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Oak Tree PT
 Oak Tree PT Newsletter . Volume 2, #3 
June 2004 
. . . . . . . . .


The Oak Tree PT Newsletter presents information that is in some way related to physical therapy and health- related issues. We hope that you find it interesting, informative, topical, and timely.

We would like your feedback on any of the topics presented here, and on any topics that you would like to see addressed in the future. Please feel free to send in questions that are relevant to our focus, and we will try to answer as many as we can in our "Readers' Forum"

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in this issue
  • Featured Article


    A video game that is helping kids slim down, so that they look better and feel better about themselves? That benefit surprises the makers of a new game called "Dance Dance Revolution" (DDR), and the kids who play the game love who they see looking back at them in the mirror.

    It's the latest teen and young adult dance craze, and the players are hooked. Those who don't have their own home version spend every quarter they have, and then some, to keep dancing. They find the game addictive, and they are also discovering that their old clothes have become too big for them. They have lost weight, and it has been a lot of fun in the process.

    Obesity in children seems to be at an all-time high. A recent cross-sectional study in Arkansas found that 40 percent of schoolchildren there are overweight, and more than half of those kids are considered obese. Dr. Carden Johnston, President of the American Academy of Pediatrics says he believes that those statistics can be generalized to the rest of the country.

    More people now realize that being overweight is a serious health issue, and they are finding some very creative ways to help solve the problem. In Arkansas, elementary schools have removed all of their vending machines. In an attempt to identify at-risk children, legislators in that state have passed a law requiring mandatory body-mass index testing of all schoolchildren, and those results must be reported to the children's parents.

    Many new products are reaching the market, with the manufacturers all vying for a piece of the health- conscious consumer's dollar. Krispy Kreme posted their first quarterly loss since going public in 2000, and they believe that it's due to the rising popularity of the low- carb diets. In response to that demand, the company is developing a low-carb doughnut. Another company is breeding a low-carb potato they may call "Spud-o- Lite".

    DDR combines pulsing techno beats with a video screen that displays arrows that point in different directions. The players stand on a 3-foot square platform that has arrows on each side of the square corresponding to the arrows scrolling up the video screen. As each arrow scrolls up to the top of the screen, the players steps on the arrow in the platform that matches the one on the screen. The kids score points based on the percentage of screen arrows they correctly match, allowing them to compete against themselves and against other players.

    As players improve, they can increase the level of difficulty of the game, speeding up the pace and dancing to more complex combinations of multiple arrows. By the time they are done, their faces are flushed and they have really worked up a sweat.

    As with any genre of entertainment that generate a subculture of devotees, there can be a dark side to the game. A recent posting on the BoingBoing Blog (web log) links to a story in Kansas City's The Pitch music magazine highlighting the escapades of a local player's obsession with the game and the things he did to support his habit.

    While his story is a fascinating tale, the folks at DDR KC point out that he does not represent the majority of players who enjoy the game.

    Still, DDR can cost from $1 to $1.50 to dance for about six minutes in the arcades. One young woman spent $150 the first four months she played.

    The home version may not offer the aura of the arcade, but it can save on quarters. The software starts at about $30 to $40, and the dancing pad ranges from about $30 for a beginner model to more than $200 for the more accurate models. The software interfaces with a video game console, which must be purchased either separately of bundled. Of course, many people find good deals on the equipment at eBay

    Dr. Richard Adler, of the University of Tennessee Health Science Center in Memphis likes the health benefits of the game, but he cautions that heavier players may experience joint discomfort, especially if they suffer from arthritis.

    That warning did not deter 22 year old Tanya Jessen. Her weight dropped from 235 pounds to 140 pounds, and she says that she now feels more socially adept, outgoing, and she cares more about maintaining her appearance now. She says, "There's something about not having to shop in the men's section anymore."


    See Katie Glaser-LeClere's related article below on the "I Can Do It, You Can Do It" campaign.

    For personal stories about DDR, testimonials & equipment information go to www.getupmove.com

    DDR Bulletin Board at www.ddrfreak.com

    Activity Calorie Calculator: Calculate the number of calories you burn for 158 activities. Fill in your weight and the average amount of time you spend working out. They do the math and return an activities page personalized just for you.


