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  • 5 Examples of Why You Should be Reading the APTA Student Pulse Blog

    Given that physical therapy students represent a significant portion of APTA membership, you can't really call the APTA Student Assembly's "Pulse" blog a "best-kept secret" or "hidden gem." Still, because the blog series is targeted at students, it can be easy for practicing physical therapists (PTs) and physical therapist assistants (PTAs) to overlook.

    That would be a mistake. Turns out the Pulse blog series is home to energized, engaging content worthy of checking out no matter how long it's been since you've earned that sheepskin (and if you've ever heard it called "sheepskin," it's been a while). Here's a list of the 5 most popular posts from 2017, with links to the original posts.

    • 5. Develop Your Patient Care, Not Your Social Network
      "Presumably, in hopes of avoiding it, students and new grads [often ask me] what I think is the biggest mistake folks make in the early years of their careers. Unlike many other questions, I’m confident on my answer: They spend far too much time networking on social media, which significantly handicaps their clinical skills development."
    • 4. Jealousy, a Well-Known But Unspoken Part of Physical Therapy School
      "Comparing grades, clinical experiences, and overall knowledge is not how we're going to be the best student or best clinician; to be honest, those things will hold us back. Not only that, but it will hold our profession back."
    • 3. My Biggest Takeaways From Physical Therapy School
      "I finally made it to #FreshPT status! It was a long, intense 3 years, but I made it! At this point, I thought I'd share my biggest takeaways from the journey that is physical therapy school in hopes that it will ease the minds of current physical therapy students."
    • 2. Three Things I Wish I Knew Before I Started My Clinical Rotations
      "It's a really interesting transition from student to clinician, even though every impressive clinician whom I've shadowed has maintained a student-like curiosity that blurs the line between these roles."
    • 1. My Biggest Challenge in Physical Therapy School? Imposter Syndrome
      "When I got to physical therapy school, I didn’t feel so successful anymore; I had never been challenged like that before. I was around the smartest people—fellow students, faculty, and mentors—that I had ever met. From the start, my professors would ask a question and someone was always there with the answer, as I sat next to them feeling clueless."

    The Good Stuff: Members and the Profession in Local News, September 2017

    "The Good Stuff," is an occasional series that highlights recent, mostly local media coverage of physical therapy and APTA members, with an emphasis on good news and stories of how individual physical therapists (PTs) and physical therapist assistants (PTAs) are transforming health care and society every day. Enjoy!

    PT student with a lot of harp: Elise Krueger, SPT, is making a name for herself as a harpist. (Findlay, Ohio, Courier)

    Helping dental students understand patients with mobility issues: Kim Dunleavey, PT, PhD, teamed up with the University of Florida College of Dentistry in a unique program. (University of Florida Alligator News)

    Neonatal abstinence syndrome: Karen Speropulos, PT, talks about the role of PTs in responding to NAS. (Bristol, Tennessee, Herald-Courier)

    Hip exercise tips: Karen Joubert, PT, DPT, provides pointers on how to keep hips healthy. (ABC News7, Los Angeles)

    "National Founder of the Year": Heidi Jannenga, PT, DPT, has been recognized by the Arizona State University W. P. Carey School of Business for the establishment of WebPT. (Phoenix Business Journal)

    Treatment poststroke: McHaley Haeflinger, PT, explains the importance of physical therapy after a stroke. (News4 Tucson, Arizona)

    PTA—and artist: Kevin Schmoldt, PTA, has his paintings featured at a local arts center. (Waupaca County, Wisconsin, News)

    Advice on urinary incontinence: Julie Wiebe, PT, MPT, BSc, shares recommendations for women who experience UI. There's also a link to APTA's Section on Women's Health. (MSN network)

    Virtual reality (VR) for rehab: Emily Keshner, PT, EdD, discusses the advantages of VR in treating patients post stroke. (News4 Tucson, Arizona)

    "There has been research and more support medically for post concussion symptom treatment being physical therapy—using aerobic exercise as treatment, as well as cognitive behavioral therapy." – Kristine Keane, PsyD, neuroscience physician. (USA Today app.com)

    Got some good stuff? Let us know. Send a link to troyelliott@apta.org.

