When I first started doing physical therapy I had trouble lifting grocery bags, reaching behind me, lifting various objectsand sleeping without pain. Since coming to physical therapy and doing Astym therapy my symptoms have improved so much. My lifting is much, much better and I’m sleeping through the night without pain. Thank you Amy and Andrea.
Diamond Physical Therapy,
Algonquin, IL, 60102
Tennis elbow, plantar fasciitis and rotator cuff tendinopathy are common injuries that can plague a tennis player. The last thing an athlete wants to hear is, “You must rest and stop playing tennis.” Soft tissue injuries can be painful, limiting conditions that are slow to heal, which is particularly challenging to a tennis player who wants to get back in the game.
Many athletes seek advice from primary care and sports medicine physicians when they have tendon pain and then are often offered anti-inflammatories, injections, and told to rest. Typically, this common regimen only offers temporary relief and may not be the best method to heal a tendinopathy. Astym therapy targets the underlying cause of many soft tissue problems, rather than just trying to relieve symptoms. It is unmatched in its ability to resolve tendinopathies, and often works even after other approaches fail.
WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN TENDINOPATHY, TENDINITIS AND TENDINOSIS?
The word “tendinopathy” actually means “disease of a tendon,” and is a broader term for two conditions known as “tendinosis,” or degenerative tendinopathy, and “tendinitis,” or acute, inflammatory tendinopathy. Although “tendonitis” is used often, most cases of tendinopathy are not associated with significant inflammation and thus don’t respond well to anti-inflammatory medications.
WHAT CAUSES TENDINOPATHY?
Tendinopathy can be caused by overuse or improper loading of the muscle-tendon unit. It can also be caused by degeneration of soft tissues due to injury, age or other reasons. Repetitive strain on a tendon may cause tiny tears that accumulate over time. These tears may result in pain and can eventually change the structure of the tendon resulting in acute inflammation and/or degeneration that can lead to pain, tissue adhesions, movement impairment and eventually loss of function.
HOW PHYSICAL THERAPISTS HELP HEAL TENDINOPATHY
ADDRESS THE CAUSE
Astym therapy addresses the underlying cause of tendinopathy and other soft tissue problems by engaging the body to regenerate healthy soft tissues (muscles, tendons, etc.), and eliminating unwanted scar tissue that may be causing pain or movement restrictions.
Correct poor footwear
Assess or change equipment, for example choosing a racquet with a larger sweet spot will help reduce load on the arm.
Correct stroke mechanics, for example bending knees at least 10 degrees during the service motion will lessen the load on the shoulders and elbows.
Identify proper training loads and recovery to avoid overuse injuries.
Incorporate proper warm-up or cool-down for tennis.
Develop a balanced training program for tennis to include stretching, strengthening, speed, core stability, agility, balance and coordination.
WHY ASTYM THERAPY IS SO SUCCESSFUL
Astym therapy, evidenced to engage the regenerative mechanisms of the body and promote the healing of soft tissues, has repeatedly been shown safe and effectivein controlled clinical trials, clinical study, and large population outcomes data. A new approach to soft tissue treatment, Astym therapy resulted from a large, groundbreaking research endeavor supported by major hospitals and universities. It is used in settings ranging from therapy clinics to hospitals to industrial rehabilitation to elite/professional athletics, and has been proven to be more effective than other available treatments.
Astym-certification is advanced training and not everyone is qualified to perform this higher level of care. In order to become Astym-certified, a clinician must undergo intensive training and testing. Doctors often prescribe Astym therapy for their patients because it is safe, high quality care that has been proven to be effective. To find or confirm a clinician is certified in Astym therapy, visit the Find a Provider section of the Astym therapy website.
