Penrose Physical Therapy
23
Sep 2018
Jennifer Penrose
Author
Jennifer Penrose

3 Things to know about knee pain!

After the summer months, knee pain is something I see a lot of in the clinic. It’s usually due to people being more active during summer. As we head back into fall, I see a lot of people with knee pain who’ve been suffering since the summer, but didn’t want to get it taken care of until now. So let’s get started with 3 things you need to know about knee pain after the summer. Last week I was on the phone with one of our regular patients, Leslie. She’s 57 from South Bay and she said: “I was making the most of the good weather by visiting Watershed Park and walking around. I was fine when I got home, but then in the morning when I woke up, my knees had a dull aching pain. At first I thought “it’s just an aching knee, I’ve probably overdone it, it’s happened before”… But the pain got worse as the day went on, and it’s still bothering me. My knees ache when I walk and I’m finding it hard to go up and down the stairs.” Now, this isn’t uncommon, especially not when we’ve had some warm weather. And when you consider that 77% of people are more active during the summer, that’s a lot of knees that could potentially become sore. The thing is, many people will put up with bad knees for days,… Read More
09
Sep 2018
Jennifer Penrose
Author
Jennifer Penrose

Tips for chronic back pain that you may not know about!

Have YOU ever been told that chronic back pain is just one of those things that comes with your job, family, age and daily stress? Worse, have you been told by your doctor that you “just have to accept it”, take medication, or rest for weeks on end, because nothing else can be done for chronic back pain?… If you’re aged 40+ and you answered “YES” to any of those questions, and you have suffered with low back pain for longer than 14 days now, then please pay special attention to what I’m about to tell you… It could help save your job, your independence, mobility, family and everything else you hold dear in your life. What’s more, if you’re NOT the one who’s suffering, but your husband, wife, partner, mother or father is, then please read on because I have some special information that may benefit you and them… It’s a shame that so many people think their only option is to “rest”, mask their pain with pills and hope that it just goes away… …Because as you may be experiencing, if you’ve suffered for longer than 14 days, something is wrong and there is a problem – and I want to help you by simply showing you all of the different options that are currently available to you – some of which are new, most are free, all are 100% natural and at least one of them you will have overlooked as most doctors don’t know of it, and many insurance companies… Read More
31
Aug 2018
Jennifer Penrose
Author
Jennifer Penrose

Back Pain: Sciatica the one thing that makes it worse

Most of us have heard of sciatica and know that it is literally a pain in the buttocks that radiates down the back of the leg.  Sciatica is nerve pain and it can be very painful varying from burning to sharp and even tingling and numbness at times. Over the last few weeks, we’ve covered quite a lot of different things surrounding back-pain but we have not covered sciatica. We’ve looked at why people get back pain when they do crunches and if there’s something they’re doing wrong, we’ve looked at some tips that can help to alleviate back pain while driving, especially if you have to drive a while to and from work every day, 5 daily habits that can help to reduce stiffness, why you need to drink more water to help relieve your back pain and last week we looked at how you can get the housework done without making your back pain worse.  Today I want to talk about sciatica and what makes it worse and what you can do about it. These are all questions I get asked on a regular basis in the clinic, so I want to answer them here to try and help more people out who might be going through the same thing and may not be aware of the help that’s available. This week, I wanted to look into sciatica in a little bit more detail, as it’s something that isn’t always covered when we talk about back-pain. Sometimes it happens. Read More
25
Aug 2018
Jennifer Penrose
Author
Jennifer Penrose

What are the best core exercises for low back pain?

Patients are told by their doctors to work their core for low back pain.   They all want to know what are the best core exercises for low back pain?  We will start to answer that question in this blog.  Or you if  you would rather watch a tube video discussing the best core exercises for back pain or why you get pain with core exercises then click HERE. First I want to answer the most common question regarding sit ups and low back pain. “I get low back pain during sit-ups. Am I doing something wrong, or should I avoid them?” Great question! I’m glad this lady asked because so many people think to work their core means sit ups.  People equate the core to abdominals only and that is not true.  The best core exercises for low back pain include abdominals, the low back, and hips. And even though sit-ups are one of the most common go-to exercises to get your “abdominals strong” – are they really that effective? And more importantly, can this exercise cause back pain?… If you’ve ever tried to do an ab workout and realized half way through that your back is feeling things it shouldn’t be feeling, you’re not alone. For me (and for many of our patients) it’s any ab exercise that asks me to sit up on my tailbone and move my legs that causes a slight twinge in my back. Which is frustrating when you want to keep active but can’t because your back… Read More
17
Aug 2018
Jennifer Penrose
Author
Jennifer Penrose

Tips to alleviate back pain while driving!

