We have decades of experience in sports and physical therapy, and many times, they coincide. Sports places high demand on athlete’s bodies, and injuries are inevitable, meaning physical therapy plays a crucial role in their recovery.
Manhattan Physical Therapist, Patrick Hansen has years of experience as both an athlete and a PT who treats athletes. Let’s talk with him about sports, injuries, and the importance of physical therapy in recovery.
What is your sports and athletic background?
I played basketball, baseball, and football in high school. Baseball was by far my best sport. I played pitcher and infielder and was all-conference my last year in school. I have stayed active post-college and have enjoyed CrossFit for fitness over the last 5 years. I have coached baseball and am currently a CrossFit coach.
What are some of the more common sports injuries?
I have seen many sport injuries associated with high school sports. I would say knee and shoulder injuries are the most common. These can be post-surgical as well as sprains and strains.
Why do you enjoy treating athletes?
Athletes come from an athletic background, so they usually have good body awareness and are able to learn quickly.
I enjoy the challenge of pushing them to get back to their sport. Athletes are typically very motivated to work hard to get back to playing their sport.
I have been injured playing sports before so I can relate to their injuries. This helps me understand the psychology involved with getting them safely back to their sport.
What is different about treating athlete’s vs the general population and how is ARC Physical Therapy+ equipped to help them recover?
The biggest difference is the level of therapy the athletes typically perform with us. All injured patients are athletes in their own way, whether they want to get back to their sport, their job, or doing tasks around the home. Patients whose goal is to get back to a sport fit in very well with the ARC Physical Therapy+ model of functional and athletic training we do. We are trained to push patients to their max potential in therapy.
Personally, with my background in athletics and being a CrossFit coach, I have the tools to break down poor movement patterns and asymmetries in strength or mobility that can affect performance significantly. Once I’ve broken down the deficiencies, I can apply my expertise and knowledge to those issues and create a plan that gets the athlete back to their sport quickly.
I am certified in the MDT method (McKenzie Method) of evaluating and treating patients. This method is very effective at classifying spine or extremity pain and decreasing the number of visits needed by the patient. When utilizing this method in the past with athletes, I have found joint issues that were missed by other health professionals and that helped my patient get back to their sport 50% faster!
What is your favorite athlete success story?
I worked with a high school girl basketball player who was on her 2nd ACL repair (she was only 16 and this was already her 2nd ACL tear!). We worked through her rehab from 3 days post-op, to 6 months post-op and all the struggles that came along with that.
This same patient came back in her senior year with her 3rd ACL tear… and we again worked together to get her playing basketball again. She had multiple scholarships to play in college due to her talent, even with her knee injuries. Helping to keep her motivated through these 2nd and 3rd surgeries was difficult, but very rewarding to see her succeed in the end.
Anything else we should know about sports and PT?
You can have PT without sports, but you can’t have sports without PT 😊.
At ARC Physical Therapy+, we work with athletes of all ages and abilities, contact us today to learn more or schedule an appointment. You can talk to Patrick and the Manhattan clinic at (785) 789-5015.