Category: ‘Press Releases’

5 Key Tips for Understanding ACL Reconstruction

Posted in Knee Replacement Surgery, Press Releases, Sports Injury | June 21, 2017

Dr. Kevin Plancher with Plancher Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine highlights important points about torn anterior cruciate ligament surgery.

New York, NY & Greenwich, CT (PRWEB) June 21, 2017

June 2017 – “It is highly likely you know someone who’s torn their ACL (anterior cruciate ligament), one of the four main ligaments in the knee and a ligament that’s vital to the knee’s stability and normal movement. But for many people, ACL reconstruction surgery is a hazier concept requiring more understanding,” according to orthopaedic surgeon Kevin D. Plancher, MD, founder of Plancher Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine. (more…)


Robotic Knee Replacement Offers Key Advantages

Posted in Blog, Press Releases | June 15, 2017

Dr. Kevin Plancher with Plancher Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine with tips on robotic knee surgery using Stryker technology

New York, NY and Greenwich, CT (PRWEB) June 15, 2017

With knee replacement surgeries becoming increasingly popular among active adults whose joints have been damaged by osteoarthritis comes a parallel surge in robotic-assisted surgeries, which are proving to be more precise and usually offer a quicker recovery, according orthopaedic surgeon Kevin D. Plancher, MD, founder of Plancher Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine.

Nearly 700,000 people ages 45 and up undergo knee replacement surgery each year, according to the National Center for Health Statistics. These surgeries are primarily used to treat those whose knee joints have degenerated due to osteoarthritis, the surgery – whether a partial or total joint replacement – can be done in two ways: conventionally, which relies on the surgeon’s visual assessment of the knee and direct manipulation; or robotically, which uses CT imaging and a robotic arm to assist the surgeon with precise measurements.

In the United States, the Food and Drug Administration has approved three robotic systems for knee replacement. Stryker Orthopaedics, a global leader in medical technology that manufactures prosthetic knee joints, acquired Mako Surgical Corp. in 2013. The Stryker/Mako system has used their robotic arm-assisted surgery for more than 50,000 partial knee replacements, according to 2016 research in the American Journal of Orthopaedics.

“The Stryker/Mako robotic system is a great example of how technology is transforming how knee replacement surgeries are done,” Dr. Plancher says. “I’m excited to be able to offer my patients this cutting-edge option to help them resume their active lives hopefully without chronic pain as soon as possible.”

How is robotic knee replacement performed?
Patients tend to have many questions about how robotic surgery is performed, Dr. Plancher notes. The most common question asked is if a robot is performing the patient’s surgery. The resounding answer to that is no. Despite the name, a human surgeon is very much in charge of the procedure. So, how is robotic knee replacement carried out? Dr. Plancher describes the steps:

  1. First, a CT scan, which is a type of special x-ray, of the patient’s knee is used to generate a 3-D virtual model of their specific anatomy. This model is loaded into the Stryker/Mako software and the surgeon uses it to personalize the surgical plan.
    2. In the operating room itself, the surgeon uses the robotic arm to assist the surgery, guiding it within the precise boundaries defined by the surgical plan. The robotic surgical tools resurface the damaged part of the knee.
    3. The robotic system allows the surgeon to make changes as needed based on what is visualized inside the knee.
    4. The surgeon places metal components on the ends of the thighbone and tibia bone (below the kneecap), cementing them in place. A plastic insert is then placed between the metal components to enable smooth knee movement.

“We’re simply taking advantage of technology to assist us in resurfacing the bones and individualize treatment to a patient’s own knee anatomy,” explains Dr. Plancher, also a Clinical Professor in Orthopaedics at Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York.

“Robotic surgery helps to tightly control factors such as lower leg alignment, soft tissue balance and other variables that all contribute to how successful the surgery is overall,” says Dr. Plancher, who lectures globally on issues related to orthopaedic procedures and sports injury management. “Research is making an attempt to improve accuracy through robotic assisted knee replacement in the hope of improving the longevity of the prosthesis.”

