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Play Jazz: OPTP Prepares for American Physical Therapy Association Combined Sections Meeting in New Orleans

As the winter weather carries on mercilessly here in Minnesota, our thoughts are already turning to warmer temperatures. And to a very festive, jazzy location: New Orleans, site of the 2018 American Physical Therapy Association Combined Sections Meeting, held February 21 - 24.

With over 12,000 health professionals set to attend, the annual Combined Sections Meeting is the largest conference on physical therapy in the country. OPTP will be an exhibitor and is preparing to showcase a wide range of new products, many of which are being unveiled for the first time at the event. Attendees can stop by the exhibit hall on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday to visit OPTP in booth #624.

Well Read…

Among OPTP’s new and exclusive products that will be on display are a number of books from accomplished authors, including several who will be presenting at CSM. Following is a preview of a few of these books, whose topics range from pain neuroscience to manual therapy to mindful exercise with a foam roller.
Pain Neuroscience Education

Pain Neuroscience Education: Teaching People About Pain

The revised second edition of this highly anticipated clinical guide contains significant updates. A book by clinicians and for clinicians, it provides an evidence-based perspective on how the body and brain work together to create pain, teaches how to convey this new view of pain to patients in a way that’s easily understood and internalized, and demonstrates how to successfully integrate pain neuroscience education into a practice.

The textbook is written by physical therapists Adriaan LouwEmilio Puentedura, Steve Schmidt, and Kory Zimney. Attendees of CSM will have a chance to hear all four of these esteemed authors present on various topics at the conference, and a list of their presentations sorted by name can be found on the APTA website.

Thrust Joint Manipulation Skills for the Spine

Thrust Joint Manipulation Skills for the Spine
This new manual therapy textbook explains how to effectively perform thrust techniques, allowing therapists and students engaged in the practice to understand and safely apply the concepts. Thrust Joint Manipulation Skills for the Spine is designed to familiarize the reader with the concept of focusing to engage the barrier as it relates to patient comfort, and provides clinical pearls along the way to enhance skill acquisition and technique.

Perhaps most unique to the book is its access to videos demonstrating 45 techniques, allowing viewers to watch and learn from the authors and master clinicians; Emilio Puentedura and William O’Grady.

SMARTROLLER Guide to Optimal Movement

SMARTROLLER® Guide to Optimal Movement, 2nd Edition
Written by physical therapist Dr. Stacy Barrows, this is a book for anyone who wants to move with greater comfort, ease, and mindfulness. It provides exercise instructions for the SMARTROLLER®, a unique two-sided foam roller that helps promote balance, awareness, and core strength, while recognizing tensegrity concepts.

New updates to the second edition of the book include quick lessons called “SMARTROLLER Shortcuts,” with links to online videos demonstrating the movements. The latest neuroscience and fascial research make the guide relevant for multiple areas of practice, including physical therapy, Pilates, Feldenkrais®, and yoga.

Sacroiliac Pain

Sacroiliac Pain: Understanding the Pelvic Girdle Musculoskeletal MethodSM

Physical therapist Deborah Riczo has authored this book, which provides basic education, screening guidelines, and exercises for those affected by sacroiliac dysfunction. It introduces the Pelvic Girdle Musculoskeletal MethodSM, a program that empowers individuals to monitor their sacroiliac (SI) pain symptoms and address them with exercises that focus on muscle imbalances and weakness, as well as stretches that can be enhanced with the OPTP Stretch Out Strap™.

Sacroiliac Pain also includes access to online videos demonstrating the exercises, an exercise planner for logging workouts, and an FAQ section that discusses when to use an SI support belt or other products such as the PFProp™, an exercise tool for strengthening the pelvic floor muscles.

More than Words…

Of course, OPTP will have more than just books at the booth. New therapy products like the OPTP Positioning Cube, PRO Soft Release Ball, and the Performance Block™ and Performance Wedges™ will be on hand. OPTP staff will be at the booth to discuss all items in more detail, answer questions, demonstrate products, and talk shop. There is even rumor of a book signing from some of the authors.

Between the top-notch programming, incredible lineup of presenters, and all the additional APTA activities and local flare of NOLA, CSM 2018 promises to be a memorable adventure. We’ll see you in New Orleans!

READ MORE Josh Crane, OPTP Staff Writer - February 13, 2018

Pilates Method Alliance Conference: Definitely Epic

The 17th Annual Meeting of the Pilates Method Alliance, held October 25-28, lived up to its claim of being “One Epic Pilates Conference.” From the amazing Indian Wells, California venue to a packed agenda, we take a look back at some of the event’s highlights.
A Fusion of Sport and Pilates
As an ESPN play-by-play announcer for Major League Baseball and college basketball, Jon Sciambi might not have been the typical keynote speaker for a Pilates conference. But as someone who finds balance in Pilates and connects it directly with athletics, he was the perfect fit.  
First introduced to Pilates by pitcher Jake Arrieta of the Chicago Cubs, Sciambi realizes the importance of the mind-muscle connection and sense of control that Pilates brings. As he puts it, “It helps me understand how, why and what is actually making something move and fire.” Understanding the anatomy of functional movement is definitely relevant to any athlete.
Sciambi addressed his philanthropic work as well, which involves fundraising for ALS, a condition he has personal experience with and for which he strives to bring awareness. He related this important mission to the work of improving lives through exercise, noting that “Carrying around the knowledge and ability to improve someone’s physical state is a powerful currency.” His message was inspiring, and the relationship of Pilates and sport is certainly one that will continue to gain momentum.    
A Wealth of Knowledge
Additional speakers from many different backgrounds also shared their knowledge during the event. In fact, over 50 presenters from around the globe provided expertise and insight over the course of the four days.

