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The 2015 Raise the Bar Award Winners

The University of Jamestown–Physical Therapy Program

A comprehensive screening plan for older adults.  Submitted by Richard Zaruba, PT, DPT, PhD, Assistant Professor

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“The University of Jamestown Physical Therapy Program would like to provide a free neuromusculoskeletal screening for the senior citizens living in our community, including both community dwelling, as well as those in assisted living. The risk of falls and injuries in the elderly increases with age, which can substantially decrease their quality of life. Prediction and possible prevention of falls and injuries is important to allow these individuals to live a full and active lifestyle in their later years. We believe that an appropriate screen should not only screen for balance, such as the Mini-BESTest, but include screening of general movement using the Selective Functional Movement Assessment, Functional Movement Screen, and Y-Balance Test. Previous research has indicated that poor movement and movement patterns can be important indicators for a risk of injury. The information provided by this type of screen can be used to make recommendations for corrective and fitness exercises that may help to moderate the risk of falls and injuries. We would also like to track participants for falls and injuries to help improve our ability to detect and predict when an increased risk for these events is present. We believe that by providing enhanced screening along with recommendations to modify any identified risk factors for falls and injuries should assist these individuals to maintain or improve their ability to have a full and active lifestyle.”

More Innovative Plans Receiving Partial Awards

Excel Orthopaedic Specialists / Greg Crossman, DPT, OCS, COMT, CSCS

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“At Excel Orthopaedics, a large orthopedic practice in Woburn, MA, we have begun utilizing the Move2Perform software and testing program as a key component in assisting clinical decision making, preseason athlete screening and programing for performance training.  We have been using M2P with our return to sport testing program for about a year and it has given us valuable objective data to help guide the return to sport decision making process with our athletes.   We are now expanding our offerings to preseason athlete screenings and return to sport/injury prevention performance training and M2P will be a key component of both programs.  Our preseason screenings are designed for youth sports teams and leagues and provide both injury risk screening using M2P and baseline concussion testing through ImPACT baseline testing.  We will provide athletes with exercises to reduce the risk of injury or use their M2P results to help individualize the athletes’ training.  The baseline concussion test will help guide management by the athlete’s doctor or certified concussion specialist if a concussion is suspected during the season. We hope to also use the data from the preseason screenings for research to help identify modifiable risk factors related to deficits in neuromuscular control and fundamental movement as they relate to concussions.  Funding for this kind of program is a major hurdle for youth sports leagues.”

Southwest Minnesota State University / Kris Cleveland, PT, DPT

Assistant Professor of Exercise Science / Director of the Wellness and Human Performance Center

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“As a faculty member at Southwest Minnesota State University in Marshall, MN, I have incorporated the use of FMS, Y Balance, and Move2Perform in testing at the Wellness and Human Performance Center.  I believe a fundamental piece in learning how to be a professional in an Exercise Science related profession is to learn the importance of foundational, fundamental movement.  This provides a starting point in which to build a high quality exercise program for improvement of performance, reduction in pain, and fall prevention.  I also teach the importance of all elements of fitness, and the Y balance test has been an objective way for students to measure balance in clients from 18-90 years of age.  By teaching the FMS screen, students get a basic understanding of foundational movement, and how to correct it.  It can be overwhelming for a student who is new to Exercise Science to wrap their head around this concept, and I have found the FMS screen is a great way for them to start to see this process as a freshmen, and then refine and enhance this skill as they progress in the curriculum.  Students have and can continue to participate in research studies in these areas.”

Orthopaedics and Sports Medicine Owensboro/ Allison Fallin, DPT, COMT

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“Our goal is to implement an Injury Prevention Program consisting of a dynamic warm-up and FMS/Y Balance testing with 2-4 local high schools as part of pre-season athletic screenings to reduce risk of injury and enhance performance.  Our plan started during the 2013-2014 school year with one local high school’s varsity football team. We performed FMS and Y balance testing on all athletes, followed up with administering corrective exercises as provided by Move2Perform analysis for all athletes falling in the moderate and slight risk category. We then performed individual assessments for all athletes in the substantial category. We then gave all athletes their individual Injury Prevention Program and the team received a group dynamic warm-up program. Both the coaching staff and athletic trainer report improvements in both performance and decreased injuries this past season. This year, we have now implemented this program with 2 high school varsity football teams. We have performed both of the initial screenings consisting of FMS, Y Balance and Closed Chain Dorsiflexion testing. We have followed up by administering corrective exercises as provided by Move2Perform. We gave both teams the group dynamic warm-up programs to follow. Players and coaches have bought in to our Injury Prevention Program and we have had multiple players attend formal rehab to address pain and deficits. We are now implementing detailed injury tracking procedures with these two schools, as well as with 3 other schools that we have not implemented this Injury Prevention Program with. Our plan is to expand our Injury Prevention Program to multiple sports and multiple schools. We will use our comparative data over the next few years to support the effectiveness of our Injury Prevention Program and use of Move2Perform.”