What does Function Mean to You?

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physical therapy function

What does Function Mean to You?

physical therapy functionFunction means different things to different people. When a patient has a functional limitation, they have a restriction of the ability to perform a physical action or activity in an efficient manner. The goal at Contact Physical Therapy is to return patients to their level of function.


Sprains and strains can affect children, but if treated correctly, we can get them back to playing their sports with little to no down time. Our physical therapists first concentrate on controlling any pain & swelling associated with the injury. Then, they may start functional activities such as running, jumping and climbing. Returning children to playing is returning them to function.

Young Adults

Young adults can be plagued with a variety of injuries. Whether they are a high school or college athlete, or the occasional runner, swimmer or hiker, injuries can occur & they need to return to function. Function for the young adult could mean returning them to their active lifestyle including sports specific activities or drills.


The adult may define function in a very different way. Sometimes the adult needs to work or drive ‘pain-free’. While working with the adult population, special attention may be made on postural exercises & activities and strengthening exercises. By the age of 40, adults begin to lose 8% of muscle every 10 years – therefore concentration on exercise & posture is critical in returning adults to function.


By the age of 70, we have lost over 15% of our muscle, and oftentimes balance has significantly decreased. For the geriatric patient, we pay special attention to gait & balance activities, allowing them to be functionally unassisted while performing activities of daily living such as getting in & out of bed or a chair, up & down stairs, or simply navigating uneven surfaces.

noah arenson physical therapist

Noah Arenson Interviewed by Masters in Healthcare

Noah ArensonNoah Arenson from our Mesa Contact Physical Therapy clinic had the privilege of being interviewed by Masters in Healthcare to discuss his career as a physical therapist, and he was featured on their website!

Below is Noah’s interview:

What is it about your job that keeps you at it day in and day out?

Arenson: “There is an incredible variety of conditions that we treat at Contact Physical Therapy. I enjoy the investigative approach of rehabilitation to determine the unique origin of each patient symptoms and creating a treatment plan to meet their goals. It is very satisfying to assist patients on their journey to effectively diminishing their pain and restoring their function.”

How do you stay up-to-date in the field and maintain professionalism?

Arenson: “I am blessed to have colleagues around me to bounce ideas off and review my documentation. We also live in a state that offers a variety of continuing education opportunities to expand our treatment approaches.”

What’s one of the most memorable experiences you’ve had, either as a student or in your professional career?

Arenson: “There have been several instances in my career where a patient initially is very doubtful that physical therapy would have any impact on their particular issue. To see them leave the clinic with appreciable improvement and knowledge to continue gains on their own is very rewarding.”

What advice do you have for people just starting their education or their professional career?

Arenson: “Volunteer at a variety of health professional settings. Get an appreciation of the demands of a variety of professions and see if they match your individual strengths and interests.”

Click here for more on Noah’s feature on Masters in Healthcare.

For more information on Contact Physical Therapy, or to schedule an appointment, please contact us today!

sport safety

We Love our Children!

sport safetyWe Love Our Children!

Contact Physical Therapy wanted you to know how much we love our children, and how it is our passion to keep them safe and happy, by highlighting the National Awarenesses throughout April.


SPORTS SAFETY TIPS (National Awareness: 4/1-4/30)

• Be mindful of hot temperatures and cancel practice if the heat is too extreme

• Have your kids participate in flexibility and fitness programs to learn proper exercises.

• Make sure your kids are provided with adequate rest periods to prevent overuse injuries. (Modified from Healthline.com)

PLAYGROUND SAFETY TIPS (National Awareness: 4/21 – 4/27)

• Make sure playground equipment is inspected frequently and kept in good repair. If it’s not, report this to your local parks and recreations office.

• Remove hood and neck drawstrings from children’s clothing and outerwear and don’t let kids wear helmets, necklaces, purses or scarves on the playground.

• Keep toddlers under age 5 in a separate play area, away from equipment designed for bigger kids.

• Actively supervise kids on a playground. Just being in the same area isn’t good enough – they need your undivided attention while playing on or around the equipment. Stay active and spend time at playgrounds, but always remember these tips not only during National Playground Safety Week! Modified from Safe Kids USA


Whether you are a brother or sister or have more than one child, celebrate that special relationship, not only this day, but every day!


