Kory Lutz is a recent graduate of the University of Minnesota. He looks forward to focusing on Orthopedics and Sports Medicine at HAMH. Kory is especially interested in performance enhancement for golf and getting players back in the game. We recently sat down with Kory to learn a little more about his specialty.
What does a Physical Therapist, focusing on sports medicine do?
A physical therapist working in sports medicine specializes in evaluation, injury prevention, treatment, and rehabilitation of both recreational and competitive athletes of all ages. Therapy can focus on return to sport following an injury or addressing movement faults as a preventative form of medicine with the goal of optimizing sport activity and participation.
What are some of the problems/issues that you specifically treat?
A physical therapist has the skills to treat sports injuries from head to toe. Everything from non-surgical injuries like ankle sprains, tennis elbow, and rotator cuff strains, to patients with post-operative return to sport injuries such as ACL reconstruction or joint replacement can benefit from receiving physical therapy.
What type of training do you have specific to sports medicine?
My final clinical rotation was in sports PT at UW-Health in Madison, WI. There, I received mentorship from a physical therapist with over 15 years of experience working with a wide variety of athletes from overhead throwing athletes to professional bowlers. I was able to collaborate treatment plans with highly regarded orthopedic surgeons, physicians, and physical therapists during this time. I will be receiving the TPI golf certification in August in order to better treat golf injuries and optimize golf performance for players of all ages.
When a patient comes to see you, what information should they bring?
A patient should come prepared to give a brief history of their injury, along with their current training program or exercise routine. Most importantly, a patient should have a clear idea of what their goals for physical therapy are so that I am able to tailor a treatment plan specific to their goals.
What are three questions patients should consider asking during their visit?
1) How often and how long will I be in physical therapy? Each patient is different and duration and frequency depends on condition and injury of each individual.
2) What can I do outside of therapy sessions to help manage my condition? Being compliant with home exercises and limiting/modifying activities as recommended can greatly improve the speed of recovery.
3) What is causing the issue I am having? Patient education is one of my favorite parts of being a physical therapist and is a key to better patient outcomes. This helps the patient understand the source of their issue and gives them a better idea of what to expect moving forward.
What is the largest misconception you think patients have about what you do?
“I need a referral from my physician to see a physical therapist.” Wisconsin is considered a “Direct Access” state, which means a written referral is not required to see a physical therapist for conditioning, injury prevention/biomechanics, and treatment of musculoskeletal injuries with a few exceptions.
What’s the one piece of advice you’d give patients to improve their overall health?
Variety is the key to staying healthy. Find more than one recreational activity that you enjoy! Whether it’s cycling and baseball or swimming and running, participating in multiple forms of fitness ensures you are well rounded. Keep moving!
If folks wanted additional health information about physical therapy, as it relates to sports medicine what are some available resources?
I recommend checking out the American Physical Therapy Association’s website for a reliable and easy to understand source of information regarding a variety of sports medicine topics.