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Fitness testing with a physiotherapist can help you reach your goals - safely!

Whether you’re looking to start a new adventure, recovering from an injury, or an athlete who wants to get back to your sport, your physiotherapist has a test for that

When you think about going to physiotherapy, often times it’s because you’ve suffered an injury that you want to recover from. While this is true, your physiotherapist can also help you reach certain fitness goals to ensure you are capable of participating safely and independently.

At Lake Country Physiotherapy in Orillia, they have several different tests to help you obtain optimal physical ability in alignment with whatever goals you have. Chad Watters, clinic director and physiotherapist at Lake Country Physiotherapy, said that testing can benefit anyone whether injured, returning to sport, or looking to evaluate their fitness.

Testing helps determine everything from whether you can achieve certain physical goals and predicting risk of injury, to measuring injury recovery and measuring safe return to sport.

“Let’s say a local Orillian who is a baseball player wants to know if it’s safe to go back and do training come April, we can give them an assessment where we can check their upper extremity strength with three different tests, and I can give them any of those tests and then I have this data bank that tells me whether that’s normal and on the right track,” Watters said.

The results of the test are compared with normative data, which is what’s considered “normal” for the population based on thousands of previous tests. The results can then assist your physiotherapist in tailoring a treatment plan so you can strengthen for performance where you need to, for preventative care, or both.

Watters said, a good example is someone who wants to do an extended walk and they want to ensure they’re able to do so. Although they’re not in pain they can come in for advice, and with the help of these tests during an assessment, Watters can arm them with knowledge to make sure they can do the task they want.

“If they want to do a 15 km. walk, well how do we make sure they’re independent and ready to do that?” he said. “Well, here are all these battery of tests that would tell me that you function normally and that is a way the physiotherapist can use the data that we have to help the population outside of someone being hurt or previously injured.”

There are several tests a physiotherapist can do to help determine a variety of different functionalities and abilities. Below a few examples of tests and what they can help determine.

The Biering-Sorensen Test (hyper strength position)

The patient lies face down then slides forward until only legs are on the table. Legs are strapped in, then the patient lifts and holds their body in a straight position for as long as they can. A time beyond 200 seconds predicts no risk of back pain within the next two years.

Timed up and go test (TUG)

The patient sits in an armed chair, asked to stand up and walk three metres, turn around, walk back three metres, and sit down. Times less then 12 seconds suggest a low fall risk, but times over 12 seconds means your risk is elevated.

Disc injury and pain

After a disc injury, people want to know when they’re healed enough to bend and lift again safely. A simple test to determine this sees clients being asked to lie on their back, bring their knees to their chest, and squeeze them in for 15 repetitions. If there is no pain after these reps then you're, in most cases, safe to recommence forward bending.

Thessaly Test

This test determines whether there is a meniscus-based injury in the knee. It involves standing on the injured leg, other leg off the ground, and then your body will be rotated side-to-side as far in each direction as much as they are able. If this leads to pain, there’s a better chance you have a meniscus-based injury in your knee. *Statistically, this test is as accurate as an MRI specifically used for a meniscus diagnosis*

While Lake Country Physiotherapy is under new ownership, the staff and the quality of care remains the same. They are committed to providing the same rehabilitation services to the Orillia community.

If you would like to book a consultation, please call 705-413-3712 or visit them on Facebook to learn more!