The talented middle distance runner became even more ill at home, getting violently sick to his stomach."I went back to the emergency room, they did blood work and found out that my kidneys were working at like 20 percent of what they should be," Matthews said.A combination of dehydration and excess pain killers led to partial kidney failure and an extended stay at two hospitals. The serious ordeal also put Matthews' junior track and field season in doubt.That was until Matthews visited Ron Enyeart at Pine Lake Physical Therapy in Sammamish.
The device requires users to place a special pair of pants on, then zip themselves into a pressure-controlled chamber that gently lifts them. Precise calibration allows for unweighting from 100 to 20 percent of the user's body weight.Essentially, the device enhances performance, while minimizing impact."I'd have this aerobic workout, but I wouldn't be bothering my injuries," Matthews said.
The AlterG saved the season for Matthews, who by the beginning of May, was ready to compete in league meet. He placed second in the 400 meter dash at the district meet, and eventually helped the 1,600 relay team to an eighth-place finish at the state meet.It's not just athletes the AlterG can help, however.
Drew Matthews was in a bad way.First, it was a pulled calf muscle in late March that slowed the 17-year-old Skyline High School track and field standout. Then, in early April, the Ibuprofen he took to ease his pain, caused more serious issues.The night of his second meet, Matthews woke up with a throbbing ache in his back. A trip to the emergency room resulted in a diagnosis of back spasms and he was sent home with more pain killers — a remedy that proved costly.
Just a couple months prior, Enyeart, who had worked with Matthews before, got his hands on a piece of unique piece of equipment called the AlterG Treadmill — a device that uses technology developed by NASA."It's totally new," Enyeart said. "In the past, the only way to unweight someone would be to put them in a harness and if you put someone in a harness they're not free to move."That's certainly not the case with the AlterG.
It also did wonders for Eastlake teacher and recently inducted Washington Interscholastic Basketball Coaches Association Hall of Fame member Richard Belcher."For me personally, it's been really a life-saver," said Belcher, who came to Pine Lake Physical Therapy overweight and with a recently replaced knee.
Belcher, who started his weight-loss quest over a year-and-a-half ago, was able to change eating habits and do some minimal forms of exercise. But when Enyeart purchased the AlterG, it opened up a whole new world. Over the last 18 months, he has officially lost 180 pounds.
"Honestly, I could have never done the pace I was doing on the ground or another a treadmill," said Belcher, noting he still uses the AlterG two times a week for roughly 35 to 45 minutes.Enyeart said Belcher's story is one he's seeing a lot more of."Someone with bad knees or a lot of weight, we can put them in here and they can actually exercise," he said. "People are like 'I haven't walked like this in 25 years.'"
Success Story- Melissa Giesa
My family and I highly recommend Pine Lake Physical Therapy. Through the years, and a few mishaps along the way, my family has had the opportunity to meet a couple of key Physical Therapist that helped us recover, heal and grow stronger after some sports injuries. My husband and I enjoyed the years of PT experience Ron Enyeart brought to us along with his easy going conversation and knowledge of how to assist us in our recovery.
Our daughter, Jory, started seeing Emily Solie several years ago with a partial tear to her quad muscle. As an avid soccer player and track runner, Jory had several other injuries that required Emily's attention through her many years of athletics. With each injury, and the extra time Emily spends educating Jory about her injured areas, she not only became stronger, she became more knowledgable about her body and how to continue strengthening to keep from re-injuring in the future. Jory tore her ACL this past winter. It was a difficult recovery. Emily recognized right away that Jory was experiencing more pain and losing sleep due to the pain even after a week after surgery. Even though rare for an active 17 year old, Emily insisted that Jory have an ultrasound performed to rule out blood clots. We had an appointment that next day and they found two blood clots. We didn't get this level of care from Jory's doctors. We are happy to say after weeks of PT, and great care from Emily, Jory is running and hiking and soon to graduate from Pine Lake. The AlterG antigravity treadmill has helped Jory with her strengthening and confidence in running.
We feel fortunate to have met the fine staff and Physical Therapists at Pine Lake. We hope we won't need their services in the future but will certainly stop in to say hello.
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