Kevin D. Plancher, MD, is a board-certified orthopaedic surgeon and the founder of Plancher Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine.

Plancher Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine is a comprehensive orthopaedics and sports medicine practice with offices in New York City and Greenwich, CT. http://www.plancherortho.com


Cutting-Edge FloGraft Can Alleviate Knee Pain

Posted in Press Releases | May 16, 2017

Dr. Kevin Plancher with Plancher Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine Offers tips on new treatment option for arthritis of the knee

New York, NY & Greenwich, CT (PRWEB) May 16, 2017

Instead of putting up with nagging pain and stiffness and continually taking anti-inflammatory medications, wouldn’t it be better to help those with knee arthritis to actually heal? That’s the premise behind a newer injectable therapy called FloGraft, which uses human amniotic fluid to protect and regenerate inflamed knee joints, says orthopaedic surgeon Kevin D. Plancher, MD, founder of Plancher Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine.

FloGraft is one of several bio-derived substances orthopaedists and sports medicine doctors have been using in recent years as part of a “regenerative medicine” effort. This cutting-edge treatment makes use of amniotic fluid, which cushions and protects babies during pregnancy and is harvested during cesarean births without harming mother or baby, Dr. Plancher explains.

The injectable treatment adds another alternative for a nonsurgical treatment for osteoarthritis, which is one of the most common health problems in the United States. Arthritis of the knee affects about 10% of men and 13% of women over age 60 nationwide, according to the National Institutes of Health. Often called wear-and-tear arthritis, the pain, stiffness, decreased range of motion and swelling it causes not only makes it hard to move around easily, but takes away some of the enjoyment of life for those affected.

“Beyond undergoing total knee replacement surgery, which is obviously an invasive procedure, doctors haven’t had that many options to offer knee arthritis patients in the past,” says Dr. Plancher, also a Clinical Professor in Orthopaedics at Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York. “The development of FloGraft is definitely a promising and welcoming alternative along with other newer modalities.”

How FloGraft works
How does FloGraft work? It helps to understand that amniotic fluid, and the membrane surrounding it, are diverse substances containing many components, including the structural protein collagen, growth factors, and anti-inflammatory proteins. When injected into the knee, these all work together to ease the bone-on-bone grinding from thinning cartilage often occurring in knee arthritis. Furthermore, this potentially promotes regeneration of the cartilage and other tissues that have been worn away.

Injections of amniotic fluid and membrane tissue are being analyzed not just for knee arthritis, but other orthopaedic conditions as well, Dr. Plancher notes. These include tendonitis, muscle tears, cartilage repair, and even plantar fasciitis in the foot. And while FloGraft itself is a relatively new product, using human- and bovine-derived amniotic fluid to treat orthopaedic conditions was reported as long ago as 1927, Dr. Plancher says.

Before being used on patients, harvested amniotic fluid is screened extensively for safety. Donors also undergo a variety of blood tests and medical reviews to determine if their material is safe to use on others.

“The great thing is that amniotic fluid is a readily available substance,” he says, “and having something like this that’s easily injected into damaged body areas opens the possibility of regenerative medicine for a wide variety of disorders and injuries.”

What to expect with FloGraft treatment
What can you expect if you undergo FloGraft treatment? The injection process takes just a few minutes and only poses minimal discomfort, Dr. Plancher explains. Patients can leave the office immediately and go about their daily activities with exception of using crutches for a short period of time if injected into the knee. The number of FloGraft injections needed for each patient will vary and is tailored to their individual situation.

“Hopefully once it’s injected into the knee, FloGraft will help the knee begin healing within weeks, and patients should notice a real difference in their arthritis symptoms within a few months,” says Dr. Plancher, who lectures globally on issues related to orthopaedic procedures and sports injury management. “Many patients notice less pain after only one injection.”

Kevin D. Plancher, MD, is a board-certified orthopaedic surgeon and the founder of Plancher Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine.

