9 Questions with Dr. Jonathon Geisinger

9 Questions with Dr. Jonathon Geisinger

We’re digging into the impressive roster of physicians we have here at Orthopedic Institute (OI), letting you get to know some of the team members that make us proud.

Get to know Dr. Jonathon Geisinger, the latest addition to our “Patients First” team! 

Dr. Geisinger trained at some of the best and largest institutions in America and graduated at the top of his medical school from the University of Iowa. He is a fellowship-trained orthopedic surgeon specializing in neck and back treatment.

Let’s take a look at why Dr. Geisinger is passionate about helping patients get back to life with decreased pain and increased mobility.

1. How did you decide to become a physician?

Growing up on a farm, I developed an aptitude for fixing things. I worked in my father’s swine buildings fixing and maintaining nearly every system. I thoroughly enjoyed fixing tractors, combines, and various other implements on the farm. I have always had a deep desire to understand how things work. Then in high school, I had my first physiology class and it was the only subject that piqued my interest more than working outside.

I had an opportunity to enroll in a career transitions class during high school that allowed me to follow surgeons at my local hospital and learn about orthopedics. I remember watching total knee and hip replacements and I was fascinated by the instrumentation and the implants that were used in surgery. From this experience, I knew I wanted to go into the surgical field. I set my goal on applying for medical school to become a surgeon. 

2. What led you to join the OI team?

Geography! My wife and I grew up on farms a few miles apart from each other just south of Spencer, Iowa. We moved to Iowa City where I attended college and then medical school at the University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine. After graduating, we moved to Royal Oak, a suburb of Detroit, Michigan; where I did five years of orthopedic residency. 

Our two boys were born while living in Royal Oak and we realized the importance of having family close so they could be a part of our children’s lives. It was crucial to us that our kids grow up in the heart of the Midwest so we could share with them the agrarian values my wife and I were raised with. With this in mind, we were set on coming back. I feel very fortunate to find a prestigious position with a premier orthopedic group in the tristate area.

3. What is your favorite part of your job?

There is nothing in the world that is more rewarding than when the patient and I achieve a good outcome together. When people come to see me, most are suffering from arm, leg, or back pain that has dramatically impacted their lives. They are often unable to function and or work at a level they once were easily able to perform.

Working with someone to find the right treatment, whether it is non-operative or operative, to achieve pain relief and restore function is the best part of my job. It gives me a great deal of satisfaction when I see people come back after their treatment or surgery and they are smiling and resuming their normal lives. It drives me to get out of bed early each day and helps me to look forward to the work I will accomplish.

4. What do you feel are the strengths of Orthopedic Institute’s physician team?

Everybody wants to be on a winning team. That describes the Orthopedic Institute staff. We are a top tier orthopedic group with an outstanding reputation for integrity, quality, and high patient satisfaction.

5. What is the best part about working with patients?

The physician/patient relationship is a very sacred and privileged one. A favorite aspect of my career has been building these relationships with people. While patients come from all walks of life and often have complex problems, each have certain things in common. Each person has responsibilities and cannot afford to have their lives altered by pain and disability. Building relationships with these people and gaining their trust that I will do my best to alleviate their pain and get their function back is a commitment that I take very seriously.

6. If you could tell every patient one thing before each came in, what would it be?

Relax! Patients have a lot of uncertainty when it comes to their spine. Please rest assured that I will listen to your concerns and develop a treatment plan that is tailored to you. Together, we will go over spine models and review your imaging so that when your visit is over, you will have a much better understanding of your condition as it relates to your spine and a plan for recovery.

7. How do you spend your time when you’re not at Orthopedic Institute?

My wife and I love returning to the farms where we grew up just south of Spencer, Iowa. Our families continue to grow corn and soybeans and also raise livestock. We strategically take vacations in the spring and fall to help in the field with planting and harvest. Also, my wife and I are working with our kids to build our own hobby farm. Much of our spare time is spent building fences for our livestock. We are excited to be back in the area and to have the ability to give our kids the same agrarian upbringing that my wife and I had.

8. What is your ideal way to spend your birthday?

Working. I love my medical career, but I also love working outside. The best way to spend a birthday would be working with my kids taking care of livestock or working in the fields.

