Monday, December 30, 2013

Should You Go to PA School? Deciding if Becoming a Physician Assistant is Right for You

The healthcare industry is booming right now, with nearly all medical professionals in high demand. Physician Assistants are among the most highly sought after graduates and it's a great career choice for people that want to be heavily involved in diagnosis and treatment, but might not want to spend the time and money to become a physician.

One of the benefits of becoming a physician assistant (PA) as opposed to a nurse practitioner (NP) is that a physician's assistant often has more flexibility in his or her career choices after becoming a certified PA. NP's are trained within a specialty, and so if they were to move between specialties, additional training would be required.

Education

Physician assistants require a master's degree in Physician Assistant Studies, Health Science, or Medical Science. To get into a PA program, the applicant has to take the GRE or MCAT, and also needs a bachelor's degree. Typical bachelor's degrees for PA students include nutrition, sports physiology, psychology, biology, and other science majors. Not only will a science based major look better when you're applying to a PA school, but it will also ensure you have taken the required classes and help you on the GRE or MCAT more than a non-science major. Finally, most PA students have a work background in health care, including technicians, medics, nursing assistants, medical assistants, and more.

PA school is usually a two to three year program. According to U.S. News & World Report these are the top 25 PA programs in the country:

  1. Duke University
  2. University of Iowa
  3. University of Utah
  4. Emory University
  5. George Washington University
  6. Baylor College of Medicine
  7. Oregon Health and Sciences University
  8. University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey–Newark
  9. University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center–Dallas
  10. University of Washington
  11. Quinnipiac University
  12. University of Colorado–Denve
  13. Interservice Physician Assistant Program
  14. Northeastern University
  15. Stony Brook University–SUNY
  16. University of Nebraska Medical Center
  17. University of Oklahoma
  18. Philadelphia University
  19. University of Texas Health Science Center–San Antonio
  20. Wake Forest University
  21. Yale University
  22. Drexel University
  23. Midwestern University
  24. Shenandoah University
  25. DeSales University

You should pick a handful of schools you are interested in attending and do your research into their requirements for admission to maximize your chances of getting in.

Salaries & Schedule

PA's typically work on salary, as opposed to a nurse that typically works on an hourly basis. If you need the flexibility of an hourly schedule, pursuing an NP career might be more suitable. Your level of pay as a PA will largely depend on the state that you are practicing in and the demand for that particular area, but the median in the United States is $90,000/year according to PayScale.com.

MMAR Medical is a medical equipment retailer that specializes in bracing, DME equipment, diabetic footwear and more. Visit our store for our complete selection.

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Hot & Cold Therapy Myths & Facts

Hot & Cold Therapy Myths & Facts

Ice is Better than Heat to Treat Pain: MYTH

The fact is, it depends on the stage of the injury. So to say that using heat or ice to treat an injury is better or worse is inaccurate unless you’re speaking to when they should be used. Initially, when the injury is fresh, you will want to use ice. Applying ice to an injury will cause the blood vessels to constrict, reducing blood flow and reducing swelling. An ice pack will also serve as a local anesthetic, numbing the pain that you’ll be feeling from the injury.

Heat therapy is best for chronic injuries & ailments. If swelling and inflammation isn’t an issue, heat therapy is generally okay to use. If you have a chronic injury, applying heat will help loosen up your joints and muscles, increasing flexibility and reducing pain when you’re active.

You Shouldn’t Put Ice on a Head Injury: MYTH

With concussions becoming a major concern in contact sports, some myths about head injuries have been floating around that are simply inaccurate. As far as hot and cold therapy is concerned, you should apply ice to a head injury. This serves the same purpose as any other injury—reducing blood flow to reduce swelling and inflammation, and also relieving the pain from the injury.

What you will want to avoid, especially if the head injury seems serious, is applying pressure to the injury. In the event that the skull has been fractured, applying pressure can further injure the area. Simply place and hold a cold pack on the injury don’t press it down.

Only Keep Ice or Heat on an Injury for 20 Minutes: FACT

Icing or heating an injury for too long can cause further damage to the muscle tissue you’re trying to repair. If you ice an injury for over 20 minutes, you run the risk of frostbite or nerve and tissue damage. Your body will also try to counteract the cold and actually open the blood vessels up, which could increase swelling—the very thing you are trying to prevent. Heat application is a bit more tricky considering that it is used for chronic injuries. If you suspect you have a chronic injury (3+ months of pain), it’s important to visit a doctor that can instruct you on how to treat it.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Top 3 Knee Braces for Ski & Snowboarding

Best Knee Braces for Skiing & Snowboarding

Winter sports are unforgiving on your knees. Between moguls, jumps, and staying in proper stance, both skiing and snowboarding are serious leg work outs and can be particularly stressful for those with bad knees. While it’s impossible to completely protect yourself from injury on the mountain, there are incredibly useful braces that will give you the extra stability that you may have lost in a previous injury. Always remember that there is no substitute for strong legs when it comes to skiing and snowboarding, so even if you do have an injury, it’s important to make sure that you’re in shape before you hop on a ski lift for your first run of the season. But if you still need that extra insurance, these are some great knee braces for skiing and snowboarding:
  1. DonJoy Armor Ski Knee Brace
    donjoy armor knee brace for skiing
  2. DonJoy’s ski brace was specifically designed for skiers and those who will be wearing two knee braces at the same time. If you have suffered an ACL injury in the past, the likelihood of sustaining another knee injury while skiing is three to four times more if you aren’t wearing a knee brace. This version of brace is 15” so you can wear it comfortably with ski boots, and the construction keeps the hinges from getting caught in your snow pants.
  3. DonJoy FullForce ACL Knee Brace
    donjoy fullforce knee brace
  4. If an ACL injury isn’t your issue, the DonJoy FullForce is a great option. Available in several different versions, the FullForce can provide support for injuries related to ACL, MCL, PCL, LCL, and hyperextension. This is one of our favorite braces for skiing and snowboarding because it is offered in a short version to keep the brace free from ski and snowboard boots and give you slightly better range of motion in general.
  5. DonJoy Reaction Web Knee Brace
    donjoy reaction knee brace
  6. If you don’t need advanced support for a previous ACL or PCL injury and are just looking to ease the pain of sprain, prevent any potential injuries from occurring, or protect against patella injuries, the DonJoy Reaction Web Knee Brace fits your criteria. The Reaction is a lightweight, soft brace that offers just enough support to give you peace of mind, while remaining comfortable enough that it doesn’t affect your performance on the mountain.
Don’t let an injury keep you from the slopes. MMAR Medical has a huge selection of winter sports braces that will keep your knees protected from even the most demanding conditions this winter.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Training Tips & Protective Equipment for Hockey Players

The sport of hockey is vastly popular and played around the world with widespread participation in North America, Scandinavia, Eastern Europe and Russia. Male and female players of all ages and skill levels enjoy the competitive nature of the sport that requires equal parts power and finesse to truly excel. The modern team sport’s origins can be traced back to the 1800’s in Canada where British soldiers passed time playing the game on skates on frozen lakes and ponds. Over the next 200 years the game has evolved to a place where indoor ice rinks and roller hockey rinks are common in cities across the United States.

Organized hockey leagues require a large amount of equipment to protect participants from the frozen rubber puck and other players while playing the game. Basic equipment needed includes a helmet, shoulder pads, neck guard, hockey gloves, padded hockey pants, skates and of course a stick. It is recommended that players invest in hockey specific equipment from a well-known hockey manufacturer due to the risk of injury players expose themselves to every time they step on the ice. While MMAR Medical recognizes the need for specific hockey gear, we also suggest you explore popular hockey rehabilitation equipment to help players recover and perform their best.

