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New Year’s Resolutions You Can Stick To

The beginning of each new year brings a feeling of a fresh start, a time to let go of the past and embrace your future with newfound hope and vigor. As we relish this time of euphoric optimism, we inevitably stack up a list of quality-of-life-improving resolutions. Nearly half of Americans make resolutions each year, so you are not alone! Unfortunately, fewer than 10% of them will maintain these healthy habits for more than a few months. Far fewer still are successful in making sustained positive lifestyle adjustments.

Not surprisingly, exercising more, eating more healthily, and losing weight make the list of the top 5 most common resolutions that Americans made going into 2020. No one would be astonished if they were right near the top of the list this new year too. We expect these will possibly gain in popularity when taking into consideration the fact that many people gained extra weight this year and were all around less physically active in the midst of quarantines and COVID restrictions. Given the state of our bodies (and mental health) nationwide, it is important we make these decisions for health and find ways to stick to them!

What is the point of making resolutions you are bound to break? Is there a way we can be smarter about this process to increase our chances of success? What steps can we take to increase the likelihood of adherence to our new ambitions? Here are a few keys to help make the most out of your 2021 goals:

  1. Set attainable goals. Make sure your resolutions are not so lofty as to be unreachable. There’s no reason to set the bar so high that you can’t make progress in any reasonable timeframe. If you have a big goal, try breaking it down into achievable steps. Even with the end goal in mind, setting incremental steps as mini-goals on your way to the overall desired end result makes it easier to chip away at what may be a long-term investment.
  2. Be specific. You have to be able to identify when you have and have not held up your end. Saying you are going to “work out more” isn’t easy to quantify. Goaling yourself to work out at least 15 minutes every day, or 30 minutes 3 times a week, is something you can mark on your calendar and celebrate when you achieve.
  3. Celebrate your victories. Tying a reward or an incentive to hitting your goal each day or week is a great way to keep yourself going. It’s very encouraging to hit those micro-goals, and it reinforces the fact that you’re on the right track when you can see measurable progress.
  4. Don’t be too hard on yourself. No matter what goal you choose, it’s not something you can do all at once. You have to take it day by day. Some days will be better than others. If you break your streak or fall off the wagon, get right back on it! Find that sense of optimism you have right now and go at it again. Success is not about never failing, it’s about how quickly you get started again.

Whether you want to lose weight or get in shape, setting yourself up with someone who has the skills and knowledge of how the body works will help you remain committed, and the encouragement of a like-minded person who has a history of success will bolster your resolve to fulfill the challenge.

It’s certainly difficult to commit to an exercise regimen when you have the limitations of back or joint problems, but you don’t have to allow pain or any other physical dysfunction to remain a barrier between you and a healthier lifestyle. Physical Therapy Doctors of Florida has the professional expertise and extensive experience to help you move without pain again. Our team knows how to construct a pain-free workout personalized just for you. Whether your pain was caused by an accident, injury, sedentary lifestyle, poor posture, or age, our Physical Therapists will assist you and get you back to a healthy, active, and pain-free lifestyle. We’re conveniently located to serve all of Manatee and Sarasota Counties. Give us a call at (941) 264-1414, email info@ptdoctorsfl.com, or send us a message on our Contact Us page today, and again, Happy & Healthy New Year 2021!

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Healthy Holidays and a Happy New Year!

The holiday season is a time of year when the busyness of event planning, vacations, and an abundance of festive (and fattening) treats abounds. Not surprisingly, all of that routine change also makes it a time when people commonly stray from their otherwise healthy habits and end up finishing the year having gained a few extra pounds. As we conclude 2020, let’s review some tips and strategies for staying active and healthy over the holidays and into the new year.

Remember to stay alert to virus transmission when around family and friends. All of the basics still apply:

  • Wash your hands frequently
  • Practice 6 feet of social distancing
  • Wear a mask when appropriate

Of course, Physical Therapy Doctors of Florida holds your health as our top priority, so you can rest assured that your appointments with us will be conducted with COVID-safe practices.