Plancher Orthopaedics & Sports Medicineis a comprehensive orthopaedics and sports medicine practice with offices in New York City and Greenwich, CT. http://www.plancherortho.com


Workouts to Keep Your Belly Flat

Posted in Fitness, Press Releases, Strength Training | May 4, 2017

Dr. Kevin Plancher with Plancher Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine Highlights Common Reasons for Belly Fat and Offers Tips on Exercises to get it Flat.

New York, NY & Greenwich, CT (PRWEB) May 04, 2017

May 2017 – With summer rapidly approaching, a bathing suit-ready body – with a flat belly, is top of mind for many men and women. But many people don’t know how they are sabotaging their chances of flatter abs or which exercises up their chances of attaining them, says orthopaedic surgeon Kevin D. Plancher, MD, founder of Plancher Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine.

“Extra belly fat isn’t just hard on the eyes – it’s hard, more importantly, on our health. Extensive medical research has shown that too much abdominal fat increases the odds of developing metabolic syndrome, type 2 diabetes, heart disease and cancer. Known as “visceral fat,” this excess padding also surrounds abdominal organs such as the liver, impeding their function,” Dr. Plancher notes. There’s no question, however, that keeping abdominal fat at bay is a major challenge for men and women of every weight.

Common reasons for belly fat
“If your tummy bulges a little too much, it may – or may not – actually be your fault,” says Dr. Plancher. Many factors can make people gain excess belly fat, and not all of them are things they can change. Still, it helps to be aware of what factors lead to weight gain in the abdomen so people can modify our lifestyles as much as possible.

According to Dr. Plancher, these include:
Sugary foods and drinks: Even so-called “healthier” choices such as frozen yogurt and low-fat muffins still pack a lot of sugar, and high sucrose and fructose intake has been linked in research to excess belly fat. Soda, flavored coffee drinks, and sweet tea are also among the big offenders.

Alcohol: Surely you’ve heard the term “beer belly.” It comes from alcohol’s suppression of fat-burning, along with the calories from alcohol that are partly stored as belly fat. Consumed moderately, especially in red wine, alcohol can, however, lower the risk of heart attack or stroke but some do contain a high content of sugar.

Menopause: The growth of a “meno-pot” is legendary among menopausal women, but there’s strong science behind that unhappy belly fat gain. When estrogen levels drop dramatically – typically around age 50 – fat is more likely to be stored in the abdomen instead of the hips and thighs.

Fruit juice: Juicing may be a huge health trend right now, but it’s not so good in certain ways. Even unsweetened, 100% fruit juice contains a huge amount of sugar, which drives insulin resistance and belly fat gain.

Genetics: Unfortunately, if your parents tended to store excess fat in their bellies, you probably will too. Genes appear to play a prominent role in where we store fat and our waist-to-hip ratios.

Stress: Going through a rough patch? You may be producing more of the “stress hormone” cortisol, which not only fuels hunger and overeating but promotes fat storage in the tummy.

Inactivity: OK, this won’t shock most of us, but too much couch time and lounging around simply doesn’t promote a flatter belly. We need to burn more calories to keep belly fat at bay.

Exercises to flatten the belly
All hope is not lost. There’s much we can do to flatten the tummy. According to Dr. Plancher, perhaps the most impactful move is to, well, get moving! “You’ll see faster, more effective results when you eat properly and combine that with daily activity, especially cardio exercises such as brisk walking, hiking, jogging or stair climbing,” he says.

Dr. Plancher, who lectures globally on issues related to orthopaedic procedures and sports injury management, also recommends spot-toning exercises to enhance cardio exercise in your belly-flattening efforts. These exercises include:
Sit-ups: Lying on the floor, hold your hands by your ears and bend your knees with feet flat on the floor. Lift your shoulders and upper back away from the floor, with face pointing toward the ceiling. Exhale as you come up, hold for a second, and inhale as you return to the floor. Repeat 15-25 times.

Crunch-and-twist: Start the same way you do for sit-ups, but as you raise yourself up, slowly twist your body from the waist. Touch left knee with right elbow, then untwist and go back to starting position. Repeat, now touching the right knee with the left elbow. Repeat on each side 10-15 times.

