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MPI says 20,000 motor vehicle accidents in December, is this you? Winnipeg? Whiplash?

In my opinion, our Winnipeg streets have never been so bad in my lifetime; streets like Portage, Main, Pembina, Henderson have become obstacle courses of ruts and ice.
Today, another 10,000 accidents reported by MPI in the last two weeks! Cmon Winnipeg, we are the resilient drivers of Canada, we’ve probably seen it all! Little more time and space and you too can avoid that next injury claim

I can offer you this advice to make your injury claim as ‘painless’ as possible; whether it be whiplash, other neck pain, spinal injury, low back pain, knee sprain, shoulder strain, etc.

Always obtain a ‘personal injury or health’ claim number as this is a basic part of your ‘personal injury protection plan’ given by Manitoba public insurance if you are involved in a motor vehicle accident. The pain of the accident may not be there initially, but hours or days later.

In Manitoba, you do not have to see your doctor first before obtaining treatment from a physiotherapist. The physio shall assess your injury and determine if additional testing, medication or xrays are required.

MPI will send you an individual package of information regarding the complete process to cover all costs of your personal injury. Physiotherapy fees are billed directly to MPI, such that there are no ‘out of pocket’ expenses.

Education will be a key component of your treatment program; risk management, ergonomics, exercises, that involve home and work environment should be considered.

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It’s heavy snow Winnipeg, learn about rotator cuff injuries, the winter cold and shovelling

It’s snowing this morning in Winnipeg; the first heavy blast of winter this season. Car accidents, falls and shovelling injuries are inevitable. Beware of your posture, the load, your balance and fitness level before you ‘shovel for hours’. The shoulder, and its supporting rotator cuff group of muscles are highly susceptible to those strains n sprains of high repetition and little prep.

Rotator cuff injuries are common in all sports and can be career enders for athletes likes quarterbacks and pitchers. But even if you’re just throwing snowballs with the kids or working out to stay fit, it’s important to keep the shoulder joint healthy. Here, physiotherapist Chris Bisignano, answers some of the important questions.

Q1: What exactly is the rotator cuff?

“The rotator cuff is a group of muscles, that act almost like a dynamic ligament. It is comprised of four muscles: the supraspinatus, which is the most commonly injured, the infraspinatus, the teres minor, and the subscapularis. The rotator cuff’s functions are to assist with arm movements and provide stability to the glenohumeral [shoulder] joint.”

Q2: Why does the rotator cuff get hurt so often, and what are the common issues?

Most of the exercises we do actually do not specifically target the RC enough to make a difference to its actual strength.

“Up to 67% of the population will have a shoulder problem at some point in their lifetime, and the rotator cuff is most often the source of the pain. The primary reason for rotator cuff pain is that pinching sensation or ‘impingement syndrome,’ which may be the result of rotator cuff tendon inflammation caused by an activity or trauma. Over time, this can lead to a rotator cuff tear. To make matters worse, evidence suggests that most individuals are likely to experience rotator cuff degeneration by age 40 and rotator cuff tearing by age 60. Thus, in many cases, a seemingly normal exercise session or home-repair project may incite shoulder pain.”

Q3: What kinds of moves should I avoid if I want to stay injury free?

Repetitive reaches with even a simple load can isolate alot of force upon the RC. Movements above shoulder become risky when a joint is not supported well, or even unstable because of weakness.

“Many of the more common gym exercises—such as upright rows and lateral deltoid raises—may lead to rotator cuff injuries. Modifying these exercises to keep the end position of the arms or elbows below shoulder height may help prevent injury.”

Q4: How can I tell if I have a rotator cuff injury?

“Many people already have a rotator cuff injury and aren’t aware of it. Unfortunately, evidence suggests that these individuals will eventually develop symptoms. Early on, if you have pain when reaching overhead—pain located at the tip of the shoulder or the outside of the arm, where the lateral deltoid is located—that suggests a rotator cuff injury. Weakness when reaching the arm out to the side is also suggestive of a tear.”

Q5: How can I prevent a rotator cuff injury?

“Three key measures can be taken to reduce the chances of experiencing a rotator cuff injury.

“First, strengthen the external rotators; specifically by tubing or dumbbell exercises that need to be learned from a professional; these will help restore and maintain shoulder stability and may prevent impingement.

“Second, avoid sleeping on your side with your arm positioned overhead.

“Finally, try to achieve muscle balance—that’s key. Many weight-training routines are inherently biased, creating muscle imbalances that may lead to a rotator cuff injury. Try to perform an equal number of ‘pull’ versus ‘push’ exercises. Moreover, try to replace a few sets of shoulder exercises—such as lateral deltoid raises or shoulder presses—with exercises that strengthen both the deltoids and the rotator cuff, such as prone ‘Y’ or ‘T’ exercises.”

Visit yourPhysio or ask your healthcare provider for specific RC education and exercises.

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Core training not just for your abs, improve your sitting posture, prevent back pain by Physiotherapy Winnipeg

We’ve all heard physios, chiros, docs and fitness experts claim that core training is important for overall fitness and health. Health clubs offer core training exercise groups and physiotherapists recommend it for those recovering from spinal injury. Your core is the collection of muscles that stabilize the spine, this includes the hips, pelvis, abdominals, lower back, mid-back, and neck regions of the body. These muscles are extremely important in all sports, so why do so many ‘office athletes’ that basically sit for a living overlook core training?

The reason most people skimp on this vital part of their workout is because the benefits are simply overlooked.

Benefits of core training:

It’s important to note that performing a few crunches is not proper core training. As a matter of fact, I recommend that these be avoided for much of a lower back stabilization program. We simply just do not need any more ‘flexion’ in our daily routine; you sit most of your day!

Since your core involves many different muscles groups, a variety of exercises are needed to ensure you work them all; some exercises to explore include, but are not limited to, lunges, bridges, planks, and crunches. Every patient learns how to properly stretch their hip flexors, the ‘culprit’ muscle that usually guards when the ligaments are sprained in the lower back.

Pilates and Yoga classes are also excellent for strengthening your core muscles while also improving balance and posture. Check out Pilates Manitoba as they are offering 50% off their introductory classes for first-time participants.
When your core is strong, your whole body works better. Core training isn’t just for athletes, it’s for anyone who would like to have their body working at its greatest potential. For anyone just starting an exercise program, be sure to talk to yourPhysio first.