherow Taekwondo is Sara Tutherow’s passion. For the past seven years, she has dedicated herself to the Korean martial art known for its fast and high kicks. She entered the sport as a white belt, the traditional starting color, and through the years, she ascended the ranks to become a black belt in 2015. It was far from an easy journey, and it only became more challenging when Sara began to experience hip pain. There were times when she thought her time with taekwondo was going to end because the pain was getting in the way. She knew she had to do something. Sara began physical therapy. Over six months, and for two separate cases, Bridget Littrell, DPT, helped Sara find relief. She could once again focus on the sport she loved. Without the therapy, her ascension through the ranks would not have happened, and she would

not have garnered the attention of the International Taekwondo Federation (ITF).

Even before Sara achieved black belt status, the ITF wanted her to compete in the ITF World Championship. It was right before Sara earned her second-degree black belt that they finally asked her to compete in the event. The ITF World Championship is held every two years, and it serves as a world-class event for the sport. The event took place in Argentina, August 9–12. Sara competed in the junior division, earning the distinction of the youngest competitor in her division from any country. She was also one of three female juniors on Team USA. Looking forward, Sara plans to try out for cheerleading. Already, she has made an impression with her ability to jump and kick.

She can launch herself seven feet into the air to kick and break a board. There is no doubt she will be able to do what she loves for years to come!


Your Feet Don’t Have To Hurt!


The NEW Foot and Ankle Pain Workshop (exclusively at Synergy Physical Therapy & Sports Medicine) includes a thorough explanation with a live demonstration to address the most common risk factors and causes of foot and ankle pain. At this exclusive workshop, you will learn: • The top 3 common causes of foot and ankle pain for most sufferers • The single biggest mistake foot and ankle pain sufferers make which actually stops them from healing • What successful treatment looks like without medications, injections or surgery Foot and ankle pain can totally cramp your style! • It can limit you during your most fun activities. • It can ruin your travel plans. • And it can take away your ability to live life, causing you to rely on others or limiting how much you can push yourself.

• Do you have a hard time walking long distances or keeping up with your family members while walking through stores because of foot or ankle pain? • Do you experience stabbing pain in the bottom of your foot that occurs with your first steps in the morning or after rising from sitting? • Do you have throbbing pain in your feet when standing all day at work? • Do you have “weak ankles” and worry about your stability when on your feet? • Are you afraid your pain will get worse if you don’t do anything about it? If you are confused about what to do with these symptoms or simply want answers to your questions, then attending the Foot and Ankle Workshop at Synergy Physical Therapy & Sports Medicine might be perfect for you! Are you looking for permanent relief of your foot or ankle pain without injections, medications, or surgery?

Join us Saturday, September 30th, from 10-11am for our

Foot and Ankle Pain Workshop

At 233E Bell Fork Rd, Jacksonville, NC 28540

HOW MUCH IS IT TO ATTEND? This event is FREE, but we are only taking 30 attendees. Make sure to RSVP by calling our clinic at 910.238.2259 or email us at When you register you can bring a guest (we do this because many people request to bring their spouse or other family member or friend). As a bonus, those attending this workshop will receive our special report, “Top 10 Burning Questions for Foot and Ankle Pain.” We hope to see you there!


Achieving Your Goals ... TOGETHER


Part 2

There are four features to consider when you are selecting a running shoe for maximum performance and minimal risk of injury. This month, we are going to focus on the first point: the heel. Let’s get started! 1. Drop the Heel Heel-to-toe drop refers to a difference in height between the outsole/midsole of the heel and the outsole/midsole of the forefoot. Traditional running shoes are a modified version of high heels, whereby the difference in height between the heel and toe is often 10–12 millimeters. This was originally developed as a means to establish a “heel rocker” and promote a smooth progression through the stance phase of running. However, the foot works best in a flat position in order to appropriately stabilize your stride. Scientifically speaking, a Laughter Is the Best Medicine

decreased heel-to-toe drop optimizes the feedback received by the foot when contacting the ground, allowing for appropriate landing response and muscle firing patterns.

We often recommend shoes with a 4–6 millimeter (or less) heel-to-toe drop. Minimalist shoes are often zero drop, meaning that the stack height at heel and forefoot is the same. While most individuals can run in a zero-drop shoe, it should be noted that the transition from traditional footwear to a zero-drop model is a delicate process that should be completed over several weeks (up to two months). This is due to the fact that low drop models require increased activation of calf musculature to dissipate the forces of landing. Dropping the heel is something runners should give great consideration to. This especially goes for runners with runner’s knee, IT band friction syndrome, shin splints, stress reaction, or fracture.

One-Pan Harvest Pasta

2 tablespoons vegetable oil 1 small eggplant, cut into 1-inch pieces (4 cups) 1 medium zucchini, coarsely chopped (2 cups) 2 tomatoes or 4 Roma tomatoes,

1 cup dried whole grain elbow macaroni 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper Kosher salt Ground black pepper (optional) Snipped fresh basil Grated Parmesan cheese

coarsely chopped (1 cup) 1/3 cup chopped red onion 2 cloves garlic, minced

1 (19-ounce) can cannellini beans (white kidney beans), rinsed and drained 1 3/4 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth 1. In a large skillet, heat oil over medium heat. Add eggplant, zucchini, tomatoes, red onion, and garlic. Cook, uncovered, 7–10 minutes or until vegetables are almost tender, stirring occasionally.

2. Add beans, broth, pasta, and crushed red pepper. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat. Cover and simmer 7–10 minutes more or until vegetables and pasta are tender, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat. Season with salt and pepper; top with basil and Parmesan cheese and serve.



Achieving Your Goals ... TOGETHER


233 E Bell Fork Rd. Jacksonville, NC 28540


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A Dedication to Community

Extracurricular Overload Athlete of the Month

The Truth About Running Shoes Part 2 One-Pan Harvest Pasta

Dealing With Stress

Dealing With Stress Learn Healthy Coping Mechanisms That Put You in Control You have more control over stress than you think. Stress management is about taking charge of your lifestyle, thoughts, emotions, and the way you deal with problems. No matter how stressful your life seems, there are steps you can take to regain control.

Make Time for Relaxation Nurturing yourself is a necessity, not a luxury. If you make ample time for self-care, you will be in a better place to handle life’s stressors. Give yourself options like going for a walk, calling a good friend, journaling, or reading a book. Live a Healthy Lifestyle In addition to regular exercise, there are other healthy lifestyle choices that can increase your resistance to stress. Eat a healthy diet; reduce caffeine and sugar; avoid alcohol, cigarettes, and drugs; and get enough sleep. Stress is unavoidable, but it doesn’t have to dictate your life. With stress management techniques, you can avoid chronic stress, reduce your stress levels, and live your life to the fullest.

Identify Sources Chronic stress is hard to recognize. Look closely at your habits and excuses. Do you explain away stress as temporary? Do you define stress as an integral part of your life? Do you blame your stress on others? If you don’t recognize your role in creating or maintaining stress, you will never be able to control it. Find Healthy Strategies Withdrawing from loved ones, bingeing on food or alcohol, procrastinating, and sleeping too much are all unhealthy ways to deal with stress. Instead, find unique, healthy coping

strategies. Focus on what makes you feel calm and in control.

Avoid, Alter, Adapt, and Accept Some stressors are predictable. Learn how to predetermine your reactions by choosing to avoid, alter, adapt, or accept. Avoid people or situations that stress you out. Talk about your feelings instead of bottling them up, create a balanced schedule, reframe your problems, look at the big picture, and practice gratitude. It’s critical to look at the glass as half-full and learn to forgive.


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