With less time to commit to working out, it’s an easy temptation to fall into just putting exercise on the back burner and then expecting to get back to it in the new year. This will make it harder to start again when you resume a normal schedule because your body may lose some strength and calorie-burning muscle in the meantime. Because the holiday season is relatively short, you can likely retain what you’ve achieved by continuing to exercise even if the overall time spent is less than normal. Even a short 10 minute workout 2-3 days per week is far better than entirely abandoning your healthy habits, and will help you maintain some strength while burning a few extra calories. Our Physical Therapists are happy to assess your fitness level and customize a pain-free workout plan that will meet you where you are and bring you to the next level.

Consider substituting some traditional holiday foods with healthier alternatives. Highly rated Low-Fat Christmas Eggnog, No Bake Peppermint Fudge Energy Bites, and Healthy Gingerbread Cookie recipes allow you to still enjoy seasonal desserts while remaining mindful  of health considerations. Even non-dessert dishes can benefit by trying alternatives like Savory Pumpkin and Sage Soup, Hanukkah Oven-Fried Latkes, and Slimmed Green Bean Casserole.

There are many local Manatee and Sarasota County options for outings to view colorful lights and enjoy holiday music this winter season. A Taste of Chanukah, Country Christmas, Showfolks Holiday Circus Festival, and St. Armands Circle Holiday Night of Lights are very family-friendly events with festive food and fun. You can even take your well behaved, leashed dog in its holiday attire to A Night Before Christmas for a chance to win a basket for best dressed canine friend! For something a little more performance art oriented, you may be interested in Moscow’s Ballet Nutcracker or a holiday concert under the stars called We Need a Little Christmas.

You don’t need to allow back or joint pain to diminish your holiday fun. Our Certified Physical Therapy Doctors have the expertise to assist you with difficulty in walking, dizziness/vertigo, spinal dysfunction, and joint pain of all types. No matter whether your condition was caused by your everyday activities or by an accident, we are here to help you move without pain! Reach out to us at (941) 264-1414, email at Info@PTDoctorsFL.com, or send us a direct message at the bottom of the page here. Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, and Happy New Year!

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Stay Healthy While Working from Home

According to the US Census Bureau and The Bureau of Labor Statistics, even before the COVID-19 pandemic 4.7 million Americans worked from home, which is about 3.4% of the US workforce. Of course, that has only increased since the historic mandatory quarantines. Although many people have returned to commuting, plenty of others have found increased amounts of their job being able to be performed remotely. Remote work typically means seated computer usage, which lends itself to a host of common painful dysfunctions. Let’s examine a few of these problems and discover solutions to them.

Watch out for Weight Gain

If you consume significantly more calories than you expend through physical activity you will gain extra fat. Working from home can easily contribute to a more sedentary lifestyle that may lead to obesity. We’ve gone over some home-based exercises before, but for a more complete fitness assessment and routine personalized just for you, schedule a consultation with one of our Physical Therapists. They have the specialized training and experience to tailor-fit you with a safe and productive health-optimizing regimen.

Rest your eyes

Headaches are all too common with people who spend a lot of time working on a computer. Head pain deriving from eye strain may be alleviated by utilizing the 20-20-20 rule. What this means is to give your eyes a much needed rest by taking a 20 second break every 20 minutes by gazing at an object that’s at least 20 feet away. This allows your eyes some much needed rest to minimize the tension that contributes to headaches. Installing an anti-glare screen and decreasing the brightness and contrast and increasing the text size on your monitor can also make it easier on your eyes and consequently your head. The flicker associated with older technology monitors is also associated with light sensitivity induced vertigo, so consider upgrading to a new LED model.

Build an Ergo-friendly Workspace

Perhaps your seating arrangement is contributing to pain. Prolonged sitting in an ergonomically inefficient set-up exacerbates dysfunction, so let’s look at improving our seating arrangement. Some tips to improve your seated posture while using a computer are:

  • Sit at an adjustable desk designed for computer use.
  • Ensure the monitor is at eye level or slightly lower.
  • Have your keyboard at a height that allows your elbows to comfortably rest at your sides. If your forearms are approximately parallel with the floor and level with the keyboard you know you have a workable position.
  • Use an ergonomically designed chair that allows your feet to rest flat on the floor. Otherwise, use a footstool.

