KIMA Physiotherapy and Wellness 2017
KIMA is an urban healing space that combines physical therapy and preventative medicine with integrative and holistic wellness services. By focusing on root cause resolution we treat the cause of pain and not the symptoms.
Moving into the new year we at KIMA are excited to offer several advanced therapeutic practices. In addition to our traditional PT expertise, this post will acquaint you with the unique tools and methods with which we help to guide our patients to a pain-free existence. Here’s what you can expect from us in 2017:
Your story is important
When you meet with your Therapist for the first time, they will ask you about any past physical trauma or pain and consider emotional trauma and how thoughts and beliefs play a role in the experience of pain. Together, you and your PT will discuss goals and reach an understanding of what is meaningful for you on your journey to optimal health and well-being.
Physical Therapy sessions are indeed physical, but they are not in any way rigorous and are often very pleasant. Based on your story, the site of your pain and your goals, your therapist will use a clinical reasoning approach to assess your body’s mechanics and simple movements. For example, let’s say you’re experiencing hip pain when walking. Your PT may ask you to perform a simplified movement such as standing and slowly transferring your weight onto the painful leg. The PT will identify which parts of the body struggle to transfer the weight in order to determine a chain of causality that ultimately leads to hip pain.
Getting to the Root Cause of Pain
The source of pain may not always reside in the painful area itself – although you may experience pain in your hip, the cause of the pain could be located elsewhere – your ribcage, pelvis, or even feet. A good Physical Therapist will apply their honed clinical reasoning skills to test (and retest), investigating the potential root cause of the specific pain.
For example: Let’s say that while transferring weight onto the painful leg your Therapist observes that the arch collapses into a flat foot and the thigh/knee region rotates inward. This inward rotation puts a strain on the hip labrum (cartilage of the hip joint) leading to the complaint of hip pain with walking. A complete ‘movement diagnosis’ might look something like: “Labral tear in the hip secondary to a hip internal rotation control dysfunction that is driven by the foot.”
A good PT will address the cause of the pain – the lack of control at the foot – and craft the patient’s therapy around the cause rather than the symptoms.
Technological advancements have allowed Physical Therapists to incorporate research-grade equipment into their diagnoses and treatment, providing higher quality care for their patients. Biofeedback in particular is very useful as it is important that the patient not only understands why they are doing the exercises but know they are doing them correctly. A major goal of PT is to help the patient feel something new in their body and carry the newly learned strategy into their daily movements.
Real-time ultrasound machines are biofeedback tools that allow PTs to look at the deep stabilizing muscles of the core.
These muscles are largely responsible for the stabilization of the spine. Hands-on techniques to monitor usage of the deep core musculature have proven to be ineffective in many cases. Real-time ultrasound is an extremely useful tool as it provides clear pictures in real-time. Patients and PTs can identify which cues elicit optimal contraction of the deep stabilizing muscles such as the transversus abdominus and multifidus to can reduce back pain. Once these cues have been identified, they can then be incorporated into patients’ daily exercise or activity routine to eliminate symptoms of pain.
Millions of people worldwide suffer with the profound and misunderstood symptoms and deficits of learned dysfunctional breathing habits. Symptoms such as headaches, dizziness, brain fog, and muscle tension are often caused by dysfunctional breathing. These poor habits are highly correlated to chronic pain. The physical therapist can identify these dysfunctional breathing patterns and triggers using an instrument called a CapnoTrainer.
The patient breathes into a nasal cannula and the data enters into the CapnoTrainer and is represented as a graph on a computer screen. Using this real time biofeedback the Therapist and client work together to learn new breathing behavior patterns and reduce pain.
Protokinetics & ZenoMat Gait Analysis
Using this cutting edge science we can measure components of our patients walking or running that our eyes cannot see. For example, we can precisely identify where the foot strikes on landing or calculate in milliseconds the difference between the time spent on the right foot vs the left, or the exact stride distance to identify asymmetries. Once we have determined where the patterns are non-optimal we can prescribe exercise or shoes to optimize mechanics and eliminate pain. We do baseline testing at the initial evaluation and re-assess as the patient progresses on their healing journey and in their sports specific training program. Click here to learn more about gait analysis.
3-D Live Motion Capture and Analysis
The ability to correct faulty movement patterns is central to rehabilitation and performance optimization. The Noraxon system gives KIMA access to research grade 3-D live motion capture and analysis combined with multi channel EMG, all done wirelessly. These machines can measure joint angles, movement speeds and muscle activation and inhibition during practically any movement; from something as simple as standing up to something as complex as a baseball pitch!
