When to allow an injured player to return to play is a dubious subject. Whilst the level of risk will vary, any time an injured player takes the field there is a clear and present danger of further damage. In the case of acute soft tissue injuries logic suggests that the principles of RICE and No HARM must be implemented and thus no further exercise that day. However, try telling the athlete and coaching staff that. There are times when the sports physiotherapist will stretch their boundaries when it comes to return to play, discussed here. Therefore, it is important to have an objective, clear and structured assessment to implement on the acutely injured player to assess their ability to return to play (RTP).
As a sports physiotherapist it is absolutely essential that you have the tools required to complete your trade. This means that you must be (over) organised with your on-field sports kit, or you will risk being unprepared for an injury. As many of you know, injuries happen fast, and the game officials expect an injury resolution even faster – so you do not want to be left messing around in your large sideline kit looking for something you should already have. Below I discuss the 8 essential items you need in your ‘On-Field’ sports physiotherapy kit.
I think the world of developing clinical prediction rules (CPR) are exciting. Whilst this may be related to my scientific, rather than creative, way of thinking, I just feel that they will lead to improved management of the conditions that sports physiotherapists treat. Some clinicians believe that they will lead to recipe-based approaches to physiotherapy, but I just don’t think that will be the case. Clinical prediction rules are not, and would never be, a substitute for a skilled assessment, diagnostic process, and implementation of interventions. They will however lead to a higher level of clinical reasoning and ultimately improved outcomes.
Below I discuss an article regarding the preliminary determination of a CPR for identifying patients diagnosed with patellofemoral pain that are most likely to respond to orthotics. Once validated, this would be a clinically useful rule for deciding when to utilise orthotic therapy. This is particularly important given the expense associated with the purchase of orthotics and the prevalence of this condition.
Recently, more than ever, the importance of establishing a clinical network has become apparent to me. By clinical network I mean a group of health professionals with which you have established relationships and maintain regular professional contact with. Whilst many sports physiotherapists would be acutely aware of the benefits of such a network, some may not realise the effect that it can have.
Want to know how important a clinical network can be? Read on.
Sports taping is an integral part of the skill-set of a sports physiotherapist. The sports physiotherapist will tape an immeasurable number of joints over their career, and thus most become proficient in this skill. Whilst on the surface sports taping may seem simple or easy, I liken it to Texas Hold ‘Em Poker – it takes minutes to learn, but years to master.
In this article I present the 6 P’s of Sports Taping which identifies 6 components of sports taping that are easy to get right, yet are often done incorrectly by the less experienced or novice sports taper.
The RICE protocol is widely advocated in the treatment of acute soft tissue injuries, and is therefore frequently utilised in the acute phase following most sports injuries. Whilst RICE should still be used in the case of acute muscle strains, given the potential for adverse consequences such as compartment syndrome, there are some who are suggesting that the RICE protocol has reduced efficacy in the management of acute ligament (and even tendon) sprains.
Why is this so? Read on to find out.
A clinical mentor of mine once made an interesting commentary on the world of sports, or indeed all realms, of physiotherapy. It was an analogy comparing sports physiotherapy and the assessment of athletes to a murder mystery. It was so captivating I decided to expand on it here.
Introduction Concussions are a common sports injury, most often sustained by athletes involved in contact sports. Therefore, the sports physiotherapist will regularly assess, diagnose and subsequently manage this condition. Concussion is a potentially life-threatening condition, and thus appropriate evidence based assessment and management is crucial. However, there is a broad and often confusing body of […]
PROLOTHERAPY IN THE MEDIA You may have heard talk in the media recently about Phil Graham (an elite Australian rugby league player) having “sugar injections” following his pectoral muscle injury. Read here. I found it interesting to hear the Sydney Roosters team doctor, John Orchard, is using these injections, commonly know as ‘prolotherapy’, in an […]
Thanks for staying tuned, as I discuss the final 3 reasons why I feel sports physiotherapists love working with athletes.
In my experience in the ‘sports physiotherapy’ arena I have developed high levels of rapport with athletes. Whilst I’m sure we would all agree that as physiotherapists (or physical therapists) we have the high level communication skills necessary to develop rapport with patients from all walks of life. However, I’ve often found developing rapport with athletes a complete no-brainer. There are a few easy explanations to why this is.