Hip lifts: Lie on the floor with arms at sides, palms down and legs over hips at a 90-degree angle. Flex your feet. Now lift hips off the floor using your core muscles as your legs are reaching toward ceiling. Return to starting position. Repeat 15 times.

Side plank: Lie on right side while legs are extended and feet and hips rest on floor atop each other. Prop head up on right elbow. Squeeze your core muscles and lift hips and knees off the floor. Hold as long as you can, then return to starting position. Repeat on other side. Do as many repetitions as possible.

Cycling: Consideration to joining an exercise bicycle program for those with early arthritis of the knee can also be quite helpful to reduce overall body fat and tone your abdomen.

Kevin D. Plancher, MD, is a board-certified orthopaedic surgeon and the founder of Plancher Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine.

Plancher Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine is a comprehensive orthopaedics and sports medicine practice with offices in New York City and Greenwich, CT. http://www.plancherortho.com


Meniscus Surgery: Tips on Myths and Facts

Posted in Blog, Press Releases | April 26, 2017

Dr. Kevin Plancher with Plancher Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine explains key details about surgery to repair or replace knee cartilage

New York, NY & Greenwich, CT (PRWEB) April 26, 2017

There’s no mistaking the negative effects a tear in the knee’s meniscus – the C-shape of cartilage cushioning the space between the thighbone and shinbone – can wreak on patients’ daily lives. But a swirl of myths surround surgery to repair or remove the meniscus, can blur patients’ ability to decide whether this treatment may be right for them, says orthopaedic surgeon Kevin D. Plancher, MD, founder of Plancher Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine.

More than 400,000 surgeries to remove or repair a torn meniscus took place in the United States between 2005 and 2011, according to a 2013 study in the American Journal of Sports Medicine. Meniscus tears are common for good reason: There’s double the opportunity to injure the meniscus, since two such cartilage pads are located in each knee joint, Dr. Plancher says. Tears stem from several causes, including sports injuries involving squatting and twisting motions, such as a football tackle or sudden basketball pivot; trauma such as car crashes; excess body weight, which strains the entire knee; and aging, which weakens and thins knee cartilage over decades due to less lubrication in the knee.

Symptom severity ranges from patient to patient, but typical signs of a torn meniscus include pain, stiffness or swelling in the knee that gradually worsens over days. Some patients feel a slipping or “popping” sensation in the knee, notes Dr. Plancher, also a Clinical Professor in Orthopaedics at Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York.

Conservative treatments are almost always tried first after a meniscus tear — including rest, ice, compression or physical therapy – but if a patient doesn’t experience symptom or pain improvement or can’t straighten the knee, surgery may be considered to either repair or remove part of the meniscus.

Tips on Truth vs. Fiction about Meniscus Surgery
In addition to normal concerns about surgery, those facing a meniscus operation often aren’t privy to correct information about the surgery itself and whether meniscus repair or removal is advised. Dr. Plancher, who lectures globally on issues related to orthopaedic procedures and sports injury management, offers these myths and facts about meniscus surgery:

Myth: The surgeon always knows before meniscus surgery whether the meniscus needs to be repaired.
Fact: Sometimes surgeons must visualize the inner knee at the start of the procedure before a final determination can be made whether repair is possible or a piece of the meniscus must be removed. Among other factors, the decision is also based on the patient’s age, activity level and overall health along with where the meniscus tear is located, its size and pattern. Saving the meniscus is important and when possible should be performed.

Myth: Removing the entire meniscus is always preferable to leaving any piece behind.
Fact: The lack of any meniscus tissue to cushion the knee joint may eventually lead to degenerative arthritis in the knee, which may necessitate an artificial knee joint down the road. So whenever possible – and especially in younger patients – preserving and if possible repairing the meniscus is preferable to removing it completely. In fact, studies have demonstrated that the more meniscal tissue removed from the knee, the more likely you will be to develop knee osteoarthritis.