9. If you could have dinner with anyone (living or dead, fiction or non-fiction) who would it be?

Jesus. He was the ultimate physician. Through God our father, Jesus healed people with the power of his touch. God has helped me to be in the position that I am in as a surgeon. With the blessings he has given me, I feel a serious responsibility to use my talents to care for people in a diligent, honest, and compassionate way using the skills I have developed in my many years of experience.

Dr. Jonathon Geisinger is a wonderful addition to our “Patients First” care team. Learn more about his expertise – then schedule your appointment today.

Top 5 Orthopedic Tips for Your Workout Routine

Top 5 Orthopedic Tips for Your Workout Routine

From pulled muscles and ankle sprains to knee, hip and shoulder pain—it’s no secret that when we work out we put ourselves at greater risk for strains, sprains and more. We asked the experts (our highly-trained Orthopedic Institute physicians) for their top tips on staying healthy while staying active.

Check out these top 5 orthopedic tips for athletes of all ages and skill levels.

1. Warm up and cool down

Whether you’re part of a competitive team or a “weekend warrior,” warming up your body prepares your cardiovascular system for activity and increases blood flow to your muscles. Cooling down after your workout allows for gradual recovery of both your heart rate and blood pressure. Both are important parts of exercising injury-free. Proper warm-ups and stretches specific to your sport can also help prevent painful pulled muscles.

2. Invest in the right equipment

No matter the sport or the amount of activity, investing in the proper shoes and equipment can help prevent injury along the way—especially when it comes to arch and heel support. Not sure what you need? Consider talking to a physical therapist, or athletic trainer. You might even benefit from inserts in your athletic shoes, which can absorb energy and help correct alignment. Our pedorthist can help with all your insert needs. Do a lot of running? Check out our post on how to find the perfect running shoe.

3. Use proper technique

From golfing, hiking and weight lifting to tennis, running, swimming and everything in between—every athletic activity involves technique. If you’re not actively working with coaches as part of your training, take time to learn the correct techniques associated with your sport or workout routine. For example, learning how to do the lunge correctly can protect your knees.

4. Switch up your routine

Not only does this beat workout boredom and keep you excited about athletic activity, it is essential for avoiding overuse injuries. By mixing up your activities, you give those overused muscles, joints and ligaments a chance to rest and recover before putting them into action again. Some great ways to give your joints a rest include elliptical machines, swimming, biking or yoga. Looking for new ideas? Check out these five unique ways to exercise outdoors this spring.

5. Don’t overdo it

You’ve heard the phrase, “listen to our body.” It’s one of the best things you can do to avoid a sports-related injury. When you begin a new sport or workout routine you’ve never tried before, begin slowly and steadily to avoid pulling or straining muscles. Even if you have been training hard, never let your competitive urges push you to strain or compromise your technique in an attempt to do more. Injury can often be the result.

5 Benefits of an Orthopedic Walk-In Clinic

5 Benefits of an Orthopedic Walk-In Clinic

Injuries and illnesses don’t always occur during business hours – but heading to the ER can be expensive and time-consuming. That’s why walk-in clinics are so great! Where else can you get high-quality care, with less wait, without an appointment? That being said, not all walk-in clinics offer the same types of care.

If you suspect a muscle, bone or joint injury, here are five benefits of an orthopedic walk-in clinic.

1. Specialized expertise

Primary care walk-in clinics are staffed with general practitioners for good reason. They see everything from colds and flu to chest pain and eye infections. An orthopedic walk-in clinic, on the other hand, specializes in bone, muscle and joint injuries. A medical specialist, with extensive training in orthopedics, will look over your injury and carefully evaluate the situation.

2. Coordinated follow-up care

Whether you’ve broken a bone, torn a rotator cuff, hurt your back or one of any number of orthopedic injuries, odds are your primary care physician will refer you to an orthopedic specialist for follow-up care. From initial diagnosis to ongoing care, starting the process at an orthopedic urgent care clinic is like cutting out the middle man. No need for unnecessary appointments.

3. Less expensive than the ER

Emergency rooms are for critical and life-threatening situations. If your orthopedic injury can’t wait, but it’s not life-threatening, save yourself the expense (and the long wait times) of an ER. Just like hospitals, an orthopedic walk-in clinic has the ability perform X-rays, MRIs, and other procedures. And because most are an extension of an orthopedic practice, the cost savings over an ER visit are substantial.

