Advanced Practice Physical Therapy - July 2020

JULY 2020

www.advancedpracticept.com | 406-770-3171

WEDDING BELLS ARE RINGING! PANDEMIC OR NO, I’M GETTING HITCHED

Hello everyone, it’s Anna here! Dawn asked me to step in and write this month’s newsletter because I have some big news to share: If everything goes to plan, then next month on Aug. 15, my fiancé, Brian, and I will be tying the knot on the shore of the Missouri River. I couldn’t be more excited! If you’ve been a patient of mine for a while, then odds are you’ve heard me talk about Brian. We were both born right here in Great Falls and actually met at a local hot spot. Before Brian went to nursing school to become a physician’s assistant, he used to work at a brewery here in town. By chance, we met there one night in 2015 when I went in with a girlfriend to commiserate over a bad breakup. The friend I was with knew Brian, so he came over and introduced himself. Even though I was upset and probably trash-talking boys at the time, I remember that he was very sweet to me from the beginning. When my friend and I eventually got up to leave, Brian came after us and handed me a free beer card with his name and number on the back. He said that I could call him if I felt like it, and a month or so later, I did! You might think that’s the end of the “how we met” story, but after our first date in the summer of 2015, we decided things weren’t going to work out. Neither of us was ready for the

relationship, so we just kept in touch as friends. A year later in 2016, we ran into each other again. Just like last time, I was out with friends at a bar, but this time it was a bar that they’d dragged me to, and we were supposed to be celebrating finishing our finals. As it happened, Brian was also there with his coworkers! He hated the bar too, so funnily enough, we connected over that and decided to try another date. By that point, I knew he was the one for me. We dated for a few more years, then bought a house and moved in together last summer. I had a sneaking suspicion Brian was going to ask me to marry him before he did. I knew he had a ring because when he was showing a photo of it to a friend, I accidentally caught a glimpse! What I didn’t know was when or where he would pop the question. Last September, Brian went all-in and planned a surprise 30th birthday party for me. He had one of our mutual friends take me out to get my nails done, and when we got home, everyone was there! He’d even invited our moms (both of our dads have passed away). Maybe I should have suspected something then, but it was actually a total surprise when, as the party was wrapping up, he got down on one knee and held out the ring. Both of our moms got to see the big moment, and mine even burst into tears. It was a really special proposal.

Anna and her fiance!

As far as wedding planning goes, with the chaos of the pandemic, we’ve been taking it day by day. We have our fingers crossed that we’ll be able to celebrate with our friends and family on Aug. 15, but if it ends up just being a small ceremony, then that’s okay too. What matters the most to us is that we love each other and want to get married — the big show is just a bonus.

Next time you see me, I might be a married woman!

–Anna Fry

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2 EXERCISES TO START NOW BUILD STRONGER KNEES WITHOUT SURGERY

Knee injuries are all too common for professional athletes and weekend warriors alike, but the problem may originate higher than you think. Many knee injuries can be tied to hip weaknesses. Because hip muscles play a big role in controlling the position of the knees, even slight imbalances can lead to problematic knee flexion or hyperextension during exercise. Many workouts later, injury and pain can result. If this describes your situation, don’t give up on running or soccer just yet. Try these two exercises to help stabilize and strengthen your knees. LATERAL WALKS Sometimes called monster walks, this movement targets the gluteus medius, an often overlooked muscle that is important

for strong running mechanics because it helps stabilize the knee. Wrap a resistance band around your ankles, place your legs shoulder-width apart (if this doesn’t create tension in the band, use a smaller one), and descend into a slight squat. Begin by taking one lateral step to the right with your right leg, followed by the left leg, keeping feet shoulder-width apart so there is always tension in the band. Take 10 steps to the right side, then repeat on the other side. Try for two sets. STEP-UPS Standing in front of a step or stable wood box that is 6 inches tall, step onto it with your right leg, putting your weight on your heels to engage your gluteal muscles. Tap the step with your left foot, then return it to the floor. As you step up, focus on not letting your right knee extend beyond your toes. Repeat 10 times, then switch legs. Try for three full sets. Once you feel confident with the step height, you can use a taller step or box — just make sure it’s no higher than your knees. Start slow and ease into these movements. However, before beginning any new exercise program, talk to your doctor to make sure you are ready for it. If you do experience any pain or if your knees continue to bother you while you’re exercising, then talk to a physical therapist. They can help you find the best movements and exercises to address your specific condition and help you get back to the activities you love.