    Ready for Falls Prevention Awareness Day? PTNow Can Help

    Falls Prevention Awareness Day is coming September 22, making now a great time to check out falls-related resources on APTA's recently expanded PTNow evidence-based practice center.

    Here's a quick take on just some of the falls-related resources available at PTNow.

    In addition to PTNow, APTA also offers information on falls at its Balance and Falls webpage. Resources include continuing education courses, tips on developing consumer events on falls, and links to other organizations.

    PTNow Expands Resources, Offers New Search Experience

    If you haven't checked out PTNow lately, you haven't checked out PTNow.

    APTA's online evidence-based practice resource has been updated and expanded significantly. Just how significantly? Additions include:

    • 92 new clinical practice guidelines (and more than 80 updates to existing ones)
    • More than 50 new tests and measures, including new resources on pain and cognitive impairment
    • 22 new clinical summaries
    • 20 new Cochrane reviews

    And getting at those resources is now easier than ever, thanks to a  retooled search function that's both user-friendly and expansive, providing members with easy access to journals and other resources relevant to clinical practice. The PTNow site has also simplified its access to its CPG+ collection, which provides expert appraisal of selected CPGs.

    "The new resources at PTNow enrich offerings to clinicians in some truly meaningful ways," said Anne Reicherter, PT, DPT, PhD, a board-certified orthopaedic clinical specialist and APTA’s senior practice specialist overseeing the PTNow expansion. "And it's not just about the new material—updates to earlier clinical summaries on subjects such as total knee arthroplasty, falls, traumatic brain injury, and unilateral vestibular dysfunction will connect members with some of the latest and best evidence out there."

    APTA Awards Now Open for Nominations, Including New Awards for Humanitarian, Societal Impact Efforts

    Members of the physical therapy profession do amazing things for people every day and not just inside the walls of a clinic: that's the idea behind 2 new awards from APTA that focus on humanitarian efforts and contributions that make an impact on society.

    The APTA Honors & Awards program is now accepting nominations for the 2018 awards cycle, and the program has added a Humanitarian Award and Societal Impact Award to APTA's distinctive collection of accolades. Those honors include awards for excellence in education, practice, research, and publications.

    The APTA Humanitarian Award recognizes association members "who exemplify the compassionate nature of the physical therapy profession by actively expressing a commitment to humanity and exhibiting admirable degrees of selflessness in addressing key health concerns," according to the award webpage. Nominees must be active APTA members in good standing at the time of nomination and selection, and must have a record of humanitarian service for at least a year prior to nomination.

    Also for APTA members with at least 1 year of relevant activity, the APTA Societal Impact Award is aimed at individuals who embody the compassionate nature of the profession "by exhibiting a distinguished commitment toward philanthropic initiatives, raising public awareness on key societal issues, and demonstrating how physical therapy can be applied to address these issues."

    Detailed award descriptions, eligibility information, and nomination instructions for these and the many other awards and honors in the program are available on the APTA Honors & Awards webpage. Deadline for nominations is December 1.

    Award winners will be recognized by the APTA Board of Directors at the 2018 NEXT Conference and Exhibition, set for June 27-30 in Orlando. For more information, email Alissa Patanarut.

    Still Time to Enter the APTA–Private Practice Section Video Contest

    Fire up those cameras and make room in your bank account, because your video about the power of physical therapy could earn you an extra $3,000.

    APTA and its Private Practice Section (PPS) are calling for entries in a video contest open to all members. Here's how it works:

    1. Create a video no longer than 3 minutes that tells a story about how physical therapists transform society by optimizing movement to improve the human experience, or a video that shows how physical therapy reduces overall health care costs and improves patient outcomes.
    2. Make sure your video meets the technical requirements and that all the appropriate waivers have been signed (details can be found on the video contest webpage).
    3. Submit your video to APTA by September 30.
    4. Dream about what you'll do with $3,000; make notes for your future Academy Award acceptance speech.

    In addition to the $3,000 grand prize, APTA and PPS also will award $1,500 to the second place winner and $1,000 for third place. Check out all the details and download forms at the video contest webpage. Questions? Email Amelia Sullivan. And … action!