4. “What if” sports injuries

Any athlete, or parent of a student athlete, knows the drill… something hurts, but it’s (probably) not broken. The coach says, “tough it out.” A friend says, “ice it.” These types of “what if” sports injury situations occur everyday—and more often than not, athletes try to play through pain. But what if they end up injuring themselves worse? Good news! An orthopedic walk-in clinic can help diagnose the issue in a timely manner so they can start their recovery right away.

5. Hands, wrists, elbows, feet, ankles, shoulders, necks and backs

If you’re thinking “that’s just a list of body parts that could be giving me pain on any given day,” you’re right. Orthopedic walk-in clinics specialize in bone, muscle and joint care. When you experience a sudden injury or pain that can’t wait, skip the primary care clinic or ER and go straight to the experts.

Orthopedic Institute is proud to offer two OI Now walk-in clinics in Sioux Falls and Yankton. We’re here for you and your family, no appointments or referrals necessary unless required by your insurance.

4 Key Benefits of Going to an Orthopedic Walk-In Clinic

4 Key Benefits of Going to an Orthopedic Walk-In Clinic

Whether it’s scheduling, varying degrees of urgency or fear of price tags, dealing with orthopedic emergencies or non-emergencies can be tricky. Thankfully, orthopedic walk-in clinics provide an option for those acute injuries and pain and they don’t require an appointment.

Here are four key benefits of an orthopedic walk-in clinic, a feature that Orthopedic Institute (OI) happens to offer.

Avoid Unnecessary ER Visits

Not every injury is alike. That’s why some minor, non-emergency injuries that require treatment but may not be urgent enough to foot the bill for an emergency room visit can be dealt with thanks to orthopedic walk-in clinics. Say you experienced a knee sprain or fracture during an evening sporting event—you may be more inclined to take this condition to an orthopedic walk-in clinic than to a potentially pricey emergency wing of a hospital.

Be Seen After Hours

Speaking of time of day, one of the biggest benefits of orthopedic walk-in clinics for daytime workers is the ability to be seen after hours for spur-of-the-moment issues such as flare-up pain, dislocation, fracture or muscle spasm that is causing loss of sleep. Timing may vary from clinic to clinic, but these walk-in-style situations will typically offer hours both after 5 p.m. on weekdays and on weekends for added availability. For example, OI’s own walk-in clinic in Sioux Falls provides weekday hours from 3 to 7 p.m., and Saturday hours from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.  In Yankton, we see patients Monday to Friday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Reduce Costs

It can be expensive to see a doctor in an immediate situation. Luckily, walk-in orthopedic clinics often provide flexible hours for more immediate care in cases of injury or sudden pain. Better yet, specialty clinics such as OI have the equipment available for treating these types of injuries—which isn’t always true of a general walk-in clinic. These general clinics may be able to diagnose and offer minimal services and pain relief but will often times require a referral to follow up with a different clinic or physician.

A walk-in clinic at a specialized healthcare provider such as an orthopedic clinic can offer you highly personalized care that a general urgent-care clinic may not be able to provide—not immediately, at least. OI’s walk-in clinic puts you in front of an orthopedic health professional from the get-go to meet your specific needs.

See the Right Healthcare Providers

One of the key benefits of an orthopedic walk-in clinic is that, if you need to be referred to a specialist, such as a hand, foot and ankle, or back specialist, a walk-in clinic healthcare professional can supply you the connection you need to be seen by the appropriate people, often in a timelier manner than you may expect. OI’s team consists of a variety of caregivers, from physical and occupational therapists to interventional pain management services to orthopedic surgeons, so you have comprehensive orthopedic care at your disposal.

Ready to Be Seen?

Click here for details on how to be seen at OI’s walk-in clinics, OI Now.

10 Questions with Dr. Eric S. Watson

10 Questions with Dr. Eric S. Watson

We’re digging into the impressive roster of physicians we have here at Orthopedic Institute (OI), letting you get to know some of the team members that make us proud.

Today’s showcased team member is Dr. Eric S. Watson, one of our physicians. Dr. Watson graduated from California State University—Fullerton before attending medical school at Creighton University. He joined the OI team in 2004 and has spent his time offering specialized care in foot, ankle, knee and general orthopedics.

