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WorkinCT: Advanced Physical Therapy

HARTFORD - Before Craig Maddox takes the field for the New Britain Bees, his body and movements are given a once over by Advanced Physical Therapy to see if there are any problems before he starts playing.

“Craig, we’re going to take you through what’s called the SFMA or the Selective Functional Movement Assessment, and basically it’s a series of movement patterns that we’re going to check to try to identify any areas of limitation or weakness,” explained Jarred Parker, who works for Advanced Physical Therapy.

From extending Maddox’s neck to checking his shoulders and spine, the Selective Functional Movement Assessment goes from head to toe.

“By taking someone through this assessment first, we can identify areas of movement dysfunction, also areas of weakness, and by identifying those early, we can help to prevent future injury,” said Parker.

In Craig’s case, Parker said he identified a couple areas of limitation in segmental trunk rotation as well as the overhead deep squat.

“A lot of times, as athletes, we just go out and play. We don’t realize the things that might be a little more tight than we thought going into it,” explained Craig Maddox, who is a designated hitter for the Bees.

Then Andy Muccino, who is the New Britain Bees trainer and a member of Advanced Physical Therapy, can work with the players to target any problem areas.

“Hitting every day, rotation every day in the same direction causes a lot of hip tightness,” said Muccino.

“As I internally, externally hit his hip, I can feel whether the muscles on the top part of his glute are tight and put pressure as I need to, to loosen them up so he maintains proper range of motion,” he added.

“I just feel like my hips are opening up a little bit. Feeling a little bit more loose,” said Maddox.

It’s not only athletes who can benefit from the SFMA. David Pannuto had shoulder surgery a few months ago after falling on the ice and hurting his left shoulder. He’s been doing physical therapy for a few weeks and underwent his own SFMA.

“Your body is delicate, it’s fragile, you really need to think about how you’re moving to make sure that you prevent any injuries and just moving in a manner that is smart for you and not going to put yourself in a problem situation,” said Pannuto.

“Even just being conscious of your movement flaws can prevent pain as well,” explained Dave Donnelly, who owns Advanced Physical Therapy.

It’s a new approach to the physical therapy profession that digs deeper than the traditional methods of stretching, hot packs and massage.

“If we can fix the cause of pain and eliminate the cause, we can prevent pain before it starts, so that’s what we want to do,” said Donnelly.

Advanced Physical Therapy offers a 20-minute SFMA for $20 for anyone who wants to stop by one of its five offices in Connecticut. A therapist will show you what your movement dysfunction is and how to correct it.

Find out more: http://physicaltherapyct.com/