Take a break…and stretch!

Plan on taking a 5-10 minute break every hour to engage in a few light stretches. These stretches can be done while seated at your desk or standing next to it. Let’s go over some simple ones here:

  • Separate and straighten your fingers until tension of a stretch is felt. Hold for 10 seconds, relax and bend your fingers at the knuckles and hold for another 10 seconds.
  • Raise the top of your shoulders toward your ears until you feel slight tension in your neck and shoulders. Hold for 3-5 seconds, then relax your shoulders downward into their normal position.
  • Turn your chin toward one shoulder to create a stretch on the other side of your neck. Hold for 10-20 seconds, then repeat the other direction.

Call us for more help

Many underlying pain issues can be rectified through the guidance of our Physical Therapists. They can help stabilize and strengthen your neck, back, and shoulders so you can work more efficiently without the distraction of annoying pain. The tips offered in this article are only an entry level introduction to learning how to work without pain from home. For a plan that’s geared directly to you, call us at (941) 264-1414 or email us at info@ptdoctorsfl.com to schedule a consultation for a drug and surgery-free solution to your pain. Our clinic is conveniently located in Bradenton and is easily reached from all parts of Manatee and Sarasota Counties. Find out how we can help you today!

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October is National Physical Therapy Month!

 National Physical Therapy Month was established in 1981 by the American Physical Therapy Association (APTA) to raise awareness of the key role that physical therapists and physical therapy assistants can play in helping people find relief from pain, improve mobility and overall functional ability, and live healthier, more physically-able lives. According to the APTA, physical therapy professionals engage in efforts to “transform society by optimizing movement to improve the human experience.”

At Physical Therapy Doctors of Florida, we love physical therapy for the wide range of possible benefits that far outweigh the risks involved with the often over-prescribed drug and surgery routes that far too many people are willing to quickly adopt. Our non-surgical back and joint pain specialists are here to improve Florida’s healthcare and the health of its residents by addressing the root cause of their musculoskeletal pain and dysfunction. Our modern, well-appointed, and comfortable office serves all of Manatee and Sarasota counties and is conveniently located in Bradenton.

Physical Therapy is a health profession that uses evidence-based kinesiology, exercise prescription, health education, mobilization, and modalities to treat chronic or acute pain and movement impairments resulting from injury, trauma, or illness. It’s been scientifically demonstrated to effectively treat low back pain, knee osteoarthritis, carpal tunnel syndrome, and many other dysfunctions without the need for surgery or drugs. Pain medication is a common option for painful orthopedic conditions, but a good physical therapist will focus on finding the origin of your pain and work on improving the mobility of your painful areas, as well as the stability of the surrounding areas, instead of merely masking the pain with narcotics. By treating the underlying condition, they can often also preclude the need for surgery.

Physical therapy doctors complete 6-7 years of university training and clinical affiliations before graduating and becoming eligible to take the board licensure examination. Dr. Jonathan Mullis, PT, DPT graduated from Northeastern University in Boston with a Bachelors of Science degree in Physical Therapy in 2000, and obtained his Doctorate in Physical Therapy (DPT) from Simmons College in 2005. Dr. Mullis also completed a one year fellowship program in the Norwegian Approach to Manual Therapy at the Institute of Manual Therapy in Woburn, MA.

Jay McLaughlin, PT, MA has been a Physical Therapist since graduating from the University of Connecticut with a Bachelor of Science degree in Physical Therapy in 1977, and a Master of Science degree in Sport Medicine in 1986. During his career, Jay has developed expertise in a wide range of orthopedic rehabilitation, including post-surgical conditions, chronic pain, joint inflammation, headaches, neck pain, low back pain, gait dysfunction, Parkinson’s Disease, balance disorders, and vertigo.

Wonderful. Personal. Professional. Very caring. These are some of the common adjectives our current and past clients have used in describing our non-surgical back and joint pain specialists. We love hearing our clients’ success stories and about how we’ve helped them achieve the ability to move without pain, overcome vertigo, and avoid the need for drugs and surgery. Find out for yourself how we can help your joint pain or balance problems by requesting an appointment. Call us at 941-264-1414, email us at info@ptdoctorsfl.com, or fill out our message form today!