Protective padding
 Hockey players travelling at high speeds on wheels or a blade are susceptible to collisions and wipeouts. To cushion the fall and decrease the impact on a player’s knees we suggest investing in Mueller Knee pads. The extra strength knee pads slide up the player’s legs and an elastic material provides a comfortable and snug fit. The lightweight, non-bulky padding allows the player to move freely and not be encumbered by larger pads. These hockey knee pads are recommended for street or roller hockey players looking for more knee protection. Many ice hockey leagues require USA Hockey approved full leg protection available at hockey specific retailers.

Skate Insoles
The importance of leg strength to the sport of hockey cannot be overstated. Forwards, defenders and even goalies rely on their leg’s conditioning and power to skate faster and longer than opponents during training and in competition. For players to maximize their play their feet must be comfortable. Much of that has to do with properly fitted and broken in skates. If your skates are not as comfortable as you’d like consider Prothotic Performance Sport Insoles to cushion the often hard skate soles. Choose from a range of men’s and women’s insole sizes to provide exceptional arch and metatarsal rise support and guard against harmful over-pronation. An advanced polyurethane base layer cushions the entire foot and will never flatten or lose comfort over time. The anti-friction fabric will keep the hockey skate insole in one place and even wicks moisture away from the foot, reducing heat and the risk of uncomfortable blisters.

 Hockey Joint Braces 
There is no replacement for a strong and healthy joint but bracing an injured or recovering joint can give you confidence to play the sport you love at a high level. If you suffer joint weakness or pain we recommend adding a hockey knee, wrist or ankle brace to your equipment list. MMAR Medical stocks a wide selection of low profile braces designed to fit underneath your equipment. Most hockey skates provide excellent ankle support when laced properly however if you still require extra ankle support, browse our hockey ankle braces that will give additional muscle and joint stabilization.

Monday, November 11, 2013

Best Exercises for Preventing Ski Injuries

If you're a skier, preventing ski injuries shouldn't begin on the slopes. Though there are plenty of ways to stay safe when you're on the mountain, there are also a number of exercises that will prepare you for the upcoming ski season and help ensure that you remain healthy throughout the winter and into spring. Of course these exercises are also great during the season, but hitting the mountain before strengthening the muscles you use most could lead to injuries that could have otherwise been avoided. Check out our exercises for preventing ski injuries so you'll be ready for whatever terrain you come across.

Core Strengthening

Strengthening your core is a good idea for any sport, but the workouts will depend on the sport you're training for. Holding proper form is important while skiing, so doing workouts that will improve your endurance in these positions is helpful.

Planks are a great exercise for your abs, back, and stabilizer muscles. Simply get in a push up position, except with your elbows on the ground instead of your hands. Hold that position for a specific amount of time, which will equal one set. You may only be able to do 15 or 20 seconds when you first start off, but over a few weeks you should shoot for holding a plank for a minute or more.

Leg Strengthening

Skiing is tough on your legs, particularly your quads. Leaning forward and being on your toes for long periods of time will require strong quads, and lunges will help you build up strength in your legs that will translate well on the mountain.

Start with your feet side by side and your hands on your hips. Lunge forward with one foot, bending your front knee and making sure not to let your back knee touch the floor. Ideally, you want your back shin to be parallel to the floor, but if you can't get that low, you can work towards it over time. As you gain more strength, you start doing lunges while holding dumbbells, or with a barbell on your shoulders.

If you have had knee or ankle issues in the past or just want extra peace of mind when you're training, MMAR offers a range of performance braces for snow sports, such as the DonJoy Reaction brace, that will help keep your safe.

Cardio & Flexibility

Proper cardio is necessary for just about any sport, including skiing. If you have access to a gym, using the elliptical mimics the motion you would make in cross country skiing, but if you don’t have access to this equipment, just getting your heart rate up in general is important, whether you're running, biking, jumping rope, or any other cardio exercise.

Finally, be sure to stretch before and after your workouts. These workouts are great for avoiding injuries when you're skiing, but if you're not taking the proper precautions while exercising, you can get injured before you even get to hit the slopes.

MMAR Medical supplies medical equipment for a wide range of sports including skiing and snowboarding braces. Visit our store for our complete selection of sports braces.

Monday, November 4, 2013

Top 5 Twitter Accounts to Follow For Physical Therapy Students

Physical therapy is one of the fastest growing professions. With over 25,000 students enrolled in physical therapy programs throughout the United States, it's also becoming a competitive field. Like any medical field, there is constantly changing information and as a student it can be tough to learn established knowledge while keeping up with new research. If you're a PT student, check out these Twitter accounts for PT research and news, career advice, and job listings.

PT Think Tank

PT Think Tank is the Twitter account for PTThinkTank.com, a blog that began by covering many facets of physical therapy, and now hosts weekly Twitter talks for students enrolled in Doctor of Physical Therapy programs. The Twitter chats include professional physical therapists, students, and professors and they often have a featured guest that contributes to the conversation. The talks are hosted by @LaurenrSPT every Wednesday.

Allied Travel Careers

As a student, you will be looking for jobs and internships over the course of your PT education, and assuming you're young and flexible, traveling physical therapy jobs are a great way to spend the first few years of your professional career. @PTtraveljobs is the Twitter account of AlliedTravelCareers.com and they tweet out traveling physical therapy opportunities that are great for recent grads looking for exciting careers.

Physical Therapy Web

Physical Therapy Web posts educational PT articles from their website and other physical therapy sites around the web. They have a lot of articles based on sports physical therapy, so if you're a student specializing in sports PT, this is a great resource to follow for the latest news and research on sports therapy.

American Physical Therapy Association’s Student Assembly

The student resources Twitter page for the American Physical Therapy Association features tweets by PT students on issues they care about including study and educational resources, networking events around the country, and advice for students on how to network and stay connected within the PT community.

Physical Therapy Journal

Finally, the official, peer-reviewed journal of the American Physical Therapy Association, the Physical Therapy Journal, tweets from @PTJournal. This is a great account to follow if you're looking to stay updated on the latest PT research. You have to be an APTA member to read the full research articles, but abstracts are available and they also tweet other content such as videos of lectures and Podcasts.

MMAR Medical blogs about medical topics, including physical therapy, sports health, and more. They also supply a wide range of therapy products in their store at wholesale pricing.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

5 Ways to Encourage Your Child through Physical Therapy

If your child has an injury from athletics or an accident, physical therapy or rehabilitation is often a necessary component of recovery. Each child responds to rehabilitation differently, making it critical to create unique recovery strategies for all individuals. It is imperative that both the family and caregiver remain supportive to complete the exercises safely, whether at the doctor's facility or at home.

1. Be Selective

Rehabilitation often takes weeks or months. You want a practitioner that specializes in physical therapy for children to make the experience as comfortable as possible. Visit several different facilities before choosing a caregiver. Look around the waiting room and ask to see the therapy room. Each space should be child-friendly, including whimsical decorations or colorful wall paint. Books and toys need to be a focal point in the waiting room to keep children's minds occupied until their rehabilitation appointment. Avoid offices that are industrial and cold. Your child may not respond or recuperate well in these facilities.

2. Collective Fun

With everyone staring, children may be shy or scared to perform the necessary rehabilitation techniques. Make recovery a group project with friends and family joining in on the exercises. This distraction technique takes pressure off of the child and engages a sense of comfort with the situation. If this strategy works, continue to participate at each session to complete the therapy with flying colors.

3. Welcome All Questions

Even the youngest children have questions about their exercises and pediatric braces. Your practitioner should welcome all questions from adults and children. By answering children's questions with honesty, kids feel more comfortable with the situation. They may be more inclined to push through an exercise that may hurt when they know it will help them later. Ignoring questions makes children uneasy and distrustful to perform any exercises.