Eric FranklinAmong the many professionals in attendance was mind-body guru Eric Franklin. His famous Franklin Method® uses dynamic imagery, anatomical embodiment, and reconditioning movement exercises to improve how the body functions. Eric has a background as a dancer, and he has provided training to Olympic athletes and professional dance troupes such as Cirque du Soleil.

Elizabeth LarkamAnother mind-body movement educator and practitioner that presented was Elizabeth Larkam. Sharing much in common with Franklin, she also has a background in dance and has worked with Cirque du Soleil. She has created Pilates protocols for orthopedic, spine, and chronic pain diagnoses, and collaborated with physical therapists to help wounded soldiers using Pilates techniques.

Centered Book
Madeline Black, author and educator, also shared her insights at the conference. Madeline coaches and mentors advanced teachers, raising the level of education and quality in the Pilates industry worldwide. Madeline lives and works at Studio M in Sonoma, California, and is the author of the popular new book, Centered: Organizing the Body Through Kinesiology, Movement Theory and Pilates.

A Host of Cool Products
PMA 2017 wasn’t just about the sharing of information; it also spotlighted some of the industry’s best and most innovative Pilates products. Exhibitors ranged from studios to apparel to props. There was truly something for everyone who strolled through the exhibitor hall.    
OPTP brought many of its exclusive Eric Franklin items to the conference so that attendees could see firsthand the tools of his Franklin Method that he discussed in his presentations. The ever-growing collection of Franklin Method products provides users with tension release, efficient movement, and relaxation. Franklin is also the author of 13 educational books for both professionals and individuals, including the recently released Grow Younger Daily, as well as The Art & Science of Cueing, a guide for Pilates educators featuring mental imagery techniques.

Franklin Method Products
Also exhibiting was the popular ActivMotion Bar®, perhaps one of the most innovative products to capture the attention of the Pilates world in recent years. The bar features internal ball bearings that shift during movement, producing instability for a challenging workout on a mat or reformer. The 4-foot, 4.5-pound version, offered exclusively from OPTP, is the most popular ActivMotion Bar for Pilates. There is also an exercise manual developed by ActivMotion inventor Derek Mikulski featuring more than 40 Pilates, rehabilitation, and golf exercises using the bar.

A number of discs, balance boards, and similar products were also showcasing their applications for Pilates. One of these effective tools for developing strength and balance was OPTP’s Pro Rotating Discs™. With many versatile uses, the discs can help educate hip rotators, increase core strength, and improve range of motion. The rotating 11” diameter discs have their own instructional DVD, “Movement Techniques for Rotating Discs”, developed by the previously mentioned Elizabeth Larkam.

Pro Rotating Discs
Already Excited for 2018
Between all of the amazing speakers, motivational messages, and great products, it was hard not to be inspired by the PMA conference. And of course, the luxurious setting of the Renaissance Indian Wells Resort & Spa didn’t hurt, either. Even though we’re still awestruck by the experience, we’re already looking forward to next year…we can’t wait to see what 2018 holds in store.

READ MORE Josh Crane, OPTP Staff Writer - November 6, 2017

It’s Almost Here: ISPI 2017 Clinical Conference

The International Spine & Pain Institute (ISPI) Clinical Conference will once again be held at the Hilton in Bloomington, MN. This year’s conference will be held June 9-11, and the theme will be Neuroplasticity: Reshaping the Treatment of Pain.

The conference will focus on reshaping pain from a neuroplasticity perspective. Increasing understandings of the functional and structural changes of the brain in people struggling with pain provide exciting opportunities to help with their suffering, and the presentations at this event will focus on these opportunities. The conference will feature both keynote presentations as well as breakout sessions on targeted topics.

This year’s scheduled special topics and lab sessions include:
  • Neuroplasticity and the treatment of pain
  • Graded motor imagery
  • Neuroplasticity for shoulders
  • Motor control
  • Dystonia and sensory processing disorders
  • Neuroplasticity and dry needling
  • CRPS, CLBP and neuroplasticity
  • Mirror therapy
  • Virtual reality
  • Peripheral neuropathy
  • Phantom limb
Physical therapists, physical therapy assistants, and many other healthcare providers who address patients with chronic pain will benefit from the knowledge shared at the event. The ISPI Clinical Conference provides a chance to hear from many international and nationally recognized speakers, including the following:
  • Paul Hodges PT, PhD, MedDr, DSc, BPhty(Hons), FACP
  • Siobhan Schabrun PT, PhD, BPhy(Hons)
  • Nancy Byl PT, PhD, FAPTA
  • Hunter Hoffman PhD
  • Steve Schmidt PT, M.Phys, OCS, FAAOMPT
  • Kory Zimney PT, DPT, CSMT, TPS
  • Louie Puentedura PT, DPT, PhD, OCS, FAAOMPT, CSMT, TPS
  • Adriaan Louw PT, PhD, CSMT, TPS
  • Paul Mintken PT, DPT, OCS, FAAOMPT
  • Edo Zylstra PT, DPT, OCS
  • Kevin Farrell PT, PhD, OCS, FAAOMPT
  • Debra Rico PT, DPT, CSMT
  • Colleen Louw PT, MEd, CSMT
  • Rebecca Vogsland DPT, OCS, CMTPT, CSMT, TPS
  • Lindsay Marth MA, OTR/L, TPS 
As title sponsor of the event, OPTP will be providing therapy products and educational resources for viewing and sale, including exclusive neuroscience education products by guest speaker Adriaan Louw.

Anyone interested in attending the event can view complete information and register online at the ISPI website.

READ MORE Josh Crane, OPTP Staff Writer - May 24, 2017

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