Thursday, January 21, 2016

Spiderman, Tobey Maguire, PTW, and SFMA, all have this in common...

Doctor Stephanie McDougal, DPT, working on Functional Movements
Several years ago, during filming of  the movie Seabiscuit., Tobey Maguire, suffered a herniated disc in his spine, preventing him from filming Spiderman 3.    

Pain from a herniated disc generally causes numerous problems, including loss of strength, muscle spasms, and loss of function.  Debilitating as it might become, there are many tools in a PT skill set to help, including training in Selective Functional Movement Assessments. 

So what is SFMA?
The Selective Functional Movement Assessment (SFMA) is the movement based diagnostic system, designed to clinically assess 7 fundamental movement patterns in those with known musculoskeletal and joint pain. 

The assessment provides an efficient method to systematically find the cause of symptoms, not just the source, by logically breaking down dysfunctional movement patterns and diagnosing their root cause as either a mobility problem or a stability/motor control problem.  For a PT, this takes significant training and lots of reps to fully utilize on a regular basis. 

How is this applicable to therapy?
In many cases involving Physical Therapy, the source of pain is addressed and treated, with positive results.  Often for chronic pain, especially those more active, it is not broken down far enough to understand why they are susceptible to re injury.

The SFMA assessment looks at the entire body to assess each region and decipher if there are mobility and/or motor control/stability problems leading to a breakdown in the movement pattern and contributing to your risk of injury/re-injury. 

Where to read more?
See more at:

Where to find certified providers?
see more at:

PTW’s Stephanie McDougal, PT, DPT provides expert clinical care and is a SFMA specialist at our Montgomeryville Clinic, located in the Costco Shopping center on Upper State Road, just off route 309.   For an SFMA assessment and treatment based therapy program, call Steph or Andrew at 215 855 1160 today for an appointment tomorrow.