On Friday I had my first session at physical therapy. Brian Beatty (Balanced Physical Therapy in Carrboro, NC) is fantastic! He spent a considerable amount of time watching me walk and move, and with skilled hands he was tracking my heel bone (talus) to see why I was still having pain. Then he gave me exercises to do several times a day.
I’ve known Brian for some time, primarily because we have been talking about how to bring my therapy to massage therapists and physical therapists around the USA. I’m looking forward to us getting that moving along soon. However I never needed a PT before so I could only imagine that he was as good as I thought. Now I know for sure…he is!
We spoke about the fact that I’ve been working on all of the muscles of my lower leg and foot ever since I got out of the hard cast, and what a difference it made in my healing process. I just don’t know how people function after a broken ankle if they haven’t released the tension in the leg muscles! Maybe that needs to eventually turn into a separate book…Caring for your muscles after a broken bone. I’ll have to give that some thought!
If you have had a broken bone, especially if it was a joint bone, this information is extremely important for you. Muscles either cross over a joint or insert directly into the joint. In either case the tight muscles will prevent your joint from moving freely. They must be released of the tension, and the only way to do that is by direct pressure on the muscle fibers, especially the spasms (knots) that are holding the joint fast. To try to do PT without first releasing the tight muscles will give you a less than perfect result. But, if your muscles are prepared, PT will strengthen and stretch successfully and you’ll be moving better immediately. After just one session (and several “at home” sessions) I can’t get over the difference in the movement of my ankle and in my pain level (almost gone).
If you have broken a bone, go to an anatomy book and see what muscles affect that joint (if you can’t figure it out, put a message on my forum and I’ll be happy to help). Then treat that muscle. If you have my book, Treat Yourself to Pain Free Living you can see how to do each of the self-treatments. If your problem is in your wrist then also take a look at the information about carpal tunnel syndrome (even though you don’t have CTS, the info is the same). The treatments need to be done so frequently that while it’s great to go to a good massage therapist, you also need to know how to continue the treatments on a daily (or even more than once a day) schedule.
Massage, physical therapy, and chiropractic….what a team!
Wishing you well,