    With Fourth of July festivities fast approaching, the Prevent Blindness America (PBA) organization warns that, "Bottle rockets are the single greatest cause of eye injuries requiring hospitalization. Their flight path is erratic, their fuses are non-standard and their explosive power is enough to turn a "launch site" bottle or can into shrapnel."

    Several free fact sheets and brochures are available on PBA's website on fireworks hazards and safety, on eye testing and eye-related medical issues, and on other issues of interest to a Safety Manager. They can also be reached by calling (800) 331-2020.

    PBA has launched a campaign to promote the use of approved protective eyewear that meets ANSI Z87 standards. Examples they cite of safety glasses saving the wearer's eyes include: a fluorescent light tube exploding during installation, spraying the worker's face with shards of sharp glass; and a woman whose glasses were struck by a staple after it hit a knot in the wood while she was using a compressor-powered staple gun to attach wood to a window frame.

    The top 10 workplace-rated eye injuries treated in U.S. hospital Emergency Rooms in 2002, as reprinted in Industrial Hygiene News were:

    1. Welding Equipment (not specified): 13,904
    2. Tools (not specified): 9,492
    3. Adhesives: 6,698
    4. Lawn Mowers (not specified): 4,556
    5. House Repair or Construction: 4,176
    6. Chemicals (others, not classified): 3,806
    7. Power (Grinders, Buffers, Polishers): 3,234
    8. Saws (not specified): 3,134
    9. Nails, Screws, Tacks, Bolts: 2,603
    10. Paints, Varnishes, Removers: 2,601

    Among the health awareness observances
    listed in the "Featured Article" section for the month of June, this month is also Safety Awareness Month. Driving safety is featured prominently on the National Safety Council's website this month.


    This spot features answers to questions and/or news of interest from our readers. Send your physical therapy-related questions, comments, and current therapy/health topics we can share to: pt@oaktreept.com.

    If we answer your question in this column, we will send you an Oak Tree PT ergonomic pen. Please be sure to include your mailing address, to be used strictly for mailing the pen only, and no other purpose.

    I will also be happy to publish in this Readers' Forum any original, relevant, well-written articles submitted by readers. Just forward your material to:

    **Editor's note: This month we feature another news article from Katie Glaser-LeClere, MSPT, owner of Safe Home Pediatric Physical Therapy, LLC.

    The "I Can Do It, You Can Do It"> campaign sponsored by HHS was initiated on May 26th, and promotes fitness among children with disabilities by matching them with a mentor who guides them toward increasing physical activity and improving nutritional habits. This program is part of the President's Challenge, which promotes active lifestyles for people of all ages and abilities by providing activity suggestions, achievement awards, and social resources.

    This incentive responds to the growing demand for increasing physical activity in children to promote long term physical fitness and reduce the risk of conditions such as overweight, obesity, diabetes, and arthritis. Reuters Health Information Group recently studied 300,000 school aged children in Arkansas and found that 40% were overweight or at risk for becoming overweight. Children with disabilities are even less likely to lead active lifestyles because of physical, social, or cognitive impairments.

    According to the Sugeon's General's Report on Physical Activity and Health:

    About 50% of people ages 12-21 years regularly participate in vigorous physical activity. 25% report no vigorous physical activity.
    Females are less likely than males to participate in regular physical activity.
    Older children are less likely to participate in physical activity than younger children.
    60 minutes of structured physical activity per day is recommended for children under age 18.

    The President's Council on Physical Fitness and Sports (PCPFS) and the Congressional Fitness Caucus sponsor a public fitness event on June 16th at the National Mall. For more information, visit their website.

    **Editor's note:
    Katie has some tips for anyone thinking about contributing a column to this newsletter:

    How about if we define some terms now, so as to avoid future confusion:

    1) Procrastination- A highly efficient and productive way to initiate and complete a project on the deadline date. Also minimizes daydreaming and lollygagging.

    2) Deadline- The time during which procrastination transitions to prioritizing, preferably the absolute last minute. Also interpreted as "no more revisions after this point."