    2017 ELI Fellows Graduate From APTA Education Leadership Institute

    Eighteen seasoned physical therapy educators have deepened their knowledge and skills over the past year, thanks to the APTA Education Leadership Institute (ELI) Fellowship. These physical therapists (PTs) made up ELI's sixth cohort of ELI Fellows when they graduated in July after completing a yearlong higher education program that consisted of:

    • 9 online modules provided by content expert faculty;
    • 3 2-day face-to-face mentorship sessions and ongoing mentorship provided by experienced physical therapy program directors;
    • higher-education mentorship provided by physical therapy education leaders; and
    • implementation of a personal leadership plan and an institution-based leadership project.

    The ELI Fellowship strives to provide new and aspiring program directors in physical therapist and physical therapist assistant education programs with the skills and resources they need to be innovative, influential, and visionary leaders who can function within a rapidly evolving, politico-sociocultural environment.

    Partners who help promote and support the ELI Fellowship include the American Physical Therapy Association, American Council of Academic Physical Therapy, Education Section, and PTA Educators Special Interest Group. See who graduated from this year's class and find more information about the ELI Fellowship on APTA's website, and view video testimonials of previous ELI graduates.

    The program was first accredited by American Board of Physical Therapy Residency and Fellowship Education (ABPTRFE), the accrediting body for postprofessional residency and fellowship programs in physical therapy, in 2012 and reaccredited in 2017 for a 10-year period.

    The Good Stuff: Members and the Profession in Local News, August 2017

    "The Good Stuff" is an occasional series that highlights recent, mostly local media coverage of physical therapy and APTA members, with an emphasis on good news and stories of how individual PTs and PTAs are transforming health care and society every day. Enjoy!

    Ashleigh Dalton PT, DPT, cofounder of Camp Cliffview, talks about how the program provides opportunities for children with special needs. (BlueRidgeNow.com)

    Jessica Dufault, PT, explains how addressing separation of abdominal muscles in women post-birth requires more than an exercise or 2. (Offspring.lifehacker.com)

    Jan Dommerholt PT, DPT, gives Good Morning Washington a glimpse of what exergaming is all about. (Good Morning Washington)

    Tom Hulst, PT, MHS, and Jen Kurnowski, PT, discuss dry needling for back pain. (West Michigan Fox 17 News)

    The Brenau University physical therapy program's pro-bono physical therapy clinic in Georgia, is benefitting students and patients. (Gainesville, Georgia, Times)

    Caitlin Jones, PT, DPT, talks about the progress of a remarkable 5-year-old recovering from a gunshot wound. (WSB-TV2, Atlanta, Georgia)

    Eric Robertson, PT, DPT, provides insight on how exercise can help keep back pain from becoming chronic. (Oprah.com)

    University of Mary, North Dakota, PT students work with engineering students to create adaptive cars inspired by the Go Baby Go program. (Bismarck, North Dakota, Tribune)

    "Jonathan continues to recover from his accident, and Laura continues to stand beside him as he does. One day, Laura was shadowing Jonathan's physical therapy session when his therapist invited her to help lift him out of his wheelchair. 'As soon as we got him up, he started kissing my neck,' Laura said. 'We hadn't been able to stand and hold each other since before the accident ... It gave me the chills. You don’t realize how much that means until it’s almost taken away from you.'" - Laura Browning Grant, whose husband, Jonathan, is recovering from an automobile accident, on the viral video of their first kiss in months. (Self.com)

    Got some good stuff? Let us know. Send a link to troyelliott@apta.org.

    From PT in Motion Magazine: The PT as Inventor

    Sometimes, clichés exist because they're true.

    Take "necessity is the mother of invention." Physical therapists (PTs) know all about the necessity part: patients need to regain, increase, or maintain mobility, and PTs constantly need to be on the lookout for ways to help make that happen. And when none of the usual ways seems to work? That's when some PTs become inventors.