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Is My Back Pain Normal?

Back pain is one of the most common complaints to doctors and is a leading cause of work-loss days. Sadly, a painful back often brings limitation to social and physical activity and 1 in 3 people claim that it has an impact on their daily life. Around 80% of Americans will experience problems with their back at some point in life and it’s more common in women than men, but the good news is that it can often be treated.

How do you know if you should seek treatment? Sometimes, you just wake up with a sore back. Maybe you slept on it wrong or worked out differently than usual. Sometimes it goes away as we “warm up” throughout the morning and others it can last for a few days at a time. If your pain persists past a few weeks, spreads down one or both legs, or causes weakness, numbness, or tingling, you should contact us so that our pain specialists can assess your situation and prescribe a plan of treatment designated specifically for you.

Why is the back so commonly problematic? It’s complicated! Literally. Your back is a very complex structure made up of 33 vertebrae, (5 of which are fused in your sacrum and 4 fused in the coccyx or “tailbone”), 23 discs, 31 pairs of spinal nerves, dozens of muscles, tendons, and ligaments. There’s a lot going on back there! So don’t leave it to chance that it will work itself out if you’re suffering pain.

What are some of the causes of back pain? Back pain can be attributed to weaknesses or imbalances in the development of your muscles or it may stem from repeated incorrect movement patterns that developed over time, usually in order to compensate for a prior problem. Some pain problems might originate from pressure on a nerve or an incompletely healed injury. Poor posture, osteoarthritis, strains, and sprains are some of the many potential issues with which our physical therapy doctors are trained to work.

What can you do to prevent back pain? All of the tips that apply to health in general also keep your back healthy and strong. Make sure you are drinking enough water and getting enough quality sleep. Quit smoking. Back pain risk actually increases with the number of cigarettes smoked per day, so don’t smoke any. Building muscular strength and flexibility helps support your back, so exercise and maintain a healthy weight. Our physical therapists can tailor a fitness plan for your level and optimally train you with it. They can also teach you how to sit and stand with proper posture so as to not place undue strain on your back.

Back pain may be common, but it doesn’t have to be tolerated. Pain-masking drugs and invasive surgeries are not the only options. Our non-surgical joint and back pain specialists have the tools, skills, knowledge, and experience to assist you with pain and to correct dysfunction to help you resume a more active and fulfilling lifestyle. Physical Therapy Doctors of Florida is conveniently located in Bradenton and serves all of Manatee and Sarasota. Call us at (941) 264-1414, email us, or fill out our online message form today!

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4 Keys to Exercising Safely During Florida’s Summer

With our sunny Bradenton, Florida summers comes storm season. Increased likelihood of wind and rain doesn’t necessarily preclude all possibility of enjoying outdoor exercise; it just means that we have to exercise some extra precaution that doesn’t usually come up as much during cooler, dryer times of year. Let’s go over several points to take into consideration when planning to exercise outside during the summer.

 #1 Storm Safety

According to the National Weather Service, lightning can reach temperatures of 50,000 degrees fahrenheit–that’s hotter than the surface of the sun and not something to be taken lightly. Florida has one of the highest rates of lightning strikes in the United States, so remember to check the weather forecast before departing for a healthy outing. If you are already outside and see lightning, utilize the 30-30 rule: Start counting to 30. If you hear thunder before reaching 30, go indoors. Don’t engage in any more outdoor activity until at least 30 minutes have elapsed since the last thunder clap. As the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says, “When thunder roars, go indoors.”

 #2 Don’t slip!

Post rain shower, the ground will still be wet and may be slippery. Ensure good traction by wearing properly fitting athletic shoes that still have sufficient tread to decrease likelihood of taking a fall. Avoid muddy or uneven ground and wear sunglasses. The sun tends to come out quickly after the rain here in Bradenton!