“Take your Daughters & Sons to Work Day®”, focuses on the ongoing challenges parents encounter while trying to integrate work and family. This day was designed to allow parents, guardians and mentors to share their work lives and introduce solutions these issues for our nation’s daughters and sons.

For more tips and information, please contact us today!

baseball injuries

Common Baseball Injuries and Fun Facts

Spring Training is here and we wanted to share some fun facts with you and common baseball injuries to look out for!

common baseball injuriesArizona Baseball Fun Facts

Chicago Cubs

Mesa has been hosting the Cubs since 1952. Previous to Hohokam Park and Fitch Park, the Chicago Cubs Spring Training facility was called Rendezvous Park.

Arizona Diamondbacks

The Diamondbacks have the first Major League Baseball spring training facility in the nation to be built on Native American land.

San Francisco Giants

The original Scottsdale Stadium was built in 1956 and served as the former Cactus League home of the Baltimore Orioles, Boston Red Sox, Chicago Cubs, Oakland A’s and now the San Francisco Giants.

Most Common Baseball Injuries

In Children Eye Injuries are the most common baseball injuries in children, while as many as 45% of pitchers under the age of 12 have chronic elbow pain.

In Teenagers Other than lacerations and bruises, the most common teenage baseball injuries are sprains and strains. However, pitchers suffer the most from overuse injuries. About 58% of high school pitchers suffer from an overuse injury of the elbow or shoulder.

In Professionals Recent studies show the most common baseball injuries among fielders include hamstring & groin strains. While pitchers tend to strain/tear ligaments in the elbow or rotator cuff.

A quote from the Diamondbacks Strength Coach, Nate Shaw!

“From my perspective, the warm up is one of the most important parts of the day. It prepares athletes for a day consisting of reactive movements in every plane. Our goal with the warm up is to have athletes go through a series of planned movements, lubricating the joints and raising the body temperature enough to sweat. A rise in core temperature and preemptive motion in all directional planes are two of the bigger themes for us, especially during spring training.”

To purchase tickets to a Diamondbacks spring training game, visit The Arizona Diamondbacks website.

Are you or your child experiencing one of the above listed conditions? Contact Us today to schedule an injury assessment!

National Physical Therapy Month

October is National Physical Therapy Month!

national physical therapy month

Celebrate National Physical Therapy Month with Contact by learning a little more about how physical therapists can help you recover from injury. Don’t forget to thank your physical therapist for what they do!

Physical therapists help you restore and improve motion in patients to achieve enhanced quality of life.

We can help care for patients with the following ailments:

Common Injuries  Physical therapists can help your patients recover quicker from and injury by restoring movement and decreasing pain.

We can help patients:

  • Restore strength, flexibility and endurance.
  • Control pain more effectively, often decreasing the need for long term use of medications.
  • Avoid re-injury both during and after recovery.
  • Develop better health and fitness habits.

Medical Conditions Physical therapists help reverse the debilitating effects of many chronic conditions such as arthritis and diabetes.

We can help patients:

  • Restore strength, flexibility and endurance.
  • Assist in controlling pain, often decreasing the need for long term use of medications.
  • Return to normal activities.
  • Stay as independent as possible.
  • Develop improved health and fitness regimens.

General Motion  Physical therapists can help ¬¬create happier, healthier patients through a coordination of care with all healthcare providers.

We can help patients:

  • Decrease pain, and increase motion resulting in a happier patient.
  • Improve overall movement allowing patients to perform the activities they love.
  • Do the activities they love resulting in healthier lifestyles and enhanced quality of life.

Surgery  As a healthcare provider, we would all like to help our patients avoid surgery. We will play a key role in helping your patients improve motion and decrease pain. If surgery is needed, we can help improve their outcome by helping your patients to:

  • Assist in improving and regaining strength, flexibility, and endurance.
  • Effectively control pain.
  • Return to activities of daily living quicker.
  • Educate and prevent re-injury.
  • Develop a better health and fitness regimen.

Things to consider when choosing a Physical Therapist:

  • Make sure the physical therapist is licensed in the State in which they practice.
  • Check to see if the Physical Therapy Clinic takes the insurance, this will lessen financial responsibility
  • Ask if the clinic will submit claims on behalf of the patient
  • Make sure the patient understands their financial responsibility

Information modified from www.moveforwardpt.com

preventing pain scottsdale

Ouch…Don’t Slouch!

preventing pain scottsdalePreventing Pain at Work

This article includes Tips for preventing pain while working at your desk.