Myth: Meniscus repair surgery involves large incisions.
Fact: In the past, larger incisions were needed during meniscus surgery. Advances in surgical equipment now enable tiny incisions or small poke holes to be used. Surgeons insert tools and a camera through these slits to either repair the meniscus or trim away damaged areas, a procedure lasting about an hour.

Myth: Failure rates for meniscus repair surgery are high.
Fact: 2013 research in the American Journal of Sports Medicine notes that many prior studies suggested between 20% and 40% of meniscus tears repaired surgically later re-tear with higher re-tear rates in medial (or the inside of your knee) versus lateral (or the outside of your knee) meniscal repair. But the 2013 research indicated those numbers were inflated, with less than 10% of meniscus patients experiencing a re-tear. Patient selection and the pre- and postoperative rehab program is essential.

Myth: Meniscus surgery will require patients to keep the knee immobilized for an extended period.
Fact: After the same-day procedure, patients can bear weight on the knee within a day or two but must wear a brace to keep the leg straight for 4 weeks. Physical therapy exercises are begun within days and the patient must bend the knee to 90º to avoid any long-term stiffness. While meniscus repair surgery generally takes longer to recover from because some of the meniscus has been preferred, this is still a more optimal result. Most patients that undergo meniscus repair will fully recover within about 6 weeks after wearing a knee brace and/or using crutches during that period. Patients with a small portion of their meniscus removed can expect to recover in 5 weeks.

Fact: All patients who require meniscus surgery must insist upon a plain, standing x-ray even if they have an MRI to avoid worsening symptoms.

Kevin D. Plancher, MD, is a board-certified orthopaedic surgeon and the founder of Plancher Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine.

Plancher Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine is a group of fellowship-trained surgeons with expertise in knee, hip, and shoulder arthroplasty, sports medicine, hand and microvascular surgery, foot and ankle and cartilage specialty procedures. Offices are located in NYC and Greenwich, CT with office hours 6 days a week. http://www.plancherortho.com


Time to Tee Up: Preparing Your Shoulders for Golf Season

Posted in Press Releases, Shoulder Injuries | April 4, 2017

Dr. Kevin Plancher with Plancher Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine explains golf-related shoulder injuries and offers tips on preseason conditioning.

New York, NY & Greenwich, CT (PRWEB) April 04, 2017

As temperatures rise with the start of spring, so do golfers’ hopes for their next eagle or hole in one. But such feats aren’t possible unless golfers’ shoulders are primed and ready – a goal preseason conditioning can promote, says orthopaedic surgeon Kevin D. Plancher, MD, founder of Plancher Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine.

Because shoulders are so crucial to golfing, they also account for a large chunk of injuries experienced by golfers. For amateur golfers – who number more than 37 million in the United States – the shoulder is the fourth most commonly injured body area, according to the Orthopedic Journal at Harvard Medical School.

“The fact is, playing golf well relies heavily on the strength and fitness of the muscles, tendons and joints in the shoulders just to drive the ball off the tee,” Dr. Plancher says. “As much as golf involves the entire body, a solid golf game isn’t attainable without your shoulders working well.”

Common Golf-Related Shoulder Injuries
What are the most prevalent shoulder injuries stemming from golfing? Essentially, Dr. Plancher says they fall into three types:

Overuse injuries caused by too much golfing and/or poor form. These include rotator cuff tendon inflammation and tears.

Traumatic injuries that happen suddenly during play. These include strains and tears.

Joint degeneration caused primarily by aging. These include arthritis and bone spurs.

Many golf-related shoulder injuries are preventable with forethought and common-sense measures, notes Dr. Plancher, also a Clinical Professor in Orthopaedics at Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York.

“Do sensible things, such as stopping play if your shoulder starts hurting during a game,” he says. “Avoid carrying a golf bag with a sore shoulder, and learn good technique for your swing.”

