Welcome to the #LifeCantWait Blog, SPEAR Physical Therapy’s official stream for fitness tips, exercise advice, and healthy lifestyle inspiration. Our articles and features are written by our physical therapists and staff members with your progress in mind. Designed to educate and motivate, SPEAR’s #LifeCantWait Blog exists to share your stories and help you get back to life! Disclaimer
Recent times have called for us to pay more attention to important social causes. One thing that has been highlighted is the lack of diversity and inclusion in the physical therapy and occupational therapy fields. At SPEAR, we are committed to to serving diverse communities, and want to ensure we are doing our part to contribute to a community of clinicians that come from different backgrounds and experiences. We wanted to find an actionable, direct way to help transform the profession—and so we created a fundraiser: our Miles Toward a Movement Virtual 5k Running Event!
Running from June 3rd to June 7th, the virtual marathon was created to help improve diversity within the physical therapy and occupational therapy fields. Runners, joggers and walkers alike had the opportunity to pledge their miles and donate to a good cause, with all proceeds going to the APTA’s Minority Scholarship Fund. This 5k event allowed us an opportunity to support the APTA’s mission to foster the long-term sustainability of the physical & occupational therapy profession by making APTA an inclusive organization that reflects the diversity of the society the profession serves with therapists from various races, backgrounds and experiences.
Race participants got running ready by sporting their shiny digital race badges on their social feeds, and shared their running journey on social media! To say “thank you” for the donations and commitment, we also gifted our runners with cool SPEAR gear, swag, and gifts, including t-shirts, bags, phone clips, and masks!
SPEAR’s Diversity and Inclusion Council, which includes a team of dedicated physical and occupational therapists, also contributed their expertise, knowledge and personal experiences to raise awareness for our cause—you can check out all our videos on our IG TV and Facebook video pages! From warm-up videos to personal life stories, there’s something for everyone!
SPEAR teammates were definitely in the spirit, too: across all our clinics, we hosted a Community Run Day. Each location had a fun time posing for photos together to build excitement for the event, and of course, letting our patients and visitors know how they could help support our cause!
The virtual marathon proved to be a great opportunity to do something collectively as a community, while still maintaining a safe social distance. With everyone’s donations, together we raised over $1,200 for the fund!
We are so excited to have created such an awesome impactful event that benefits a cause bigger than just running. We would like to thank everyone who donated, shared, and participated. We appreciate the contribution of your time and energy to such an important cause. As always, we will continue to look for ways to continue elevating our community and finding ways to create a more diverse, inclusive environment for all!
After a very long and difficult year, New York is finally on the rise. As SPEAR continues to help the city make a full comeback, CEO and Co-founder, Dan Rootenberg, was recently featured on NPR to discuss the hot-button topic of returning to office life full-time. Interviewed by Audie Cornish, Dan expressed his support for coming back in: “I do believe that people learn from each other more. There’s more collaboration. There’s Zoom fatigue. I mean, I’m on so many Zoom meetings. It’s, you know, it’s really exhausting after a while. And so there’s a totally different feeling when you get together.”
With the onset of the pandemic, life changes and everything else going on, it’s safe to say many people have been feeling stressed. People are constantly looking for ways to get rid of worry, which can also manifest as tension in the body. Enter: massage guns. A popular trend, massage gun ads, videos and informational posts have been sprouting up all over the internet. The question is: do they actually work? Our very own Ashley Rozek, PT, DPT, CSCS, and Clinical Director of our Grand Central – 3rd Ave clinic, and Donald Zerio, PT, DPT, TPI LII, is here to help bring some truth to light, recently contributing her knowledge to a CNN article exploring this very topic!
While massage therapy often noted to be very beneficial for recovery, it’s not always an accessible option for all. Especially during the middle of the pandemic, where social distancing was necessary, many people turned to other options to be able to alleviate those tight knots and pains in their muscles. Naturally, handheld massage guns became a easy solution.
Donald says these popular massage guns work just like a foam roller: “They do work in the same sense that foam rolling works. It is another method of soft tissue mobilization that provides the benefit of loosening up tight muscle tissue, which provides a feeling of relief and provides a short-term improvement in flexibility.” Donald also points out that you can easily injure yourself with a massage gun if not used correctly, which can worsen your situation. His advice? Talk to your PT! “We tell our patients to bring in their massage guns to a physical therapist so we can demonstrate how to use the different percussion heads and vary the depth and speed for specific muscle groups.”
While Ashley also believes these massage guns are good for recovery and pre-workout, she stresses: “it is important to come see a physical therapist and learn how to safely and correctly use the gun on your body so you can effectively use it at home.” It’s always best to get professional advice from a physical therapist to ensure you’re occupying the right tool for your specific needs.
Last week, the team at Brooklyn – Park Slope congregated to commemorate the one year anniversary of the clinic’s launch! The team excitedly celebrated the eventful occasion with many laughs, pictures, cake, and of course—ribbon cutting!
Opening up just two months into the pandemic in April 2020, it was a tough (and admittedly scary) time to try new things. There were many questions up in the air about whether or not it was the right moment to make such a big decision.
Now, one year later, it’s clear our leadership team made the right choice. Park Slope has evolved into a beaming example of where hard work, determination and grit can take you. With the leadership of Clinical Director Austin Afshar, PT, DPT, CSCS the clinic has already become a beaming illustration of our company values and community impact. Austin addressed each team member directly at the ribbon cutting event, thanking each individual person for their specific contribution in the clinic’s success, and that of our patients.
CEO and Co-founder Dan Rootenberg also spoke to the team, admitting he had his doubts about taking such a big jump during a volatile time. Ultimately, he learned the leap was in good faith. Speaking of the clinic opening, Dan expressed: “It brought hope. It brought inspiration. This was the team, that showed everybody the future, and the positivity—knowing it’s going to be okay.”
Park Slope has been a successful venture thus far because of the dedication of the team. Everyone has input much soul and passion into making the clinic great, and that’s why it will continue to grow and progress. We’re so proud to reach more patients in Brooklyn who need our care. Congratulations to the entire Park Slope team—we know the future is bright!
The Union Square team stands ready to cut the famous big red ribbon!
The unexpected arrival of the pandemic last year put many of our lives on pause. With New York at a standstill, plans and ideas were forced to be placed on hold. For our newly opened Union Square – 14th St clinic, this meant postponing our ribbon cutting ceremony, meant to celebrate the launch of the location, leadership and team.
A year and a half year later, on May 6th, 2021, we were finally able to properly celebrate the opening of this amazing clinic! Led by Clinical Director Michael Virgile, PT, DPT, CSCS, Union Square has already made momentous progress in helping bring New Yorkers back to life. The team has built a close rapport in such a short amount of time; the camaraderie is palpable, and stands a true testament to the fantastic care they bring to patients each day.
Centrally located, the clinic is conveniently situated in a commutable area of Manhattan for ease of accessibility and convenience for our patients. With over 4,000 square feet of space, the clinic provides ample room to give patients the best treatment in comfort and style. The clinic is located right in the center of one of NYC’s most popular neighborhoods, making treatment more easily accessible than ever before. All areas, equipment, rooms, etc. are also always thoroughly cleaned and sanitized per CDC guidelines.
It was amazing getting our team together to celebrate this momentous date together (safely, of course!). We’ve got one and a half years in the books, we can’t wait to see what else our clinic accomplishes!