Is back pain “driving” you mad?   If you drive to and from work every day, or if you are driving family members around from event to even than likely you’ve experienced back pain. In fact around 30-60% of drivers report having back pain at some point in their life, and a lot of the people we see in the clinic come to us in pain as a result of spending 30 minutes or more on the road, almost daily! But why does something as simple as driving trigger off back pain when it’s not exactly strenuous? Well, driving for long periods of time exposes the body to many different forces such as acceleration, sudden stops, and most notably vibrations from the road – and it especially affects those of us who drive larger vehicles. Driving also involves the use of your feet to control the car’s pedals which means they are not used to help stabilize and support your lower body as they normally would when you’re sitting. So it’s no wonder why a combination of these factors as well as the inadequate design of some vehicle seats can cause back problems for many of us. Because back pain can make driving unpleasant (and in some cases, unbearable!) I put together a list of tips to help make your next journey as pain-free as possible. Here are 7 tips to help you: 1. Get Comfortable Before You Set Off – A small irritation can quickly grow into an unbearable pain, and if… Read More
10
Aug 2018
Jennifer Penrose
Author
Jennifer Penrose

Back Pain: 5 Daily Habits that reduce stiffness

I wanted to answer a common question I get asked about stiffness which I get asked regularly by clients in the clinic:  “Jennifer do you have any advice for someone like me who isn’t in a lot of pain? I’m just incredibly stiff when I wake up on a morning, and I feel it throughout the day which means I can’t do things as easily as I’d like. Any advice for stiffness?” I’ve got plenty of tips and advice to help reduce stiffness. But first I want to clear up ‘why’ we feel stiff in the first place. A lot of people we see think that stiffness is something we feel as we get older – and while there’s some truth in that, stiffness isn’t always directly related to how old you are. Yes, as you get older your joints and muscles get stiff if you don’t exercise regularly. And it’s true that your joints become less flexible as the lubricating fluid inside them decreases, and the cartilage becomes thinner as you age… But there’s some other points to factor in too. Not drinking enough fluids and dehydration can also lead to stiffness in the muscles. Muscles are active tissues, which means they’re the kind of tissue that requires the most water in the body. Inactivity is another culprit – leaving your muscles in one place for a prolonged period (sleep, sitting in a chair, driving for hours etc.) can cause them to stiffen. Another cause can be related to stress – when… Read More
22
Jul 2018
Jennifer Penrose
Author
Jennifer Penrose

Don’t let a fall or poor balance threaten your independence and mobility!

In today’s blog, I’m going to help you by telling you a story about a lady we worked with recently in the clinic who had a fall and felt less confident going places. Let’s call her Susan. As I go through Susan’s story, I’m going to tell you how we assessed her 3 Balance Systems as well as the other various factors that contribute to her balance and risk for falls. Then we’ll discuss how we used this information to design a successful treatment plan for her. Here’s Susan’s story in a nutshell: Susan came into the clinic after she fell 6 months ago while walking to her car in a gravel parking lot. She ended up with a couple bumps and bruises, but otherwise was uninjured. However, over the next several months, she became more and more worried about having another fall, so she started limiting her activity level, and she specifically avoided things like walking on uneven surfaces (since walking on the gravel was part of why she fell). She decided to come in for physical therapy because lately she’s been feeling even more unsteady on her feet, and she’s had several near-falls where she’s had to catch herself on a piece of furniture or a wall inside her home. If you have had a few falls where you caught yourself or just a few bumps and bruises you may not realize what weaknesses may be contributing to these little mishaps! Hopefully this story will make… Read More
06
Jul 2018
Jennifer Penrose
Author
Jennifer Penrose

Do you ever have the sensation of Spinning? All about Vertigo/BPPV…

Do You Ever Have The Sensation Of Spinning? All About Vertigo & “BPPV” Since we have been talking about balance and falls,we need to talk about what can often lead to falls: vertigo. Let’s start with the basics about vertigo: True vertigo is the sensation of spinning or movement (such as the sensation of swaying). If you’ve ever been sea sick, this is a bit like the swaying sensation, and if you ever got “the spins” in your younger years after having too much fun with alcohol, this is similar to the sensation of spinning that some people experience. There are 2 types of vertigo: “Inner-ear vertigo” is the most common type that we help people deal with in the clinic. I’ll discuss it more below. Central vertigo is related to damage to the balance centers of the brain. This includes things like strokes, MS and Parkinson’s. People with central vertigo tend to feel more unbalanced or unsteady in general, versus having sudden attacks of spinning. Today I want to focus on inner-ear vertigo. People with inner ear vertigo have very specific symptoms. Typically, they have a hard time turning their heads rapidly and walking in busy environments (like the mall). Certain positions can cause a sudden sensation of spinning which can be pretty scary at times. These positions include tipping the head back, bending forward, lying down in bed, or rolling over in bed. Read More
23
Jun 2018
Jennifer Penrose
Author
Jennifer Penrose

“I didn’t realize my balance was this bad!”