HOW TO IMPLEMENT A VIRTUAL WELLNESS CHALLENGE BE YOUR BEST SELF WITH THE HELP OF OTHERS

A lot of people struggle to keep up with a regular wellness routine because they lack accountability to hold them to it. Whether it’s exercise, meditation, or healthy eating, if you go through the process alone, it’s that much harder to will yourself to see it through. But at a time when isolation is still one of the best ways to stay healthy, how can you involve others in your wellness plan? The answer is simple: Create a virtual wellness challenge! UNDERSTAND THE PROCESS A wellness challenge cultivates healthy competition among participants that keeps them motivated to stick with their wellness regimens. Challenges can be fully customized depending on the goals and abilities of those participating, and when the challenge is carried out virtually, participants have more freedom and flexibility in their

routines without missing out on any of the social interaction that makes it fun.

GET STARTED Every challenge should have a

quantifiable goal depending on the theme. Challenges like working out for 30 minutes a day, getting seven hours of sleep at night, eating 1 cup of leafy greens with every meal, or meditating for 15 minutes every day are all great examples. Whatever it is, the target should be clear and reasonable in order to encourage maximum participation and low burnout. STAY ACCOUNTABLE Treat the challenge like you would a weekly book club. Set a time every week to meet via a video call to share wins and setbacks, discuss necessary changes to the challenge, plan for the next week’s challenge, and offer

encouragement. If you really want to up the inspiration, determine a prize to be awarded to the person who actively participates the most. Just be sure you have a tangible way to record and share those results, like video evidence of the activity. A wellness challenge shared among friends and family is a great way to work on your physical or mental well- being and stay connected with loved ones when you aren’t able to visit them in person. That kind of consistent personal connection can be wellness in and of itself.

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THE KEY TO BOOSTING YOUR PERFORMANCE IN THE GYM 3 DEVICES TO IMPROVE YOUR BREATHING

When you’re running or lifting weights, oxygen is the fuel that keeps you moving. It rushes into your lungs and blood with every breath you take, and your heart pumps it out to your muscles, where it becomes vital energy. Ensuring your airway is open is the key to making this process run smoothly. If you’re a regular in the gym, you probably know how important proper breathing is. You might even be employing breathing techniques already. But did you know you can also buy your way to better breathing?

even found that wearing an Under Armour mouthguard boosted college athletes’ endurance, exercise intensity, and recovery. PUTTING YOUR BEST NOSE FORWARD Since the 1996 Olympics, athletes all over the world have been using nasal dilators to improve their breathing. These devices make it easier to breathe through your nose, either by pulling open your nostrils from the outside (like the Breathe Right Nasal Strips you see on football players) or pushing them open from the inside (like Nas- Air that clips into the nose, a bit like a bull’s ring). These devices aren’t exactly fashion statements, but they work, particularly the internal ones! According to an Italian study published by Acta Biomedica, athletes using an internal dilator made by Nas-Air felt less fatigued after working out than athletes using Breathe Right strips or no device.

CREATING AN OXYGEN SUPERHIGHWAY

Mouthguards aren’t just to protect our teeth during sports anymore. According to specialists, wearing a mouthguard can help open up your airway by moving your jaw forward and keeping your tongue stable. This lets more oxygen in and lets more carbon dioxide out! One study published in The Journal of the American Dental Association

but they’re the most accessible options for athletes just starting to dabble in the practice. To find out more about the products above, visit UnderArmour.com for mouthguards, BreatheRight.com for external nasal dilators, or RhinoMed. global for internal dilator options.