4. Session Rewards

The main goal for the entire rehabilitation program is to recover fully and lead a normal life. This abstract idea is too large for most children to grasp. You must create small goals with a reward at the end of every session. For sessions that are not too strenuous, a lollipop or other candy will suffice. Particularly painful sessions should be met with a larger reward, such as a small stuffed animal. As each session passes, they earn more rewards as their body heals.

5. Home Exercises

Some rehabilitation programs require extra exercises at home. Although they are normally simple, it may be painful for your child. Create a star chart to encourage these exercises each day. Draw a box for every day your child must exercise. When the exercise is completed, your child picks a sticker and affixes it to the chart. They must collect enough stars, or daily exercises, to earn a major prize, such as a dinner at a favorite restaurant.

Injury rehabilitation may be difficult for children to understand, but creative thinking encourages them to complete the program for other reasons. Treats and small prizes are smart distractions from recovery pain. Think of your child's favorite toys and foods to create a reward system that works for your family.

MMAR Medical Group Inc. has a wide selection of children’s physical therapy products and pediatric braces.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Cold Therapy Systems for Healing and Comfort

Whether you have an upcoming surgery or a recent injury, using cold therapy for increased healing and comfort can have you feeling relief in no time. In part two of our three part series on cold therapy systems, we are discussing system brands and how they affect your recovery. Be sure to check them out to determine what cold therapy brand is best for your rehabilitation.

Bledsoe
For more than 30 years, Bledsoe has offered innovative rehabilitation products that treat a wide variety of injuries or conditions. Whether you are looking for the Bledsoe Cold Control or the Bledsoe bMini Therapy System, you will find relief and healing with their products.

Both systems are designed for usage immediately after an injury or surgery. They help reduce swelling, pain and speed up the healing and recovery process.

DeRoyal
DeRoyal is another popular and reliable cold therapy system brand. They have been manufacturing healthcare products worldwide for years, specializing in surgical and acute care products, such as cold therapy products. Two of their most popular products are the DeRoyal Cold Therapy Unit and the DeRoyal Hot/Cold Therapy Unit. Both are designed to help with soft tissue swelling as a result of surgery.

ThermaZone
ThermaZone manufacturer’s heat and cold therapy products that help patients rehabilitate injuries and decrease acute pain. ThermaZone has long understood that cold therapy pads designed for a specific part of the body increases the effectiveness and comfort during treatment. Easily change between heat and cold therapy with pads intended for the head, eye, neck, wrist, knee, shoulder, ankle and lower back. Drop the ice and invest in comfortable neoprene high-efficiency ThermaZone heat and cold therapy products.

Breg
Another reliable and trusted cold therapy manufacturer is Breg. They have been providing solutions in the cold therapy world since 1991. Their signature product, Breg Polar Care Cube Cold Therapy System, is easy to use and reliable. They are designed to reduce swelling, pain, and put the cold where it is need the most.

Other Cold Therapy System Brands
There are many other types of cold therapy systems. Besides the ones already listed, other popular and effective brands include:
  • Vitalwear
  • Aqua Relief
  • Aircast
  • Donjoy
 Regardless of the brand you choose, when looking for the best cold therapy for your healing, take time to do your research. There are plenty of products out there that are designed to provide you relief. Look for testimonials and ask professionals for recommendations so you are sure to find the best one for your unique needs.

If you need any help or support along the way, MMAR Medical Group Inc is standing by. We have provided high end medical brands at discount prices since 1990. We ship our products nationwide and our inventory is always stocked full for speedy delivery. Contact us with any of your cold therapy system questions today.

Friday, August 30, 2013

3 Reasons Cold Therapy Systems Help Healing Time

If you have an upcoming surgery scheduled, most likely you are concerned with post op pain, inflammation and recovery time. There is no doubt that having surgery is typically not a walk in the park. However, there are solutions that make the process much easier.

Cold therapy is one of the most recognized forms of therapy for patients undergoing surgery. Sure you can use ice to help keep the swelling down, but cold therapy systems are more effective and speeds up your recovery, so you are back into your daily activities in no time.

In the unfortunate event that you need surgery, the following three reasons may help you determine if cold therapy is the right solution for you:
  1. Recovery time is much faster. One of the main benefits of cold therapy systems is faster recovery. The therapy helps to not only reduce swelling and inflammation it also helps with the pain. The cold ends up where it needs to be, penetrating deep into your joints and muscles.
  2. It’s easy to use. Cold therapy is simple to use. Each system is portable and the battery life is long lasting. The motor is quiet, so you don’t need to worry about loud or obnoxious noises. And they are also comfortable to wear.
  3. It’s been tested and proven for years. Cold therapy is not new. In fact, doctors and rehab centers have used them for years. Through their usage, they have been refined to ensure patients receive the best possible solution for their post op needs.
Let’s face it, using ice and icepacks are a pain in the neck when you are injured. Trying to recover from surgery makes ice even more annoying. You either spend your time getting up and down so you can change your ice pack, or you need to rely on someone else to do it for you. Not only is ice a pain to use, it is also not as effective as cold therapy. Because ice is not as consistent, your recovery takes longer.

Just a few things to consider when discussing your recovery options: cold therapy systems do not require prescriptions and need to be properly used to prevent injury. Make sure that you discuss your options with your doctor, so you make the best decision for your unique needs.

MMAR Medical Group Inc. has a variety of cold therapy systems to explore. Some of the most popular brands include Breg, Bledsoe, Vitalwear, and DeRoyal. Each option offers you a high quality product that is safe, durable and tested. Of course, it's always important to consider whether you need hot or cold therapy, but if you are in the market for cold therapy products, contact us today to explore your options and find the best possible product for your post op needs.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Moist Heat Therapy for Muscle Relief

The benefits of heat therapy are undeniable and truly impressive. Heat therapy can relieve stiffness and improve circulation by opening blood vessels - relieving pain from arthritis, tennis elbow, sinus headaches, TMJ, aching feet, shoulder and back pain, and many more conditions!

But how does moist heat compare to dry heat therapy? There are many advantages to using moist heat therapy over traditional dry heat:

Deeper Muscle Penetration

Because water transfers heat better than air moist heat therapy delivers more heat directly to your skin without losing heat in the transfer process. The result of this greater heat transfer efficiency is that more of the heat makes its way deep into muscles, joints, ligaments and soft tissue. This deep muscle penetration is great for athletes; because blood flow and oxygen levels are increased the healing process is accelerated.

Faster Relief of Pain

Moist heat pads are able to relax and penetrate the muscle faster due to the wet heat. As the muscle heats up blood quickly rushes in and starts the healing process. People who use moist heat therapy report that they start feeling more relaxed faster each time they do the therapy and get better faster overall.

Does Not Dry Out Skin

Dry heat therapy tends to pull moister away from skin causing it to dry out. Think about what happens to your skin when it gets too hot inside your house - your skin gets dry and can crack if you do not apply moisturizing lotion. The same is true of heat therapy. Applying direct heat to your skin will leave your skin drier over time. Moist heat therapy, on the other hand, doesn’t wick moister away from your body. Leaving your skin warmed without drying it out.

Longer-Term Pain Relief

While people using moist heat therapy tend to report that their pain symptoms are relived faster, they also report that on average the pain relief lasts longer- reducing the need to use heat therapy as often. People with chronic conditions like arthritis who use moist heat packs regularly tend to require moist heat therapy less often than when using dry heat therapy. Fewer applications are required due to the increase in blood flow and oxygen levels that allows quicker muscle and tendon healing.

