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Preventing injury through physical therapy

KAAL-TV
Created: November 15, 2019 06:43 PM

(ABC 6 News)-- When most people think of physical therapy they tend to only think of it benefiting surgery or injury recoveries.
 
"So you're a healthy person but you're trying to get to that next level, so then we can access how you're put together as a human," said Joe Eischen a Physical Therapist at Mayo Clinic.
 
Eischen says that performance training focuses first on what you can do. With videos and pictures and assessments, your team can look at what you need help with and gear training specifically to your needs. 
 
"Then it's about giving that athlete corrective exercises to fix whatever issues they might have," said Eischen.
 
Does the training help completely prevent injuries from ever happening? Officials say no- research does not support the idea of physical therapy preventing all injuries. However, there are reasons to believe that over-use of the body- type injuries could be avoided.
 
"I had a grade one separation. I just went into the boards awkwardly. And then the last game of the season in April I got hit again and then it became a grade three separation," said Dylan Schneider, who is recovering from a shoulder repair surgery.
 
Schneider's injury during hockey wasn't preventable, but a part of his post-surgery recovery is building up the strength in his shoulder and his other muscles as well. 
 
"We train him until failure without any risk of re-injury or falling or anything. That's one of the biggest benefits, is there's no risk in here because it's a controlled environment," said Peter Spratte, the Head Hockey Specialist for Mayo Clinic.
 
Spratte works with Schneider on the ice to build back his ability to perform with his shoulder, while Eischen focuses on the overall strength. 
 
Although Schneider's injury was local to just his shoulder his team is preparing his entire body to return to the ice.
 
"We want to do everything from the doctor to the physical therapist to the sports performance side to make sure that we're working together to give him the best possible service for him to come back and be successful," said Spratte.
 
The Performance Program at Mayo covers sports from hockey to golf and everything in between.

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