A few weeks ago were US Figure Skating Nationals. Perhaps you caught some of it on NBC? We had several skaters competing at all different levels. With so many skaters competing at such a high level, the weeks leading up to the competition were intense at work. Athletes and coaches were anxious, nervous, excited or all of the above. The younger ones (ages 9-12) were a bit more relaxed, but the older ones ages 13-25 were certainly a bit more nervous as they had more to gain if they placed well. Any injury that happened to these skaters in the preceding weeks was treated with extreme caution but training couldn’t end unless it was a debilitating injury. With skating, there is no on-ice tapering and I’ll touch on why in a bit. One of our skaters had the potential to make the world team and even with a back fracture, his training was only cut down to what was absolutely necessary. That was the most extreme of the injuries, the rest were managed with manual therapy, modalities, stretc
hing, bracing and other everyday treatments.
It was very quiet at the rink during national’s week. The competitors and coaches were in St. Paul, MN at the competition and the rest of us at the rink were buzzing and keeping a close eye on competition and results via Ice Network. When any of the skaters would compete everyone in the rink stopped and tuned into the live stream to watch and cheer. (The pic to right is us taking a break from class and crowding around a little laptop)
When the skaters returned from Nationals they finally took a well-deserved break. For high level skaters, taking a week off will usually result in a frustrating training set back that can take between 2 hours to a few days to recover from. It’s not just feeling “rusty”, more it's getting your balance/ center of gravity back and retraining your body to do what it’s supposed to. The body control that one must have while spinning or doing a jump is so much different than other sports and this control doesn’t just automatically come back when the skater steps back onto the ice. This often deters skaters from taking much time off in-season and with skaters training 52 weeks / year this can result in some serious overuse injuries. Interestingly enough though, the injuries I’ve seen over the past few weeks were mainly new little injuries during the week they returned from their vacations. These included, hip pain (resolved immediately), shin pain (resolved immediately), Achilles pain (still treating), and ankle pain (2 athletes both resolved immediately). All of our athletes are back in action and are training like next week is nationals again but with much less stress and anxiety.
This past weekend Precision Athletic Training hosted a live Evidence Based Practice seminar which went wonderfully. Our speaker Jeff Driban is an ATC and a well published expert on Preserving Joint Health. He discussed the scary truths about ACL reconstructions and how many will inevitably lead to osteoarthritis. He also talked about preventative measures we ATs can take and how we can treat those who already have the disease. This course will hopefully be available as a home study this spring and I highly recommend ALL ATs take some time to learn about how we can better protect the future well-being of our patients. Prevention is one of our domains!
We also have spent the last month updating our online store to include several interesting CEU home studies. These can be taken anytime from the comfort of your own home and are a great way to spend a snow day! Yesterday we started promoting a live webinar “Heath Care and the Performing Arts” which will take place at 9am on Saturday, March 26th. If you’re interested in learning the ins and outs of this setting, this webinar should not be missed. And… as a special treat for you blog readers, the first 10 readers to use coupon code BLOG10 will receive 10% off any CEU course in the shop!
Lastly we’re now in full swing for ATs against Cancer (ATAC) 2016. We hosted this fun charity event 2 years ago and it was a big success. We’re excited to bring it back on March 19th at 6:30pm at Millers Ale House in Watertown, MA. The goal of this event is to raise lots of money for the American Cancer Society while celebrating National AT Month AND networking with other professionals, or just catching up with our AT pals. It’s really a fun time. I just learned that one of the prizes donated (which may be the door prize) is a home theater system! WOAH! More on ATAC to come in the next blog, but check out the webpage to make a donation or buy a ticket!
That’s all folks! Stay warm, stay dry, use good shoveling ergonomics, and have a great day!