Thermotech moist heat packs do not have any of the drawbacks traditionally associated with in-home moist heat therapy units. Thermotech moist heating pads plug in to a power outlet just like a regular heating pad and have a safety switch that prevents burning if you fall asleep while using them. Also, Thermotech packs do not require water be added before or during use. Instead, they pull moisture from the surrounding air to create the moister required. Thermotech also makes their moist heat pads in a variety of sizes and styles to effectively relieve pain from large areas like backs and shoulders to small areas like sinuses and jaws. They even have cuffs for use on elbows, wrists, and ankles! If you are in need of moist heat therapy check out Thermotech automatic moist heat packs today!

Caution: Do not use moist heat therapy if you have an existing skin condition, open wound, bruising, diabetes, or any heart-related disorder.

About MMAR Medical Group: MMAR Medical is a leading supplier of medical products, including a wide selection of sports and orthopedic braces and supports. For more information, please visit www.mmarmedical.com.

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Low Mobility Workouts & Exercises

Exercising and being active is important to everyone regardless of age and current fitness level. A regular exercise routine helps strengthen muscles, relieves stress, controls weight gain and best of all exercise increases endorphins and boosts your mood! Unfortunately patients suffering diabetes, arthritis, obesity and the elderly are prone to mobility restrictions making it difficult for them to get a regular workout the gym. Having a condition that limits your ability to move does not mean you can’t exercise; this article outlines tips and specific exercises that are designed to get you moving and attain your goals!

Before starting a new workout routine, get medical clearance from your doctor, not a friend or personal trailer. Your medical professional has a complete understanding your condition and can recommend activities that are suitable for you that will not aggravate preexisting conditions. It’s also important to pace yourself when starting with a new activity. Trying to accomplish fitness and exercising goals too quickly can result in an injury and loss of motivation. Setting short-term goals like improving your mental state and reducing stress helps your confidence and gives you more motivation to reach your long-term goals.

Warming up cold muscles and joints is a must before every workout. Starting a workout by stretching and doing slow range-of-motion exercises increases blood flow and reduces the risk of injury. Do not exercise if you experience pain or discomfort as pain is your body warning you that it doesn’t like the way it is being used. The below list’s contain exercises for the lower body, low mobility cardiovascular exercises and specific upper body workouts for people in wheelchairs.

Wheelchair/Upper Body Exercises:
•    Rowing Machines
•    Overhead Fist Punching
•    Elastic Band Resistance
•    Lifting Dumbbells
•    Stationary Arm Cycle
•    Nintendo Wii & Xbox 360 video games

Lower Body Exercises:
•    Stationary Exercise Peddler
•    Yoga/ Tai Chi
•    Wall Squats/Body Weight Squats
•    Aqua Jogging
•    Standing Heel Lifts
•    Sitting knee Extensions

Cardiovascular Exercises:
•    Elliptical Machine
•    Tennis
•    Dancing
•    Water Aerobics
•    Swimming

Save money today with MMAR Medical’s SUMMER SPECIAL deals. Enjoy 10% off Breg, DonJoy and Ossur products using coupon code’s BREG10, DONJOY10, OSSUR10. Please note these coupons are valid on regularly priced inventory and cannot be combined with wholesale pricing discounts or other sale priced coupons. First time customers can use our SHIP75 free shipping coupon with them, though!

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Summer Exercise Safety Tips

The summer months allow athletes and rehabilitation patients to move their exercises outdoors and away from stuffy indoor offices and gyms. Extended hours of daylight and warmer temperatures are welcomed by many and help break up the tired routines of a long winter.

There are some safety concerns you should be aware of when exerting energy in the heat. In this post we’ll share tips and warnings to help ensure the time and effort spent outside exercising is beneficial and safe.

Scheduling
Just finding free time to exercise is almost as difficult as some workouts. Work and personal obligations are top priorities for many of us; add kids to the equation and you’ll find yourself wishing for more hours in a day. While schedules often dictate our daily routine there are safer times of the day to spend in the sun. When exercising outside, we recommend going as early in the day as possible before the daily temperatures reach their peak. In the mornings the radiation from the sun is lower and the chances of heat related injuries are greatly reduced.

Hydration 
Extreme temperatures can turn an outdoor workout into a dangerous event quickly if one has not prepared to be in the heat. The #1 Rule when exercising outside is hydration. Before beginning any physical training, indoors or outdoors, your body needs to be hydrated to perform at the highest level. A body will lose fluids through sweat faster in the heat so it is imperative you are properly hydrated before, during and after being outside.

Renee Melton, MS, RD, LD and developer of Sensai recommends drinking >15 ounces of water 1-2 hours before a workout, 8-10 more ounces about 15 minutes right before you start, and continuing with 8 ounces for every 15 minutes of exercise during the workout. Drink lots of water and avoid diuretics like coffee and caffeinated drinks which cause rapid fluid loss. When finished exercising outside you need to re-fuel your body with nourishment in the form of food and vitamins to aid in recovery.

Dress the Part 
Protect your skin from the sun’s UV rays with sunscreen and light colored clothing. Applying SFP 40 or higher will protect vulnerable skin cells from the damaging sun radiation. Wearing light and pastel colors will reflect the UV rays and help to keep you cool in the heat. Avoid dark colors.

For endurance athletes training in the sweltering heat we recommend CEP Arm Cooler Sleeves which are designed to shield athletes from the sun. These non-compressive arm sleeves are manufactured with high-density knit structure and UV absorbing yarn which provides over SPF 50 protection. CEP’s Cool-Cell technology reduces the skin temperature by up to 6 degrees, keeping the athlete comfortable and reducing fatigue while training. These cool arm sleeves come in pairs and are perfect for runners, triathletes, cyclists and other outdoor endurance athletes.

Educate Yourself
Even the most vigilant person and in-shape competitor can be overwhelmed when exercising outdoors, so it’s important to understand the risks and symptoms of heat related illnesses. Heat exhaustion and heat stroke are serious medical illnesses common for anyone outdoors during hot summer months.
  • Heat exhaustion is caused by a loss of water and salt; symptoms include: headaches, heavy sweating, dizziness, fainting, muscle cramps, nausea and vomiting. If you or someone you’re feel feels these symptoms, it’s recommended to find a cool, shady place to rest and drink lots of water. 
  • Heat stroke is a much more serious condition that may cause death or permanent disability if not treated. When a body is going through heat stroke and unable to cool itself down, warning signs include: warm dry skin, body chills, hallucinations, high body temp, confusion, slurred speech and throbbing headaches. It is imperative 9-1-1 is called ASAP and the sufferer is moved to a cool area until help arrives.
Exercise safely at a bargain this summer with MMAR Medical’s SUMMER SPECIAL deals. Enjoy 10% off Breg, DonJoy and Ossur products using coupon code’s BREG10, DONJOY10, OSSUR10. Please note these coupons are valid on regularly priced inventory and cannot be combined with wholesale pricing discounts or other sale priced coupons. First time customers can use our SHIP75 free shipping coupon with them, though!

Friday, July 19, 2013

Breg Freestyle OA Knee Brace Review: A Comfortable Knee Brace for Active Lifestyles

For active people and athletes, osteoarthritis of the knee can become a debilitating condition that can alter their entire lifestyle. What’s worse is that because they put stress on their joints more often, active people tend to develop osteoarthritis earlier in their lives and, if they continue to remain active, can have it worsen more quickly once they are diagnosed. It’s simply the nature of joint overuse that causes this, and of course can become more of an issue if other knee injuries have also occurred.

The Breg Freestyle Osteoarthritis Knee Brace aims to alleviate pain and performance issues that stem from osteoarthritis and also prevent osteoarthritis from worsening. For athletes, runners, and others that live active lifestyles, having an OA brace that allows them to keep participating in the activities they love is essential.

