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Get Moving Again: Part 1

With a pandemic raging, how active have you been this year?

As vaccines roll out and people cautiously return to the world, I spend a lot of time thinking about the non-runners. The indoorsmen and women of the world, whose gyms have closed — the people without established home workout routines.

Among the myriad reasons that you might notice a dip in your health and fitness routine, the psychological and physical stresses of isolation and reduced social activity are bubbling to the surface.

Or maybe your local gym shut down. 

Or maybe you’re out of work and can’t afford the membership.

Over the course of a few blog updates, we’re going to look at how and why people across America are working out less during Covid. In the first part, we’ll break down how this disruption impacts peoples’ motivation and capacity for routine. In the second half, we’ll take a look at the potential outcomes, solutions, and how physical therapy may play a role in safeguarding your return to healthy routines.

Impact of Isolation and Disruption

The Unexpected Decline

In a time where people are facing a number of personal, financial, and social crises, the decline in personal physical activity and wellness is a parallel problem. Still, that’s no reason for you to look down on yourself. 

For the current generations, this is an unprecedented disruption. 

In spite of popular depictions of America, statistics from 2018 show that nearly 50% of people ages 18 and up engage in some kind of physical activity, though only around 23% engage in aerobic and strength training workouts.

But even with those numbers, early reports from during the pandemic suggest that America is rapidly becoming more sedentary as a direct result of social distancing and other safety measures.

The Impact of Isolation and Disruption

But what’s actually causing that decline? 

People can still run or workout from home, and with all kinds of classes on YouTube for yoga or crossfit, it’s not like there’s a lack of options.

To explain, let’s start with an anecdote.

Personally, I love climbing.

Living in a flat chunk of the country means that my best bet is a climbing gym. And honestly? I love the local climbing gym, too.

There’s a good warmup area with weights and aerobic equipment, the routes are updated each month for a new challenge, and you can easily kill a few hours after work just decompressing and getting your fitness in.

Access to my climbing gym was physically and mentally a major part of my personal wellness routine. I could work out, be social, and get out of the house all at once.

Enter Covid-19. A pandemic. A major disruption of routine.

Suddenly, the gym is either closed or presents a health risk.

Even now that things have stabilized, nearly a year after the initial pandemic panic, the gym still requires reduced capacity and scheduled workout blocks. Going with friends or coworkers after work stopped, and it got a lot harder to work the gym into my day to day routine.

For a lot of people, this is a familiar story, and that’s all from my perspective as someone who’s incredibly lucky to not have health issues or financial issues in the wake of Covid. 

Why am I sharing this?

I want to illustrate how changes to routine or losing access to the right kind of physical activity can gut motivation and cause someone to stop taking care of their physical health.

For me, climbing was that “right activity”. For my partner, it’s running.

While they’re able to keep running, because all the need is enough outdoor space to run, I’ve noticed a huge decline in how frequently I work out. Without access to the gym, I’ve tried running, I’ve tried home workouts, I’ve tried online yoga.

Some work better than others, but none of them motivate me to consistently work out or maintain my health like climbing did. 

The results of that disruption have been pretty negative.

Over the last 8 to 12 months, I’ve put on weight. I’m less limber, my grip strength is weaker. Even my mental health has taken a dive as I worry about letting myself go. Losing access to a vital part of my routine sucks, and that’s an experience I hear echoed by a lot of my friends and colleagues.

Disruption

Let’s be crystal clear — this pandemic has been hard.

I’m not here to tell anyone struggling with their body image or health routine that they’re bad or wrong. Body image, mental health, and finding ways to focus on motivation and physical activity are all taking a big hit right now. 

But from the perspective of a physical therapy blog, I think it’s useful to take apart this process of disruption and look how it impacts our lives. Armed with that understanding, not only do we have a better method for avoiding it, we can also figure out how to overcome disruption in ways that are healthy for both our physical and mental health.