 #3 Heat-Related Illness Avoidance

Heat exhaustion and heat stroke can happen when your body can’t cool itself appropriately. Increased moisture in the air slows the process of sweating, which is the body’s main method of cooling itself. Humidity also makes it feel much hotter than the temperature actually is, so it’s a good idea to take note of the heat index in addition to the temperature when checking the weather. The heat index takes humidity into account with the temperature to report what it will actually feel like. This is important because prolonged exposure to high temperatures increases your risk of heat-related illness. Make sure to drink plenty of water and to wear clothing that allows sweat to evaporate easily, thus cooling your body. If wearing a mask is your preference or local regulations require their use, be sure to consider its effect on your breathing and heat retention while engaging in physical activity in warm, humid conditions. Some masks are more breathable than others, so choose wisely according to what you’ll be doing.

 #4 Choose Safe Outdoor Training Exercises

Don’t over do it! If you haven’t been exercising outside much, be sure to start off slow and safe. The easiest way to get started moving outside in a safe and healthy way is by walking. Whether a stroll around your neighborhood, or drive to a scenic venue, Manatee County has a plethora of beach, park, and nature preserve trails to enjoy. If you prefer something more challenging, you may want to incorporate a guided 20 minute workout that requires no equipment and can be done right in your own yard. You can even take a chair outside and get some fresh air while increasing your fitness with these smooth moves.

Don’t needlessly miss out on the great outdoors because of pain. Physical Therapy Doctors of Florida are your non-surgical back and joint specialists! We’re all about helping the members of our Manatee and Sarasota communities to live more active and fulfilling lives by maintaining and improving their overall health and fitness. We do this through providing high-quality physical therapy care and exceptional customer service. Find out how we can help you with back, neck, hip, or any other kind of joint pain by calling us at (941) 264-1414, emailing info@ptdoctorsfl.com, or directly sending us a message on our contact us page.

 

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The Benefits of Aquatic Exercise and Public Pools in Bradenton & Sarasota

Aquatic exercise is a fun and effective way to engage in healthy movement without overly loading the joints or requiring you to bear much weight. Working out in the water will reduce jarringly repetitive foot-strike forces (i.e. from running, jumping, or walking on hard surfaces) that can burden muscles, tendons, ligaments, and bones, and it helps to minimize the risk of stress or injury to sensitive body parts. Your weight decreases the deeper you submerge because the water your body displaces causes you to be buoyant. If osteoporosis, nagging injury pain, or arthritis causes you to shy away from activity on land, pool exercise may be an ideal starting point for you to build endurance and strength while burning some extra calories.

Even with recent decreases in the availability of public spaces, we have several open local options with pool access. For recreational use or lap swimming, you can reserve a lane for 45 minutes for only $3 at Manatee County’s G.T. Bray Aquatic Center. Other inexpensive pools close to home are John H. Marble and Willie J. “Bro” Clemons Jr. Alternatively, for those not interested in swimming, water-based group fitness classes are also back in action, including Aqua Fit and Aqua Zumba. Aqua Fit requires no swimming experience and offers timed intervals using the water as mild resistance during your coach-led exercises. All levels are welcome! Aqua Zumba incorporates Latin music such as cha-cha, merengue, and salsa into a dance move inspired workout. You can find information about reserving your spot for either of these classes here. If Sarasota is a more convenient location for you, Sarasota Memorial has Aqua Challenge classes on Mondays and Wednesdays throughout July.

There are many health promotive exercises you can perform on your own in the water if you don’t want to be limited by predetermined group class times.

  • Start by water walking: Wade into about waist deep and walk back & forth, essentially as you would on land. Try not to walk on your tiptoes; treat it like you’re still on dry ground. If you want to burn more calories or increase the intensity, add in more exaggerated arm swinging as though power walking.
  • Build upper body strength: You can focus on your upper body by standing in one place at a depth such that only your neck and head are above water, then raise your arms out to the sides and make small circular motions just beneath the surface. Count to 15 and then reverse motion.
  • Focus on legs: To direct more attention to developing leg strength, stand at waist depth, hold on to the pool’s edge, facing the wall, then swing one leg out as far as you can. Hold this position for 5 seconds, then do the same in the other direction. Do this for 10-15 repetitions per side.
  • More ideas: See this link to view an entire guided water workout on video.