Light and Comfortable Design

The issue with many OA knee braces is that wearing them becomes a chore. Not only are they clunky, but they are also uncomfortable and can sometimes create more issues than they are solving. The Breg Freestyle OA Brace features a low profile hinge that doesn’t interfere with activity or get in the way of your opposite knee. The brace is secured with a set of soft, comfortable Velcro straps. The Velcro attachments allow the brace to remain free from snagging on clothing and the brace can be worn just as easily under pants as it can with shorts.

The Performance Athletes Need

Athletes, particularly long distance runners, will love the performance that the Breg Freestyle Brace provides. Whether you’re in need of a lateral or medial brace, the Breg Freestyle gives your knee proper support by providing firm but gentle pressure to the joint, preventing your knee joint from grinding. This OA knee brace model features a numbered adjustable wheel on the hinge that allows you to change the amount of offloading easily and quickly.

Visit our store today for full specifications on the Breg Freestyle Brace. For a limited time, we are offering a summer discount for 10% off “Our Price” on all Breg products. Simply enter the coupon code BREG10 at checkout and receive 10% off today!

Monday, July 15, 2013

Orthofeet Naples Diabetic Sandals Review

Orthofeet Naples diabetic shoes are one of the highest selling and most stylish products offered by MMAR Medical. These shoes are made with comfort and safety in mind. They are specifically designed to optimize breathability and support to help reduce pressure. Naples diabetic sandals are also designed with a wide, easy open design. This design helps the user easily slip the shoe on or insert custom insoles.

Breathability:

Most shoes are made with material that doesn’t allow an adequate amount of air on to the foot. Without adequate air and an increase in pressure the foot begins to sweat and blisters can form. The blisters caused from sweat and too much pressure can turn into extremely painful foot ulcers. Orthofeet Naples diabetic sandals allow increased airflow, so skin irritations and blisters due to sweat is dramatically reduced.

Support:

Support is crucial when searching for diabetic shoes and that’s exactly what Orthofeet Naples diabetic sandals offer. These diabetic shoes have several different areas of support. The heal of the shoe has a custom designed heal fitting strap that allows for reduced heal slippage. Also equipped with extra support padding this diabetic shoe ensures that your feet are comfortable throughout even the longest days of walking.

If you’re looking for a great diabetic shoe for men or women then look no further. The Orthofeet Naples diabetic shoe offers superior support, breathability, and comfort. At only $99 these shoes are a deal you can’t pass up. Keep your feet comfortable and safe with our phenomenal diabetic shoes.

At MMAR Medical our goal is to provide you with the best medical products at a price you can afford. If you have any questions about our Naples diabetic shoes, please contac
t us at 800.662.7633 and we’ll be more than happy to help you.

Friday, July 12, 2013

Products & Strategies to Reduce Hip Pain

Relief from hip pain may seem impossible when you are in the middle of an intense pain cycle after injury. There are strategies, however, that can reduce if not eliminate your level of discomfort so that you can return to your normal activity level. If you find that stretching, exercise, weight loss and ice/heat therapy are not enough, then you may need to invest in braces, proper shoes or other supplies for a more intensive rehabilitation.

A regimen of basic leg stretches and daily exercise can work wonders for someone who has a sedentary job and may be experiencing more hip pain through the years because of osteoarthritis or other issues. In other cases, too much exercise or rough play on the field or in practice can lead to muscle strain. This type of strain may settle into the piriformis, a muscle that can affect the sciatic nerve and cause pain to radiate through the hips and the back of the legs. In these cases, regular icing and heat can be beneficial. For pain such as this, you may want to use a cold therapy system that controls the temperature in a more efficient manner than ice for a deeper, consistent level of pain relief.

For more intense support, braces and rehab supplies can give hips the protection they need in recovering from falls, sprains and strains or other injuries. One of the more common injuries is hip flexor strain. This type of pain can be debilitating if left untreated. Various hip protector garments, compression gear and hip abduction orthosis can assist to stabilize the affected muscles, which will help you get back on your feet or on the field as an athlete.

Weight loss also can be instrumental in reducing the amount of stress placed on your hip muscles. With an increase in exercise, you may not only see overall pain reduction in your body, but also the subsequent weight loss can bring an added amount of hip pain relief. Weight loss is an important tool in battling the symptoms of chronic disease such as diabetes. As part of disease management, therapeutic shoes can be essential for circulation and balance to help maintain even weight distribution in your daily activities. With the stylish types available from manufacturers specializing in this footwear, you will find that these types of shoes look just like any other shoe. The one difference is that these shoes can provide a superior level of comfort and quality.

MMAR Medical can assist you with finding the right high-end orthopedic rehab and sports medical products for hip pain relief.

Monday, July 8, 2013

How To: Cleaning Your Sport Braces

One of the biggest questions for support brace wearers is, “how can I clean my brace?”  Cleaning your support brace can be a difficult process especially with so many different types of materials. Here at MMAR Medical we understand that this can be a problem, and we want you to get the most out of your support brace. Whether you’re cleaning your knee brace or shoulder brace the following article will give you some cleaning tips to have your brace smelling new in no time!

Cleaning Solution:

Using normal cleaning products is not recommended when cleaning your sport braces. The normal cleaning solutions can cause the materials in the support brace to weaken and provide less protection and strength. The following solution is relatively simple, but it will remove the smell from the brace without risking the support.

To get started you need 4 things:
  1. Warm/hot water
  2. Dish Soap (2-3 Tablespoons)
  3. Wash Cloth
  4. Container to hold the water
Fill up a bucket with the warm water and add the soap. Once the soap has been added, add a little more water to cause the soap to mix and create bubbles. Make sure you don’t add too much soap so that it won’t stay in the fabric and irritate your skin.

How to Clean Your Brace: 

Take the wash cloth and rub down the metal and scrub the fabric to remove all visible dirt. When all the excess dirt has been removed, submerge the support brace in your container of water. Leave the brace to soak for roughly an hour. After this time most of the smell-causing bacteria should be removed. 
How to Dry:


Always hang dry your support brace. It is suggested that you hang dry in the sun, but make sure that you don’t leave the brace in direct contact with the sun for too long. If you can’t hang dry you can also place the brace on a towel and let it air dry. Drying should NEVER be done in the dryer. This can cause weakness in the fabric.  

If your brace has metal parts make sure to apply a small amount of lubricant to the hinges to ensure that they continue to bend smoothly. When cleaning your brace follow the instructions carefully. Keeping a close eye on how long you soak it and keep it in the sun is crucial to maintaining a strong brace. All of our sport braces at MMAR Medical are the highest quality but should be cared for carefully. If you have any questions regarding a knee brace, shoulder brace or any other of our products, please contact the MMAR Medical team and we’ll help answer them right away!

Monday, July 1, 2013

Best Waterproof Knee Brace for Waterskiing

For some snow skiing enthusiasts the summer months mark the end of the ski season, but many skiers take to the water in pursuit of year round skiing. Waterskiing allows skiers to mimic the moves and skill required on the mountain by being pulled behind a boat on a body of water. One may think that a lack of icy moguls and treacherous rocks and trees takes the risk out of waterskiing; however, waterskiing presents similar risks that participants should be aware of.

Even for beginners, waterskiing is a sport that requires full-body strength and control to successfully get on top of the water. Risk of bodily injury grows as the speed and trick difficulty increases. An athlete’s knees and other joints are especially vulnerable to injury during a waterskiing wipeout when the equipment and the athlete’s body move in opposite directions. For athletes with a history of knee injuries, a waterproof knee brace provides additional support and confidence so water-skiers can continue with the sport they love.

