Prior to the 2010-2011 NBA season, former Minnesota Timberwolves point guard Johnny Flynn underwent a surgery to repair a labral tear and remove extra bone in his hip. For his rehab, Flynn came to Accelerated Sports Therapy and Fitness and worked with ASTF co-founder Andre Deloya, who is also director of rehabilitation for the Timberwolves.
Flynn was looking forward to playing basketball without the pain he was forced to overcome near the end of his rookie year. The surgery corrected Flynn’s hip issues, but it was up to Andre and the ASTF staff to get him back on the court.
Timberwolves.com Writer Jonah Ballow followed Flynn to ASTF for a morning therapy session and chronicled the innovative techniques used to strengthen and retrain the muscles around his hip. Click on this link to both read the story and watch the video profiling Flynn at the clinic.
A Rider’s Return to the Saddle
As a competitive cowboy-mounted shooter, Toshana Barthel has avoided serious injury, despite an intense schedule and being bucked off numerous horses over the years. However, her ride of good fortune came to an end last fall when her hip locked during a competition, causing intense pain.
The hip injury would need to be fixed through surgery. The recovery stage would test Barthel, who was unfamiliar to the rehab process with only sprains and minor injuries in her medical history.
“I didn’t realize how long the process would really be, so they were great to keep me positive and reinforce that I was getting better,” she said.
Barthel is referring to the therapists at Accelerated Sports Therapy & Fitness. She chose the clinic after listening to her surgeon’s advice and reviewing the clinic’s history, which included successfully treating professional athletes with similar injuries.
Initially, Barthel said the clinic worked with her to set weekly milestones. The progress was substantial early on, and she was encouraged by the therapy, which she said included some of the best workouts of her life.
However, Barthel eventually hit that plateau many experience when recovering from such serious procedures. As she got back on her horse, the mental barriers, like a lack of confidence and worries of reinjuring, proved to be the toughest to overcome.
“The PT was great during these times to help me figure out what was an actual physical limitation and what was a mental hurdle that I could push through,” she said.
With each barrier she overcame, Barthel was another step closer to her ultimate goal of competing in cowboy-mounted shooting events at a high level. Her therapy was eventually tailored to this mission, which differed from hockey players and other athletes rehabbing from similar hip procedures.
“I was doing strength and balance exercises with the balance ball I never would’ve thought of, but I continue doing them now since they are so effective,” she said. “We even discussed how I was going to start riding again in stages to allow my body to acclimate. It was great to come back to therapy after a riding session to discuss how things felt and how to work out accordingly.”
About six months out from the surgery, Barthel still checks in with Accelerated for mental or physical guidance in her workouts. Following her time at the clinic, Barthel said her therapists are more than happy to still give her advice today.
“I had such a great experience that I miss them now on my own! The patience they had with me and what they taught me is invaluable,” she said. “I never would have recovered so quickly or so well without their guidance.”
A story of Angie’s return to wakeboarding following multiple torn ligaments in her knee
Her day on the end of the towrope was coming to an end when she decided to push
herself to hit one more jump. This drive to push harder turned Angie into the wake
boarder she is today. But this time the result was different.
Upon landing, Angie looked down at her dislocated knee and immediately realized
the extent of her injury. She was rushed to hospital where her MRI revealed a
blown ACL, LCL, PCL (the terrible triad) and a torn meniscus. “It completely turned
my world upside down,” she said.
Angie’s doctor informed her of the long road to recovery she had ahead of her, and
at the end of it, she still may never wakeboard again. Step one would be three weeks
of physical therapy before the surgery would occur.
“I asked which physical therapist was the best,” Angie said. “My doctor said
Accelerated Sports Therapy and Fitness. That’s all I needed to hear”.
Shortly after beginning her physical therapy, Angie’s anxiety was eased by the bond
she quickly formed with the Accelerated staff.
“They were very encouraging, had a great sense of humor and always knew exactly
what to say,” she said. “It was the best environment anyone would want to be in”.
Following her surgery, Angie was back at Accelerated for her rehab. The
therapy proved difficult, but with the pain, she also learned to appreciate each
accomplishment – no matter how small.
“The first time I could actually pedal the stationary bike all the way around it felt
like a small miracle,” she said.
The Accelerated staff catered to Angie’s most important objective of getting back
on the water by the next summer. And with the help of a knee brace, she was back
to wakeboarding and jumping from wake to wake as she gradually gained back her
As the weather warms up, Angie, like every spring before, can’t wait to get back on
the water. She also can’t help but feel thankful for the therapy that got her back.
“I am not saying I would like to require physical therapy any time soon – or ever
again – but if it became necessary I would go back to Accelerated in a heartbeat,” she
Picture caption: Angie showed her appreciation for her care at Accelerated by
autographing a picture of her performing one of her first jumps post-recovery.