How is Functional Rehabilitation Different?

Bradley Muse  0:06 

In this video, we’re going to speak about functional rehabilitation, but, more so, the difference between functional rehabilitation and some forms of rehabilitation that you may get from some other clinics. Functional rehabilitation, if we look at it and want to give an umbrella kind of statement about it, is we are trying to integrate the area of complaint into overall body function. So, to talk about this a little bit more, we’re going to talk about something called isolationism and integrationism. So, Dr. Myers is going to talk first about isolationism.


Jordan Meyer  0:35 

Yeah. So, if you saw our previous video on this topic, I mentioned the shoulder briefly. And another good example of this idea of isolationism is like, if you tore your rotator cuff, or there’s something wrong, let’s just say it’s not even a tear of your rotator cuff, but there’s something wrong with your shoulder and we thought it was that, in the past, in physical therapy, and chiropractic, and other forms, we will just focus on just treating the shoulder and the shoulder on its own. So, it might look really, really simple. We’re barely moving anything else on our body, and we’re just treating that joint only. So, it might be like I have abandoned my hand and I’m working on external rotation on my shoulder, I might work on internal rotation on my shoulder. Very slow movements, not really getting the rest of the body involved. And there may be times where that’s effective, that’s useful, but there’s oftentimes too where we see people that do those things and they’re like, “I got better, but it wasn’t like all the way better.” Or maybe they were returning to a sport, and they’re just not quite where they want to be. That’s where I think functional rehabilitation comes in where we’re looking at you more dynamically, a whole-body approach.


Bradley Muse  1:39 

Yeah. And if we look into the world of physical therapy or even some chiropractors in our profession, there’s a time and place for isolationism, especially maybe post-surgical care, maybe going back to his rotator cuff example. If we have a repair of the rotator cuff, well then, yeah, we actually do need to instill some kind of strength and stability directly into this joint. So, that’s a case where isolationism is great. But then the end stage of that rehabilitation should be then to take this joint that we just made stronger and more stable, and integrating it into the whole body function. Because if you really study something like anatomy and function, each joint does not work in isolation. If we think about the fascial system, the musculoskeletal system, the neurological system, these do not work in isolation, these are whole-body connections that we need to be going after. So, in terms of the functional approach, we need to be doing a really good examination, that one’s on us, to determine how is this being integrated into the overall system. Like he mentioned, maybe there is some dyskinesias or poor function in the core that we need to address, maybe a hip is not moving. So, if it’s, let’s say, a baseball player who’s pitching, this shoulder is not acting in isolation. Maybe there’s some issue with them being able to rotate through that leg that’s then causing more stress to the shoulder. And there’s only one way to figure that out, and that’s through a really good examination. Early on in our treatment plans, we may be a little bit more on that isolationism side to decrease pain and increase mobility, but then we need to integrate that into overall function. So, our goal, yes, is to get you out of pain, but, more so, get you better than you were before. We want to change what got you into that situation in the first place. And if we only focus on the area of pain, then, oftentimes, we’re missing the true underlying issues at play that maybe got you into that situation in the first place. If you guys have any questions, make sure to comment below, reach out to us on Instagram, or, by all means, give our office a call and we’d be more than happy to talk to you.

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