When I travelled with the ACT Hockey teams to Nationals I was responsible for running our ‘morning walk and stretch’ sessions. Asking 18 under 21 year old athletes to ‘stretch’, without clear direction, failed miserably and you can only do so many standard calf and hamstring stretches without getting bored. Instead, in an attempt to engage my young athletes in mobility work I developed a yoga-inspired mobility session. They loved it so much that I thought it would be a shame not to share it with others. Especially when so frequently throughout the day I treat patients that confess to ‘not doing enough stretching’. Stretching doesn’t have to be boring – come and test out our stretch and lengthen classes to see for yourself!
Figure 1: Under 21’s Hockey Nationals 2017 Morning ‘Walk and Stretch’ – Kiama
What to bring – wear clothes that can easily stretch. Tights or trackies on the bottom half and a t-shirt or jumper that isn’t restrictive on the top half. It will be a no shoes occasion! We will supply the mats. Feel free to bring a water bottle!
What to expect – We’ll move slowly but surely through a series of postures and stretches. Spending time in each stretch so we can get the most out of it. Each movement can be modified to accommodate for sore knees, sore backs or other aches and pains. The class is not designed to be high intensity. You might experience slight discomfort but should not be experiencing pain. We will target the full body, paying particular attention to the spine and the hips – the areas we tend to neglect when we spend long periods of the day sitting. And you’ll leave feeling refreshed, invigorated and ready to tackle your afternoon activities!
At Enhance, we want our young athletes to have the best possible chance at achieving success. In conjunction with our physiotherapist, sport scientist and personal trainer Kristy, we have designed our athlete development program. Kristy has worked closely with elite Hockey, Netball and AFL players and has a special interest in athlete strength development to avoid and prevent injury.
The program will run for 10 weeks and include a full body screening to determine specific target areas. We will then design a personalised strength and conditioning program to target specific muscles and joints that are most likely to improve performance and prevent injury.
The program will include a combination of strength training, plyometrics, stability, prehab and mobility work.
This class is a must for any aspiring young athlete from all sports including football, netball, hockey, swimming, gymnastics.
Classes will run on Thursday’s 4-5pm for 10 weeks starting in June. Spaces are limited.
With the start of the winter sport season fast approaching, it is a good idea to start getting your recovery plans in order! The hyperbaric chamber and float tanks are used in professional sport from the NBA to the AFL. Today’s blog is on the simple (yet often done wrong!) contrasts baths or ‘immersion therapy’.
Ice baths should be used between 2 bouts of exercises, between 24-48 hours apart. An exception to this rule is playing sport in extreme heat where you use on the same day of competition. It is worth noting that there is a reduction in performance after the application of ice/cold water, so for optimal performance it is not ideal to use between competitions on the same day.
Research has found positive effects of water immersion with temperate of 10-15° for cold water, and 38-40° for hot water. Any less than 10° or any higher than 40° can stimulate pain receptors. The ratio of hot:cold during contrast water therapy should be 1:1, with research showing positive performance effects after 7 rotations of 1 minute hot and 1 minute cold.
The whole body should be exposed to the cold (excluding the head) and athletes should be standing rather than sitting to maximise the hydrostatic pressure effects – the pressure will be 10 times than wearing compression skins post exercise!!!
If it is not possible to use temperature between 10-15°, benefits from higher temperatures may be observed using longer durations of exposure. The skin temperature is 34° so anything lower than this will cool your system down.
Other notable benefits of immersion therapy include:
Below is a 4 minute video on how the Australian Institute of Sport use cold water immersion.
At a recent conference we attended on the management of tendon injuries, it was clear how poorly tendon injuries are treated in the community. The worst thing you can do for a tendon is REST!
A tendon is the tissue that connects muscle belly to bone. The main tendons we deal with at Enhance Physiotherapy are the Achilles tendon, patella tendon, rotator cuff tendon, and extensor tendon (tennis elbow). Each one of these tendons behaves differently, so the rehabilitation MUST be individualised for the patient…and the tendon!!
What seems to work best in the early stages of the rehab is what is called isometrics. These are muscle contractions, which subsequently loads the tendon, without any movement (static contractions). The optimal way is to hold the contraction for 45 seconds, 5 repetitions with 2 minutes rest in-between. The load must be heavy and be a struggle to hold for the entire 45 seconds. If you have a true tendon injury, you should get some pain relief after completing this exercises by about 50%. Isometrics are often called the ‘tendon panadol’. If you’re pain has increased a thorough assessment is required as most likely, your therapist has misdiagnosed you as a tendon pain – which we see on a regular basis at Enhance Physiotherapy.
At Enhance Physiotherapy Albury-Wodonga, we are the tendon experts! We have completed further training, and rehab tendon injuries through the Australian Defence Force (the most common site of tendon injuries in Australia!).
The water cooler discussions at Enhance Physiotherapy of recent times has included ACL injuries in the AFLW competition. We predicted a huge increase in ACL injuries given that female athletes are x5 more likely to rupture there ACL than males due to structural and hormonal differences.
We have noticed in the clinic an increase in 15-18 year old girls entering with ACL injuries. It is crucial any girls playing AFLW at all levels should be completing an injury prevention program. The program should include strengthening, jumping and landing (correct form), as well as quick pivoting movements to help with the readiness to play.
We use a number of different ACL prevention programs. One of the simplest programs is the Santa Monica PEP program (see below).
If you would like to know more about the ACL and ACL injuries Nathan sat down with local orthopaedic surgeon Mr. Jeremy Kolt to discuss all things ACLs.
· Line to Line jog (1 min)
· Shuttle Run (1 min)
· Backwards Running (1 min)
· Walking Lunges (1 min)
· Russian Hamstrings (1 min)
· Single leg calf raises (1 min)
· Lateral hops over cone (30 secs)
· Forwards/backward hops over cone (30 secs)
· Vertical jumps (30 secs)
· Scissor jumps (30 secs)
· Forwards run with 3 step deceleration (1 min)
· Lateral Diagonal runs (3 passes)
· Bounding run for 50m
· Calf Stretch (30 secs x2)
· Quad stretch (30 secs x2)
· Hamstring Stretch (30 secs x2)
· Adductor stretch (30 secs x2)
· Hip flexor stretch (30 secs x2)
*** SPORTS TAPING COURSE ***
Saturday the 4th of November
9.00am – 11.00am
Located at the Enhance Physiotherapy Clinic: 550 Smollett St Albury.
Ideal for sports trainers heading into preseason.
Please contact the clinic on 02 6041 3609 to secure your place.
Learn from physiotherapists working in the sports field!
As physiotherapists who work closely with sports teams and the Australian Defence Force, a fair proportion of our work consists of loading issues.
“The Envelope of Function” is a great analogy, when discussing injuries related to loading. If the load fits within your “Envelope of Function”, you will have a normal loading and tissue response, which adapts quickly without injury. However, occasionally the load can go outside your level of function resulting in injury. This typically occurs in two ways.
NORMAL CAPACITY = NO INJURY
The first way involves increasing your load quickly. There is no change to your functional capacity (or Envelope of Function), however you may have increased your load beyond this capacity. An example of this is doubling gym or running sessions to make up for missed sessions.
EXCESSIVE LOAD = INJURY
The second way is maintaining the same load, however your “Envelope of Function” has decreased. Factors that contribute to this decrease include; pain, stress, poor nutrition, fatigue, insufficient recovery or poor sleep. These factors can often explain why an overuse of loading injury has occurred when you have not altered your load.
If you have any loading injuries, please contact Enhance Physiotherapy Albury-Wodonga. We will fully assess your injuries and get you training back at your peak.