The last few weeks we’ve seen a lot of people coming into the clinic with balance issues and being worried about falling. It’s a common problem that we see quite a lot of, but not a lot of people know that physical therapists can help with your balance. We like to have a bit of fun when we’re testing people’s balance, to make it an easier thing for them to be doing. We like to play ‘one-legged darts’ and do the ‘can you walk in a straight line?’ test, to find out just how steady (or how wobbly) people are on their feet. After we’ve done these little tests, everyone always says: “I didn’t realize my balance was that bad!” And it’s true! Most of us rarely realize we have a problem with our balance until it’s pointed out and made obvious to us. Even though not all of us have superhuman balance like gymnasts and ice skaters, we need a certain level of balance to help us go about our daily activities without falling over and hurting ourselves. So I wanted to share the most common signs and symptoms to lookout for, when it comes to wobbly balance and an increased risk of fall. One of the most common ones is ‘dizziness’. Everyone has a dizzy spell now and then, but the word ‘dizziness’ may mean something different to different people. For some people dizziness might be a fleeting sensation of spinning. While for others it feels intense… Read More
08
Jun 2018
Jennifer Penrose
Author
Jennifer Penrose

Did you know that it is not normal to shrink?

I work with clients aged 40+ and I often hear them say with a chuckle; “Yep, I’m shrinking and my feet are getting bigger.” Honestly, this is no laughing matter. If you are losing more than 1/2 an inch a year or more than 1.6 inches in your lifetime then you likely have had a fracture in your spine (the vertebral column) due to soft bones, or what we call osteopenia and osteoporosis. Don’t panic as it has healed but it has healed in a way that has left you shorter. Think of soft bones/osteoporosis like butter and if you slouch or work in front of a computer most of your day (which is almost all of us) then that can load the vertebrae/bone and cause a “silent compression fracture”. A “silent fracture” means you do not feel it happen! Can we help people regain height? Yes, but not by causing the bones to grow. We have seen patients gain an inch in height by stretching the tight posture muscles and giving them posture activities and yoga type exercises. It is a myth to think shrinking comes with age. It’s also a myth to think you can’t do anything for the rounded upper back posture. You can improve that rounded upper back posture and certainly prevent it from getting worse. If you are a pre or post-menopausal woman with a rounded upper back posture you certainly… Read More
20
May 2018
Jennifer Penrose
Author
Jennifer Penrose

Last Night My Neck Pain Got So Bad… I Couldn’t Even Turn My Head..

If you or a loved one suffer from chronic pain – so bad that you struggle to do simple things like turning your head to look over your shoulder, or sleep at night without pain, then reading this report may be the most important thing you do this year. It may unlock the agonizing mystery of your neck pain and show you a way to get back to the life you deserve… A life where you can sleep at night without tossing and turning, hoping to find one position where your neck pain stops. A life where you can read a book before bed… or newspaper on a morning… without the fear of more neck pain. A life where you can wake up in the morning and not suffer from headaches or migraines… A life where you can plan family time with your kids or grandkids, without worrying over if your neck pain will strike! …Basically, a life without chronic or severe neck pain! Finally, one of the nations leading neck pain experts, Jennifer Penrose, a specialist from Lacey who has already helped 100’s of people over the last decade with her recovery advice – has recently released a new 7 page “Neck Pain Consumer Awareness Report” that reveals the best kept secret in Lacey… How to actually get to the bottom of Neck Pain without talking to your insurance, regular trips to see the chiropractor, or needing a referral from your doctor. Read More
11
May 2018
Jennifer Penrose
Author
Jennifer Penrose

3 Simple Stretches for Neck Pain at your Desk!

Today I’ll be going over the importance of exercising in the workplace and how it can help your shoulder pain. The reason I’m writing about the workplace is because not many people realize how much time they spend at work. For example, the average full-time worker spends around 1,650 hours at work every year. That’s equivalent to 68 days or 9 weeks of day-in-day-out work! Now, imagine if you had an office job, or if you DO, think of all those hours you actually spend sat down, not moving and potentially developing poor posure, it’s no wonder you have shoulder pain! That’s why it’s important to exercise at work and to keep moving as much as possible. Having only 5 weeks away from work can take it’s toll on your body. This truly shows how long you are at work for and how it can affect your health. With that in mind, here’s a few of my tips that are handy to use to ease that shoulder pain. Yoga before and after work is a MUST to stretch away those potential aches and pains in your muscles. It is ideal to do yoga on a morning as you have been sleeping in the same position for a while and will continue to do so at work. After work yoga is just as important. Doing yoga after work will stretch your muscles after being sat for so long! Not only this, but it will leave you feeling a lot calmer and stress-free. If you… Read More

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