While there are several knee braces that provide ligament support during watersports, the Ossur CTi® OTS Ligament Knee brace offers the highest level of protection for waterskiing enthusiasts. The CTi Ligament Knee Brace’s superior fit and design gives the athlete needed joint stability with unmatched comfort. The waterproof knee brace is designed with anatomically-correct Accutrac hinges, flexible cuffs and buckles allowing the joint to naturally move while protecting the knee from irregular knee angles associated with high speed crashes. The carbon composite frame coupled with a flexible subshell, adjustable tibial straps and breathable liners ensures the waterproof knee brace remains properly positioned on the knee. Ossur CTi® OTS Ligament Knee brace has been graded for all activity levels and provides support to the ACL, MCL, LCL and PCL ligaments.

Professional water-skiers and wake boarders have high praise for the waterproof knee brace.  After Scott Byerly suffered a second major knee injury on the water he needed a durable knee brace that could withstand a large amount of stress from the wake. At the suggestion of a fellow watersport athlete, Scott, tried the CTi Ligament Knee Brace and was immediately impressed with the confidence it brought to his knee. The low-profile design and lightweight material has allowed Scott to regain focus on his riding and landing aerial tricks, not thinking about his surgically repaired knee. While there is no waterproof knee brace that will outperform a healthy and strong knee joint, a CTi ligament brace gives you extra confidence when charging the wake on your next waterskiing outing!

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

The 5 Worst Athlete ACL Injuries of All Time: Recovery (Part II)

Injured professional athletes have some of the most incredible recoveries from the most devastating injuries. In our last blog post we talked about the 5 worst ACL injuries in recent sports history, but how did they recover? In this blog post we’ll cover how the recovery went for these five athletes and highlight some of the amazing recoveries modern sports therapy has achieved.

Tom Brady’s “Unprecedented” Recovery

Tom Brady’s ACL tear in 2008 marked the first time the star quarterback missed games in 15 years of his career. The doctor who oversaw his surgery and recovery said, “With regard to his recovery of strength, I’ve never seen anything quite like it. With an average person, it would have taken probably twice as long.” Even after getting an infection after the procedure, Brady was still able to keep his rehab on track. Brady went on to play the entire following season with a knee brace, was named the 2009 NFL Comeback Player of the Year and won the AFC East title.

Robert Griffin III’s “Superhuman” ACL Recovery

Robert Griffin III’s season ending ACL injury was heartbreaking for Redskins fans after the team rallied to win 7 games at the end of the season, winning the NFC East title. Dr. James Andrews has called RG3’s recovery “superhuman,” leading many to believe he will be ready for Week One of the 2013 season. It’s still too early to tell, as RG3 is still in recovering, but his appearance at a draft party in early May, complete with jumping jacks, suggests that he is well ahead of schedule.  (We hope he’s wearing an ACL brace under those jeans for support!)

Tiger Woods “Double Bundle” ACL Surgery

As a professional athlete you typically have access to the newest and most innovative procedures in the medical community. When Tiger Woods tore his ACL in 2008, he underwent ACL surgery that consisted of repairing both parts of the ACL, which isn’t done with conventional ACL surgery. Though studies have to gauge performance over time to determine if this is a superior surgery, the thought is that it establishes a more natural motion post-surgery. With a win at the 2013 World Golf Championship, if looks like Tiger is doing just fine.

Adrian Peterson’s Incredible Return After ACL Tear

Adrian Peterson wasn’t expected to return until the middle of the 2012 season following an ACL tear in 2011. Eight months after his surgery (which was done a risky 6 days after it was injured), Peterson was on the field for Week One of the 2012 NFL season. He went on to have the best season of his career, finishing with 2,097 rushing yards, the second most in NFL history. Orthopedic surgeon Leon Popovitz notes Peterson is the exception for this kind of recovery stating, “Adrian is so special. Not only is he physically, just exceptionally gifted, he has the mental makeup that will give him confidence and extreme concentration.”

Derrick Rose’s Slow Recovery

Derrick Rose spent the NBA playoffs on the Bulls’ bench, despite being cleared to play. Rose was injured in the 2012 playoffs, and sat out the entire 2012-2013 season during his recovery process. Even as the Bulls entered the playoffs, Rose displayed extreme patience in his recovery saying, “I'm not coming back until I'm 110%. Who knows when that can be? It can be within a couple of weeks. It could be next year.”

MMAR Medical supplies orthopedic braces for a range of injuries, including ACL and MCL injuries and for a range of sports including basketball, football, and golf.

Have you had ACL surgery? How did your recovery go?  Which one of these recoveries is most impressive to you?  Comment!

Monday, June 10, 2013

The 5 Worst Athlete ACL Injuries of All Time (Part I)

ACL injuries that will never be forgotten. 

Rarely do people consider how much athletes put their bodies through to perform at the professional level. Sure, it sounds great to get paid to play the sport you love, however, athletes spend countless hours in the gym, conditioning and training. Rightfully so, athletes need all the strength training they can get to help prevent major and common injuries.

According to a leader in proactive wellness, Core Performance, 70% of ACL injuries occur during the planting and cutting movements used in all sports. In addition, girls and women are 4 to 10 times more likely than boys and men to sustain ACL injuries. However, as we’ve seen in professional sports, ACL tears can happen to even the best and strongest athletes.

Below is our list of top 5 sports related ACL injuries. Please be advised that some of the injuries listed are difficult to read or watch.

Tom Brady

Tom Brady with knee brace after ACL injury. Image by CBSSports.com
Tom Brady’s injury is an example of how injuries can occur in many ways. In contact sports, things are moving so quickly that some injuries are unavoidable. This is exactly what happened to Tom Brady in the first game of the 2008 NFL season when Bernard Pollard landed on Brady’s knee, tearing both his ACL and MCL. Despite severely injuring this knee and fighting an infection, Brady was able to come back and play the next season.

Check out Tom Brady’s knee injury on YouTube.

Robert Griffin III (RG3) 

RG3 with support brace during practice. Image by NFL.com.
 In the 2012 NFL season, RG3 suffered from two severe knee injuries, including the PCL sprain in Week 14 against the Baltimore Ravens, and the inexplicable looking injury against the Seattle Seahawks. Since the injury, Robert Griffin III has made great progress towards rehabilitating his knee and looks to continue playing.

See RG3’s knee injury against the Seattle Seahawks for yourself on YouTube.

Tiger Woods 


Tiger Woods experiencing knee pain. Image by ScientificAmerican.com.
Although there was a lot of speculation as to the extent of Tiger Wood’s knee injury, it’s an observed fact that knee injuries can occur in non-contact sports. It was reported that Tiger tore his ACL and received an advanced form of reconstructive surgery. To achieve a powerful swing, professional golfers tend to place a high amount of pressure on the knee joints in order to add rotation into their swing. With time, wear and tear can occur on both knees.

Adrian Peterson 
Adrian Peterson with support knee brace after knee injury. Image by ABCNews.com.
Not all ACL and MCL injuries end on bad notes. Adrian Peterson is one of the most notable athletes to make a nearly 100% recovery after his knee injury to almost break Eric Dickerson's single-season rushing record. Despite the odds against him, Peterson shocked both the medical and sports communities when he was nominated for the NFL’s Most Valuable Player the very next year. Chek out Adrian Peterson’s season ending knee injury on YouTube.

Derrick Rose 

Derrick Rose ACL support brace. Image by Madeira.org.
Although there has been a lot of speculation about the appropriate length of recovery of Derrick Rose’s ACL tear, it should always be treated with care. Most doctors recommend 6-9 months recovery time for non-athletes, but for professional athletes this time is usually scaled down due to the fact that they have more time for rehabilitation. Nevertheless, Derrick Rose’s knee injury is still in our top 5 worst injuries.