Understanding Our Departure From Routine

Understanding Our Departure From Routine

To start, let’s look at two main components of routine and how they’re impacted by unexpected disruptions. We’ve got motivation and accessibility — both of these are subject to some degree of change based on our circumstances, so let’s dig a bit deeper into that:

  • Motivation

As a physical process, motivation works like this: you do a thing, your brain anticipates completing the task and gives you the feel good chemical dopamine as a reward.

This task-reward relationship is the basic building block for things like want, desire, addiction, or developing routines. You and your brain like to feel good, so you keep doing the thing.

The psychological perspective is when things get tricky. Tasks get infinitely more complicated than “do the thing” and thanks to the whole individualized nature of human experience, we all have different triggers for that dopamine release.

For now, let’s stick to one basic theory of motivation: intrinsic versus extrinsic motivation. 

This theory centers around where the stimulus for the reward process originates. Intrinsic suggests that your reward stimulus is generated internally, while extrinsic is generated from external stimuli. 

For example, if you like going to the gym because it makes you feel relaxed, that’s intrinsic. If you like going to the gym because it makes you more attractive to others, that’s extrinsic. 

What’s the point?

Motivation is delicate and personal.

Any disruption to routine can also disrupt your major motivating factors. If you go to the gym to look hot, social distancing might mean less people see you. If you go to the gym because you feel peaceful and healthy, the sudden health risk of Covid might turn you off.

Losing the comfort of your routine can have a lot of negative physical and emotional side effects. In turn, these side effects can make it harder to return to your routine whenever you feel comfortable doing so. 

When motivation factors are disrupted, you essentially risk hitting the reset button. You might have to struggle over that initial hump of effort to regain your routine. And as we saw from the studies earlier, a lot of people are dealing with this exact situation.

PT Perspective

I’ll cover this more in Part 2, but one major risk this disruption poses is how people retrain themselves after the pandemic.

I suspect there will be two sides: one that struggles to commit to their old habits, and another that tries to go back too fast. Even if you’ve only been away from your standard workout for six months, your body may have lost some of the strength or coordination you were used to.

Don’t jump into your old workout immediately.

Without taking your time off into account, you can put yourself at a serious risk for injuries or strains. Climbing is a good example — it abuses your joints on a good day, even when you’re fit and climbing regularly. Difficult routes put a lot of strain on your muscles, ask for a lot of coordination, and even then you can slip and fail the route.

Trying to immediately go back to your upper limit can amplify those risks to unhealthy levels. And if you push yourself too hard, then get injured, you’ll just be that much further from your initial fitness goals.

  • Accessibility

Accessibility accounts for a wide range of factors, but basically it boils down to whether or not you can consistently access the necessary parts of your routine.

Fitness routines typically include some physical element that you need access to. For me, it’s a climbing gym. For someone else, it might be running shoes or home gym equipment. 

But that’s just one component, not only does access to a specific factor need to account for how motivating that factor is, you also have to consider limitations that people have no control over.

Here’s an example: in my case, the gym is open and I’m actively choosing not to go. 

My concerns about health risks outweigh my motivation to go to the gym, even though by all accounts they’re doing a good job maintaining pandemic protocol. I simply don’t feel comfortable going back yet, but it is technically a choice, and technically means I don’t have full access to my routine. But it is a choice, tied to motivation.

Compare that to someone living with an autoimmune disorder, or someone that lost their job and can’t afford a gym membership, new shoes, or their standard diet? The health risks and financial impact of Covid may take the choice away from a lot of people, denying them access to their usual physical routine components whether they like it or not.

So what about…?

In these situations, the almost obvious thought is “what about home workouts” or some other, less risk intensive routine? They are certainly viable options, and if you can transition into running, outdoor activities, or home workout routines? By all means, take advantage of that.

But for a lot of people, motivation and circumstance will play a big role in determining how effective these alternatives are as replacements for your usual method of fitness. 

The most basic hurdle is “I don’t like this”. Personally? I hate running. My partner runs 15 miles every Sunday morning, and in spite of their best efforts to convince me of its merits, I have a whole lifetime of evidence suggesting that running sucks and I hate it. 

Is that petty? Yes. 

But similar to many others, I dedicated my time to developing a routine centered around an activity that I liked. I carefully built a routine that used my personal motivation as a foundation. 