Let’s take a look at why Dr. Watson loves serving his patients and how he approaches work in the orthopedic medicine field.

1. How did you decide to become a physician?

I like to say that, when I was five years old, I broke my femur, was in traction and a body cast and, after that, had always wanted to be an orthopedic surgeon—except that’s not really true. (The femur breaking part is, but my interest in orthopedics started much later.)

I always liked science and always did well in sciences in high school. I went to college and started pre-med—I liked the courses and the science behind it, but I didn’t really know everything that being a doctor entailed. I took a course to be an EMT, and I worked as a tech in the ER—that was really my first patient experience. I really enjoyed it. I liked taking care of the patients. I liked what I was seeing—the medical side of it. When I decided I wanted to go to medical school, I liked orthopedics best. I applied for residency, and here I am.

2. What led you to join the OI team?

I had been working in Kansas City, and my wife was finished with her residency. My family lives south of Las Vegas, and that really was not a place we wanted to raise our family, so we thought maybe we would look up Sioux Falls. Before we moved here, we happened to be visiting when Orthopedic Institute had built its new building. We were with my wife’s family, and they took us by it—they kept dropping hints that we should live here. It was a no-brainer once I interviewed at OI. There is just much more opportunity—you have your own life, your own say.

3. What’s your favorite part of your job?

Obviously, I like the technical piece. I like surgery. I love putting fractures back together. It is also always fun to get to know people. You see them, they come in and they are kind of at their worst. They are having a bad day when they have to meet me, usually. Then they heal and get well. What is really fun for me isn’t the last time I see them in the office, but when I run into them on the street. I see them walking, not limping, and it makes you feel good. I like it when I see people out in the community that I have taken care of.

4. What are the strengths of the OI physician team?

We don’t have any holes—we have got everything covered. We cover every piece of orthopedics. We have joint reconstruction plus revision. We have a tumor guy and a pediatric guy—hand, foot and ankle. There is just nothing we are lacking. I think people would be amazed at what we do here and the things we accomplish. There is almost no need to go elsewhere. I think that is the strength—we have the areas covered, and they are covered by very strong surgeons.

5. What’s the best part of working with patients?

It is really fun to see them come back and resume their life—that is one of the biggest things in orthopedics. It’s concrete. It’s not like having a chronic illness. If someone had a fracture, and you put it back together, they heal. So many people have these injuries and they struggle, but they do well in spite of it. It is awesome. That is what I get the most out of—seeing people excel.

6. If you could tell each patient one thing before they came in to see you, what would it be?

What I would want people to know is that my decision-making is always going to be based on what I would do for myself or my own family.  That does not mean that everyone’s care is going to be the same—it depends on what the overall situation is. I try to look at it from the perspective of what I would want, what I would want for my mom, cousin or kids. That’s how I try to make my decisions.

7. What would you consider your career highlight?

I don’t know—I am not sure if I have had it yet. There is not one patient or one thing that makes a highlight. All of the individuals go into the tapestry, so hopefully your highlight is your career—not one thing in your career. Hopefully it is consistently good care over an extended amount of time. To me, that would be the highlight. That you would consistently do well by your patients.  There are always certain cases that make you feel good, but that’s not the end all, be all. The goal is to do well for everyone you take care of.

8. How do you spend your time when you’re not at OI?

Usually shuttling kids to athletic things. I feel like a chauffeur when I am not here. I’m a soccer and hockey dad. I also like to fish. (I don’t get to fish very often, but I enjoy fishing.) I really enjoy watching my kids play sports and music, too. My oldest enjoys music, so we go to his recitals and performances. To see someone play an instrument, because I have none of that skill, is impressive enough. But then, to have practiced something, get up in front of your peers and people you don’t even know and perform is… Wow!

9. What’s your go-to movie snack?

Junior Mints! I am a bit of a Junior Mints snob. If they are old and kind of chewy, then I am not that big of a fan. But if they are new and fresh and the chocolate is almost like crispy then… good stuff. By the way, I don’t take them in the operating room—no Kramers. (Excuse the Seinfeld reference.)

