Most professional sports teams in North America have physiotherapists on the payroll. But when it comes to amateur, city league, college/university, and youth level there appears to be a bit of a lack in Canada. As a coach or athletics coordinator, you may be seeking to fill this void, but in order to build a case for making physiotherapy a part of your team’s fitness regime, you need to better understand the benefits. As Burnaby/Coquitlam BC’s authority on sports injury, rehabilitation, treatment, therapy, and prevention, Absolute PhysioCare is here to provide everything you need to justify regular visits between your athletes and a specialized physiotherapist.
5 Reasons Why Your Sports Team Will Benefit from Regularly Scheduled Physiotherapy
1. Quick and Effective Response to Injury
One thing that can sideline a player and your team’s chances through a season, is an injury. Being able to respond to any given form of physical trauma in a timely manner will help set the best path towards recovery, ensuring that your player/s return to health (most important) and quite possibly in time for the big game (the icing on the cake).
When the athletes on your team are already on file with the same physiotherapy clinic, a physical therapist will have immediate access to their medical history, and be familiar with each individual. That means they can prescribe the appropriate form/s of treatment and therapy without getting bogged down in inconsistent records. In addition, they will already be familiar with an athlete’s unique body function, and even temperament, the latter of which certainly has an impact on recovery.
2. Team Injury Prevention
While quick and effective response to injury is great, there is nothing better than preventing injuries in the first place. Sure, physical trauma is unavoidable in most sports, especially when impact is involved, but there is much that can be done to prevent the more common injuries associated with sports.
By working with a physiotherapy clinic, your team will develop better knowledge of the specific risk associated by sport. Take soccer, a popular team sport in Canada, as an example. Soccer players are more susceptible to cartilage tears and anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) sprains. A physiotherapist can therefore provide your entire team with expert guidance regarding proper warm-ups and cool-downs, both of which will take the threat of cartilage tears and ACL sprains into consideration. A physiotherapist can even provide advice on protective equipment that should be worn to better protect vulnerable parts of the body. View more on how physiotherapy can help your entire team reduce the risk of injury.
3. Complementary/Supplementary Guidance
Optimal injury recovery and prevention are certainly enough to justify putting your entire team on file with a local physiotherapy clinic. But there’s more. In assessing each athlete, a professional physical therapist can identify underlying conditions that may be impacting individual performance on the court, track, and field. For example, a digital Gait analysis which applies pressure mapping technology can allow a physiotherapist to identify underlying problems with an athlete’s foot function and gait-patterns. This can help determine if an orthotic prescription would be of benefit to an athlete. It is a fact that custom orthotics can have a dramatic impact on an athlete’s ability to run, pivot, and jump.
Physiotherapy can also help optimize performance, even when there is no underlying condition to address. For instance, balance plays a big role in performance for many team sports, from basketball to hockey and beyond. Physiotherapists can apply measures and provide ongoing guidance regarding core strengthening to improve balance for each member on a team. In fact, the right physiotherapy clinic will make core fitness a big part of their service offering, something of which can have a direct and positive impact on your team’s performance. A wide variety of physical therapy services can serve as a perfect complement/supplement to your existing training program.
4. Healthier Alternative to Pharmaceuticals
The abuse of painkillers is an unfortunate and well documented trend among athletes. It wasn’t that long ago that the Sports Illustrated article on how painkillers are turning young athletes into heroin addicts struck fear in parents across North America. Of course, that article focused on the extreme consequence of team sports and resulting injuries. But there is no doubt that the use of painkillers and other prescription and over-the-counter (OTC) pharmaceuticals is more rampant that it should be when it comes to sports.
By integrating physical therapy into your team’s normal regime you could very well eradicate the persistent pain that some of your athletes have played with (and lived with), without the use of OTC or prescription drugs.
5. Gaining a Competitive Advantage
Without a doubt, the most important theme here is the health and wellness of each member on your team, from season to season, year in and out. But in accomplishing this by applying what you’ve learned above (and working with a physiotherapist) you do get to enjoy an additional benefit – a competitive advantage.
When working with a physiotherapy clinic with a team deep in varying disciplines you will have access to a wealth of knowledge and skills that can be applied to each one of your athletes. The result, will be the summation of its parts – one strong, healthy, and optimally functioning cohesive unit that will have competition running for the hills. Better clear space in your trophy case.
If your team is based in Burnaby, Coquitlam, or anywhere in Greater Vancouver, we welcome you to contact our clinic for a consultation to find out what we will do mitigate the risk of sports injury while helping to improve performance for the athletes on your team.