Take a look at Derrick Rose’s devastating knee injury on YouTube. Which sports related injury do you think was the worst? Did we miss any? Share with us in the comments!

Support Braces for Knee Injuries & Injury Prevention 

If you are rehabilitating an ACL or knee injury, then proper support is needed. MMAR Medical specializes in ACL braces and knee injury prevention braces.

Have a question about a particular knee brace? Contact us or comment below to ask your question or share your personal injury stories! Be sure to check back in the future for the 2nd part of this blog where we talk about how these amazing athletes are recovering from their ACL injuries.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Back Injury Prevention: 5 Simple Techniques

Did you know that one of the most common reasons for missed work is back related injuries? In fact, it is estimated that up to 90% of US residents will experience some sort of back injury during their lifetime! Many of these issues stem from work related injuries, but regardless of where the injury takes place, the pain can cause major problems in everyday life.

The key is to prevent the injury from the start. To help, we’ve compiled a list of simple and effective techniques that you can implement to keep your back healthy.

1. Lifting and moving objects.

One of the most common causes of back pain and injury is moving and lifting objects. Most of us know that we should be lifting from our knees, but sometimes we seem to forget this simple step. Even if an item doesn’t appear very heavy, throwing your back out can happen very easily. Be sure to follow the squat technique and if an item seems extremely heavy, ask for help!

2. Sleeping support.

You wouldn’t think that sleep could cause back pain. In reality, if your bed isn’t supporting your back, you might wake up with problems. Make sure that you have a bed that offers the right amount of support. If you notice that you often wake up in pain, it may be time to re-evaluate your sleeping arrangements.

3. Exercise and stretch.

There are many muscles throughout your back that need stretching and exercise on a regular basis. Strengthening your back supports your spine and helps it to work properly. Be sure to keep your back flexible and strong for optimum support.

4. Relieve stress.

For many people who are experiencing high levels of stress or anxiety, they are holding that tension in their back. If this is you, find a way to release your stress levels, so your back can also feel the release. Getting a nice message can help alleviate back pain and stress levels.

5. Diet and health.

If you happen to be carrying extra weight in your belly, your back will feel the effects. Keeping yourself fit and healthy will also keep your back in shape. So make sure you eat the right foods and get enough exercise each day. Strengthening your core and lower back muscles can help take pressure off your lower back.

If for some unfortunate reason you do experience a back injury or pain, MMAR Medical is here to help. We specialize in back support and spine bracing. From lumbar belts to complete spinal braces, we are ready to give your back the support it deserves. Have a question about a particular back brace? Ask below using our comment section.

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Product Spotlight: CEP Calf Compression Sleeves

Over the past few years, compression gear has become popular among athletes, particularly runners who are training for long distances including marathons. One of the more effective pieces of compression gear is calf compression sleeves, and they have been gaining popularity for their performance and recovery enhancing effects. Many users also cite the benefit of calf compression over long compression socks during the summer months, as it gives your ankles and calves a bit more breathing room. Some of the benefits of wearing calf compression sleeves include:

  • Reducing soreness during and after training
  • Increasing blood flow, resulting in improved recovery time
  • Improving running time
  • Decreasing vibration and muscle strain making for an easier run
  • Reducing injuries

The CEP Calf Compression Sleeves are one of the newest entrants to the market, and feature the latest compression technology. Other brands include SKINS, Zensah, and RecoFiT, but CEP (Compete, Endure, Perform) is regarded as the best fitting and best performing of these brands, probably due in large part to their medically influenced technology. All of CEP’s products are backed by research performed by reputable scientific journals, such as The Journal of Strength and Conditioning, and the calf sleeves are no different.

So how specifically do these calf compression sleeves differ from the competition? CEP calf sleeves are made of higher quality compression material and hold their tightness for a longer amount of time. It’s important to order your correct size, which will require a measurement of your calf circumference. After all, compression sleeves can’t work properly if they aren’t compressing your muscles.

One of the main benefits of CEP compression gear is that it tends to fit a bit more snug than other similar products, but it’s never constricting. This results in a feeling of stabilizing your muscles, actually making you feel stronger and allowing your muscles to endure tougher workouts. Another benefit is in comfort. CEP’s are made from one solid piece of material, so there are no irritating seams that will rub against your legs and distract you from training.

Finally, minimalist runners who use Vibrams will love these compression sleeves. Since wearing long compression socks is not an option with Vibrams, it gives the benefit of leg compression. But it also shortens the longer recovery time associated with using Vibram running shoes by reducing vibration and improving blood flow to the calves.

CEP Compression Calf Sleeves are available in our store at a great price and in your choice of six colors. Shop today for free shipping on your order of $75 or more.

Friday, May 17, 2013

Running After an Injury: How to Get Back In Running Mode

Returning from an injury is an uphill battle. Not only does the injury itself hold you back, but you will have decreased muscle mass in the injured area, and will most likely be in less-than-great shape, increasing your chances of sustaining a new injury. Here are a few things to keep in mind so you can get back to full strength after an injury.

 Stick to your Physical Therapy Routine 

When you’re recovering after a serious injury, you should always listen to your physical therapist and stick to the routine he or she outlines for you. These exercises are designed to help you recover quickly and effectively, and also prevent future injuries. Your physical therapist will also be able to tell you when you’re healthy enough to start running again.

Take It Slow 

Once you have to go-ahead to get back to training, it’s important to take it slow. When you are fresh off an injury, the chances are high that you can re-injure yourself, or even cause an entirely new injury. Warming up, stretching, and performing any other pre-workout exercises that your physical therapist recommends is essential.

Once you start running, begin with a light jog, or even a brisk walk. It’s also a good idea to supplement your running with cross-training on a bike or by swimming. It’s crucial to listen to your body very carefully during these early stages so that you don’t injure yourself again.

Don’t Get Discouraged....And Don’t Push It 

Many times athletes will become discouraged after an injury because they compare their previous performance to their post-injury performance. This is mistake. There’s simply no way for you to perform at the same level that you were performing before your injury, at least not without weeks (or sometimes months) of post-injury training. This might also cause you to want to push through intense workouts even though your body is telling you not to. Again, listen to your body and recognize “good pain” versus “bad pain.”. Another good way to keep from getting discouraged is to set short term goals that you can reach every week or even every day. Having goals to look forward to and achieve will also keep you on track in the long-term.

Get Proper Rest and Recovery 

You might find that you need more time to recover from workouts than before your injury. If you’re feeling particularly sore from a run, don’t be afraid to take a day or two off to let your body recover completely. A healthy diet that includes the proper amount of protein and carbs for effective recovery will also help you stick to a training regimen.

Over the ensuing weeks and months, you will eventually get back up to where you once were, and hopefully even surpass your pre-injured self.

MMAR Medical carries a wide selection of running braces and supports from respected orthopedic brands. They also offer educational articles on everything from wrist and hand injuries to sport specific injuries including football, baseball, and golf.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

The Suspicions Are True: ACL Tear Rates Are Higher on Artificial Turf

Any athlete that plays a sport outdoors has opinions on artificial turf versus real grass. Depending on the sport you play, turf can affect the way you play, the game plan and the equipment you use. Because of the artificial surface, compensating for imperfections in the playing surface becomes unnecessary and the game can be played with a bit more speed and accuracy. This can also take away some of the home field advantages in amateur level games, where grass fields aren't necessarily kept in top shape and the home team might know better where small hills, divots, and dirt patches are.