Preseason conditioning tips
Joining other top preventive measures to avoid shoulder injuries from golfing is embarking on preseason training well in advance of your first springtime tee time, Dr. Plancher says. Ideally, preseason training exercises will improve the strength, endurance and flexibility of the shoulder’s rotator cuff, shoulder blade muscles, large back muscles and large chest muscles.

Dr. Plancher suggests incorporating these techniques into your preseason golf prep:

Head rolls: Roll your ear gently to one side, toward the shoulder. Tilt head back and forth, repeating on opposite side. Continue for 60 seconds.

Shoulder stretches: Raise right arm in front of you, then bring to left, wrapping left elbow around right arm and pulling that arm closer to your chest. Reverse for left side. Continue 2-3 minutes.

Side stretches: With feet shoulder-width apart, raise right arm directly above head and lean shoulders to the left, swaying right hip slightly out. Feel the stretch along the right side of your body. Reverse for the left side. Continue 1-2 minutes.

Prone T: Lie face down on floor with a folded towel under your forehead. Arms should be out to the sides with palms facing floor (the T shape). Squeeze shoulder blades together and left hands off floor until parallel to floor. Hold for 3 seconds and lower, repeating 10-12 times.

Lunge with a Twist: Stand in upright position and step forward with your right leg, maintaining your right knee over your right ankle. Rotate your trunk to the left and then return to the starting position. Repeat the exercise on the opposite side. A pole or chair can be used, if needed, to assist with balance. Perform 3 sets of 10 repetitions on each side.

Forearm Plank with Arm Raise: Place your forearms on the ground with the elbows aligned below the shoulders. Raise your right arm out in front of you and hold for 2 seconds then lower back to the starting position. Repeat with the left arm. Perform 10 times on each side and then rest. Perform 3 rounds.

Reverse Chop with a Squat: Start in a squatting position, holding a weight or medicine ball with both hands next to your left hip. Keeping your arms straight, raise the weight across your body and overhead above your right shoulder while standing up from the squatting position. Lower back to the starting position. Repeat 10 times and then switch to the opposite side. Perform 3 sets of 10 repetitions.

“The best 18 holes happen not only with great weather on a great course, but because you’ve prepared your body for the rigors of the game,” says Dr. Plancher, who lectures globally on issues related to orthopaedic procedures and sports injury management. “If your shoulders aren’t ready, your swing will suffer – and so will your score. Don’t leave yourself vulnerable to a season-ending injury, which is the worst sand trap of all.”

Kevin D. Plancher, MD, is a board-certified orthopaedic surgeon and the founder of Plancher Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine.

Plancher Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine is a group of fellowship-trained surgeons with expertise in hip, knee and shoulder arthroplasty, sports medicine, hand and microvascular surgery, foot and ankle and cartilage specialty procedures. Offices are located in NYC and Greenwich, CT with office hours 6 days a week. http://www.plancherortho.com


New and Here Now: Collagen Meniscus Implants for the Knee

Posted in Blog, Press Releases | March 22, 2017

Dr. Kevin Plancher with Plancher Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine details newest treatment he performs for torn knee cartilage.

New York, NY & Greenwich, CT (PRWEB) March 22, 2017

There’s no question our knees take a beating every day, but now there’s a new treatment option for those who’ve been plagued by knee pain stemming from damage or injury to the meniscus on having previously had surgery requiring the removal of a segment of their meniscus, the cartilage pad wedged between the thigh and shin bones, says orthopaedic surgeon Kevin D. Plancher, MD, founder of Plancher Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine. (more…)


Protect Your Knees While Running on the Treadmill

Posted in Blog, Fitness, Injury Prevention, Press Releases | March 1, 2017

Dr. Kevin Plancher with Plancher Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine Offers Tips That Can Lead to Fewer Knee Injuries – “A Small Incline.”

