Wednesday, September 28, 2011

PTW Earns Specialization- Best Standards of Practice

From the OCCUPRO Industrial Medicine Specialists out of Kenosha, WI, we recieved this:

"We would like to congratulate the Physical Therapy & Wellness Institute on its recent accomplishments in pursuing higher level return-to-work programming within its rehabilitation practice.  Following completion of OccuPro's Comprehensive Industrial Rehabilitation Training, your facility has been accredited by OccuPro as a clinic that specializes in the treatment of the injured worker.

Your practice has demonstrated the core competencies and is deemed proficient in performing industrial rehabilitation and return-to-work functional testing to include the following services:

Functional Capacity Evaluations
Functional Progress Notes
Functional Discharge Summaries
Job Demand Analysis
Work Hardening/Conditioning Evaluation and Treatment

Congratulations on your clinic's accomplishment as one of the national leaders in this industry"

10 years in the making, the PTW crew will continue to pursue industries best standards of practice.

Flu Shot Season - Arriving!

PTW's Limber Limb 6-week program will lengthen your tight body!

To Celebrate National Physical Therapy Month, The Physical Therapy and Wellness Institute (PTW) will offer flu vaccinations on Tuesday, October 11th, in our Lansdale location. Flu shots will be provided by the nurses of the Visiting Nursing Association between the hours of 10 am and noon at PTW located at 730 S. Broad Street, Lansdale, PA. No out of pocket expenses for Medicare card holders and some private insurance plans.

Refreshments, tours, and giveaways will be offered, including a 6 week Wellness Program, valued at $249. PTW’s 10 condition specific wellness programs are designed to give you a Physical Therapist directed program for chronic conditions such as joint pain, diabetes, fibromyalgia, osteoporosis, and many others. For more information, contact our customer relations rep Danielle Taylor at 215 855 9871, log onto, or stop by today for a tour. 

Thursday, September 22, 2011

PTW's Crystal Burnick wins Philly Half Marathon for her age!!

PTW would like to congratulate our own Crystal Burnick on placing FIRST in her division at the Rock'n'Roll Philly Half Marathon! Crystal is imperative to the success of our newest office in West Norriton. She is a recent graduate from Slippery Rock University with a degree in Exercise Science. North Wales Running Company is lucky to have her as a part of their running team, who also placed very high as a whole at the race!

Top row: Bob Bacon (Hatfield PA) Derek Reinhold (North Wales PA), Jesse Clancy (Lansdale PA), Mark O'Neill (Lansdale PA)

Bottom Row: Crystal Burnick, (Collegeville PA),Paul Bojczuk (Souderton PA), Brett Rogowski (North Wales PA)

Monday, September 12, 2011

Evils, Enablers, and Exercise
Joint pain, spine pain, stomach pain, sciatica, tennis elbow, plantar fasciitis, cancer pain—the list grows longer as folks age. I often wonder what makes my patients “give up” because of the pain. I wonder what it means to “give up,” what it is they are “giving up,” and what evils lie beneath that prevent them from experiencing a good day of get up and go. To answer these questions we need to first understand some key definitions.

Even though hand and wrist pain may slow you down, you can still remain active.

The give-up

This occurs when patients throw up their hands over things out of their control. They become frustrated to the point they stop all pursuits. The causes of their frustration may include minor disabilities, chronic aches and pains, systemic diseases, and a long list of conditions that create impairments.

What is  “giving up”?

Because of the “evils” that prevent many individuals from taking care of themselves, there is an exchange of items, or “give ups.” These include independence, function, a free mind, comforts of life, communications with others, meaningful relationships.

Forces of evil

Evils are habits, thoughts, and actions that make up who a patient is. There are two types of evils: good evils and bad evils. Each has its place in a patent’s battle for fitness.

Bad evils are habits, thoughts, and actions an individual chooses that limit a healthy lifestyle. Bad evil habits include eating after 8 p.m., sleeping 5 hours a night, and exercising once a month. Thoughts, too, may be evil. Examples of bad evil thoughts are: “I don’t need to drink water” or “I don’t need to work out today.” Actions may be evil as well. Playing basketball without proper warmup is an example of a bad evil action.