Lisa Chase, PT, OMPT, Astym Cert is an internationally recognized physical therapist, educator, lecturer and published author with specialty in rehabilitation and wellness. She received her Bachelor’s Degree in Physical Therapy from the University of Pittsburgh in 1991, a postgraduate certification in advanced orthopedic manual therapy in 1995. She is Polestar Pilates trained, Certified Kinesio Tape Practitioner, Certified MELT Instructor as well as Astym Certified. She currently runs her own practice Back 2 Normal Physical Therapy, Inc. where she provides expertise in integrative physical therapy with particular interest in comprehensive and holistic manual physical therapy treatments and prevention of spine, sports and orthopedic injuries.
Lisa has worked one-on-one with world-class athletes, coaches, medical and fitness specialists around the world to help prevent injuries, decrease recovery time and optimize performance. She has brought her expertise to WTA Tour (Professional Women’s Tennis Association), ATP Tour (Professional Men’s Tennis Association) AVP U.S. Pro Beach Volleyball, LPGA, Major League Baseball, the English Premier Soccer League and covered the 2004 Olympics in Athens Greece.
Lisa lectures nationally and has been an Adjunct Clinical Professor at Michigan State University, in the College of Osteopathic Medicine, since 1998 and Assistant Instructor for SFMA and FMS Systems since 2010. She is a published author of several books on aquatic rehabilitation and published coauthor in the British Journal of Sports Medicine. Lisa is also the founder and co-owner Rehab Links, a unique exercise software for medical, health and fitness professionals.
My pain began about 3 months prior to receiving the Astym treatment. I had limited mobility in my right elbow and sharp pains as well. After a few months I sought treatment from a chiropractor. Unfortunately this did not relieve my pain. My chiropractor referred me to an orthopedic surgeon, and this is where I was diagnosed with tennis elbow. I received a cortisone shot and began occupational therapy. During therapy I was given the Astym therapy. It was painful at times but my mobility began to increase, and I was able to use my right arm again. I am grateful for this typ of therapy because I am right handed and use my arms so much throughout the day when I teach, do household chores and many other activities. With this therapy I was able to go back to my normal life. Thank you so much!!!
Treating Clinic: Memorial Hospital and Health Care Center
800 West 9th Street, Jasper, IN 47546
Phone: 812-996-0682 Website: www.mhhcc.org
About 12 years ago I damaged my right elbow. Three surgeries later I still cannot fully straighten or extend my right arm. I have learned to live with this (as well as my arthritis) but this means there is a great deal of stress placed on my right wrist, elbow and shoulder to compensate. Periodically I get flare-ups of tennis elbow and elbow joint pain. I had been having a particularly bad one for a couple of weeks and decided that I needed physical therapy. Ginger Haley at ATI in Kirkland recommended I try Astym therapy because she said she’d had good results with it. I saw improvement from the first session! My pain was eased almost immediately and the flexibility and strength training Ginger also added to the Astym treatment over the next few sessions have made my arm feel better than it has in years. The change has been remarkable, I have had to deal with this issue for a long time, so I know what a normal cycle of flare-up and calming down is. This accelerated the healing process phenomenally even though I was having one of my worst flare-ups in years – I am doing things now with no pain that I know would have triggered a flare-up in the past. I can’t say enough about this treatment, how well Ginger applied it, and how well it worked!
Treating Clinic: ATI Physical Therapy-Kirkland
11821 NE 128th Street Suite C
Kirkland, Washington 98034
More support for Astym therapy has just been published. A large, randomized clinical trial showing Astym therapy to be highly effective for tennis elbow, and also demonstrating Astym therapy’s impressive efficacy on recalcitrant tennis elbow, has just been published in a peer-reviewed journal.
This large scale clinical trial demonstrating the effectiveness and safety of Astym therapy gives even more reason for referral sources and patients to seek out certified Astym providers. Large controlled clinical trials are very important contributions to the literature, and we are pleased that Astym therapy has joined the rare, elite rank of treatments that have quality clinical trials supporting effectiveness and safety.