    3) Draft- Unproofed copy likely to be filled with run on sentences and fragments of fleeting notions. May potentially improve with second revision; probably will get worse with 3 or more (better to discard and start over)

    4) Feedback- The bitter truth. Also refers to auditory hallucinations resulting from sleep deprivation and hypercaffeinemia; must exceed combined dB of CPU humming and family snoring to count as actual feedback.

    **Editor's note:

    I'm trying to negotiate with my 4 year old for some personal time this afternoon so I can invest some writing time with both eyes open. The experimental technique I have been using to work with only one eye open in order to sleep half of my brain has been a disappointment. It has unacceptable side effects as well, the worst of which has been a space bar monobrow imprint mysteriously appearing, either from lack of depth perception while typing or from ipsilateral mutiny of my occulomotor nerve.

    **Editor's note:

    Katie Glaser-LeClere is a Physical Therapist and founder of Safe Home Pediatric Physical Therapy, providing PT to children and adolescents in the home and community. Safe Home's service areas include Frederick, Montgomery, Carroll, and Howard Counties in Maryland. Outpatient sites are located in Rockville and Frederick.



    "Best exercise class I have taken." Quoc A. Nguyen, PT -- Minneapolis, MN

    "This was an excellent experience that combined theory with hands on application. I am looking forward to developing T'ai Chi classes with residents I work with." Christine Phelps -- Bloomington, MN

    "I liked the evidence-based info & common sense approach. " Maria Walde-Doufas, PT -- Minneapolis, MN

    "Lots to take home & use. Lots of good examples. Very interesting & knowledgable" Christine Bacon, PT -- Minneapolis, MN

    "It's information that I can use in my long term care facilities. It should be fun. I'll also use it with my husband who has fibromyalgia. Thanks." Cheryl Salim, OTR -- Minneapolis, MN

    "Very good information to take back and use "tomorrow". Thank you." Marilyn Woods, PT -- Minneapolis, MN

    "Best Continuing Education course in 4 years -- real, useful application." Anonymous, PT -- Minneapolis, MN

    "Great to have a presenter who actually uses this material with clients & can speak from 1st hand experience about what works & what doesn't." Kathie Hanson, PT -- Duluth, MN

    "I actually tried some of this before the class (doing it all wrong--but using my imagination) & saw a patient improve her ambulation balance. After coming to the class I'm ready to use "correct" techniques to continue to get her more improved with gait." Mary Hultman, PTA -- Duluth, MN

    Really appreciate having the detailed handouts." Ron Lorentz, OT -- Duluth, MN

    "I thoroughly enjoyed this course. It offers a wealth of transferrable info and I look forward to using it." Kellie Truppa, OTR -- Chicago, IL

    Speaker definitely breaks down material well for step by step learning." Helen Figlewicz, PT -- Chicago, IL

    The instructor gave lots of personal attention. Very good "hands on" help. Michelle Ralph -- Chicago, IL

    You were super!" Mary Coleman, PT -- Chicago, IL

    Improving Balance and Decreasing Fall Risk Using T'ai Chi

    A groundbreaking one-day seminar for Therapists and other Professionals working with patients who are at risk for falls

    Accordi ng to the most recent statistics from the Center for Disease Control (CDC), falls are the primary reason for accidental deaths, and the 5th leading cause of death for Americans age 65 and older. In that age group, 30 percent of community dwelling elders and 50 percent of nursing home residents fall each year. The research literature supports T'ai Chi as the best balance exercise for elderly people at risk for falls.

    This interactive seminar will provide you with all the tools and skills you will need to begin a T'ai Chi balance program as soon as you return to the clinic. You will also learn creative techniques for engaging patients who are withdrawn and reluctant to participate in other forms of therapy. After practicing each exercise during this one-day seminar, you will leave with a clear understanding of how to progress your patients through the sequence of T'ai Chi exercises toward higher function with decreased fall risk.

    Finally, you will learn how to include T'ai Chi in the multidisciplinary Care Plan, and how to document the therapy sessions for maximum reimbursement from Medicare Parts A and B and all other types of insurance plans. This course is designed to be participatory and fun, and after initiating the program in your own clinical setting, you will be pleasantly surprised to find your patients looking forward to their next T'ai Chi session with you.