New York, NY & Greenwich, CT (PRWEB) March 01, 2017

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March 2017 – All year round the treadmill represents freedom for many runners, especially in the winter months when people don’t want to stop training to brave the cold weather, snow or ice. Treadmill running poses special challenges to the knees – and setting the treadmill to a small incline can help protect these vulnerable joints, says orthopaedic surgeon Kevin D. Plancher, MD, founder of Plancher Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine. (more…)


New Options for Cycling at Home Offer Key Benefits

Posted in Fitness, In the News, Patient Education, Press Releases | January 26, 2017

Dr. Kevin Plancher with Plancher Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine Provides Tips for Getting the Most Out of Indoor Cycling.

Greenwich, CT & New York, NY (PRWEB) January 26, 2017

The benefits of regular physical exercise are well known: improved health, improved energy and mood, better sleep, and weight control. Per the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, every adult should aim for a minimum of 150 minutes a week of moderate-intensity cardiovascular exercise. For decades, one of the most popular ways of exercising was on a stationary bike, either at home or at the gym. “A stationary bike offers many benefits,” says Dr. Kevin Plancher of Plancher Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine. “It gets the heart pumping without putting undue stress on the joints. And an indoor bike can be used in any weather, by novice and experienced exercisers and at varying levels of time and intensity.”

But for all their benefits, many exercise bikes bought for home use wind up as expensive clothes racks or dust collectors in the basement or attic. Why does motivation seem to flag after just a few months? “One reason is boredom,” says Dr. Plancher. “Even watching TV or listening to music or a podcast while on the bike doesn’t seem to be enough to keep a lot of people at it.” One attempt to address this problem is with spin classes offered at gyms. These programs use bikes that evolved from the stationary bike to more closely resemble a road bike and offer the camaraderie and competition of working out with a group. But, as Dr. Plancher points out, what is sacrificed is the freedom and convenience of working out at home on your own schedule.

New options now make it possible to combine the comfort and convenience of working out at home with quality hardware, expert instruction, metrics, and more classes and instructors than any gym could offer. One of the companies in this new market, Peloton Interactive, Inc., manufactures a “smart bike,” which has a high-definition monitor attached to the handlebars. It uses home wi-fi to stream live classes from Peloton’s studio and to provide an archive of thousands of past classes of every type, letting you choose from a wide variety of rides, instructors, and soundtracks. The system tracks your performance and compares your current ride to your personal best so you can push yourself to set new personal records. You can also compete against others who have done the rides you choose and review user ratings of instructors and rides. If you participate in a live ride, the instructor sees your metrics and can address you as if you were in the room. “This system incorporates all the performance and motivation factors of indoor cycling in the gym with the convenience of working out at home,” says Dr. Plancher. “This is an important new trend that represents the next generation of exercise technology, one that can potentially transform the landscape for home fitness.”

Tips for getting the most from your cycling workout
However you ride – on an upright stationary bike, a recumbent bike, or a new smart bike – Dr. Plancher offers tips to help you get the most from your cycling workout:

Before you buy a bike, do your homework: Consider what kind of bike you want and factors like how much room you have and how much you want to spend.

Have an expert ensure that you’re buying a bike that fits you properly – seat height, distance from pedals and handlebars, etc.

Make sure you understand how to safely adjust intensity and other options. Start slowly and increase the intensity of your ride gradually.

The bike seat shouldn’t be uncomfortable. Try padded shorts or a gel seat to improve comfort. Sit lightly on the seat.

If you’re not using one of the newer smart bikes that provide streaming and archived classes, look into buying or renting cycling videos that have a variety of rides and changes of scenery.

Consider cross training with another activity once or twice a week to build up endurance in different muscles and prevent overuse injuries.

“The most important factor in a successful fitness program is finding the one that is right for you,” says Dr. Plancher. “Indoor cycling has worked for millions of people and new advances make it even more appealing. But the program that works for you will be the one that suits your personality, fitness level, and lifestyle and that you will enjoy and stick with.”


Weekend Warriors: Play Hard, Have Fun and Stay Injury Free

Posted in Blog, Injury Prevention, Press Releases | January 17, 2017

Dr. Kevin Plancher with Plancher Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine with tips for weekend warriors

Greenwich, CT and NY, NY (PRWEB) January 17, 2017

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Weekend warriors are people who find little time to play in their favorite sports during the workweek, but instead, pack a weeks’ worth of them into the two short weekend days. The goal for these folks is to enjoy their sports while staying injury free.

