Athletic trainers are becoming an ever more important presence in today’s sports. From high schools to professional organizations, athletic trainers are taking on an important role in keeping student, amateur, and professional athletes safe, conditioned, and injury-free. They also play an important role in injury rehabilitation for not only athletes, but also anyone who needs recovery from pain. They are often not only employed by sports organizations and schools, but also physical therapy clinics.
Kyle McCuskey, an athletic trainer for OSR Physical Therapy, has been a certified athletic trainer for over three years. He works mostly with athletes, but also works with other physical therapists and their patients.“When a new patient goes through the consult and initial evaluation with
“When a new patient goes through the consult and initial evaluation with a physical therapist, we then work together for the remainder of the rehab,” explains McCuskey. “I assign exercises and work with each patient doing the therapy to help them return to their sport or daily life.”
Working With Patients
McCuskey primarily uses an exercise-based rehabilitation for his patients. His biggest suggestion is that patients come in right away when they feel pain, whether they think it’s serious or not.
“If an athlete or the general population is concerned about pain or an injury they suffered, they can come and see one of the athletic trainers here for a free consult,” says McCuskey. “We can get them in that same day for a free evaluation with a physical therapist.”
Rehabilitation, although primarily exercise-based, might also include other supplements known as specialty rehabilitation. Such methods might include:
- The Graston Technique, which is a type of manual therapy using metal tools;
- Kinesio taping, which McCuskey is certified in; and,
- Cupping, which brings increased blood flow to a certain problem area.
“We work smart and we try to get people back to their highest level, but it’s a process,” explains McCuskey. “Anyone who is need of physical therapy needs to have patience and remember that one day and one treatment is not enough for recovery.”
Working With Coaches
Although Kyle works with patients privately at OSR, he also works closely with various coaches in the West Metro. Kyle and OSR have a good connection with the community – the schools and people. Through working closely with coaches, OSR holds a 6-week jump program to prevent ACL injuries.
Called Sportsmetrics, McCuskey works with the coaches and the athletes to target weakness that can lead to an ACL injury. It’s a great injury-prevention program conducted by OSR Physical Therapy, according to McCuskey.
“You try to be as prepared as you can with strengthening and making sure the biomechanics or the lower leg, specifically in girls, muscles are able to support them to the best of their ability,” says McCuskey. “We take a video analysis of the squat jump, a triple jump, and single-leg squats just to see who’s more at risk for those dynamic forces on the knee.”
McCuskey says that they look specifically at the knees, hips, and ankles of the athletes. They analyze the angles involved in those areas and any weaknesses. Then, they suggest exercises that target those weaknesses. At the end of the 6-week program, they show coaches how to incorporate specific jumps and exercises into a pre-practice routine to maintain strength and prevent injury.
“It’s A Well-rounded Experience.”
Although McCuskey specializes in athletic training, he’s adamant that OSR provides a well-rounded therapeutic experience for any and every patient that walks through the door. Whether an athlete, physically active, or simply looking for relief from pain, all OSR physical therapists will provide an individualized program. You will be on the road to recovery quickly with the help of OSR physical therapists. Contact us today if you want to be pain-free.