Physical Therapy News

Keeping Kids Active :: An interview on eightWest

Keeping kids active on eightWest

Kids naturally want to be active. The need to use up some of their endless amounts of energy is vital for their mental and physical health. But, today’s modern families are facing some challenges that make it harder to be active on a regular basis. We’re seeing a greater number of kids doing virtual learning, with parents who are busy working and taking care of the home life responsibilities. These factors make it difficult for kids to get the suggested 60 minutes of physical activity every day.

The good news is that you don’t need fancy equipment to stay physically active. It can be as simple as doing some fun exercises with your kids, while mixing in a little pretend. Plus, it’s even more fun if you can get the entire family involved.

Gina Otterbein from Northern Physical Therapy and Sarah Pipher from our partners at the Grand Rapids Performance Center, Generation Care stopped by the WOOD tv studios of eightWest to chat with Jordan Carson about fun ways to keep kids active.

Plus, they announced our new Family Fitness Challenge series that will offer up weekly challenges and exercises to engage the entire family. Join the group here and participate each week for a chance to win some cool prizes.

Here’s a sneak peek at some of the fun exercises we’ll show you and your littles ones. Kids love to play pretend so these animal walk exercises are a great way to keep them engaged.

If you have questions about your child’s development, an injury they’ve had, or pain they’re experiencing, feel free to reach out to us. We can schedule a consultation and learn more about your child’s condition. As part of the Ivy Rehab Network, you can request an appointment at any of our clinics by clicking here.

View Our Previous Physical Therapy Segments on eightWest

If you missed any of our previous WOOD TV eightWest segments, you can view them at the following links. We’ve talked about various topics: Tips for doing yard work with less pain, Tips for comfortably working from homeCouch to 5k Training Programhow fitness can prevent cancertips to reduce holiday stress, reducing your chances for a fallis physical therapy painfulpediatric constipation and bed wettingback pain in women, physical therapy vs taking prescription pain medication, the lesser known issues we treat, benefits of physical therapypain during pregnancy and when caring for a newborn, our annual step challenge, senior and elderly fitness programs, having healthy kids and teens, reducing the chances for injuries by knowing the proper form when running and stretchingwomen’s health, and direct access to physical therapy in Michigan. With multiple west Michigan locations we’re offering physical therapy in Lowell and throughout the greater Grand Rapids area!

The Ivy Rehab Physical Therapy Network is Now Serving Reed City

Reed City Physical Therapy

We are excited to share that our newest clinic in Reed City, Michigan is now open. The clinic is located at 204 West Upton Avenue next to Huntington Bank. As with all offices within the Ivy Rehab Network, the Reed City clinic is committed to their patients by offering in–clinic, virtual telehealth, and at home appointments. With nearly 30 locations in Michigan, the Ivy Rehab Network continues to expand to serve more communities like Reed City.  

“I’ve been treating patients in the Reed City and Big Rapids area for over 11 years now,” said Jill Crosby, Clinic Director, and Physical Therapist at Ivy Rehab. “I am thrilled to continue to offer high-quality physical therapy services at our newest PT office in Reed City and am excited to continue to build relationships and help people get back to doing what they love.“ 

Jill has a passion for treating orthopedics, sports and work-related injuries, post-surgical rehabilitation, and chronic pain. In addition to earning a certification in Orthopedic Manual Therapy, Jill has continued to enhance her hands-on therapy expertise through further coursework in Myofascial Release using the John F. Barnes approach. 

“As Regional Director for the Ivy Rehab Network of clinics in Western Michigan and one of the founding partners of Northern Physical Therapy, I’m so excited to expand our service area to Reed City,” stated Gina Otterbein. “We are excited to add this new location to the Ivy Rehab family and are honored to have Jill join our team.”  

Ivy Rehab Physical Therapy in Reed City will provide treatments that include Physical Therapy, Soft Tissue Mobilization, Chronic Pain, Orthopedic Therapy, Post-Surgical Treatment, Arthritis Treatment, HeadachesMcKenzie Method, Myofascial Release Technique, Pediatric Physical Therapy, TMJ Treatment, and Vertigo Treatment. Special programs that will be offered at the Reed City clinic include: 

Access to care is available with or without a physician’s prescription, usually within 24 hours, and through virtual telehealth as well. The office is open Monday and Wednesday from 7:00 am to 6:00 pm, Friday from 7:00 am to 5:00 pm and open Tuesday and Thursday by appointment. If you’ve injured yourself or are experiencing pain or discomfort, the Ivy Rehab Physical Therapy team is here for you.  

To make an appointment, give them a call at (231) 465-4289 or to request an appointment online, click here

Plantar Fasciitis Stretches, Causes and Treatments

If you’re experiencing heel pain, especially after walking all day or running long distances, you may have plantar fasciitis. It’s a common condition characterized by pain and inflammation of a thick band of tissue, called the plantar fascia, which is similar to a bowstring. The plantar fascia runs across the bottom of your foot and connects your heel bone to your toes.