    "Inventional Thinking," a feature article in the August issue of PT in Motion magazine, recounts the efforts of several PTs who've developed products or technologies that have helped to fill gaps in rehabilitation. The inspiring PTs profiled include:

    • Romina Bello, PT, DPT, who led a team of PTs and occupational therapists at the Henry Ford Health System in the creation of a high-acuity walker that makes it easier to get patients in intensive care units up and walking while minimizing risk of falls or loss of lines to the patient—and with the assistance of only a PT and respiratory therapist
    • Thubi Kolobe, PT, PhD, who worked with an engineering professor to develop the Self-Initiated Progressive Prone Crawler, a skateboard-like device that allows babies with physical limitations to crawl, an important developmental milestone
    • Daniel J. Lee, PT, DPT, whose prototype limbWISE app is designed to make it easier for patients adjusting to use of a prosthesis to manage fitting issues
    • Scott Rogoff, PT, DPT, ATC, developer of the dynamic ankle rehabilitation trainer (DART), a device—now in its fourth iteration—that aids recovery from ankle injuries by helping to strengthen anterior ankle muscles
    • Bryce Taylor, PT, MSPT, the inventor of the Halo Trainer, a device that gives PTs the ability to put handlebars on stability balls

    In addition to the inventors' own accounts of how they birthed their ideas into reality, the article features tips and advice for PTs thinking about inventing—including possible funding sources.

    "Inventional Thinking" is featured in the August issue of PT in Motion and is open to all viewers—pass it along to nonmember colleagues to show them 1 of the benefits of belonging to APTA. Printed editions of the magazine are mailed to all members who have not opted out; digital versions are available online to members.

    From Move Forward Radio: Boston Marathon Bombing Survivor Dances to the Beat of a 'New Normal'

    After losing her lower leg in the Boston Marathon bombing, former professional ballroom dancer Adrianne Haslet feared she would never step out on the floor again. "My foot was my tool … and it was completely taken away from me," she says. "I thought my quality of life would be a nothing."

    But she was determined to dance again, and even run. With the dedication of her physical therapist (PT) and the rest of her health care team, Haslet did just that. She cried when she practiced her first dance step in her kitchen.

    Now available from APTA's Move Forward Radio: a conversation with Haslet, who shared her experience of recovery and her "new normal" —including running the 2016 Boston Marathon, where "just crossing the starting line" was a victory. The NEXT 2017 keynote speaker also was featured in a MoveForwardPT video about the value of physical therapy.

    Move Forward Radio is archived at MoveForwardPT.com, APTA's official consumer information website, and can be streamed online via Blog Talk Radio or downloaded as a podcast via iTunes.

    Other recent Move Forward Radio episodes include:

    Preparing for the Latest Sports Craze: Obstacle Course Racing
    The latest sports craze of obstacle course races is full of physical demands. Physical therapist and certified athletic trainer Mike Ryan, PT, ATC, describes the allure of these increasingly popular physical challenges and how to successfully prepare for them.

    Success Story: Physical Therapist Collaborates With Surgeon to Solve Hip Impingement Diagnosis
    The pain that Annie Karp felt in her hip wasn’t intense, but it was unrelenting. For months she met with numerous health care providers in an attempt to resolve the issue. And for months she had no success, until a PT asked her a fairly simple question: "Are you a dancer?"

    Cancer-Related Fatigue and Physical Therapy
    Cancer-related fatigue isn’t unique to any type of cancer or cancer treatment, and it can occur even after treatment is complete. Marie Calys, PT, DPT, explains why exercise is 1 of the most effective ways to manage it.

    Rheumatoid Arthritis and Physical Therapy
    Unlike osteoarthritis, the effects of rheumatoid arthritis can be felt across a person’s entire body. Maura Daly-Iversen, PT, DPT, SD, FAPTA, discusses what we know about rheumatoid arthritis and how to effectively manage its effects.

    Osteoarthritis of the Hip and Knee
    Osteoarthritis can make movement difficult, and yet 1 of the best ways to manage osteoarthritis is to move. Mary Ann Wilmarth, PT, DPT, MS, doesn’t just treat people with the condition; she lives with it, too.

    Treatment of Core Muscle Injury (Don’t Call It Sports Hernia)
    These days, whenever ESPN injury analyst Stephania Bell, PT, meets an elite athlete who has undergone surgery to perform core muscle repair, she has a good idea about who might have performed the procedure.

    APTA members are encouraged to alert their patients to the radio series and other MoveForwardPT.com resources to help educate the public about the benefits of treatment by a physical therapist. Ideas for future episodes and other feedback can be emailed to consumer@apta.org.