December 2014

During the holiday season we see a significant rise in patients who are experiencing back, shoulder and neck pain.  Rushing around and carrying too many things at once, and in the wrong way, places added stress on bodies which may increase the chance of injury. Consider the following advice from our physical therapists to keep your body happy and healthy this holiday season.  


Test an object's weight before lifting it. And for heavy packages or luggage, try pushing them with the foot to see if they are something you can easily carry. If things do look a little on the hefty side, take smaller loads that are less likely to strain the back and easier on the arm and shoulder muscles. Don't hesitate to rent a cart if you're at the airport.   

Lift properly. Keep the feet shoulder-width apart and bend the knees when lifting so the big muscles in the thighs take the load instead of the more delicate spine and shoulder joints. Also, stay upright instead of leaning over the object in question. That for sure helps keep the strain off the lower back.  


Try not to carry a heavy purse. Instead consider using a fanny pack or small backpack, using both straps on the backpack. Also, use good posture so that the hips, not the shoulders, take the load of the pack.   
Steer clear of the land of the clip-clop shoes. Heels may be fashionable, but wearing comfortable shoes is something men and women throughout the world do as a courtesy to themselves. Many ankle and foot injuries occur from carrying packages while wearing high heels on hard surfaces such as the floors in shopping malls.   
Don't lug. As the shopping bags start to fill consider a breather by toting them to the car. It's not a good idea to lug overstuffed shopping bags for extended periods. By making repeated trips to your car to unload, you get a good workout as well as relieve stress on your back muscles.   
Treat Yourself. 
  • Consider a massage, even a mini shoulder and head massage, is restorative and soothing.
  • Try a foaming oil bath now and then. 
  • Bending and stretching in the shower can keep muscles toned and the body limber. 
  • Take a deep breath and sigh audibly.
Be a smart and healthy shopper! 
Happy Holidays!



October: Our clinic staff walked more than 1531 miles (beating the goal of 1373 miles).
November: Our goal is 1421 miles. We are still waiting for the final results to be tallied. 

To date, we raised over $6000 for the Danny Dietz Leadership & Training Foundation (surpassing our goal of $5000).  Danny Dietz's father (Danny Dietz Sr.) and Matt Luoma (member of the DDLTF team) came to our clinic on November 20th to thank us and you for the great support.


Back row: Juliana Remer, Emily Winkler, Danny Dietz Sr., Matt Luoma, Robert Letendre, Wendy Hildreth, Renee Gonzalez, Stella Agnes

Middle Row: Jessica Mehsikohmer, Beverly Parrott, Gail Molloy, Cyndi Jensen

Front Row: Jordan Couchon, Jenn Berry, Deb Baker, Addie Swyden, Johanna Cole



Winners of the FitBit Flex

PTIS Staff: Cyndi Jensen

Non-PTIS Staff: Louisa Morgan


Nixons Coffee House (
My Favorite Muffin (

for their donations to the November 15th Event.


Addie Swyden for organizing everything!



Congratulations to Jenn Berry and Jordan Couchon for passing their intensive exams. They are both now Certified Orthopedic Manual Therapists (COMT).  GREAT JOB!

Weekly Classes For Your Health

Every Monday at 11:00 am at Pearl clinic
Every Tuesday at 12:00 pm at Meridian clinic 
Ugly Sweater Run
Many of the PTIS staff are participating in the Ugly Sweater Run on December 20. If you would like to put on your ugliest sweater and join us, please register here.  

Staff Birthdays This Month
        Phit Pickle - December 6
The Story of the Christmas Pickle

The tradition of the Christmas Pickle has got to be one of the strangest modern Christmas customs in that no one is quite sure why it exists at all!*

In the 1880s Woolworth stores started selling glass ornaments imported from Germany and some were in the shape of various fruit and vegetables. It seems that pickles must have been among the selection!

Around the same time it was claimed that the Christmas Pickle was a very old German tradition and that the pickle was the last ornament hung on the Christmas tree and then the first child to find the pickle got an extra present. However, this seems to be a total myth! Not many people in Germany have even heard of the Christmas Pickle! 

There are two other rather far-fetched stories linking the pickle to Christmas.

One features a fighter in the American Civil War who was born in Bavaria (an area of what is now Germany). He was a prisoner, and starving, he begged a guard for one last pickle before he died. The guard took pity on him and gave a pickle to him. The pickle gave him the mental and physical strength to live on!

The other story is linked to St. Nicholas. It's a medieval tale of two Spanish boys traveling home from a boarding school for the holidays. When they stopped at an inn for the night, the evil innkeeper, killed the boys and put them in a pickle barrel. That evening, St. Nicholas stopped at the same inn, and found the boys in the barrel and miraculously bought them back to life!

There is an old legend about St. Nicholas rescuing boys from a barrel but the barrel was originally holding meat for pies - not pickles!

So it's most likely that an ornament salesmen, with a lot of spare pickles to sell, invented the legend of the Christmas Pickle!

The American city of Berrien Springs, MI (also known as the Christmas Pickle Capital of the World) has an annual pickle festival held during the early part of December.

*We all know that pickles are so fabulous that the holidays would not be same without them. At least that's what Phit thinks!


turns what we have into 
~ Unknown
Roasted Brussels Sprouts


Seriously, they're good for you. Like, really good. Brussels sprouts are an excellent source of vitamin A, vitamin C (way more than an orange), vitamin K, as well as beta carotene, folic acid, iron, magnesium and fiber. They're also high in selenium, which is associated with reduced risks of certain cancers, as well as increased male virility.


1 1/2 pounds Brussels sprouts
3 tablespoons good olive oil
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.


Cut off the brown ends of the Brussels sprouts and pull off any yellow outer leaves. Mix them in a bowl with the olive oil, salt and pepper. Pour them on a sheet pan and roast for 35 to 40 minutes, until crisp on the outside and tender on the inside. Shake the pan from time to time to brown the sprouts evenly. Sprinkle with more kosher salt ( I like these salty like French fries), and serve immediately.

(The Barefoot Contessa Cookbook)


Thank you for your interest in health and wellness. We believe Staying Active is important for WORK.SPORT.LIFE.

From The Entire Staff

Physical Therapy & Injury Specialists


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