Running and home workouts, video yoga, none of these compel me to be active. A vital part of my motivational structure is missing, and because of that, the whole personal fitness routine falls apart.

The mental aspect

Once again, the reason I’m sharing is to illustrate a fairly common psychological hurdle that’s been thrown in front of people during this pandemic — mental health. 

Building a consistent routine is difficult. It requires time, motivation, resources, and a consistent level of stability. Lose any of these elements, and your routine can easily fall apart.

And that’s in the best of times. In the middle of a pandemic, the divide between normalcy and our day to day experience is growing. People talk about a “new normal”, we see increased reports of isolation, more people are admitting to serious bouts of depression. Even those without a history of mental struggles are expressing difficulty managing this experience.

When it comes to working out, mental health can play a major role in how willing people are to engage. In physical therapy, this is something you have to take into account — think about it, a lot of people turn to physical therapy as a form of recuperation and recovery, either following an injury or as a means of regaining strength when personal planning is too risky or ineffective.

Being set back in your fitness goals, feeling like you may not recover your full strength, or simply competing against the mental weight of wondering when things will be a little more normal? All of this presents a pretty big mental hurdle, and it can make developing or rebuilding a routine increasingly difficult.

Tending to your mental well being is equally important. Not only for the clear benefits of improving your mental health, but also because it can help you regain the motivation and will to act on your fitness goals.

physical therapy during covid

The Fix

While we’re all going through a similar, collective experience with Covid, the impact of that experience is fairly individualized. That makes it hard to provide solutions that will work for everyone, but there are some overarching statistics and trends like I mentioned before.

We do see a decline in physical activity throughout pandemic closures, we are seeing a higher number of people struggling with depression and other mental aftereffects related to Covid. Though it’s hard to pinpoint the individual effects, we can talk about some general options for mitigating disruption and figuring out how to safely ease into your routines going forward.

With vaccines circulating in higher numbers, it’s likely that people will start venturing out into the world again. That’s bound to include returning to the gym, taking yoga classes, and other physical activities that might have slowed with social distancing.

In Part 2 of this post, I want to focus on practical advice that will help people return safely to their usual routines. We’ll cover things how to avoid straining yourself if you stopped or slowed down in your fitness plan. I also want to talk about how to set realistic goals and fitness planning that can help mitigate the mental health aspect — we are often tied to our routines and our physical health, so it’s nice to take a professional, objective look at how and why good goals help us manage a lot more than just our fitness.

If you’ve got any questions, comments, or just want to learn more about what we do at Crom Rehabilitation, don’t be afraid to reach out. Our goal is helping people reach their peak performance through physical therapy, and we thought it would be a good time to talk about the experience a lot of people are facing because of this pandemic. We hope to see you in Part 2!

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Roy featured in OutSmart Magazine’s “How Has Covid-19 Affected Houston’s Pro-LGBTQ+ Business Owners?”

This pandemic has taken its toll on every one of us. Businesses have greatly been impacted all over the country, and Houston was hit hard. 

Crom Rehabilitation’s owner and lead physical therapist Dr. Roy Rivera has kept his business afloat during these hard times. Roy thinks of his staff as a family, and was eager to help them through these difficult financial times. 

Roy and his staff worked at reduced hours and with all social distancing protocols in place during the pandemic to keep their therapy services going strong so those in physical pain or with disabilities could avoid having too much interruption to their physical therapy appointments.

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Roy Featured in Voyage Houston

Dr. Roy Rivera, Jr., PT, PhD, DPT, MCHES, owner and lead physical therapist at Crom Rehabilitation shares his story of how Crom Rehabilitation came to be and a bit about himself and the philosophy he has always maintained. 

After deciding that he wanted to create something of his own, in his own vision, from scratch, Roy decided to undertake the huge task of starting a small business, handling most of the work by himself. Juggling many jobs, and through his hard work and belief in his cause, Roy got Crom Rehabilitation to the top of the physical therapy field at a rapid speed. 

