Apologies in the long pause between blogs. I am very happy to say that I completed my MSc and passed with a very respectable 75% for the dissertation :) My plan for it now is to get it published, so watch this space. But I'm not here to day to talk about that. I have decided to focus my blogs from now on on more interesting subjects, and ones which I hope you will find both engaging and useful.
Todays subject is 'a lesson in rehab'
Rehabilitation is obviously a big part of my life, being a physiotherapist and all. It really all started when Tess first injured herself some 15 years ago. She had an annular ligament injury, followed by a deep flexor tendon injury in the other leg, follwed by recurrent tendonopathies, as is a regular occurrence with these sort of injuries. Now this was all before PRP and stem cell injections, so she had her annular ligament cut out and her deep flexor tendon debrided. Followed by months of in hand walking and gradual return to work. I was around 16 at this point and it inspired me to persue rehabilitation as a profession. Folowing Tess' vet surgeons advise I comlpeted my BSc in Physiotherapy prior to starting the MSc we now know all about.
Anyway I digress, my point is I should know better. Every day I tell my patients, both human and otherwise, about gradual progression and keeping up with exercises even initially past recovery (rehab is kind of like an anti-biotic prescription, you take the whole course, even if you feel better, or risk it coming back).
So as I mentioned Tess has had multiple tendon problems, and now in her aging years suffers from what we assume is some DJD AKA osteoarthritis in both her back legs. I have to be careful of what she does now.
So after a long winter off work last year for various reasons, I gradually bought her back into work, using all my physio knowledge. I initially started with baited stretches, in-hand hill walking, long reining, poles etc etc. I finally got back on, she was doing great, loving her rides and with great enthusiasm. Then I had a two week holiday. This is where it went wrong. On my return I got straight back on, she was still great, but in my laziness stopped all the other exercises, so no baited stretch's, no pole work, just ridden work. It didn't last long, within two weeks, she was looking very stiff again!
So lesson learnt, follow my own advice. We are back to do out stretches 4-5x/week, lunge/pole work 1x/week and ridden work 1x/week, and so far so good!
Don't make the same mistake! Keep doing your exercises!