Sports Physical Therapy – What Is It?
Whether you are a professional athlete or an occasional sports enthusiast, sports physical therapy (PT) can be a great asset. This type of PT not only supports recovery from injuries, but it may also help athletes prevent injuries from occurring in the first place.
Sports medicine physical therapists often have a background in athletic training and some may also hold board certification through the American Physical Therapy Association as Sports Clinical Specialists (SCS).1 As such, these PTs possess the necessary skills to provide individuals with sport-specific treatments for many types of sports-related diagnoses.
If you’re dealing with common injuries like sprains or strains, trying to get back into sports after surgery, or just want to stay on top of your game, then read on to learn more about what this specialized kind of physical therapy has to offer.
Sports physical therapy is a type of physical therapy that focuses on helping athletes recover from sports-related injuries and improve their performance. Our specialists are highly skilled in the latest techniques and provide comprehensive treatments tailored to each individual athlete’s needs. We also offer support in injury prevention and sport-specific strength and conditioning programs to enhance athletic performance. With our help, you can get back in the game faster while ensuring your safety.
Why Choose A Sports Physical Therapist?
Choosing a sports physical therapist is a great choice for active individuals who are looking to increase their performance and reach their full potential. Whether you’re an ambitious amateur or professional athlete, our physical therapists can help you maximize the effectiveness of your training while avoiding the risks of injury. Sports-specific physical therapists understand how the body works in athletes, and they are well-equipped to develop tailored rehabilitation plans that target any performance issues or injuries. We strive to optimize each individual's health and fitness by providing them with personalized advice and services.
What You Get With Sports Physical Therapy Visit Like?
Evaluation / Assessment
A physical therapy evaluation is an assessment that physical therapists use to evaluate a patient’s current condition, examine any past medical history related to their injury or illness, and determine the best course of treatment. During the evaluation, the therapist will assess range of motion, posture, and how the body moves in relation to specific tasks. They may also observe how a person stands, walks or performs certain activities.
Your physical therapist will ask you specific questions about your injury or condition, as well as any pain you have and limitations at home or during sports activities. They will also talk to you about your prior performance levels and goals for therapy.
As part of the full examination, the therapist typically evaluates your range of motion, strength, and (if possible) your mechanics while performing sports-specific movements such as running, jumping, or changing direction rapidly. A selection of specialized tests may be carried out to help the physical therapist pinpoint an accurate diagnosis.
Evaluations are an important part of our work at physical therapy centers as it helps us determine what type of treatments are best suited to help a patient heal and improve their overall functioning.
Phase 1: During the first phase of post-injury recovery, it is essential to address any pain, inflammation or swelling present. Soft tissue massage and icing can help reduce these symptoms, while compression modalities can be utilized to further minimize pain. Additionally, gentle stretching and mobility exercises that focus on restoring range of motion are also often used, in addition to light muscle activation exercises.
Phase 2: During phase two of rehabilitation, the focus is usually on increasing strength, range of motion, flexibility, and balance. Those looking to prevent an injury rather than treating one may begin at this stage. Depending on your diagnosis, your therapist will show you how to gradually involve the affected area in strength training exercises. They can also develop an exercise plan that provides support to the injured area. Furthermore, proprioceptive training is typically initiated as a means of boosting balance and stability before returning to more intense sporting activities.
Phase 3: The last phase of rehabilitation involves introducing sport-specific drills and exercises. This is also the phase in which we help you develop a plan to address the root causes of your initial injury that are inhibiting your performance. We want you not only back in the gym, but at a higher level than ever before! At this stage, your therapist will typically examine your mechanics while performing movements required for your particular sport. They can also assist you in developing endurance and create an appropriate return-to-sport schedule depending on your individual circumstances. Ultimately, you are usually cleared to resume the desired activity with a home exercise program to continue with afterwards.
Home Exercise Program
A physical therapy home exercise program is a personalized plan of therapeutic exercises that are tailored to your individual needs. These exercises are meant to be done at home and can be used to facilitate progress between visits to the physical therapy clinic. The goal of these programs is to help you stay active, reduce pain, build strength and endurance, improve balance and coordination, and promote overall wellness. Depending on your unique needs, an individualized plan may include stretching, strengthening workouts or balance activities. The therapist will provide detailed instructions on how each exercise should be completed, including sets, repetitions and duration and this will be provided through our partner app Theracentric.
Sports Injuries We Treat
Knee Injuries: ACL, MCL, Meniscus Tears, Runner's Knee
Tennis Elbow & Golfer's Elbow
Rotator Cuff Tear
Swollen Muscles (Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness)
Shoulder Separation or Subluxation
Hip Flexor Strain
Swimmer’s Shoulder (Shoulder Impingement Syndrome)
Vertebral Compression Fracture
Back Injuries: Herniated Disc, Sciatica
Why should I choose HIDEF?
HIDEF Physical Therapy is the perfect choice for your sports physical therapy needs. With a unique framework designed to reduce pain and restore function, our team of experienced physical therapists are dedicated to helping you get back to enjoying life again. We have clinics in Downtown Seattle, Bellevue, and Renton to make it easy to access the care you need. With years of experience in sports and orthopedic physical therapy, we are the trusted provider many local athletes in the Seattle area.
332 Burnett Ave S
Renton, WA 98057
P: (206) 693-9929
F: (206) 922-8909