According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, half of the estimated 4.5 million youth sports-related injuries that occur each year can actually be prevented.

In response to this, the team at Impact Physical Therapy of Hillsboro recently launched a new initiative – the “Arm Care Program” – to help local youth athletes participate in the sports they love while keeping their bodies strong and flexible.

Our goal is to prevent injury and let the kids contribute to their teams. “We want them to enjoy their season,” said Kent Bond, owner and physical therapist at Impact Physical Therapy of Hillsboro.

According to Bond, the Arm Care Program is modeled after a successful program at Champion Physical Therapy in Boston, which is geared toward youths ages 12 to 18 who participate in sports that require repetitive overhead movements. This includes baseball pitchers, swimmers, tennis and volleyball players who employ overhead throws, strokes and serves.

As part of the Arm Care Program, youths may visit Impact Physical Therapy for a 15-20-minute, one-on-one session with a physical therapist. It is recommended that the athlete receive care w/in 24 hours of their competition. Sessions will include, manual therapy work, stretching/flexibility exercises and sports specific strengthening/stabilization exercises.  Individualized, sports-specific plan for establishing and maintaining healthy athletic habits.

“It’s about incorporating these programs into your sports activities to facilitate healing, improve recovery time, minimize stressors on the body,” and preventing injuries, Bond said.

Manual therapy during sessions help pitchers maintain mobility, support dynamic control of the shoulder, strengthen the rotator cuff and scapular stabilizers, and generally minimize the effects of wear and tear. The Arm Care Program was designed to prevent common overhead injuries such as rotator cuff tears, labral tears, bicep tendonitis, or the need for Tommy John surgery in the elbow.

“Cumulative trauma occurs in the shoulder after innings and innings of pitching,” Bond said. “Research has shown that there is a continual loss of range of motion and increased weakness the longer the season has gone on, and that is something preventable.”

Bond himself has been playing baseball for 50 years, participating in three National Championship Men’s Adult Baseball teams. The staff at Impact Physical Therapy has also clocked in more than 100+ cumulative years of experience treating high-level athletes and are well-trained in athletic injuries and prevention.

The Arm Care Program is focused on injury prevention first, with performance as a secondary benefit. With an overall purpose for kids to have a great season.

“Our ultimate goal is to allow kids to enjoy their sports at the highest level possible,” Bond said.

For more information about the youth Arm Care Program, please visit Impact Physical Therapy’s website at www.impactpthillsboro.com, or call (503) 615-5969.