    What You Will Learn

    Understand how Eastern and Western approaches to balance differ
    Learn postural corrections that have an immediate effect on balance
    Use kinesthetic imagery to improve cognitive, emotional and physical function
    Demonstrate movement strategies that maintain balance control
    Practice T'ai Chi exercises in sitting and standing that strengthen lower extremity and postural control muscles, increase range of motion and improve balance
    The three common mistakes in stance that decrease balance and reaction times
    Reprogramming neuromuscular responses using kinesthetic imagery
    The tan tien: The key to controlled and centered movement
    Tailoring the T'ai Chi exercise progressions to individual patient needs
    Incorporating T'ai Chi in the Care Plan and documentation for reimbursement

    Who Should Attend

    Physical Therapists
    Occupational Therapists
    Recreation Therapists
    Restorative Team members
    Clinical Managers
    Athletic Trainers
    Anyone involved in the care of someone who has issues with decreased balance

    About the Speaker

    Jon Ruttenberg holds a Masters Degree in Physical Therapy from Boston University, and he is a Certified Ergonomic Assessment Specialist. He has trained patients in T'ai Chi principles while working as a Physical Therapist in a variety of settings, including nursing homes, retirement communities, hospitals, sports medicine clinics, outpatient clinics and occupational medicine. Mr. Ruttenberg has taught therapists and other health care professionals how to design T'ai Chi balance programs in seminars sponsored by various health care facilities and by ADVANCE Magazine. He is the owner of Oak Tree PT, which is a private practice specializing in orthopedics, balance and ergonomic assessment and consulting for various industries. Mr. Ruttenberg is a national speaker with experience, energy and enthusiasm for one of the most practical and exciting seminars you will attend this year.

    Featured Article

    Nobody here at Oak Tree PT has any desire to eat bugs, but apparently there are a lot of people who have been seasoning their skillets for the past 17 years, just waiting for their front lawns to explode with a bonanza of good eatin'.

    For those adventurous types, a good cicada website called cicadamania.net asks what seems to be a very pertinent question. They also offer some sage advice:

    Question: Do you really want to eat something that's been marinating in lawn fertilizers, pesticides and other chemicals for the past 17 years?
    Sage advice: You should not even think about eating cicadas if you have a seafood allergy.

    While the cicada experts at cicadamania.net do offer some tried and true recipes, we just can't bring ourselves to publish that link. However, we have given you the home-page link, and you can find the recipes yourselves.

    For those less hardy souls who are afraid of cicadas, even though the bugs do not bite, sting, or cause any other damage to humans (unless you eat them, possibly), the folks at cicadamania.net suggest the following remedies:

    1. Get a grip! They're only bugs. 2. Try a hat, an umbrella, a bee-keepers' outfit, a suit of armor...

    While some of these suggestions may seem a little harsh and insensitive to those who suffer from phobias, phychotherapist Jerilyn Ross takes a similar approach.

    Ms. Ross is the President and CEO of the Anxiety Disorders Association of America, and she says, "Recognize that, yeah, they're going to be yucky, and they're going to show up on a car and on our clothes. So what? People should get comfortable with them, make friends with the fact they're here."

    She also recommends deep breathing and relaxation techniques to help calm those jitters about critters. However, if one finds that the phobia interferes with daily activities or causes panic attacks, a visit to a doctor or a mental health professional would be advisable.

    If you injure yourself while trying to swat away the pesky critters, please contact us here at Oak Tree PT immediately. We can help you. :-)

    p.s. By the way, the sound generated by these party-hardy male cicadas (it's only the males, desperately trying to attract females, who are even capable of making sounds) has been measured at up to 90 decibels, which exceeds OSHA noise standards.

    Anyway, with the cooler weather and the frequent rains we've been having, the cicadas are now almost gone. You have 17 years to prepare yourselves for the next brood. :-)


    IMPROVING BALANCE AND DECREASING FALL RISK USING T'AI CHI: Techniques Yielding Dramatic Results- -A Day of Participation and Movement


    Cross Country Seminars:

    Seminar Division
    1645 Murfreesboro Road, Suite J
    Nashville, TN 37217
    Phone #: (800) 397-0180

    June 22, 2004: Jackson, MS
    Clarion Hotel
    400 Greymont Ave.
    Jackson, MS 39202
    (601) 969-2141