10. How would you spend your ideal birthday?

A birthday is just a day—it’s nice when people wish you well, but I guess I don’t have a perfect birthday plan. Since I have a wife and four kids, I would rather be doing what the family wants to do. We make a big deal about our kids’ birthdays—we like to make it all about them! I think going through medical school and residency that holidays or special days seem to be de-valued, because sometimes you are on-call for your birthday or Christmas. We still get together for whatever we’re celebrating, but the “day” itself does not always mean that much—and I know my wife is kind of the same way, working in the ER. (They are never closed either.)

4 Low-Impact Exercises Everyone Should Be Doing

4 Low-Impact Exercises Everyone Should Be Doing

Despite your best efforts, not everyone is in the right shape or at the right life stage for an intense workout every day. But thanks to a wealth of options, you can still get in your regular exercise without engaging in high-intensity, high-impact routines.

Here are four low-impact, effective exercises that you should consider.

Rowing

No, you don’t have to hop in the next kayak or canoe to get your rowing in. A great low-impact exercise you can do at home or in the gym is making use of the rowing machine. It’s a phenomenal way to work out your full body without putting undue pressure on your knees, ankles and other joints. Take it at your own speed, and work up to more intense workouts. As an added bonus, it can work wonders for your back alignment and posture when done properly. Make sure to consult a certified trainer to ensure you’re using correct form so that you maximize the effectiveness of the exercise and decrease risk of injury.

Yoga

There are plenty of benefits to making yoga a part of your daily life—flexibility, focus and balance, just to name a few. It also happens to be a low-impact exercise that can still offer up noticeable results in your fitness routine. There is a spectrum of options from which to choose, including relaxation yoga and sculpting yoga—you choose your comfort level, and instructor-led classes can get you started. When it comes to trying something new, safety in numbers can help. Gather some friends for a trial run of a local yoga course.

Step Climbing

It’s an action you likely have to do on a semi-regular basis—why not make it part of your exercise routine? Step climbing, whether it’s the staircases in your home, a stair machine or platform you’d use for a step aerobics class, burns ample calories without putting too much stress on your joints. If lunges or squats are out of your wheelhouse, step climbing can be a good replacement exercise with lower impact. And Prevention magazine estimates 45 minutes could clock in at as much as 429 calories burned, on average.

Hiking

If running is too high-impact for your tastes and walking isn’t quite exciting enough to keep your attention, why not introduce a nature element to the mix? Pick a favorite nearby state park or nature trail, and engage in some hiking. Sometimes adding things such as bird-watching or exploring can make exercise seem like less of a chore. And as long as you wear proper footwear and protect yourself with bug repellent, it’s a great way to get a low-impact walk in without feeling like time is crawling by.

Need Training Guidance?

The Orthopedic Institute team and OI Performance Training and Physical Therapy Sioux Falls , can help you with proper training technique throughout your fitness journey. Click here to learn more about what we can provide.

5 Things to Look for in Orthopedic-Friendly Shoes

5 Things to Look for in Orthopedic-Friendly Shoes

Whether you’re accommodating for a temporary or chronic condition, shoes with orthopedic features can be a great tool for improving your foot health. They can go a long way toward treating conditions such as blisters, long-term foot pain, bone spurs or arthritis—all symptoms that can be born out of wearing improper footwear. If you’ve decided it’s time to look for a better shoe, whether by pedorthist recommendation or by personal interest, there are a few things to look for when trying out your options.

Here are five things you should look for in your orthopedic shoe purchase.

Inside Features

When investigating the inner workings of your everyday shoe of choice, it’s important to look for a few key elements. Does the insole provide adequate support—is it removable, and does it offer the right amount of cushion for your distinct arch? How about toe room—does it offer the right amount of space to prevent irritation or calluses over time? (Look for round- or square-toed shoes, and avoid shoes that come to a point.) The bottoms of each person’s feet can vary widely, so make sure you’ve taken steps to ensure your individual shape is accommodated for. (Your left foot may even vary from your right!)

You could also benefit from features that you can add to your existing shoes, such as certain inserts and custom-made appliances. For example, some steel flat inserts are used to help with toe pain, some small, custom-made heel lifts can help with planar fasciitis—the list is virtually endless. Talk with an Orthopedic Institute specialist to see if this could work for you.

