Our next area of expertise is our Rehabilitation and Preventative Services. When it comes to any sort of physical activity – be it sport, working out, or even just general tasks around the house – there comes a risk of injury. Our Rehabilitation and Preventative services are designed not only to help understand and overcome these injuries when they occur, but also to help avoid and minimize the occurrence of injury in the first place.
The human body is an incredible machine, not unlike our cars. However, we as humans tend to be terrible at maintaining our machines. Our cars, for instance, have a clear indicator of when there is something wrong – the check engine light comes on. When it comes on, we understand that it’s time to take the car in and get it checked. Many people don’t realize this, but our bodies have a check engine light as well, and it comes in the form of pain.
Now, it’s important to define pain because there are different levels of pain, and it’s not all bad. First off is what we call soreness – this is what we experience 12-48 hours after a workout experience. Next, you might experience some sort of irritation, typically of joints like the shoulder or knee, that isn’t comfortable but doesn’t necessarily hurt yet. If you think about a pain scale from 0-10, 0 being no pain and 10 being unbearable pain, we typically think of irritation as anywhere from 1 to 4 on that scale. Real pain is anything that stops us in our tracks or has a sense of fear associated with the pain. We’d say this is anything from 5 or higher on the scale.
You may be wondering how to apply these definitions to yourself. When it comes to general soreness, there is typically no concern at all – it’s looked as a natural side effect of the positive stress that we put on our muscles and goes away quickly. When we experience irritation, it depends. Going back to the car analogy, it’s like the random rattling you sometimes hear – the check engine light isn’t on yet but you become suspicious that something may be happening. You typically wait it out to see if it goes away. If it doesn’t, it makes sense to get it checked out BEFORE something catastrophic happens – before the check engine light comes on, before it turns to pain. Once you hit the pain stage, it’s time to get it checked out. It’s time to figure out what went wrong and how to fix it.
Here at Harbor Park, we have two extremely knowledgeable and experienced individuals who head these services – Nicole Yule, Doctor of Physical Therapist, and Stephanie Bilharz, Licensed Massage Therapist. Utilizing their tremendous knowledge and understanding of the human body, we are able to evaluate and diagnose potential issues before they turn into problems, or tackle the problems if the “check engine light” is already on. In addition to basic assessment and treatment vehicles, Nicole is trained in cupping, dry needling and Graston, while Stephanie is trained in cupping, sport massage, deep tissue massage, amongst many other massage techniques.