Some people may think injuries don’t occur with sedentary desk jobs, but, unfortunately that isn’t true. Many times bad posture and an improper work station can contribute to aches and pains such as carpal tunnel syndrome, back pain and neck pain. Below are some tips for avoiding these common complaints and work toward preventing pains.

  • Get up and move at least one time each hour.
  • Take an arm break. Shrug your shoulders, raise your arms, stretch your hands and reach for the ceiling
  • Tighten and relax your abdominal muscles while you are sitting
  • Stretch out your hamstring- the back of your leg
  • Stretch your hip flexors- the muscle in the crease of the front of your hip.
  • Squeeze your shoulder blades together by pulling them down and together.
  • Take deep “belly breaths”.
  • Make sure your workstation allows for you to keep your wrists straight, and not flexed upward, to use your keyboard.
  • Check your chair height and keep your hips in a good position. Bent at 90-120 degrees is acceptable.
  • Keep your monitor at eye level.

An office job in itself can be challenge enough at times, adding pain on top of your busy schedule can make it unbearable! Anyone can start experiencing these aches and pains, but following the suggestions above will help decrease any tension and tightness you might feel from being seated for most of the day. Still have symptoms? Schedule an appointment with your healthcare provider or give Contact Physical Therapy a call at either of our locations.

Contact Physical Therapy Mesa

Hip Flexor Stretches

Do you have a job that requires you to sit all day? It is very important to get up and stretch! Your hip flexors can become very tight from remaining in a sitting position all day. To avoid common aches and pains, be sure to incorporate a hip flexor stretch into your daily routine. In this video Noah Arenson, with Contact Physical Therapy, demonstrates how to complete two simple hip flexor stretches.

Click on the video below to watch the different hip flexor stretches you can do at work!

Contact Physical Therapy Mesa

An office job in itself can be a challenge enough at times, adding pain on top of your busy schedule can make it unbearable! Anyone can start experiencing these aches and pains, but by following the above mentioned hip flexor stretches and suggestions listed in our Our Don’t Slouch Post you will help decrease any tension and tightness you might feel from being seated for most of the day.

Still have symptoms? Schedule an appointment with your healthcare provider or give Contact Physical Therapy a call at either of our locations.

Back School in Mesa

Back School Success

Back School in Mesa

Back School Success!

Our Back School in Mesa had a good turnout and was very informative for East Valley residents suffering from back pain. Content presented by Jim Irvin PT, included proper stretching techniques, lifting mechanics, sleeping posture and tips to help neck pain, along with a number of other items.

Thank you to Dr. McCauley for coming out to our Contact Physical Therapy location in Mesa and contributing to the presentation and answering patient questions. For more information on Dr. McCauley visit McCauley Pain Center of Arizona.

Please comment below if you are interested in attending any of our future Back School seminars!

Back School in Mesa

Back School in Mesa

Back School in MesaWe are excited to announce our Back School in Mesa! Read the details below for information on our presenters and event details. If you have back pain or recently had back surgery, register for the Back School and come out to learn from our therapists. We will have a Q&A at the end for any of your questions regarding back pain.


The Back School in Mesa Arizona: Learn how to live free from pain

The Back School in Mesa Arizona is helping patients prevent back pain through stretches, stabilization exercises, posture and more Reserve your spot for our July Session of The Back School!


July 11, 2012


4850 E. Baseline Rd., Suite 114

Mesa, AZ 85206

Presenter: Jim Irvin, PT
Jim graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Exercise Science/Biomechanics from Arizona State University and received his Masters in Physical Therapy from the University of Southern California. He is a Valley native and has been practicing physical therapy in the East Valley since 1995. His specialties include manual therapy, sports medicine and therapeutic exercise. Jim has a strong background in exercise science research and has patented a piece of exercise equipment used for core stabilization and resistance training.
Guest Speaker: Michael McCauley, MD
Dr. McCauley has been practicing pain management in the Valley since 1982. He uses an integrative approach to evaluating and treating his patients and their pain issues. He does a variety of diagnostic and therapeutic spinal injections to diagnose and treat various spine problems, as well as other conditions. He is a firm believer in rehabilitation and encourages patients to always work on integrating this into their daily lives.