Once a comprehensive evaluation has been completed and the root causes of pain identified, a personalized therapy plan can be created by the Therapist with the client’s goals in mind.
Manual therapy is the application of an accurately determined and specifically directed manual force to the body, in order to improve mobility in areas that are restricted; in joints, in connective tissues or in skeletal muscles. An integral part of a physical therapy session is hands on technique. At KIMA there are many therapist with advanced certification in manual therapy.
Therapeutic exercise is the scientific use of bodily movements to restore normal function in injured tissues or to maintain a state of well being, (also called corrective exercise). The therapist will identify the site and direction of uncontrolled movement and where in the body the problem is driven from and prescribe an exercise program based on their findings.
Clinical Pilates is a distinct form of Pilates that is performed by a licensed Physical Therapist. Pilates emphasizes your body’s core muscles. These are the deep, internal muscles of the abdomen and back. When the core muscles are strong and doing their job, as they are trained to do in Pilates, they work in tandem with the more superficial muscles of the trunk to support the spine and movement. Pilates develops much of what exercisers actually need — strength, flexibility, muscular endurance, coordination, balance, and good posture — with a much lower chance of injury than with other forms of exercise.
Yoga therapy is the adaptation of yoga practices for people with health challenges. Yoga therapists prescribe specific regimens of postures, breathing exercises, and relaxation techniques to suit individual needs. Medical research shows that Yoga therapy is among the most effective complementary therapies for several common ailments including illness, a temporary condition like pregnancy or childbirth, or a chronic condition associated with old age or infirmity. More information on Yoga Therapy can be found here.
GravityFit is a revolutionary science based system of whole body exercise and rehabilitation that originated from a lifetime of research on core stability by world renowned expert Professor Carolyn Richardson.
The GravityFit system of exercise and rehabilitation was developed to target and strengthen the anti-gravity muscles, such as the transversus abdominus, so that you can stay fit and strong on the inside. It focuses on restoring the shock-absorptive spinal curves and muscles that maintain length in the spine. More info on GravityFit can be found here.
KIMA is one of the few centers worldwide offering this cutting edge, personalized treatment for conditions like knee and hip osteoarthritis. The program involves the use of a foot-worn device with adjustable mechanical pods on the bottom.
Through gait analysis our certified Apos Therapist is able to redirect the ground reaction forces traveling up and compressing painful joints. This realignment helps to decrease the muscle bracing or co-contraction around arthritic joints and specifically deloads painful areas. Next, the micro-instability offered by the convex pods optimizes information sent to the central nervous system, stimulating the antigravity stabilizing system. Patient progress is measured across several follow-ups throughout the first year of treatment using gait analysis. By restoring alignment and improving gait patterns, AposTherapy can help our clients live better with chronic conditions like osteoarthritis of the knee. More information on APOS Therapy can be found here.
Whole Body Vibration
Vibration has been used as an exercise and therapeutic tool since the late 1800s. Today you will find two types of vibration training platforms Pivotal and Linear. A Pivotal vibration platform moves like a seesaw, exerting its influence on the body in an alternating right and left motion. If we envision our body moving instead of the platform, the legs and pelvis moves up and down alternatively. This unique tool is particularly beneficial for activating “anti-gravity” joint and spine stabilizer muscles (deep muscles that elongate the spine against gravity and help reduce pain for functional activities) such as the pelvic floor, multifudus and transversus abdominus. These important deep muscles shut down from pain caused by poor posture. Whole body vibration reactivates these muscles by adding gravitational load, stimulating these muscles that are protecting and supporting our joints. Whole body vibration benefits include increasing muscle power, flexibility, balance, reduced fall risk, general proprioception, postural stability, increased bone density, increased circulation and oxygenation, pain reduction, and even hormone production.
A Linear vibration platform moves up and down in one uniform motion, exerting its influence on the body by moving both legs at the same time. There is an amplified ability to recruit 1000’s of muscle spindles at once and can achieve fatigue of a muscle group within three minutes. This tool is very useful following surgery or any injury involving muscle atrophy. More information on whole body vibration can be found here.
Certified, Pure, Therapeutic Grade (CPTG) Essential Oils provide simple, natural, and effective solutions to pain and help restore and enhance not only physical, but emotional well-being. Essential oils have been used for centuries and with advancing technology and improved quality, they can be effortlessly incorporated into manual therapy techniques with better results than without these high quality oils. Essential Oils present an organic and science-based alternative to pharmaceuticals and aide patients in their recovery.
Tracey Vincel, PT, MPhty,