Crom Rehabilitation, a LGBT+ friendly business, has been recognized time and again for it’s dedicated work to get individuals back on their feet and in their best physical condition, all while making connections to their patients so that they feel respected and involved in the physical therapy process.

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Roy featured on Expertise’s Top 19 Best Physical Therapists

Dr. Roy Rivera, lead physical therapist and owner of Houston’s Crom Rehabilitation has been featured as Expertise’s Top 19 Best Physical Therapists! 

Crom Rehabilitation is dedicated to making personal connections with every client, so that they can be a part of their recovery process. We create custom therapy regimes for every client that takes into consideration any limitation so that the client never feels uncomfortable.

We want all of our recovery programs to help achieve all therapeutic and physical goals for all of our clients so that they can return to their normal, healthy lifestyles. 

After starting in 2014 as a small business, Crom Rehabilitation has become a well-known business not only in the Houston Community, but in the LGBT+ Community as well and is known for their successful programs as well as their commitment to personal connections with their clients. 

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Crom featured on BizJournal

Houston Business Journal has placed Crom Rehabilitation among the largest Houston-area LGBT+ Owned Businesses! 

Beginning as a small business in 2014, Crom Rehabilitation has made a name for itself in not only the LGBT+ community, but the Houston community as a whole by providing inclusive, personalized therapy, and working closely with clients to create personal connections. 

With the wide variety of therapy Crom Rehabilitation offers, we can meet the needs of anyone who may be suffering from a disability or injury to provide them relief from their pain and we can work with your schedule so you can start your road to recovery on your own time.

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Crom Rehabilitation Featured in OutSmart Magazine’s “What Happens to a Physical Therapy Clinic During Covid-19?”

This year has been difficult for everyone all over the world, but it has taught us that we are strong, resilient and adaptable. The Houston community has been impacted greatly by the virus, but it isn’t stopping us at Crom Rehabilitation from being there for you, especially in this uncertain time! 

Our mission has always been to focus on your physical goals above all else to get you back into the lifestyle you’re used to, and that has not wavered in the face of Covid-19. We are taking all necessary steps to ensure your safety so you can feel comfortable and safe within our offices. 

We have enforced social distancing and are trained to use PPE equipment, as well rearranging our offices to adhere to proper social distancing guidelines. We take extra care in our offices so that we can all remain safe and healthy while making sure we meet your physical needs so you are no longer struggling with pain!

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Roy Featured on PTO Club

Dr. Roy Rivera, lead physical therapist and owner of Crom Rehabilitation tells us his secret for how he reached those top Google results for “Houston Physical Therapy”. Roy tells us how he garnered positive reviews on Yelp and Google to boost the visibility in order to help his business grow so much since the opening of Crom Rehabilitation in 2014. 

From starting off as a small business with only a few employees, Roy worked hard at creating the Crom Rehabilitation we see today. Juggling many duties on his own all at once, Roy promoted his brand and garnered attention from the LGBT+ community in Houston and has been recognized for his excellence with multiple awards. 

By maintaining a personal connection with their customers, Crom Rehabilitation has climbed its way to the top of the Google Rankings. Crom Rehabilitation is growing at a rapid rate, and even opening a new office in Pearland, because of their continued success and consistent customer satisfaction.

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Gayest & Greatest

Outsmart magazine, one of the largest LGBT+ magazines in Houston, recognizes outstanding leaders in the LGBT+ Community every year. This year, OutSmart Magazine has named Dr. Roy Rivera, owner and lead physical therapist at Crom Rehabilitation, the Reader’s Choice Award’s “Best Male Physical Therapist” of 2019

At Crom Rehabilitation,  one of our main goals is serving the LGBT+ community and making them feel at ease during their physical therapy, because no one should have to be in pain and impact their quality of life. 

Dr. Rivera has worked hard to make sure that everyone can feel welcome, safe and in good hands, and that has been recognized by the LGBT+ community of Houston! His philosophy regarding the wellbeing of his patients and to make sure they retain the highest quality of life possible is part of what makes Crom Rehabilitation such a success.