    June 23, 2004: Baton Rouge, LA
    Sheraton Convention Center
    102 France St.
    Baton Rouge, LA 70802
    (225) 242-2600

    June 24, 2004: New Orleans, LA
    Crowne Plaza Astor
    739 Canal St.
    New Orleans, LA 70130
    (504) 962-0500

    July 13, 2004: Eugene, OR
    Eugene Hilton
    66 E. 6th Ave.
    Eugene, OR 97401
    (541) 342-2000

    July 14, 2004: Portland, OR
    Holiday Inn
    8439 N.E. Columbia Blvd.
    Portland, OR 97220
    (503) 256-5000

    July 15, 2004: Seattle, WA
    Holiday Inn Select
    1 S. Grady
    Renton, WA 98055
    (424) 226-7700

    August 3, 2004: Great Falls, MT
    Holiday Inn Great Falls
    400 10th Ave. S.
    Great Falls, MT 59405
    (406) 727-7200

    August 4, 2004: Spokane, WA
    Mirabeau Park Hotel and Convention Center
    1100 N. Sullivan Rd.
    Spokane, WA 99037
    (509) 924-9000

    August 5, 2004: Boise, ID
    Holiday Inn Boise Airport
    3300 Vista Ave.
    Boise, ID 83705
    (208) 344-8365


    Single: $179.00 *(Early: $169)
    **2 to 4: $159.00 *(Early: $149 ea.)
    **5 or more: $139.00 *(Early: $129 ea.)

    *Early registrations received seven days prior to seminar date.
    **Price per person when registering at the same time.

    Registration: 7:30 a.m.
    Includes complimentary continental breakfast
    Seminar: 8:00 AM to 3:30 PM

    Approvals for this Course:
    Cross Country University is a Preferred Provider of professional continuing education with the National Association of Boards of Examiners of Long Term Care Administrators (NAB) and has approved this program for the number of clock hours listed under their sponsor agreement with NAB/NCERS. This program is approved for 6 continuing education clock hours Approval #2422004-17191-6. State licensure boards, however, have final authority on the acceptance of individual courses. 7.2 contact hours for nurses are awarded. Cross Country University, the Education and Training Division of Cross Country Inc., is accredited as a provider of continuing education nursing education by the American Nurses Credentialing Center's Commission on Accreditation. Cross Country University is approved by the California Board of Registered Nursing, Provider #CEP 13345, for 7.2 contact hours. Cross Country University is an approved provider with the Iowa Board Of Nursing, approved provider #328. This course is offered for 7.2 contact hours. Cross Country University Provider #P3097 is recognized by the NATA Board of Certification, Inc. to offer continuing education for certified athletic trainers. This course is offered for 6 CEUs.

    Care Resources, Inc.

    Continuing Education Department
    1026 Cromwell Bridge Road
    Baltimore, MD 21286-3308
    (410) 583-2490 phone
    (888) 613-2275 toll-free
    (410) 583-9670 fax

    October 21, 2004: Baltimore, MD
    Registration: 8:00 a.m.
    Seminar: 8:30 a.m.--4:30 p.m.

    $145; $155 Late Registration (Late fee applies for registrations received at Care 21 days or less before the course)

    .6 CEUs, 6 contact hours



    1 - 4 Fireworks Safety Month

    National Aphasia Awareness Month

    Vision Research Month

    6 - 12 National Headache Awareness Week

    Myasthenia Gravis Awareness Month
    National Scleroderma Awareness Month

    5 - 12 Dystonia Awareness Week

    6 National Cancer Survivors Day

    20 - 26 Helen Keller Deaf - Blind Awareness Week

    Find a short synopsis of all Health-related bills before Congress, and/or all Medicare/Medicaid-related bills before Congress by clicking on the links. Who voted for/against the most recent bills in the Capitol? Check the vote tallies here. Want to find the names, addresses, phone numbers, and e-mail addresses of your elected representatives? Get all of that information by clicking this link: just enter your zip-code.


    . Quick Links...

    More About Oak Tree Physical Therapy

    Newsletter Archives


    Safe Home Pediatric Physical Therapy

    Mid-Atlantic Region Special Needs Summer Camps

    National Health Information Center: 2004 National Health Observances


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