Calf cramps are sudden, involuntary contractions of the calf muscles. Reasons for such cramps frequently include dehydration, a lack of minerals such as magnesium, calcium, potassium, or sodium, lack of a warm up or cool down, sleeping in the same position for too long, or amping up intensity too much, too soon during exercise. These muscle cramps can last anywhere from a few seconds to 10 minutes. They can be painful and a nuisance to wake up to in the middle of the night.
As a manual therapist, what can you do to help?
ACL, or the anterior cruciate ligament, injuries make up almost 50% of all knee injuries. A hard hit, overextension of the knee joint, or a quick pivot can cause the shin to move forward, stretching or tearing the ACL. In this type of injury, the knee becomes very unstable. If there is a complete tear, surgery may be required.
Following ACL injury or surgery, treatment often consists of initial rest, with icing. ACL reconstruction takes 6-9 months to heal fully. For a partial tear, recovery takes about 3 months.
As a manual therapist, there are various manual techniques and prescribed exercises that you can include in an ACL treatment plan to help your client return to full function. The main goals of manual therapy regarding an ACL injury include decreasing pain and inflammation, increasing range of motion, and returning your client to full function. Prescribed exercises aim to improve strength, further improve range of motion, and slowly return your client to weight-bearing activities. Before surgery, exercises and strengthening can also be highly beneficial for a smooth recovery post-surgery.
ACL injury rehab, specifically following surgery includes:
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