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2020 Best Male Physical Therapist

Outsmart magazine is one of the Houston area’s largest LGBT+ magazines. Every year, they assemble a list of the top leaders in the LGBT+ Houston Community, from TV personalities, politicians to dentists and gyms. 

Dr. Roy Rivera, owner and lead physical therapist at Crom Rehabilitation has been named OutSmart Magazine’s 2020 Reader’s Choice Award’s “Best Male Physical Therapist” of 2020! Dr. Rivera has made his practice a comforting and inclusive place for LGBT+ individuals to feel cared for and to improve their quality of life. 

The inclusive environment of Crom Rehabilitation is one that Roy has strived for since the opening of his facility in 2014, and continues in his work every day. 

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Book PR/announcement

Shantay, You Stay: A Healthcare Provider’s Guide to LGBT+ Inclusive Practices is a brand new book by Dr. Roy Rivera Jr., PT, PhD, DPT, MCHES, owner and lead physical therapist of Crom Rehabilitation that focuses on how healthcare providers can make their practices more inclusive, safe and affirming for the LGBT+ community. 

Shantay, You Stay covers the health issues that the LGBT+ community faces and how healthcare providers from all of the healthcare spectrum can help bridge the gap. Something as simple as acknowledging someone’s preferred pronouns can make a huge difference in the level of comfort and trust of your patients. 

In Shantay, You Stay, Dr. Rivera gives tips and insight for all areas of the healthcare field, from reception to the completion of care, so that all patients can feel comfortable in every aspect of their physical therapy experience.

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New Pearland Location

We are happy to announce that we are now open in Pearland! At our new Pearland location, you can expect the same dedication and care that you have come to expect from Crom Rehabilitation

We work to provide the best physical therapy for whatever physical disability or pain you may be experiencing, and your recovery will always be our priority. We will create a rehabilitative program based on your needs so that you can get rid of that pain for good and have the highest quality of life possible. 

We will work with your schedule so that you can recover quickly and on your own time.

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How To Know If Physical Therapy Is Right For You

Knowing if physical therapy is right for you seems like it should be an easy answer, especially if you have just had surgery as a result of an injury or have recently been in an accident resulting in strains and injury.

If your doctor has recommended physical therapy due to surgery or an injury or a physical therapist has evaluated you and finds that you’re a good candidate for physical therapy and are in need of help to improve your range of motion of endurance, then you should very much consider physical therapy.

back pain

Pain Management 

Physical Therapy is the most beneficial method to reducing pain. You don’t have to get used to living with pain doing everyday activities or limit yourself because pain rules your life.

With pain management, you are improving your strength and flexibility that will allow you to increase your endurance and functional capacity to do physical activities with ease and comfort. Less pain at the very least. Physical therapy can give you your life back. 

Our therapists at Crom Rehabilitation strive to help you work through your physical limitations and gain the control and strength you need to live a productive and pain free life.

With a careful evaluation, your physical therapist will come up with a comprehensive therapy that will eventually leave you with less pain and more strength and range of motion for the tasks that you might have taken for granted before your injury.

If you are experiencing chronic pain that has gotten worse over time, or simply won’t subside, you are a good candidate for physical therapy.

Living With Chronic Pain

Chronic Pain is exhausting and doesn’t just affect your physical self. You are under no obligation to live with chronic pain. Not only is it physically exhausting, it eventually becomes mentally exhausting as well.

Skipping out on family events because all of the physical effort results in pain is an experience many people do have who suffer from chronic pain. They constantly struggle with a limited physical ability to live their regular day to day lives and it can impact mental health as well.

With physical therapy you don’t have to commit to being down for the count for the rest of your life or as long as the injury takes to heal. You do not have to live your life in pain, especially when physical therapy is an available option to your ticket to feeling your best.

Physical therapist administering treatment to patient

Physical Therapy Is a Commitment Worth Making

Physical therapists are trained to evaluate and treat limited physical function caused by injury, disability or disease, and then will go on to assist you in regaining your physical function and mobility while promoting physical activity and function.

