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Tag: Strategy

What is the difference between Phase 3: Activity Progression and Phase 4: Exercise, Maintenance, and Monitoring?

Welcome to the transition zone—phase 3 to phase 4—at Smith Performance Center. This shift marks an important move from rehabilitation to performance. We’re committed to ensuring that our community doesn’t get stuck in a permanent rehab mindset. The switch from rehab mode to peak performance mode can pose challenges, demanding careful consideration and expert guidance. Phase 3 is all about building up tissue capacity, gradually ramping up activity levels, and prioritizing overall well-being. It involves strengthening muscles, alleviating muscle inhibition, closely monitoring responses to increased activity, and addressing any lingering issues stemming from previous inactivity. Essentially, it’s about improving tissue capacity while laying down a solid foundation for what comes next. In contrast, phase 4 signifies a fresh chapter, with a focus on establishing a consistent exercise routine and raising the bar for performance standards. Our goal here isn’t just to ‘move’ but to instill a long-term commitment to fitness

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Physical Therapy Tucson

The 10 Strategy Mistakes of Repetitive Injury When Exercising

Do you want to get back to exercise but keep on getting hurt? The merry-go-round misery of a repeatedly injured exerciser is a common complaint at Smith Performance Center. When someone shows up, our physical therapists listen to a series of injuries that seem to occur every time they get into a workout routine. The exerciser finishes rehab and heads back to their respective sport. The first few days go well, but inevitably the same problem comes back. In our clients’ minds, their body has lost the ability to stay healthy. They believe age is driving the problem, or the joints are shot. They think the activity they choose to do is too vigorous and must be replaced.  These are not the problem.   The cycle of repetitive injury is a strategic mistake. Returning to activity with a strategy We believe in a process called the SPC Phases. A phase at

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Optimizing Your Strength Training: Understanding the Importance of Deload Weeks At Smith Performance Center

In the realm of physical fitness, the drive to push our limits often overshadows the significance of rest and recovery.  Enter the concept of “Deloading” — a strategic and essential practice that can be a game-changer in your strength training regimen.  As we engage in rigorous workouts and demanding physical activities, our bodies undergo stress, breaking down muscles and tissues.  Yet, it’s during periods of rest that our bodies repair, adapt, and ultimately grow stronger in response to these stresses. The Deload week, a planned phase of reduced training volume, intensity, or frequency, serves as a pivotal component of a well-structured training program. Its purpose is simple yet profound: to allow the body the necessary time and space to recover, prevent overtraining, and boost overall performance. Understanding when, why, and how to implement a Deload week can significantly impact your training outcomes, ensuring sustained progress, and minimizing the risk of

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Smith Performance Center Tucson

7 Key Reasons Why the Home Plan Is Vital for Success in Physical Therapy

The significance of the home plan often gets overshadowed by in-session treatment.  At Smith Performance Center, our physical therapy sessions are one hour per week with your therapist. You are responsible for the other 167 hours. Due to this, the home plan is a vital component of your physical therapy journey, capable of either propelling your progress or impeding it. It’s not uncommon for our team to encounter new clients who’ve stuck to the same ineffective home plan for years, making errors like stretching an irritated nerve, overloading painful joints, or handling an extensive plan that goes largely undone. These missteps tend to patients undervaluing the home plan. However, the home plan stands as a linchpin for your success. We want to explain the 7 key reasons why the home plan is vital for success in physical therapy. Ensuring We Target the Right Problem There are instances where immediate relief

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5 Reasons You May Struggle To Get A Diagnosis And The Right Treatment At Physical Therapy

Upon your arrival at Smith Performance Center, our primary goal is to comprehensively understand the source of your pain or symptoms.  Our physical therapists initiate this by gathering information through a medical history form, conducting interviews about your experiences, performing thorough examinations, creating an initial list of potential diagnoses, validating our hypotheses through treatment, and finally, devising an initial home plan. This phase in our rehabilitation process is aptly termed ‘Diagnosis and Home Plan Development’. While not a creative title, it encapsulates the process our team undertakes.  A workable diagnosis is pivotal. However, arriving at a diagnosis can be challenging due to various reasons. These complexities range from the diverse causes of pain (such as injury, inflammation, nerve-related issues, sensitization, psychogenic factors, and dysfunctional conditions) to individual-specific challenges. Patients may struggle to explain their experiences, while others may not show rapid responses to treatment due to the absence of a