Exercising in a pool is a great way to work around existing pain, but in order to treat and actively work towards eliminating it, you may need a professional physical therapist. Our certified physical therapy doctors specialize in helping you move without pain. Our team is conveniently located right here in Bradenton, Florida. We’re ready to address your back, neck, shoulder, knee, or any other joint pain, so give us a call at (941) 264-1414, email Info@PTDoctorsFL.com, or send us a message here.

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Go For a Walk! The Benefits of Walking & the Best Walking Spots in Bradenton & Sarasota

Our communities are chock-full of safe, well-maintained, and beautiful walking spots, and even in this summer heat, the mornings and evenings are nice enough to engage in this relaxing and fun activity. Going for a stroll is not only a great way to get some fresh air and a little sunshine, but it also contributes to your physical health. Let’s go over some of the benefits that walking can bring to your wellness and also provide you with some ideas of great places to enjoy while doing it.

Simply adding the habit of walking to your lifestyle can actually decrease arthritis-related pain. Your knees and hips are gently lubricated while walking, and the muscles that support these sensitive structures are strengthened by the mild exercise. In fact, if you haven’t already developed osteoarthritis, it may even be prevented by walking 5-6 miles per week.

In addition to burning calories and helping to keep your weight in check, walking can also assist in strengthening your heart. Walking at least 30 minutes, 5 days a week, can reduce your risk of coronary heart disease by 19%! Researchers at the American Cancer Society and the National Cancer Institute have linked exercise to a lower risk of 13 types of cancer. Certainly, going for daily walks is an easy introduction to developing a regimen of disease-incidence-reducing exercise.

Whether you prefer a stroll along the beach, a light hike on a maintained trail, or a paved walkway in a park, Bradenton and Sarasota are loaded with options. For the early risers, a sunrise walk on Siesta Beach is a very inexpensive and healthy way to start your morning. Bradenton’s Coquina Beach offers a 1.47 mile paved trail along the lovely white sands. If you prefer park-walking, you might try East Bradenton Park, with its outdoor exercise stations, or the 200 acre Bennett Park that was purchased by Manatee County under the Florida Forever Program. The Sarasota area offers Ackerman Park, where you can be on the lookout for Florida’s many bird species, and Bayfront Park, which also happens to be leashed-dog-friendly.

For something more challenging, Emerson Point Preserve in Manatee County has 5.8 miles of trails, some paved, and some composed of packed shells.

If you are experiencing joint pain, vertigo/dizziness/problems with your balance, or any sprains or strains, you don’t need to remain limited in enjoying the outdoor walking lifestyle so readily accessible here in Bradenton and Sarasota. The pain-specialist professionals at Physical Therapy Doctors of Florida are equipped with the knowledge and experience to get you back on the trail! Find out more about our services or schedule an appointment by calling us at (941) 264-1414, or email us at Info@PTDoctorsFL.com. Our location and social media links are found on our Contact Us page.

 

 

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We’re Open! Focused on Your Health & Safety

Great news for all of our patients: under the phased reopening guidelines provided by the CDC, as well as Florida State and Local Manatee County Officials, Physical Therapy Doctors of Florida will be reopening on Monday, May 18, 2020, while implementing greater measures of precaution for your health and safety. We are excited to be able to continue in our passion to help the members of our community live more active and fulfilling lives by maintaining and improving their overall health and fitness while abiding by new COVID-19 guidelines. These guidelines have been carefully designed by officials to ensure that we can all keep our patients and therapists safe from COVID-19 while still being able to provide the vital health and medical services needed to keep society strong as a whole. We are adopting all the recommended precautions and look forward to being able to serve you once again!

So what does that mean for you as a patient of Physical Therapy Doctors of Florida? What differences can you expect to see at your next appointment?

 

Upon Arrival

  • Be Timely: when you arrive at our location, please wait inside your car or outside the clinic until the time of your appointment.
  • Empty Lobby: if someone accompanies you to your appointment, they are welcome to walk with you to the lobby, but we ask that all guests wait outside the clinic during your session.
  • Hand Sanitizer: upon entry to the clinic, you will be asked to apply hand-sanitizer that we will happily provide for you.
  • Face Mask: We will require all patients to wear a face mask, each patient may wear their own or we will provide one for you if you don’t already have one to use.