The problem arises in artificial turf's inability to allow the same "give" as grass. A quick turn could prove catastrophic for a player's feet, ankles, and knees because turf doesn't allow for as much foot movement once your cleat is planted. Recent studies have shown that in both NCAA football and NFL, the rate of ACL injuries in higher on artificial turf than on grass fields. In a study conducted by the American Journal of Sports Medicine on NFL injury rates, researchers found that the injury rate of ACL sprains was 67% higher on artificial turf than on real turf. A similar study conducted on college football injury rates found that the ACL injury rate on artificial turf was nearly 1.5 times that of the injury rate on natural grass.

As I noted earlier in this blog, a game played on artificial turf can be a very different game than one played on real grass. Attributing the injuries to the turf itself may not be accurate. The increased speed of the game, varying weather conditions and footwear technology can all be contributing factors to the difference in ACL injuries on turf versus grass.

The inability to predict exactly what is causing these injuries leads us to finding ways to prevent them. Here are a few ways you can prevent injuries:

  • Wear cleats with short spikes
  • Practice regularly on turf to get used to the surface
  • Perform a proper warm up and stretch before all athletic activities
  • Strengthen knees and supported muscles with power, agility, and speed drills
  • Wear a preventative knee brace

Injuries are inherent to all sports, whether or not they're played on a natural surface. Taking measures to avoid putting too much stress on vulnerable joints, such as the knees, is crucial to keeping yourself healthy and in the game.

MMAR Medical Group offers a wide range of braces and physical rehab products for sport and other injuries. Browse our store to find the best prices on braces that will help you recover from an injury or prevent one before it happens.

Sources:

Hershman EB, Anderson R, Bergfeld JA, Bradley JP, Coughlin MJ, Johnson RJ, Spindler KP, Wojtys E, Powell JW. An Analysis of Specific Lower Extremity Injury Rates on Grass and FieldTurf Playing Surfaces in National Football League Games: 2000-2009 Seasons. Am J Sports Med 2012;40(10):2200-2205.

Dragoo JL, Braun HJ, Durham JL, Chen MR, Harris AHS. Incidence and Risk Factors for Injuries to the Anterior Cruciate Ligament in National Collegiate Athletic association football: Data From the 2004-2005 Through 2008-2009 National Collegiate Athletic Association Injury Surveillance System. Am J Sports Med 2012;40(5):990-995.

Monday, April 29, 2013

How to Manage Pain at Home | Spotlight on TENS Unit


Experiencing sudden, severe or chronic pain can really affect your life and hinder your daily activities. If you feel like you constantly have to go to the doctor for a prescription or the chiropractor for a treatment, you should consider Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation (TENS), a drug-free alternative for managing pain at home.

TENS is often prescribed as an effective way to relieve pain because it works at the cellular level to aid in the healing process. Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation restores the balance of the electrical current found in our body, which is often disrupted when an injury occurs. TENS units also relieve pain by stimulating endorphins in the brain, the body’s pain fighting chemical.

If you are using a TENS unit for the first time, follow the eight steps below to manage pain at home:

1.    Turn the frequency on the device to max
2.    Turn the pulse width to the max
3.    Set mode to normal
4.    Set timer to 45 minutes or longer
5.    Plug in lead wires to the channel
6.    Place electrodes on pain points
7.    Make sure electrode pads are not touching and are not too spread apart
8.    Turn on device and set intensity

Remember, pain is unique to each individual, so make sure you use the right settings for you. We recommend using the normal mode at first since it is the easiest to get used to, but it is important to note that TENS units have five modes: burst mode for short-term therapy sessions, normal mode for short or mid length therapy sessions, and three modulation modes for long-term therapy seasons. Only make one adjustment at a time to see if there is an improvement in your results.

An additional benefit of a TENS unit, such as the Ultima 5 TENS electrotherapy device, is that it is fully portable, so you can put it away when you are finished and you can take it with you when you travel. This handheld device makes pain relief at home easy, convenient, and affordable.  You no longer have to make an appointment each time you experience pain.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Travel Tips for the Elderly



No matter what your age is, traveling takes preparation and work, but it always seems to be worth it when you reach the final destination. Seniors may need to put in extra exertion when they travel since age sometimes results in a wider range of needs. This effort can be easier if you follow our travel tips for the elderly below: 

1. Plan, Reserve, Confirm

Seek the shortest travel times and look for direct flights 
Try to use airlines that have senior discounts, such as Southwest and Amtrak
Request any special services for the elderly that are available ahead of time by contacting the airline
Choose a seat assignment in rows designation for disabled travelers or the exit row because it has more leg room
Book wheelchair service at every airport (usually free) or bring your transport chair with you and make a plan for getting it on and off the plane
Purchase travel insurance with pre-existing illness cover 
Prepare documents and make sure you have everything you need for the trip
Print tickets and make copies of all important documents (passport, tickets, drivers license, insurance and more)
Confirm your flight times and that you have transportation to and from the airport

2. Pack Practically

Pack light, but include items for every weather scenario 
Utilize a rolling suitcase to keep from straining your back
Put all of your prescriptions in one place, preferably a pillbox with compartments for different days of the week and include notes
Make sure your carry-on bag has everything you need during the duration of the flight, including eyeglasses, a neck pillow and entertainment

3. Act Safely

Stay focused in airports and crowded places
Keep your eye on your bags
Ask for help when you need, don’t be afraid to ask flight attendant to assist you with carry-ons and escort you onto and off of the plane
Use a rollator or walker to guide you and help you after a long day on your feet


Friday, April 12, 2013

Top 5 Moments in Baseball History



"Well, baseball was my whole life. Nothing's ever been as fun as baseball." – Mickey Mantle

After an eventful opening week, we have one thing on our minds: baseball.

Major League Baseball dates back to the Civil War era and has had a tremendous influence on millions of people’s lives during it’s time. There have been so many breathtaking moments that have defined sports history, but the top five moments below really stand out.


1.            Jackie Robinson Breaks the Color Barrier in 1974

Many agree that the integration of baseball with the addition of Jackie Robinson was a moment that not only impacted the sport, but also society as a whole. Robinson bravely joined the Dodgers in 1947 (eight years before the beginning of the Civil Rights Movement) and he faced the crowds and racism with courage and confidence. Robinson was a key player in the Dodgers’ World Series win in 1955, and he is now included in the Hall of Fame.

2.            Joe DiMaggio Hits in 56 Straight Games

From May 15 to June 16 in 1941, DiMaggio hit in 56 straight games and he didn’t just hit, he hit well..really well. He batted .408 during the streak, slugged .717, hit 15 homers and 16 doubles. Even after the 56 game streak was broken he went on to hit in 17 more games safely, a remarkable feat. Since 1941, no other player has gotten within single digits of his record.

3.            The Shot Heard Around the World

New York Giants outfielder Bobby Thomson hit a homerun off Dodgers pitcher Ralph Branca to win the National League Pennant. The phrase shot heard around the world came from a poem “Concord Hymn” by Ralph Waldo Emerson and was likely used due to the high number of U.S. servicemen who listened to the game on Armed Forces Radio while stationed in Korea.

4.            Joe Carter's World Series-Winning Home Run in 1993

Joe Carter secured the World Series win for the Jays in 1993 by hitting a home run off Phillies pitcher Mitch Williams. Joe’s home run is still remembered today in Canada as one of the best moments in Toronto’s sports history.

5.            Mickey Mantle Hits His 500th Home Run

On May 14, 1967 Mickey Mantle hit his 500th home run at Yankee stadium and for a generation of fans that idolized him, each big hit holds a special place. When this legendary play baller reached the 500-home run milestone he was among only the very best of the best. Now that Mickey has retired he stands third on the all-time list.

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