It is a commitment by you to yourself and your body to get back to “normal”. While physical therapy is hard work, it is worth it. If you do not do the hard work now, it is all but guaranteed that your injury or pain will get worse as you get older.

You may not notice immediately the negative affect on your body that an injury has inflicted until sometimes it has caused more damage and now, you are looking at surgery. Physical therapy is not just a tool for after surgery or injury, it can also be used as a preventive measure. 

If your doctor has told you you are looking at surgery, there is still a chance you can avoid it with strenuous physical therapy and education in the area of focus. Not only will you avoid going “under the knife”, but you can potentially improve your condition leaving you better than you were before your strain or injury. Who doesn’t want to avoid going in for surgery if it can be prevented? 

Physical Therapy As A Preventative Measure

Yes, you can avoid surgery by committing to a physical therapy regimen.

More often than not, surgery is the last option when dealing with an injury or excessive wear and tear on your body. With physical therapy, after a proper and thorough examination by your doctor or therapist, you can strengthen the injured area and become flexible enough that you are able to get back to regular activity without having to have the extra issue of a surgery.

Not only can you avoid surgery, you are also giving yourself and your body natural healing and you’ll know what you can do in the future to avoid injury and surgery while strengthening your body, which is a huge benefit for your health in the future. 

Physical therapy is right for you if you want to live as full and active a life as you possibly can. Watching from the sidelines can be entertaining, but it isn’t necessarily fulfilling. We want you to be able to keep up and participate as long as you possibly can.

The old saying, “Don’t Let Life Pass You By” becomes a rolling dialog in the heads of physical therapy patents and chronic pain patients. It tells you that you can’t join in on the fun.

Pain patients feel physically and mentally, daily. So don’t let life pass you by, make yourself important enough to fix so you can get back to doing what you love. 

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Why Is Community Driven Health Care Vital?

In order for healthcare clinics to best serve the community, the community must feel understood and respected. 

Offering excellent healthcare without also meeting the unique needs of patients within the community not only falls short of what clinics can offer patients, but also deters patients from being proactive in seeking medical care that could improve their own health as well as the health of their families and loved ones. 

When healthcare clinics use community driven healthcare to create an environment that demonstrates their investment in the surrounding community, great gains can be made in patient care, trust, and overall treatment satisfaction. This, in turn, strengthens the community as a whole.

community and health care vital

Dynamic Community 

It may seem that services are the backbone of any healthcare clinic. In reality, the community is the backbone. Clinics must strive to encourage preventative care and early intervention in order to improve quality of life for all groups and community members.


Recognizing community differences such as patient location, economics, ethnicity, LGBTQ+ status, and other minority group dynamics is critical to providing quality care. This requires careful attention to what individual communities need, both medically and psychologically, so that they are confident their needs can be met by engaged and understanding healthcare providers.

Struggles

Historically, minority groups have often struggled to find accessible, empathetic healthcare. The impact of healthcare differences with regard to minority groups is evident.

According to the CDC, “Though health indicators such as life expectancy and infant mortality have improved for most Americans, some minorities experience a disproportionate burden of preventable disease, death, and disability compared with non-minorities.” These groups can include, but are not limited to, those who are seniors, less educated, low income, members of the LGBTQ+ community, and ethnic minorities1

These struggles can lead to delays in preventative care as well as in necessary services, ultimately resulting in more immediate, expensive, and longer term medical interventions. Diminished satisfaction in the healthcare outcomes discourages trust in the system, leading to future delays.

When coupled with a sense of distance, discrimination, or a lack of understanding and acceptance by providers, community members may find it easier to simply wait until a catastrophe before seeking care rather than risk subjecting themselves to a cold or unsympathetic environment. 

Racial and Ethnic Bias

In addition to the issues created by a lack of knowledge about a community, healthcare workers’ implicit biases also may impact how patients are treated.

In a review of 15 studies on implicit racial/ethnic bias among healthcare professionals, low to moderate levels of implicit racial/ethnic bias were found among health care professionals in all but 1 study.2

These biases can lead to differences in how clinicians behave with members of different community populations, leading to a lack of equity in the quality of healthcare provided to patients. Patients can feel they are being stereotyped or judged as unworthy, foolish, or undeserving.

