Over the past year or longer I have been offering Blood Flow Restriction training (BFRT) to FoleyPhysicalTherapys list of services. From a continuing education standpoint this is an area with an obscene amount of research to completely immerse oneself in and I decided to jump in to training and application in the early part of 2020.
In the Musculoskeletal/orthopedic care world treatments such a platelet rich plasma (PRP), stem cell use (in specific select forms only in the US), glucosamine and nutraceutical injections have come to the forefront of physician care options. They are considered "regenerative" treatments, loosely defined as using the bodies own materials to heal. It is early in the evolution/application and evidence is still in flux regarding the efficacy of these tools, but there is an encouraging progress with these proactive treatments.. BFRT is a similar game changer in my world and I can use it on nearly all patients in various degrees, including non injured folks, to make meaningful changes in their strength.
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A couple of weeks ago 2 aging athletes Tom Brady and Drew Brees, both in their 40s played against each other in a football playoff game and a lot was made of their collective ages and longevity. Which on the same weekend when 2 other younger, successful quarterbacks in the league finished their nights in the locker room with concussions is pretty astonishing durability. But beyond their abilities to endure knee and shoulder and head injuries through their 18-20 year professional careers what else makes this so amazing is the level of training they have to maintain at an age when physical therapists are just beginning to regularly treat people in that same demographic for routine knee, hip and back issues. The Harvard Health News does periodic stories about great topics including this recent one on age related muscle breakdown and this link will take you to it for todays discussion:
About 10 years ago I was building a practice in Edgewood. It was my first time really paying attention to the demographics of who I was treating and what trends I might be seeing in referrals. I recall one of the twenty-something Rehab Aides remarking, "so pretty much I should assume that when I'm 52 I'll have a shoulder problem"?
Here is Beth (I'd love to go on and on about Beth's age, her ranking as a competitive US squash player and her rocking workout program...but she doesn't love me doing that) - so again, here she is offering some ideas about adding jumping rope to your home program. If you don't have a rope it is important to the workout to involve your arms with some resistance. The rolled towels she substitutes work well and swing the rope forward as well as backward to emphasize the shoulder blade muscles critical in (everything) jumping. The rope should be fit for your leg length, please reach out in the comments section if you want those details. Start with short intervals as Beth directs and expand as you would any high intensity interval until you have more tolerance in your quadriceps and calves.
Some background on Beth and The EngineHouse 16 follows.