“The good news is that ‘weekend-warrior’ type exercise is beneficial to the cardiovascular system,” explains Kevin Plancher, M.D., founder of Plancher Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine. The benefits of physical activity, even if just on the weekends, include improved overall health, increased energy, weight management and sheer fun. “So while we encourage our patients to exercise regularly, if that’s not possible, we are happy for them to get out on the weekends and play a game, run a bit and work up a sweat, adds Dr. Plancher. We offer the following tips for understanding the risks for injury helping them to stay healthy.”

‘Weekend Warrior’ Risks

Dr. Plancher offers that sometimes ‘Weekend Warrior’ activities are welcoming for injury. “They are often greater in intensity than weekday exercise sessions,” he explains. For example, many weekend warrior sports like soccer, basketball, golf and tennis tend to involve groups of players. “Playing a sport with a group of buddies or on a team can inspire a more competitive spirit than, say, walking or jogging alone,” says Dr. Plancher. “The more competitive the game, the more likely we are to push our bodies past their limits, increasing the risk of injuries,” he says.

According to Dr. Plancher the typical weekend warrior injuries are most likely to occur in the joints and muscles of the knees, shoulders and elbows. “That’s because they are the three key areas that receive the most shock and friction during these ‘Weekend Warrior’ activities.”

Ready, Set, Play

Dr. Plancher offers the following tips to prepare the body for a weekend of intense sports activity:

Sneak in some weekday activity. “’Weekend Warriors’ can take small steps during the week to prepare themselves for their weekend activities,” Dr. Plancher points out. For example, he suggests taking a quick 20-30 minute walk at lunch each day, or keeping a set of light weights in the office and fitting in a couple of sets of lifts during the day. Dr. Plancher also suggests using a resistance band to stretch the shoulders and back muscles while in the office. Lastly, where possible, core strengthening such as planks or sit-ups can help prevent back injury. In all, any movement that can keep the muscles engaged and the joints moving will help prepare the body for the more intense activity on the weekends.

Make sure to warm-up and stretch on game day. Dr. Plancher advises that it is critical to warm-up the body and muscles before getting out on the field or court. He suggests a short jog or brisk walk in advance of the game to get the blood flowing and increase joint flexibility. He also advocates for some gentle stretching work to prepare the muscles for a more intense workout.

Know when to rest “’Weekend Warriors’ should be mindful of when they are over doing it and should allow for reasonable resting during long games or physical activities,” Dr. Plancher advises. “It’s OK, in fact, imperative, to take regular rest breaks and to hydrate the body. If substitutes are available, take the opportunity for a rest. You don’t need to be the last guy down the mountain or play all 4 quarters of a Saturday basketball game to have some fun. The odds for injury increase when players are tired.” he adds.

Don’t over-do it. “Knowing when you’ve had enough is not always easy, but it’s particularly important for ‘Weekend Warriors’. Dr. Plancher advises to pay attention to signals from the body indicating that it is overworked, or injured, and immediately stop the activity.” Dr. Plancher warns that “some sports-related joint and muscle injuries require immediate medical attention to minimize further damage. If you feel that you might have injured your knee or shoulder during a game, take a rest and if pain persists, see a doctor sooner than later.

Most importantly. Make sure your health can allow for exercise. Check first with your internist before starting any new exercise regimen.

“Weekend sports are lots of fun and when played with a reasonable attitude and attention to safety, they can be a wonderful way to enjoy a Saturday or Sunday afternoon with friends or family,” adds Dr. Plancher.

Kevin D. Plancher, MD, is a board-certified orthopaedic surgeon and the founder of Plancher Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine.

Plancher Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine is a general orthopaedics and sports medicine practice with offices in New York City and Greenwich, CT. http://www.plancherortho.com