Are you an avid runner? There are even more considerations to make when it comes to shoes built for joggers. Check out our blog on determining a best-fit shoe!

Outside Features

The comfort and effectiveness of your everyday-use shoes depends on more than just the inner elements. Outer pieces can have a big impact on quality as well. Look for pairs that feature breathable fabric on the top of the shoe for optimum ventilation in warmer conditions. The style of the base of the shoe is also critically important—make sure it features quality tread to keep your contact with the ground stable and balanced.

Adequate Heel

Many shoes feature a slight heel. Depending on your arch and the foot condition you’re accounting for, a slight lift can actually help in some cases, such as plantar fasciitis. (Consult with your pedorthist on which heel features are best-fit for you and your condition—depending on what you’re accounting for, less heel may be a better idea.) You should also keep your eyes peeled for pairs that have a stable heel counter—the cup that offers structure to the back half of the shoe. A good way to spot this is to test a heel’s bendability. If it’s difficult to bend, it should provide stable support.

True Fit

This may or may not surprise you, but your feet can experience slight changes in size throughout the day depending on factors such as humidity and temperature. That’s why picking the absolute right fit can be so important for someone looking for shoes that maintain quality foot health. Consider trying on pairs in the afternoon or evening hours once your feet have been walked on for several hours and have slightly expanded from use and outside conditions. This also goes for older shoe-buyers—our feet change throughout our lives, so if you’re still wearing the same size you wore years ago, it might be time to take updated measurements.

(Pro tip: When pinpointing the best fit, it’s important to wear the style of socks you’ll most often be utilizing when wearing these shoes—it will give you the truly best idea of the size you should buy.)

Specialization

When it comes to finding quality shoes, it helps to do your homework before you head to the store. While some major footwear manufacturers may offer shoes with joint-healthy support in addition to standard designs, they may not have a true specialization in this style of shoe. Look for companies with good reviews and endorsements of health organizations or manufacturers that solely focus on quality, well-designed and manufactured shoes. It also can’t hurt to speak to your pedorthist about best practices when buying. Check out OI’s own resident pedorthist, and schedule an evaluation!

5 Unique Ways to Exercise Outdoors This Spring

5 Unique Ways to Exercise Outdoors This Spring

The warm weather is upon us, so it’s time to break out of the indoor exercise routine and hit the outdoors. But now that you’re finally free to comfortably get in an outside workout, what new methods should you try out?

Whether you need new ideas to fit a busy spring schedule or want to try out a new regimen, here are a few unique ways to get your regular exercise this season.

Full-Body Boarding

We’re nowhere near an ocean – but there’s still no shortage of weekends at “the lake” throughout the spring and summer. So the next time you hit the water with family for some boating, tubing or paddleboating try out something new that works out your entire body. Though it looks leisurely, stand-up paddleboarding can be a strenuous and satisfying workout. It works out your core muscles, as well as forces you to emphasize balance in your routine. Give it a shot next time you’re headed for a calm body of water.

Baseball “Breaks”

Whether you’re a parent of a little leaguer or simply a big softball or baseball fan, you might find yourself hitting up some bleachers in the coming months. But instead of letting the likely uncomfortable seating arrangements give you sore “sits bones,” take a break between innings to get some bleacher pushups in. You could even make it a routine or competition amongst your fellow team parents of who can get the most in before the next at-bat. These incline pushups can offer a different level of resistance than flat floors do and work your shoulder and upper arm muscles in new ways.

Fitness Scavenger Hunt

Work out your brain while you’re working out your body. Give yourself a scavenger hunt to accomplish that will get you moving out in nature. Step one is writing out your route, which might be a path you’d typically take for a jog or walk. Step two is writing down various, spaced-out landmarks along the route and assigning them each a “task.” Challenge yourself to perform different fitness activities at each spot, such as situps, crunches or jumping jacks, and increase your reps on each lap through your hunt. It keeps things interesting and works out multiple muscle groups.

Parachute Sprints

If you don’t mind drawing a little bit of attention to yourself (perhaps consider bringing a buddy for solidarity), you can get a fantastic workout by making use of a fitness parachute. Much like the parachute you likely pictured in your mind, these are built to offer you a healthy amount of resistance when running sprints in a wide-open space. And, luckily, since you’re here in South Dakota, the added wind will offer up a fun challenge for parachute sprinting.

