A blog about my life, fitness and fun! (...and maybe a few cat pictures...)

A blog about my life, fitness and fun! (...and maybe a few cat pictures...)

Monday, November 19, 2018

Recommendation: Pivot Physical Therapy in Mechanicsburg

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If you're a regular reader of my blog, you know I was in physical therapy for about five weeks due to the lower back pain I was experiencing during my runs and throughout my workday. The lower back pain was really starting to affect my training, and of all things, my teaching. My back would ache all day from standing and walking around my classroom. It was very frustrating. I finally decided I needed to see a physical therapist.

It's a big step for me to decide to go to PT. I'm busy, and PT is time consuming. It can also get expensive. Therapy three times a week (which is what PTs normally want you to do) adds up to $90 in co-pays and $360 a month! I would pay any amount of money to be healthy and be able to run without pain, and course the goal of PT is to make that happen... But oftentimes when I would go to PT I felt like I was just paying to do the same exercises I do at home, and my PT wouldn't watch, help, or progress my exercises when I went to the clinic. In the past, PT just seemed like a waste of time and money. (I even wrote a post 5 years ago about how I thought PT sucks! It got a lot of snarky comments from PTs telling me I am stupid.)

I'm sure many of my runner friends can relate to this! We hate being "injured". We hate spending money. (Unless it's on running gear!) We hate taking time out of our busy schedules to drive to a clinic, have a session, and drive home. We're finicky people, us runners. We'll spend an hour pounding the pavement during a run, but drive 15 minutes to PT? Hell no!

I've been to lots of physical therapists over the years, and I have never, ever gone back to the same person twice. But that, my friends, has changed. I found a PT who I trust completely. For anyone who lives in the Harrisburg area who finds themselves needing a PT, I highly recommend Scott McGeary of Pivot Physical Therapy in Mechanicsburg.

Scott was recommended to me by a running friend. I called him on a whim and was able to get an appointment right away. I read his bio on the Pivot website and learned he was a runner. That was a good sign. Runners get other runners.

At my evaluation, Scott determined I had an anterior pelvic tilt which was causing my lower back pain. This was also causing my tight hip flexors. (Hmmmm.... every single PT I ever saw told me my hip flexors are tight!)

After my initial evaluation, Scott taught me some exercises and told me the purpose of each one. The exercises were mostly to engage my lower abs and activate my glutes. He seemed very knowledgeable and I trusted the information he gave me.  

I felt good when I left my first appointment, but of course I always feel hopeful when I leave physical therapy for the first time! However, I was pleasantly surprised that when I went back for more sessions (twice per week) I was always under the supervision of Scott. He did not pass me off to an assistant. He was always right there beside me to make sure I was doing my exercises correctly and that I engaged the right muscles.

As the sessions went by and I got better with my stability and glute activation, Scott progressed my program. He answered all of my questions, offered advice, and moved things along at my pace. I never felt like I was wasting my time at physical therapy. Each time I left, I felt like I learned something new about my body and how I could take care of it moving forward.

My back pain slowly started to subside, but my progress didn't go in a straight line. I would have several days with no pain and then a day or two with pain. But eventually it got to the point where my back pain was no longer the norm but an anomaly. These days, I have maybe one or two days per week where I feel it ache a bit after a run. Before PT, it was aching every single day. That's huge progress in less than two months! And I'm running 20-30 miles per week, so it's not like I'm just sitting around and resting.

It is such a relief to make it through my work day and teach seven 40 minutes music classes and two instrument lessons per day without being plagued by back pain!

Obviously, no one ever wants to go back to physical therapy, but at least now I know I have someone I can trust.

I highly recommend Scott and his team at Pivot Physical Therapy in Mechanicsburg!

11 comments:

  1. I bet Scott would be happy to hear this. What a glowing recommendation for him!
    My sister use to work at Pivot (Obviously not the one in Mechanicsburg though).

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    1. Cool! I had never heard of Pivot before but I see they have clinics all over.

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  2. I remember when you wrote the post about not liking physical therapy! I'm really glad you found someone that is actually helping you!

    I liked my physical therapist last year but I did not like going to physical therapy if that makes sense. Once I was there I was fine, but I had to go from 7-8pm since I had to go after work and that SUCKED. Being at physical therapy until 8pm is the worst. I was usually tired, hungry and stressed out by the time I got there.

    Also I have this one pair of workout capris that I didn't throw out for some stupid reason even though they had a hole in the thigh area near the crotch from the seaming coming loose. I grabbed them by accident one morning when I was packing my PT bag and didn't realize it until I was changing in the bathroom at PT. So I had to do my whole routine with this giant hole in my leggings in such an embarrassing area. I threw them out after that session haha!

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    1. I hear you! Luckily I was always able to get 4pm appointments at Pivot on days without piano lessons. But in the past when I have gone places and they were really busy, I'd sometimes have to go after piano lessons, which was really late. That is absolutely no fun and I felt like it was encroaching on my normal relaxing time.

      Did anyone notice your hole?? Lol

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    2. YES exactly! By the time I got home around 8:15pm I was beyond exhausted and super hungry. Definitely encroached on my relaxation time.

      Since I went at 7pm the only people there were me, the receptionist and my PT. I'm sure he saw but he kindly didn't say anything lol. He was gay so at least that made me feel slightly less awkward about the whole thing.

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  3. I'm so glad you found a good PT, but at the same time, I understand why you hated PT. Like you I've seen my share of PTs and the care and approach really varies! I do agree that a lot of running bloggers and runners in general praise PTs online and some of my experiences have not been positive- I bet even PTs would admit that there are some in their profession who aren't giving 100% but that is in every profession. It's great that you found a good one and you're running and pain free now too!

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    1. I definitely agree there are good and bad in every profession. I'm just finally glad I found someone who's very good.

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  4. It definitely depends on the PT. I did PT when I first got ITBS and I was doing the same exercises each time I was there. My second round of PT was at my chiropractor's office, and this one gave me homework. We did different exercises each time, and she would have me do the body weight stuff at home, saying most PT progress happens at home. I think I made a lot of progress doing it that way.

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  5. Oh yay, I am so glady ou found a PT that you can trust. It's so important to feel like you're in "good hands" when it comes to PTs/doctors!

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