Managing Complexity in Sports Rehab

Where do you start when trying to balance complexity, uncertainty, and reductionist mindsets in sports rehab – your Grounding Principles. Lets discuss further:

Control the Controllables in Sports Rehab

We must all reconcile the fact that we can never exert complete control over any given situation. We can only control our reactions and our future plans. Within a rehab context, we must plan for the best case scenario, yet be prepared to pivot if (read: when) obstacles begin to arise.

An agile mindset and an appreciation for non-linear cause-and-effect is a must for all rehabilitative processes.

Rely heavily on foundational truths based in anatomy, physiology, and physics. When in doubt, do not seek to add additional complexity to a situation. Lean heavily on agreed upon and well studied information prior to anecdotal or novel tactics and beliefs. ⁣ Start by assessing the macro (big picture physical deficits, goals, subjective readiness), then steadily work inward toward a specific course of action as the terrain comes into focus. If this approach is not working after a period of time, then it may be warranted to experiment with more nuanced or novel approaches.

Leverage Intelligent Redundancy and accountability within your training and rehab processes. ⁣

Do not rely exclusively on subjective reports, gut instincts, past successes, or emotion. Your process should include a variety of objective metrics that counteract our natural cognitive biases. ⁣

Metrics may include:

  • Range of Motion (ROM)
  • Isolated strength measures
  • Compound strength outputs (weights lifted, velocity moved)
  • Limb symmetry Index (LSI)
  • Sprint and Change of Direction Testing
  • Jump Testing

Provide a birds-eye-view of your process to your client.

Explain where they are now, where they would like to be, and how you plan to assist them in reaching their desired self. Leverage both short and long-term goals to keep your clients engaged, motivated, and accountable.

-Dr. Michael Reinhardt, PT, DPT, OCS

Grounding Principles = Set Your Foundation. 

Earn .6 CEUs and get started on the Foundations in Sports Rehab with our self paced course. Approved in all 50 States for Physical Therapists, ATCs, and Strength & Conditioning Coaches through NASM.  Get all the Details and Start HERE

R2P Academy The Foundations Online Course Sports Rehab

The R2P Academy

Setting the New Standard in Performance Rehab for Professionals. Providing Educational Seminars, Mentorship & Online Courses the R2P Academy has offerings from Student Physical Therapist and Strength & Conditioning Coaches to established Physical Therapists and Business Owners. Check out all of the offerings Here.


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