Bad evils can also take the form of peer pressure. Neighbors, friends, family members, and schoolmates may all potentially offer reasons to not get up and exercise, enabling the patient’s own disabilities. Peers may offer subtle suggestions such as “It’s OK to stay home and rest today,” or “Take another medication.” These suggestions tempt a patient toward a path of inactivity, ineptitude and apathy. Physicians and physical therapists, too, can be complicit in this evil by suggesting “Don’t do it if it hurts,” instead of “Let’s find a way to get you functional!”

Help patients slay these evils by equipping them with a common sense understanding of their conditions. Help them develop tools that will help them reach their goals. Encourage them to make connections with enablers who will support their fitness progress with strategies designed to keep them happy, healthy, and independent.

In contrast to bad evils are “good evils”—activities which may not feel the best, but are essential health and well-being. Also known as “necessary evils.” An example of a good evil habit to encourage a patient to adopt is to stop eating at 6 p.m. Good evil thoughts include: “I’ll give up a diet soda today for water,” or “I’ll exercise Saturdays instead of playing X box,” or “I will get this done now.” Patients should also be encouraged to perform good evil actions, such as warming up, stretching, and playing a sport.

The consequences of evil

Patients should understand if they balance the evils of life—both good and bad—they will experience more success in their lives on all levels. Exercise is key. Therapists must help patients find the means to exercise, even if it requires convincing the patient to rise at 5 a.m. Strength training is also a necessary evil, stretching too. Patients who are affected by chronic pain particularly should practice good evils, since loss of function places them at risk of “giving in.”

What are the evils of exercise?

Good evils include stretching after a warm up phase. Why is stretching an evil? Many patients are gym members, but few use the facilties for strecthing. Men go to the gym to train, get stronger, and bulid their biceps. Women go to keep down their weight, look tone, and—more often than men—participate in group activities. Patients must realize that without stretching they will grow stiff and lose elasticity. Stretching is a necessary evil.

What evils apply to patients battling joint pain? Determine this by looking at the compression of the lower extremities. What are the most compressive exercises for cardio training? The answer, in order of most compressive to least compressive: treadmill, EFX, Nu-step, and bike. All are great warmups prior to stretching. If a patient’s arthritic knee joint hurts, the patient should consider the treadmill a bad evil because of the compressive forces that occur. In place of the treadmill suggest the bike to provide degenerative joints with movement for synovial flushing. The bike is a good evil.

 Patients who have joint pain may struggle to maintain independence. For these individuals strengthening large muscle mass while protecting joints is critical. Strategic strengthening of larger muscle groups around joint pain, performed with purposeful functional strategies, offers the greatest return. For example, strengthening the larger back muscles requires some pulling activities of the arms, such as lat pulldowns or a seated row. For individuals who have degenerative arthritis of the wrist, this may be difficult and painful to perform. A bad evil for patients who have degenerative arthritis of the wrist is push ups, a good evil is therapy band presses performed supine, with the bands wrapped around the wrist.


Physical therapists are enablers. They are creative by nature and training, and the health care providers best suited to help those with joint pain exercise safely and maintain independence. Helping patients understand good evils and bad evils can help them sustain an effective exercise strategy, and avoid “giving up” the treasures of independence and functional ability.

Robert Babb, PT, MBA, is owner and a practicing physical therapist at the Physical Therapy & Wellness Institute ( Robert can be contacted at

Tuesday, September 6, 2011


But why would you do that?

If pain relief is around the corner, take advantage of PTWs abilities!

12 Physical Therapists, 4 Locations, Aquatic Therapy, Industrial Medicine Specialists, Balance Certified, Spine and Joint Experts...

Don't just take our word, stop by today for tour to help understand how PTW could help you improve in work, recreation, or just functioning around the home.

The Physical Therapy & Wellness Institute

Lansdale, Quakertown, Montgomeryville, and West Norriton, PA

(215) 855-9871