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The 4 Primary Goals In Strength Training When Struggling With An Injury or Pain

Goal setting is one of the most important, yet tricky aspects of training. Our team believes that goals are secondary to developing habits and systems that you can do day in and day out. We call this an exercise habit and it is a critical aspect of becoming an exerciser. However, goals can help to shape your training, increase motivation, and improve decision-making during the course of workouts.  When you are returning from an injury or dealing with a particularly irritating pain, we believe your goal is very specific. You need to exercise without your body feeling terrible. While this sounds obvious, one of the most common training mistakes our coaches see clients make is too much focus on performance while ignoring a recurring injury or pain.  If you have pain during your running, biking, lifting, etc., you will not achieve performance goals. We strongly believe there are 4 goals

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What are the phases at Smith Performance Center?

At Smith Performance Center, we focus on the main problem of the client. This focused process revealed a recurring set of problems that many of our clients experienced. This led to an overall process we call SPC Phases. There are 5 phases for our clients at Smith Performance Center: Diagnostics and Home Plan Development, Symptom Stabilization, Activity Progression, Exercise, Maintenance, and Monitoring, and Maximize Performance. Each phase consists of a main problem, the common challenges experienced by the clinician, coach, and client when managing your problem, steps to achieve along the way, and a promise for what you get when you complete the phase. We believe a clear process matters to your overall success. We want to explain the problem, common challenges, steps to achieve, and the promise. The Focus On A Problem The focus of a phase is the problem being solved.  In Diagnosis and Home Plan Development, we

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Total Knee Case Study: Why You Need A Structured Rehab Process

A structured rehab process that ultimately targets a full return to activity is missing in healthcare. Patients struggling with pain are treated as if they are all the same. We believe there are common, big problems to address, but there is a high degree of uncertainty with every patient presentation. Even when a patient has the same diagnosis they can have different triggers, different contributing factors, different behaviors, and drastically different needs in the rehab process. This is true when patients have the same surgery by the same surgeon.   Let me use an example with a straightforward rehab plan; post-total knee replacement.   The Painful Total Knee Replacement Peter Pain had a total knee replacement.  He has always been active and handles pain well but this replacement has been horrible. First, he fell behind on medication post-surgery because he hated the way the drugs made his stomach feel. The second day

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What are the 3 major issues in physical therapy and exercise?

The quality of physical therapy is not consistent between clinicians or clinics.  There are numerous reasons causing the differences: the overall rehab process, the management, how the client pays for the service (insurance, Medicare, cash, etc.), the time available between the clinician and patient, the use of assistants, the number of patients per provider during an hour, the clinical skill set, and training of a specific physical therapist. This is far from an exhaustive list.  These issues result in a pervasive underperformance in rehab outcomes for clients. The 3 major issues in physical therapy and rehab When starting out on a rehab journey, you will not think about these problems – you just want to feel better. But these issues matter and directly impact your outcome.  The major issues in physical therapy fall into 3 critical areas: Process, Patient-Provider Relationship, and Clinical Skill. Together, these drive the difference in experience

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The 5 Most Useful Tools for Progressing Your Workouts After an Injury

Too many fail in their effort to progress activity after an injury. You arrive at the gym feeling good but later in the day the low back soreness that has been feeling better comes back or the knee pain that seemed to be going away comes back with a vengeance after your second run.  The regression happened even when the workout felt easy and pain-free at the time. Why is this happening? Why is this phase of rehab frustrating?   It’s due to a fundamental mistake or what we call a violation of the rehab standard, which is training at exercise capacity, not tissue capacity. When individuals make this mistake, they start telling themselves stories like ‘I am getting too old,’ or ‘I guess I need to do something with less impact.’ However, the problem is not due to aging or the fact that the body can return to preinjury levels.

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