 

During your Appointment

  • During your appointment, we will provide you with gloves to ensure safe interaction with any equipment.
  • Your therapist will wear a face mask throughout the duration of your treatment.
  • After glove removal, we will again offer you hand sanitizer on your way out.
  • Your appointment will end 5-10 minutes early to ensure that you have ample time to exit the clinic before the next patient arrives.

 

Our Staff

Our therapists are here to Help You Move Without Pain! Our vision has been to improve Florida’s healthcare and the health of its residents. Your health and safety continue to be our top priority. Our clinic is clean, comfortable and beds are placed with ample space in between them.

  •  Our therapists will continue to wash their hands in between each patient.
  • They will continue to wipe and disinfect beds between each patient.
  • They will continue to thoroughly wipe and disinfect waiting room chairs and any other touched surface.

 

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention gives more detail about additional steps you can take for safely navigating outside your home.We appreciate your cooperation in our effort to keep all our patients and staff safe.

Physical Therapy Doctors of Florida is Bradenton’s answer for non-surgical back and joint pain. Pain medication merely masks your perception of pain, but a good physical therapy doctor will focus on finding the origin of your orthopedic pain and will work on improving the mobility of your painful areas as well as the stability of surrounding body parts. We’re here to serve all of Manatee and Sarasota counties and can be reached at (941) 264-1414 for questions or appointments. You can also send us a message at Info@PTDoctorsFL.com.

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Staying Healthy While Staying Home

Even though you’re spending more time at home than you’re used to, you can still sustain an amount of physical activity that’s part of a healthy lifestyle. Let’s go over several exercises that require no special equipment, are mild enough that most people can enjoy doing them, and are legitimately contributory to your strength, balance, and joint health.

Back

Around 80 percent of adults experience low back pain sometime in their lifetime. In fact, in one large survey, more than a quarter of adults reported experiencing it in the last three months. To strengthen the muscles that help stabilize the spine and maintain its safe, neutral position, we can utilize an exercise called a “bird dog.” Start on all fours on the ground with your knees bent at a 90-degree angle directly under your hips. Tighten your abdominal muscles and reach with your right hand straight ahead in line with your shoulder while simultaneously extending your left foot straight back in line with your hip. Keep your shoulders and hips parallel to the floor the whole time; this will be more challenging than it sounds! Here’s a video demonstration.

Upper Body

A mild but challenging exercise for your upper back and shoulders is called a wall slide. Simply stand with your head and low back against a wall, place your elbows and the backs of your hands against the wall with your elbows bent at 90 degrees, then slowly slide your hands straight up the wall without allowing your elbows and forearms to lose contact with it. Slide up and down the wall several times while maintaining this posture. You can see it in action here. If this proves difficult, try laying on the ground on your back. You might try this floor method with your knees bent at 90 degrees and feet held up if you also want to work on your core muscles as well.

Neck

One of the easiest but still very effective home exercises you can do for your neck is the simple head turn. Merely stand or sit with relaxed shoulders and slowly turn your head to one side until you feel a light stretch. Hold that position for a few seconds and then slowly turn the other direction.

Lower Body

With lower body movements you can keep your leg muscles active by practicing a knee-friendly sit-to-stand exercise. Simply stand in front of a stable chair with your feet as far apart as your hips. Slowly bend your knees and push your hips back until you make contact with the chair. Don’t collapse into it, you’ll want to maintain tension and hold for a couple of seconds if you can before standing up to the original position. You can see how it’s done here. If this is difficult, a simpler leg exercise without any knee bending is where you stand on one leg while holding onto a stable chair and then push one foot out to your side in a slow and controlled manner. You don’t need to go very high at all; just enough to feel some comfortable muscular contraction. See it in action here.

Physical Therapy Doctors of Florida are your non-surgical back and joint pain specialists right here in Bradenton! We’re here to help the members of our Manatee and Sarasota County community live more active and fulfilling lives by maintaining and improving their overall health and fitness. Call us at (941) 264-1414 or reach us at our contact us page for more information on alleviating aches and how to move without pain. We can also be emailed at Info@PTDoctorsFL.com.