PREhabilitation – The act of exercising to prevent injury
This article was originally written on Jan 2014. yet it still rings thru today.:
I have often used this word to describe the preventative maintenance we all must abide by to truly succeed with fitness. Sure it is not the 2013 Oxford Dictionary Word of the year (Selfie) but why shouldn’t it be the 2014 word? This is the discussion we need to have more aggressively.
As we come upon the major transition of universal healthcare, better known as “#ObamaCare,” we should ask what is covered with our new plans. As a physical therapist we are daily fighting to gain more visits for our patients. As important as justification is, to prevent fraud, I find it upsetting that simple prehabilitation is not covered enough. As a public we are not completely unaware of the theory of prehabilitation.
Functional exercises prevent injury:
1) ACL injury and Female Soccer Players usyouthsoccer.org by Marc R. Bernier is the National Center for Sports Safety Soccer Consultant.
2) Hip Replacement/Fractures related to Falls from Older Adults and how fall prevention can prevent injury Center For Disease Control and Prevention CDC.gov
I think most specifically we should highlight the football phenomenon occurring at Stanford. Last week the New York Times article Stanford’s Distinct Training Regimen Redefines Strength by Greg Bishop talks about how Coach Shannon Turley used simple functional movement screening to an almost injury free year. The NFL has been in the news all year with discussion about safety concerns and here is a man that use the basic principle of do exercise correctly, functionally, and you will prevent injury. Prevent injury and you will prevent rehabilitation costs & surgery costs.
So what does this have to do with the population we see as physical therapist? What if before you start your Iron Man, NY Marathon, Tough Mudder, Spartan Race or even before you decided to pick up tennis or golf again, you instead have a screening from your physical therapist to see if you are safe to do these things. Yes, your primary care physician (PCP) can clear you physiologically but what about physically. If you are at risk for injury will you yourself be safe to begin training? Is your personal trainer or coach trained in functional movement science? Here in New York you can see a physical therapist without seeing your PCP first. You can be treated for 10 visits or 30days whichever comes first. Although, not all insurances are okay with this, it is your right. However, I do suggest you do see a PCP for the physiological clearance as well.
I hope this does not seem like a ramble but more of a #food4thought blog entry. We have the power to prevent the enormous costs of health care in this coming year. Why not spend a little to prevent spending much more later.
Be Healthy, Be Safe, Prehab;
Clifford A. Yun, PT, DPT