When this happens, patients may ask fewer questions or fail to obtain necessary follow-up care, leading to a less-desirable treatment experience and outcome. Community driven healthcare can help to prevent this occurrence. 

LGBTQ flag

Impact on the LGBTQ+ Community

The LGBTQ+ community is an example of a community that often feels discomfort when seeking healthcare.

Fear of discrimination brought on by law rollbacks such as those prohibiting covered healthcare from discrimination based on sexual orientation as well as personal experiences in which individuals felt judged or mistreated by healthcare workers has led to a feeling of marginalization by many members of the LGBTQ+ community. 

Lack of understanding and utilization of appropriate language and terms relating to gender, sexuality, and the LGBTQ+ community create a sense of distance and lack of respect by healthcare professionals.

However, when clinics train workers to be sensitive to these topics and are transparent in their desire for outreach and inclusion, LGBTQ+ community members feel more welcome and are better able to ask for and embrace the care they need to continue or improve their well-being. 

physical therapist with patient

How Can Things Change?

So, what does community driven healthcare do to help change this? According to the CDC, “Working at the community level… helps to reduce health gaps caused by differences in race and ethnicity, location, social status, income, and other factors that can affect health.”3

This means that cultural differences within the community are recognized and addressed through training and implementation of practices that assure clients that they will be treated fairly, compassionately, and with an understanding of the unique qualities of their social/financial group and their individuality. 

Inclusivity and a commitment to nonjudgement create a bond with patients and the community. When healthcare providers understand not only what health risks the community faces, but also what social issues result in delays in requesting and receiving necessary care, they are better equipped to address these concerns and offer the community assistance and solutions.

Steps then can be taken to remedy any obstacles for treatment or impediments to patient comfort that healthcare institutions may have unknowingly created or perpetuated. 

Clinics that focus on the community are a stepping stone to ensuring the public’s health. As Dr. C. Everett Coop stated: “Health care is vital to all of us some of the time, but public health is vital to all of us all of the time.” 

By caring for individuals as they are, not through a cookie-cutter approach, clinics are able to reach further into communities, help more, and establish a bond that will extend into the community at large and future generations.

Establishing mutual respect and concern is a step that leads to improvements in the lives of everyone. Clinics are imperative to the community. The culture of respect fostered by community driven healthcare has the power to be transformative to clinicians and patients alike. 


1“Minority Health and Health Equity – CDC,” Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, November 23, 2020), https://www.cdc.gov/minorityhealth/.

2Hall, William J., Mimi V. Chapman, Kent M. Lee, Yesenia M. Merino, Tainayah W. Thomas, B. Keith Payne, Eugenia Eng, Steven H. Day, and Tamera Coyne-Beasley. 2015. “Implicit Racial/Ethnic Bias Among Health Care Professionals and Its Influence on Health Care Outcomes: A Systematic Review.” American Journal of Public Health105 (12): e60–76. https://doi.org/10.2105/ajph.2015.302903.

3“NCCDPHP: Community Health.” Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, November 17, 2017. https://www.cdc.gov/nccdphp/dch/about/index.htm.

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Redirecting a Bad Experience

In any line of work, especially when providing a service, there will always be patients and clients who are difficult or present a challenge. Physical therapy, and healthcare in general, is no exception to having patients that are combative, hostile, or in a bad mood. 

Most of the time, this isn’t something you should take personally. There is usually an underlying reason for them to be acting this way towards you, and there are always ways to change the course of the visit and your relationship with them as well. 

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What To Wear To Physical Therapy

So you’re about to start physical therapy, but what should you wear? 

You’ll want to focus on something that allows for a good range of motion but also supports any equipment or exercises that your physical therapist may employ during your treatment.

In most cases, you can simply ask your therapist what is appropriate, but here are a few things to consider as you get ready for your first or next appointment!

Dr. Roy Rivera’s
“Shantay, You Stay: A Healthcare Provider’s Guide to LGBT+ Inclusive Practices”

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