Mouthguards and nasal dilators are just the tip of the breath-enhancing iceberg,

THE BEST GRILLED SUMMER VEGETABLES Inspired by DinnerAtTheZoo.com

TAKE A BREAK!

Contrary to popular belief, vegetables are delicious. Most of our parents just didn’t know how to prepare them well. This summer, revolutionize your cookout with a serving of delicious, colorful veggies.

INGREDIENTS

• 1 tsp salt • 1/4 tsp pepper • 1 1/2 tsp dried Italian seasoning • 1 1/2 tsp garlic, minced • 2 lbs assorted vegetables, trimmed and halved (asparagus,

3. Prepare the grill at medium- high heat. 4. Grill vegetables in batches, cooking 3–5 minutes on each side until browned and tender. (Carrots will cook longer, 6–9 minutes per side.) 5. Remove from the grill, sprinkle with parsley, and serve hot. mushrooms, red onion, red bell peppers, baby carrots, and yellow squash are great on the grill) • 5 tbsp olive oil • 2 tbsp lemon juice • 1/4 cup parsley leaves, chopped

DIRECTIONS

1. In a small bowl, combine salt,

pepper, Italian seasoning, and garlic.

2. Brush vegetables with olive oil

and place in a large bowl. Top with lemon juice and seasoning mixture. Toss to coat evenly. Cover and refrigerate for at least 20 minutes but no longer than 2 hours.

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406-770-3171 | www.advancedpracticept.com

PRST STD US POSTAGE PAID BOISE, ID PERMIT 411

1. COVER TITLE . WEDDING B LLS ARE RINGING! INSIDE THIS ISSUE 2. 2 EXERCISES YOU NEED TO STRENGTHEN YOUR KNEES STAY ACCOUNTABLE WITH A VIRTUAL WELLNESS CHALLENGE 3. THE KEY TO BOOSTING YOUR PERFORMANCE IN THE GYM THE SECRET TO DELICIOUS GRILLED VEGGIES 4. WHAT TO WEAR TO PHYSICAL THERAPY

WHAT SHOULD I WEAR TO PHYSICAL THERAPY? TIPS FOR STAYING COMFORTABLE AND HEALING FASTER

When your doctor refers you to a physical therapist after an injury, you may be wondering what you should wear to your appointments. If you’ve never been to physical therapy before, it’s natural not to know what to expect — much less what to wear while you’re there. Here are a few tips to help you ensure maximum comfort and a speedy recovery. DRESS FOR COMFORT In physical therapy, you’re going to be moving around a lot and doing many different stretches and exercises. That means you’re going to want soft, loose-fitting clothing, like what you might wear to the gym or while lounging around at home. Don’t wear your work clothes. Clothes that allow you full range of motion, like sweatpants, gym shorts, workout T-shirts, and tank tops are all good

choices. Even though they’re not always loose-fitting, yoga pants and leggings will also work. Basically, when choosing your outfit, ask yourself, “Can I move easily and comfortably in this?” If the answer is yes, then it’s probably good to wear to your next physical therapy appointment. ACCOMMODATE YOUR INJURY Depending on the nature of your injury, some wardrobe choices might be better than others. Part of a physical therapist’s job is to observe how your muscles and joints move in order to identify the best way to heal your injuries. So if you’re suffering from a knee, ankle, or lower leg injury, opt for shorts over sweats. If you’re working on a shoulder injury, wear a tank top instead of a T-shirt. Choosing clothes that accommodate your injury will make your physical

therapist’s job easier, which, in turn, helps you heal faster.

WEAR PROPER SHOES The most common type of footwear for physical therapy is a good pair of exercise sneakers. Avoid dress shoes, boots, sandals, flip-flops, or any other nonexercise shoes. You’ll want to wear something with good support since your physical therapist will probably have you moving around a lot. Any other kind of shoe might leave you with more aches and pains than you had before you came to your appointment.

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