St. Louis Physical Therapy

Develop resiliency by using the best exercises to get stronger and improve balance & agility.

Physical Therapy

Physical Therapy

What are physical therapy and sports rehab?

Physical therapy involves stretching and strengthening critical regions of the body with the intent of overcoming or managing a musculoskeletal injury. When joints don't move correctly, they interfere with body movements in other areas. When joints and tendons aren't strong enough, they wear down quickly, increasing pain and risks of injuries.

Sports rehabilitation is similar to physical therapy but with a greater emphasis on enhancing performance. Athletes utilize the best exercises to help them perform their best and prevent injuries. Sports rehabilitation aims to unite this athletic training approach with traditional physical therapy.

What are functional physical therapy and functional rehab?

Functional physical therapy or functional rehab is a new spin on rehab closely tied to sports performance. It's considered to be more dynamic and specific to the person receiving therapy. The idea is that there is an overlap between exercises that allow elite athletes to perform their best and activities that help people move and feel their best.

The word functional in athletics means to focus on high-quality whole-body movements specific to a sport rather than isolating single muscles for strength, such as bodybuilding. It emphasizes balance, coordination, and body awareness. In rehab, functional means prioritizing individual factors such as posture, alignment, muscle imbalances, and biomechanics.

Traditional therapies tended to focus primarily on the diagnosis and treatment of the exact site of the damage. This new rehab style aims to figure out how the breakdown occurred in the first place.

Difference between physical therapy and sports rehab

Physical therapy implies that a physical therapist is performing the rehab. Traditionally, physical therapists were the sole providers for managing and treating injuries. However, chiropractors, personal trainers, and yoga instructors have become excellent options for managing pain and enhancing movement in recent years.

Dr. Craig Liebenson, a leader in sports medicine and author of Rehabilitation of The Spine, says; rehabilitation is exercising in the presence of an injury. He believes that top-tier personal trainers are an excellent option for rehab. One complaint he has with some traditional physical therapy is that it does not go far enough to enhance strength and improve resilience.

Physical Therapy Chiropractor in Kirkwood, MO

Professional physical therapy and sports rehab

O’Guin wellness chiropractors are specifically trained to integrate traditional chiropractic care with sports performance and physical therapy. Common manual therapies include spinal manipulation, myofascial release, dry-needling acupuncture, stretching, and cupping. 

There are two options for receiving physical therapy at our center. Option 1 is for anyone interested in a do-it-yourself approach. We can teach you corrective exercises specifically for you with a comprehensive plan that you can do on your own. Option 2 is for anyone who would like more guidance and accountability. We will devise a plan consisting of 4-12 weeks and work with you one-on-one 1-2 times per week.

Chiropractic vs. physical therapy

In the traditional sense, chiropractors primarily provided chiropractic adjustments, and physical therapists gave exercises. As research has advanced with new understandings of evidence-based care, these two professions have begun to overlap. For example, many physical therapists now offer hands-on therapies. More forward-thinking chiropractors have become leaders in sports rehab and sports medicine.

The best chiropractors and physical therapists share similar philosophies and give individualized care in the patient's best interest. However, as in all professions, there are still many chiropractors and physical therapists who are not integrative and do not appreciate a holistic approach.

Rather than asking the question, which is better between chiropractors and physical therapists? It is more valuable to consider the provider's experience, philosophy, and treatment approach.

Is physiotherapy the same as physical therapy?

Physical therapy and Physiotherapy are terms that are often used interchangeably, but their usage can vary depending on the country and the context. Both physiotherapy and physical therapy refer to the practice of using physical methods, such as exercises, massage, manipulation, and other treatments, to promote, maintain, and restore physical health and well-being. They focus on alleviating pain and improving mobility and function.

Choosing the best chiropractor or physical therapist

Chiropractors and physical therapists are both excellent options for treating and managing neck pain, back pain, disc bulges, shoulder pain, hip pain, etc. When deciding, try to find a therapy office equipped to handle your specific condition. For example, if you have a disc bulge or degenerative disc disease, the option of spinal decompression would be beneficial.

Next, be sure to search for a facility that offers some form of myofascial release, spinal manipulations, and a strong emphasis on rehabilitation. Being certified or familiar with Mechanical Diagnosis Therapy, Neurodynamics, and acupuncture are additional recommended qualifications.

Finding a chiropractor or physical therapist that offers several therapies is essential because the best results occur when several treatments are combined. Also, therapists limited to only 1-2 treatment options tend not to see the whole picture. Instead, they apply the same therapy to everyone regardless of the condition. Diversity is vital to receiving the highest quality care. 

Do you need a referral for physical therapy?

A referral is usually no longer required for physical therapy. All chiropractors and most newer physical therapists are doctors. They can diagnose and make appropriate treatment plans and deliver care without a referral. O’Guin wellness chiropractors do not need a referral. You are welcome to get evaluated and treated right away by one of our specialists.

Top-rated physical therapist in St. Louis

Dr. O'Guin has taught physical therapy and sports rehab, myofascial techniques, and advanced biomechanics at Logan University. He and his team utilize leading techniques to relieve pain and promote healing. Our manual therapies are used with the intent to restore posture and alignment as well as reflexively enhance muscle activations and movements. 

Most importantly, we meet each client at their current level of ability. A frequent frustration with traditional physical therapy is that the exercises can be either too easy or challenging. It can be too easy if a patient is being encouraged to do basic isolation exercises and they're an athlete who has a specific movement issue. Physical therapy can be discouraging if someone has a particular muscle that is the weakest link and they're being taught advanced movement-based exercises.

Our chiropractors break the sports rehab process up into phases. First, we consider the injured tissue and discover individualized movements to either protect it or strengthen it, depending on the situation. Second, we find and treat all joint or soft tissue restrictions. If there is a kink in the spine or fascia, it can negatively impact movements elsewhere.

Third, we check and work on improving core stability. The 'Core' is our center of gravity and foundation for all other movements. If advanced exercises are attempted before a baseline level of core stability is achieved, there will be delays in progress.

Next, we evaluate and enhance movement patterns and coordination. This step involves learning how to move the entire body most efficiently. Having good balance and fluid movements is necessary to protect joints as strength. Therapists who only focus on planks and bridges are missing a significant rehab component.

Sports injury rehab; the gift of Injury

Our ultimate goal is to promote an empowering mindset. We're aware of the frustrations encountered when overcoming injuries. However, we also understand that injuries can be used as opportunities to discover more about the human body's potential. Many of our clients have recovered from injuries in better shape than ever. They have a deeper appreciation and respect for continuing to become stronger. Once momentum is established, movement is medicine, and exercise is the fountain of youth.

Book an appointment

Begin Your Healing Experience Today

Whether you're a new patient looking for answers and solutions to a complicated condition, or just need a chiropractic adjustment, our office can help. Our chiropractors can help no matter if you are recovering from an injury or are experiencing chronic back pain or neck pain, so call O'Guin Wellness today!

We specialize in leading, non-invasive therapies that restore alignment, enhance movement, and promote healing.

Other Therapies We Offer



Begin Your Healing Experience Today

Free Consultation
Discover a Healthier You

Claim Your Free Chiropractic Assessment

Start your journey towards a healthier, pain-free life. Experience the difference our expert chiropractors can make.

Free Assessment