Many times plantar fasciitis develops due to chronic poor posturing of the foot during weight-bearing activities, such as walking for long periods, or standing all day at work. It’s also common in runners and people who are overweight.

Most people experience a sharp, stabbing pain in their heel. This often occurs when you first get out of bed and take a few steps in the morning, or when you get up after long periods of sitting. When sleeping or sitting, the plantar fascia becomes tight. Once you get up and start walking around, the plantar fascia loosens and the pain typically decreases.

Other notable symptoms include pain in the arch of the foot, pain that increases over a period of months, and swelling on the bottom of the heel.

If you suffer from plantar fasciitis or foot pain, give these stretches a try next time you feel a flare up coming on.

What causes plantar fasciitis?

Causes of plantar fasciitis vary but there are risk factors that can increase your chances of developing the condition:

  • Improper foot mechanics, being flat-footed, having a high arch or even having an abnormal pattern of walking
  • Occupations that require walking or standing on hard surfaces, including teachers, factory workers, carpenters and nurses
  • Faulty footwear can affect the way weight is distributed when you’re standing and put added stress on the plantar fascia
  • Overuse or increase or change in activity
  • Weight fluctuation and obesity
  • Age as plantar fasciitis is most common in women and men between the ages of 40 and 60
  • Certain types of exercise including long-distance running, jumping, ballet, and high-intensity training

If tension on the plantar fascia becomes too great, it can create small tears in the fascia. Repetitive stretching and tearing can cause the fascia to become irritated or inflamed. Ignoring the symptoms of plantar fasciitis may result in chronic heel pain. If left untreated, it can lead to foot, knee, hip or back problems from overcompensating.

Treatment options for plantar fasciitis

Plantar fasciitis usually goes away after several months, but it is best to visit your doctor for an official diagnosis and rule out other injuries. There are a variety of lifestyle changes and treatment options that can help, along with education and physical therapy.

  • Stretching exercises. Stretching out the calf muscles can help ease pain and assist with recovery.
  • Limit activities. Give your heel a rest by reducing physical activities.
  • Good shoes. Invest in supportive shoes that have good arch support and a slightly raised heel.
  • Ice. Using an ice pack on your heel for 20 minutes a day can reduce inflammation. Do not apply ice directly to the skin.
  • Avoid going barefoot. When you walk without shoes, you put undue strain and stress on your plantar fascia.
  • Medications. Oral non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), such as ibuprofen, can help reduce pain and inflammation.

Minimally invasive procedures include extracorporeal shock wave therapy (ESWT) and radioablation (Topaz). Few people need surgery to detach the plantar fascia from the heel bone. It’s generally an option only when the pain is severe and all else fails. Side effects include a weakening of the arch in your foot.

Dry needling is also a great treatment for plantar fasciitis. In part 2 of our video series we’re demonstrating how and why it works. Dry needling the calf not only reduces tightness throughout the lower leg, but also aides in reducing foot pain.

Physical therapy can help plantar fasciitis

If at-home treatments don’t relieve your symptoms, physical therapy is a good option for foot pain and plantar fasciitis. A good way to think of rehabilitation is in two phases: first, control the symptoms and aggravating factors; second, prevent future flare-ups or reoccurrences.

Phase one of physical therapy may include treatments such as hot/cold packs, electrical stimulation, or ultrasound. Gentle non-weight bearing stretching and range of motion (ROM) activities are often recommended.

Manual therapy techniques include joint mobilizations and soft tissue mobilizations. The Graston Technique, a form of instrument-assisted soft tissue mobilization, is a specific type of manual therapy provided by certified physical therapists and is an effective complement to stretching and strengthening.

Physical therapists also focus on education, such as wearing proper footwear and using ice packs at home, to prevent and change daily habits that may be triggering symptoms. The goal is to help control and eliminate symptoms such as pain and inflammation.

Phase two is designed to prevent reoccurrence by eliminating the source of the fasciitis. Re-establishing correct foot mechanics, the way in which the foot impacts the floor throughout gait, is critical in preventing future symptoms. Routinely orthotics or proper-fitting shoes are recommended to support unstable or high arches.

Additionally, strengthening and balance training activities are beneficial to ensure proper force transfer through the foot during stance and minimizing stress through the plantar fascia. As part of the Ivy Rehab Network, we also offer a special Running Analysis Program.

Don’t go another day with a throbbing heel or chronic foot pain, especially if you have been diagnosed with plantar fasciitis. Contact your nearest Northern Physical Therapy clinic for an assessment or to talk to a physical therapist about your symptoms and how they can help.