Kevin is a physical therapist entering his 4th year as a clinician. When asked about the Prospect office, he said, “I really like the team dynamic here.” He noted how the collaboration with the staff members in Prospect brings a fluid process for the patients.
“I also get a good mix of various injuries, from fractures, sprains, osteoarthritis. And many other injuries.”
I asked him what injuries he sees the most. “I do see a lot of knee osteoarthritis. The key to prevention is strengthening. 100%. Even if they are about to undergo a knee replacement surgery, the stronger they are prior to surgery, the better off they will be after the surgery and the easier the recovery process will be.”
Kevin’s Take on Osteoarthritis Prevention
He emphasized the role of quadriceps strengthening, underscoring its pivotal role in supporting knee health. Kevin believes that a proactive approach to strengthening, especially focusing on the quadriceps muscles, not only aids in preventing knee osteoarthritis but also significantly enhances the outcomes for those facing knee replacement surgery.
“The stronger they are prior to surgery, the better off they will be after the surgery and the easier the recovery process will be,” Kevin emphasized. By prioritizing quadriceps strength, he empowers his patients to protect their knee joints, fostering resilience and facilitating a smoother journey toward recovery. This holistic perspective aligns with Kevin’s commitment to providing comprehensive care that addresses not just immediate concerns but also contributes to the long-term well-being of his patients.
Physical Therapist’s Secret of keeping the patients motivated
He pointed out how physical therapy is not only about addressing the physical hurdles but also about the emotional and mental aspects of healing. Motivation is the secret sauce that propels patients towards recovery, influencing their commitment and resilience.
“I always point out small wins, because as a physical therapist, I do notice their victories. Some patients tend to focus on the pain and discomfort that are bothering them at the moment but, I try to divert their attention to their small wins and achievements because I see their progress.” When he was working with his patients, I noticed he was encouraging his patients by saying ‘You look much more confident with the step-ups today!’, ‘You got so strong and you could almost lift a car tomorrow!’. It seemed like motivating his patients was his second nature.
It’s a subtle art for the physical therapists, finding what inspires each individual on their unique journey to triumph over challenges. In this friendly and nuanced landscape, motivating patients becomes a vital part of fostering not just physical strength but also the resilient spirit needed to tackle hurdles with a smile.
Kevin’s Clinical Interests as a Physical Therapist
I asked Kevin his favorite body part to treat as a clinician. “Shoulder and neck!” He answered without hesitation. His interest in shoulder and neck dysfunction started as a PT student at the University of Connecticut. The classes he took and cases he’d seen simply clicked together.
“Patients often get surgeries for wrist or elbow pain but no symptom relief. Why? Because in many cases the source of the pain starts with the neck or shoulder.”Kevin Tucker, DPT, Advanced Physical Therapy Prospect
I picked on Kevin’s expertise and asked him to teach me his favorite manual techniques for the shoulder. First, he started with subscapularis release which could be beneficial for overhead athletes. Then he moved on to scapular PNF patterns that could help someone with scapular dysfunctions. Also, he noted stubborn trigger points on my upper trapezius and recommended dry needling.
“Dry needling works great with shoulder and calf tightness. It’s like getting good blood in and bad blood out to the area.”
Kevin is a dedicated physical therapist whose passion is evident in every aspect of his practice. By emphasizing prevention through strengthening and celebrating small victories, Kevin not only motivates his patients but also actively contributes to their overall well-being. His expertise in addressing the root causes of pain, particularly in the shoulder and neck, showcases his commitment to providing effective and personalized care. He not only brings healing hands but also a compassionate heart to our community.