After two months of trying to heal my extremely painful elbows on my own, i was diagnosised by my physician with tendonosis. I had stopped working out with a personal trainer. I also stopped my yoga practice that my husband and I had been doing regularly for many months. The doctor said it was a very lengthy healing process, because tendons have little blood flow, which is what is needed to heal. I tried several different things to heal my degenerating elbows including self physical therapy excerises, taping, bracing, acupunture and injections. None of those gave me the results i received with Astym therapy. I am still healing, but I am anxiously excited with my results. My left elbow is mostly healed and my right is getting there. I truly apprecitate Heidi, my therapist. She encourages continuing the treatment and it is working. Thank you.
Treating Clinic: Heidi Carstensen, DPT, SERC of Liberty
1512 NE 96th Street, Suite A
Liberty, MO 64068
Phone: 816-792-0775 Website: www.serctherapy.com
After 12 years in the military my left elbow had enough, The pain was so bad i couldnt even pick up a coffee mug. I was extremely skeptical Astym treatment would be effective but gave it a try. Here i am 3 weeks into treatment and its amazing how much better i feel.
Treating Clinic: SERC of Warrensburg
540 East Young Suite E
Warrensburg, MO 64093
Phone: 660-262-4795 Website www.serctherapy.com
I had been suffering from tennis elbow for about 8 months. I tried using the the tennis elbow band you put around your arm which usually works for me but it wouldn’t even touch it. I am a firefighter and work construction part time so everything I did was killing me. My grip strength was half of what it usually was and I had constant sharp pains radiating from my elbow. It got so bad at night I could hardly sleep. I had no time to give my elbow rest so I was taking Aleve to dull the pain. I started astym therapy and it stayed the same and then got even worse which is normal from what I was told. Then it just started getting better very quickly. My therapy has been finished for two weeks now and I feel just a slight bit of pain. My strength is at 95%. I continue to do the exercises I was given and hope to be pain free. Astym therapy can be painful but well worth it. I truly believe astym therapy works and have already recommended it to a friend of mine with the same problem.
Clinic: Via Christi Rehabilitation Services, Wichita, Kansas Website: www.viachristi.org
The pain in my elbow was not getting any better. Actually, I was beginning to experience limited use of my whole arm. Opening door knobs, cooking, drying my hair and writing were beginning to be affected because the inflammation caused by my tennis elbow was so bad. After the Astym therapy I began to regain use of my arm. Then we were able to discover exactly what was causing my problem, which was the way I slept on my arm. Astym therapy was exactly what was needed.
Carolina Orthopaedic & Sports Medicine Center Physical Therapy & Rehab 620 Summit Crossing Place Suite 305 Gastonia, NC 28054
Phone: 704-833-3103 Website: www.carolinaorthopaedic.com
I couldn’t even shake hands any more with colleagues, friends or the padre, and I’m a bit too old to be fist-bumpin. The nerve at my elbow was ‘hot’ sensitive to touch or even brushing against something. Technically some form of ‘tennis elbow’, but I never play tennis or golf and spend most of my day in an office environment. Once Lesa got a hold of me though, I was done for, I had a chance for a new beginning. I told my colleagues at work I was off to PT for a “mauling”, my affectionate name for what Lesa would do to my arm tissue from my fingers all the way up to my neck. The Astym therapy is at first something that could be mistaken for spousal abuse. The ‘meat’ on my arm looked like it had been in a wringer and wrenched out with all that tissue being rearranged so skillfully by Lesa. I never felt real pain, just a lot of manipulation, but you know you’re getting a mauling. Next day or two, WOW! Things improved over time more and more as she worked her way from my fingertips to my neck. She spent a lot of time on the “knots” she found in my tissue, the wrist and elbow being the worst. I tried to do my home exercises religiously but I wasn’t quite an ‘A’ student there. However, Lesa instilled habits in me which I still adhere to, doing exercises to help loosen up my arm before getting into anything rigorous. I have recommended this process to all my families GP’s and all my colleagues at work. Much, much better than shots in the joint, or surgical procedures of any kind which take recovery, rehab, and a lot of money. Thank you for letting me share my story, and creating Astym therapy!