Opportunities for current and future employees

Some people are gifted with the knowledge of where they want to head and confident they will enjoy the position and all its responsibilities, but most of us like to try things on for size and work our way to the “right” fit.

Thankfully, being a member of the Foothills team allows for growth and visibility into opportunities within the organization. Before you think this isn’t the right fit for you: we’re not just looking for licensed physical therapists.

From support staff to corporate and administrative roles, there are multiple options and directions to take to find a fulfilling career here at Foothills Sports Medicine Physical Therapy. Front office representatives can move up to office managers. Observation students can move into internships, then into a physical therapist tech position, and, depending on their area of interest, into physical therapist school. Our licensed physical therapists can move into residencies, clinic partnerships, or, in my case, into more clinical education. The point is: no one needs to feel stagnated in any position they are currently filling here at Foothills.

Have you heard the phrase “Don’t dress for the job you have, dress for the job you want”?  To give that phrase a turn, “Think about the job you want to do, and use your current job to make that happen”.  Now I know that doesn’t directly translate, but you can use your present position to springboard you into another. The opportunities are here!

In addition to the grow-from-within mentality, Foothills Sports Medicine Physical Therapy offers employees the chance to work with other positive and friendly coworkers. Having an office filled with people that motivate you is honestly the best cure for the case of the Mondays.

Members of the community should know that opportunities for employment may be right in their backyard!  If you are a hardworking and energetic team player, this may be just the place for you to begin your upward climb.

As the Center Coordinator for Clinical Education, my focus is managing students who are forwarding their careers in Physical Therapy and other areas of healthcare.  For those interested in observation or internships, they should get in touch with me at [email protected]

Please visit our Careers page to see our current openings. We are hiring for many different positions: physical therapists, techs, front office, billing and more. We are members of the communities in which we live and work, and we are happy to help you find your fit at Foothills!

Your tree is up, the halls are decked and the holiday music is on repeat—it’s the perfect setting for wrapping gifts. We’re here to share helpful tips on proper posture when gift wrapping—all to work within the limitations that we all have in our homes.

Wrapping presents on the bed. I do this very often, but the problem is the bed is too low to keep you from bending too much. One of the best ways to give your back some support is to stagger your feet and put one knee into the edge of the bed. This knee is then used to support your body weight and you don’t have as much strain on the back.

Sitting on the floor. An important thing to do before wrapping presents this way is to stretch your legs first. The hamstrings, hip adductors, and hip rotators (back of the leg, inner thigh, and buttock) are often over stretched and painful after you wrap presents this way.

Another thing is to make sure to sit upright, and not let your back roll into a “C” position, or slump down. And make sure that you keep scissors and tape within reach. I personally have aggravated a sciatic condition by reaching quickly for the scissors that were just beyond my foot. Keeping items nearby will help this.

Create a gift wrapping station. Have a spare room or maybe you’re an avid crafter? Use this space to set up a gift wrapping station. Make sure the table you use is high enough that you don’t need to hunch over when wrapping. And don’t forget to slip on some supportive shoes while standing—no bare feet or cozy Christmas slippers.

Remember to be mindful when gift wrapping, especially if you have enough gifts to fill up Santa’s sleigh. If you end up feeling sore, tense or discomfort, schedule a Rapid Recovery® Injury Assessment with the Foothills team to get you feeling better. Happy holidays!

The other day, I was having a conversation with one of my patients—a journalist who had recently interviewed a retired doctor. One of the questions she asked him was what he felt was lacking in today’s healthcare environment. A key response from him was bedside manner. By this, he meant the ability to empathize with the patient, and the ability to sit with them and let them know you care about them as a person, not just their injury or illness. At each of Foothills Sports Medicine’s Phoenix physical therapy clinics, we are doing our part to change this. One sometimes hears physical therapists being described as “physical terrorists,” but more often we hear that we were the first people to put our hands on a person with kindness. Unfortunately, many people have had negative experiences with healthcare and therapy, or felt they were not listened to or validated.

At Foothills Sports Medicine, our slogan includes the phrase “Hands-on Therapy that Gets Results.” What does this mean? It could be a reference to the fact that therapists use their hands in many different treatment techniques—and this is certainly an important part of the patient’s recovery. In fact, I have had more than a few patients tell me stories of their prior PT experiences, during which they were put in a corner of a room with a sheet of exercises and basically told “have at it.” While exercises are necessary to patients’ treatment, they need to feel their visits are of value.

I feel that the hands are more than the implements with which we perform treatment techniques. They are the doors through which we can let our heart do the work. Empathy plays an important role in connecting with patients and providing effective treatment to the whole person, not just the body part that is injured. No injury exists in a vacuum, and no person exists in a vacuum. Sometimes that human touch is the one thing that reaches a patient and gets them well.

