How Physical Therapy & Sports Medicine Work Together

How Physical Therapy & Sports Medicine Work Together

December 1, 2021

Physical therapists and sports medicine practitioners know how important both forms of treatment are when it comes to managing sports injuries. Athletes who have hurt their arms, legs, back, or neck can significantly benefit from physical therapy, chiropractic care, or sports medicine. 

At Mid-County Physical Therapy, we help athletes not only recover from the wear and tear of their favorite sports, but also protect themselves from potential injuries in the future.

To learn exactly how physical therapy and sports medicine work together, keep reading our guide below. We’ll define sports medicine, physical therapy, how to diagnose and treat sports injuries, and ways to prevent these types of injuries.

What is Sports Medicine, and How Does It Work?

Sports medicine is all about diagnosing, treating, and learning to prevent injuries and ailments among athletes and others who actively and regularly play sports. Any medical issues or conditions caused during a sport can be assessed and treated via sports medicine.

This realm of healthcare is not meant solely for professional athletes, as teenagers and even children who regularly play sports may injure themselves and need treatment. Sports medicine and sports injury physical therapy both involve using exercise science, biomechanics, physiology, and injury risk prevention.

What is Physical Therapy, and How Does It Work?

Physical therapy is a form of treatment and prevention strategy for managing injuries and other medical conditions. Essentially, physical therapy involves implementing exercise, physical training processes, and massages to heal people’s bodies and strengthen their muscles. 

Physical therapy is different from other forms of healthcare methods like taking medications or undergoing surgery.

The Link Between Physical Therapy and Sports Medicine

To better understand how physical therapy and sports medicine work together, you will need to consider how physical therapists can specialize in sports medicine to treat or prevent an athlete’s injury. Sports-based physical therapists know how to help athletes manage injuries and movement strategies for various sports.

These physical therapists develop a specific treatment plan for every athlete, depending on their sport of choice. This includes creating position-specific and sports-specific exercises to heal the athlete’s body.

The Diagnosis and Treatments of Injuries

When it comes to diagnosing sports injuries, physical therapists must first assess the level of pain a patient is in. Then, the physical therapist will determine where the pain is coming from and provide a diagnosis with a treatment plan. 

Functional and mobility testing may also be conducted to determine any weaknesses in the patient’s arms, legs, or spine. Typical treatments related to sports injuries include:

  • Stretches and flexibility training
  • Physical exercises
  • Massages to boost flexibility and alleviate pain

How to Prevent Sports Injuries

One of the benefits of sports physiotherapy is not only the way it helps heal and treat injuries, but also its ability to help prevent sports injuries by assessing muscle instability and any potential weaknesses that could cause an athlete’s muscles, tendons, or bones to become injured.

The sports injury professionals at Mid-County Physical Therapy can create a prevention strategy involving warm-ups and cool-downs, along with other specific exercises to strengthen your body, reducing the risk of future injury.

To get started on a sports injury prevention or treatment regimen, schedule an appointment with Mid-County Physical Therapy today, and let us develop a therapy plan specifically for your body’s unique needs.

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