Park Playdate

For those busy parents out there who have to couple their outdoor free time with their children’s outdoor free time, one unique way to take advantage of the situation is getting in your own routine when you take your children to the park to play with their friends. There’s nothing saying you can’t get in a few pullups on the monkey bars while you keep tabs on the kids. Turn the jungle gym into a strength workout, and check two things off your list.

A Parent's Guide to Spring Family Outdoors Time

A Parent’s Guide to Spring Family Outdoors Time

The warmth has finally arrived. So while the weather is still moderate before summer sets in, it’s time to take advantage of some family time outside. There are plenty of activities you can engage in with these last few weeks of spring, but how about trying something new?

Here are a few ideas for some spring family outdoor time.

Mini-Golfing

While your littlest family members might not quite be up for a round of golf on a full-on course, a miniature golf course might be just the ticket to not only gear them up for a future on the links, but also to get the whole family outside for an hour or two. Not only does it give them the opportunity to hone some skills with aim and precision, but it keeps your blood flowing from the walking (and the adrenaline rush of anticipation for that big round-winning putt).

Gamifying Chores

With spring comes plenty of opportunities for cleaning and other chores. But how do you get your youngest family members excited about getting these tasks accomplished? It’s all about gamification. Need the car to get washed? Make it a contest between two of your children to see who can get their half of the car cleanest. Need to get your garden planted? Have your kids make their own markers for the garden and then set a regular time each week to check on and track the progress of their plants. It’s all about finding fun ways to teach your children good habits they can take into adulthood.

Kite-Flying

Why not take advantage of our very windy state? Flying a kite is a great way to engage your whole family in a deceptively active pastime. Find a field or park where you can avoid trees and power lines and give it a go. You can even make it a bit competitive, if you like. It’s estimated that you burn about 100 calories from kite-flying for approximately 22 minutes, so even the parents can get a little bit of a workout out of the deal.

Farmer’s Markets

Getting some outdoors time in doesn’t just have to be about exercise. In fact, there are other ways you can instill some positive habits in your kids during the springtime. It’s a prime time, in fact, to bring the family to a farmer’s market or two. Use the opportunity to take in some fresh air and teach your children how to pick out fruits and vegetables and get them excited about eating healthily. If they get to pick out their own, they’re more apt to giving them a try when you serve them later.

Prize Package: Golf Medicine Experience

Prize Package: Golf Medicine Experience ($350 Value)

The giveaway has closed. If you have already entered, a winner will be announced the week of August 1, 2017.

You love golf. Or maybe you are intrigued by golf. But did you know that there are methods, tools and techniques that can make it even more valuable for your health and wellness than you expected? Orthopedic Institute (OI) is here to guide you through the world of golf medicine.

And we’re doing it by offering up a $350 prize package to get you started on your new health journey.

Prize Details

Enter to win one of OI’s Gold Golf Medicine Packages, which include:

  • A pre- and post-program Titleist Performance Institute (TPI) screening
  • Technique education
  • Home exercise program
  • Swing analysis
  • Three follow-up sessions
  • Individual, one-on-one instruction
  • Manual golf therapy

What’s TPI? It’s the world’s leading educational organization dedicated to the study of how the human body functions in relation to the golf swing. Learn more here.

Case in Point

According to our own in-house golf medicine aficionado Adam Halseth, DPT, TPI M-2, this program has proven successful for golfers of all skill levels.

“I was treating a junior golfer with mid-back pain who was able to finish his season without pain and ended up qualifying for the U.S. Junior Amateur. I also have had a client with a lot of knee pain who wanted to wait for a knee replacement until after golf season. I worked with him on strategies to protect his knee when golfing, and he was able to play two times per week during the summer before getting his knee replacement the following fall!”

An Answer for All Ages

It’s the perfect way for golf enthusiasts and aspiring golf enthusiasts alike to dive into golf medicine. Plus programs can be designed for golfers of all skill levels and ages.

“Our programs are designed specifically for each patient and can be developed for junior golfers to seniors and professionals to high handicappers. We will determine your body limitations and how they are affecting your swing. The main goal is to keep your body healthy and strong as you golf.”