When I was in physical therapy school, one of my clinical instructors marked me down for putting my hand on a patient’s arm, effectively touching the patient “too much” and making me appear “too sympathetic.” While I feel I have learned from every criticism I’ve received on my treatment style, I greatly rejected this one. It has been my experience that demonstrating some sympathy toward patients as people is necessary in achieving healing.

At Foothills Sports Medicine, we believe it is possible to give some of ourselves away without losing anything. Kindness costs nothing, and it is our hands-on approach that puts our Foothills Sports Medicine Phoenix Physical Therapy clinics above others in providing patient care.

If you’re looking for a physical therapist, contact your local Foothills clinic today! Our highly-trained staff offer a free assessment of your physical therapy needs, which can be scheduled online here. For more information about Phoenix Physical Therapy, check out our blog!

Tempe physical therapy expert Melanie McDonald, PT, MPT, is here to give us information on dizziness and how this complaint can be fixed with the proper care.

In my career, I have worked with patients being treated for an orthopedic complaint, and they must sit for a period because of the onset of dizziness.

Occasionally, this lightheadedness occurs as a result of rising too quickly, and is accompanied by a drop in blood pressure. Sometimes the symptoms dissipate quickly, whereas other patients need more time to recover. In these cases, most of our session is spent waiting for the patient’s symptoms to go away. This can be frustrating, but fortunately, this is something that can be remedied.

For certain physical therapy patients, the complaint of dizziness may be a result of a recent orthopedic surgery. In these cases, they say the room is spinning when they look up, roll in bed, or feel dizzy out of the blue. Dizziness among patients also happens frequently with seniors, but physicians often tell them the lightheadedness is a sign of age. As a licensed physical therapist, it is difficult to see this problem recurring after multiple trips to the Emergency Room where patients are given Meclizine (a drug that prevents and controls dizziness, nausea and vomiting caused by motion sickness or vertigo) and no further instructions or follow up treatment. For some, Meclizine can help, but for others, it can actually make the problem worse. While this temporary solution may work for some, it’s doesn’t address the issue at hand.

Some physical therapy experts and physicians have received valuable training in balance and vestibular disorders. Problems with dizziness and balance can come from a myriad of sources. One of the first steps is to rule out the possibility of a central nervous system problem including a stroke, tumor, MS, or Parkinson’s disease, to name a few potential issues.

After having these potential causes ruled out, experts would look at a few other factors. In the absence of a brain or circulatory issue, a physical therapist very often can locate the area of problem. Some common issues are: positional vertigo, an activity problem of the nerve coming from the inner ear, a cervical spine issue, or even a lack of sensation coming from the feet.

In our senior population, we often run into balance issues coming from neuropathy. While we can’t fix this, we can improve strength and safety by training other parts of the body to sense the imbalance and make corrections. Additionally, a leading cause of dizziness and imbalance for seniors is being overmedicated. High blood pressure medication is often a source of lightheadedness upon arising because blood pressure is too low. It is beneficial to consult with a doctor to verify that the patient is receiving the correct dosage and to discuss any potential drug interactions.

Seniors are the most susceptible to problems with positional vertigo. Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo (BPPV) is a very common diagnosis. In (BPPV), crystals are inadvertently dropped into another part of the ear. The inner ear contains canals filled with fluid, and they work like a carpenter’s level; if the bubble is in the same place on both sides of the head, then things are balanced. If crystals drop into the wrong ear canal, it makes that canal heavier, and the bubble won’t be in the right place, resulting in vertigo. A trained physical therapist can determine which canal the crystals have fallen in and can remove them, often in just a visit or two.

A similar situation can occur when a virus interrupts the activity of the nerve coming from the ear’s balance systems. If the brain can’t communicate with the nerve messages from the ear, it tries to correct itself, causing spinning sensations. If a patient is recovering from a bad sinus infection or head cold, steroids would be the treatment of choice to combat vertigo problems. Always be sure to check with a doctor to find out if this treatment is appropriate.

While actual injury to the nerve cannot be corrected, one of the wonderful things about the human body, particularly the vestibular system, is its ability to compensate for another area that is not working well. With retraining, one can correct for this imbalance. It takes work, but it can be done!

In short, vertigo or dizziness is not something that a patient needs to deal with. It can be corrected or managed.

If you or someone you know is experiencing chronic dizziness or vertigo, contact one of our trained professionals and request an appointment today! To learn more about Foothills Sports Medicine Physical Therapy and our certified Tempe physical therapy experts, check out the Foothills blog.