Good physical therapist for back problems?

lower backJennifer emails:

Any chance you can ask your readers for suggestions on a good physical therapist for the lower back? I have been to a few different places around town over the years and seem to always get stuck with folks fresh out of school with little experience.

In addition to physical therapy, we're curious if there are other things -- like maybe specific yoga or other exercise classes in the area -- that people have have found helpful for back problems. (Of course, you'd always want to check with your doctor ahead of time to make sure any sort of other exercise wouldn't make the problem worse.)

So, got a a suggestion for Jennifer? Please share! And a sentence or two about why you're recommending a specific therapist or program can be very helpful.


I don't know about a good PT but I've had wonderful results with chiropractor Dr. William Root in Guilderland.

I'm 33 and have been dealing with genetic lower back issues for 7-8 years. Before you have surgery - which is a widely-known last resort - try one or all of these:

Shiatsu and/or yoga.
If you work out, take a month or two and strengthen your core before lifting weights again.
Buy a memory foam or sleep number mattress. Yes, it's expensive, but you spend a lot of time in bed. It's worth it.
Try a wide shoe size.
Learn to sleep on your side.

Maccio Physical Therapy in Troy is great.

I saw David Steck at St. Peters once for a pinched sciatic nerve and then after back surgery to regain strength and flexibility. I had good outcomes with PT and this office has early hours before a typical 9-5 workday.

Outpatient Rehabilitation Services
1240 New Scotland Road
Slingerlands, NY 12159

I went everywhere and finally found Maccio physical therapy in Troy. Everything else was an ongoing treatment plan - keep me a patient forever. They taught me how to do therapy at home, and now my subluxations from degenerative disc only last a day or so instead of 6 months. My pain was unmanageable and now its manageable so I have to give them a recommend -

I agree about Maccio Physical Therapy in Troy - I had an extremely painful shoulder and they fixed me!

Core Physical Therapy on Western Ave

Cocozzo Physical Therapists in Malta.

If you weren't referred already, have that discussion with your orthopedist. I went to OrthoNY and saw Adam Suslak, who is big on PT and I would hope that he could help you find someone. For the record, what helped me most was DAILY walking for about an hour, over hill and dale. My low back pain lasted for about 3 years and between the walking and taking Tylenol for arthritis I managed to live with it. The pain eventually went away, and so far, so good. Good luck.

I can't say enough about Core Physical Therapy in Guilderland. They are hands on and attend a lot of training courses so they are up on the latest treatments. They helped me a great deal when I was in a car accident with lots of injuries.

Brett Sears is who you're looking for, at Capital Region Physical Therapy. He and his small staff are all very experienced and they practice the Mckenzie technique, which focuses on movements that let the body heal itself. Brett and Sandy saved me from bad disc pain, with no medical intervention or surgery. I would absolutely start there. I bet it's the only place you need.

Physical therapy is important. I'd also suggest massage therapy with cupping.
And you're in luck because I'm a massage therapist who specializes in that. Look at my Facebook page and consider it as an option.

Agreed on both Maccio PT and Dr. Root. I was seeing them simultaneously to recover from a running injury.

Problems like yours are so frustrating because nobody in the medical system is responsible, or even helpful, for finding a solution for you, especially if the solution is "non-traditional". You have to become your own advisor and take charge of your care because nobody else is going to do it.
I encourage you to try lots of different things to see what seems to help for you. For me - after 6 years of hard core deep tissue massage when things got bad for me that was only marginally effective, I tried Thai massage, and it changed my life. I also use chiropractic to keep things aligned or else they go bad. My primary doc doesn't even know what Thai massage is...
My point isn't that thai massage is right for you, but to try everything and see what helps. Shiatsu, Yoga, Pilates, massage... heck I would even suggest acupuncture. Keep asking everyone associated with your care for advice.
Personally I am not a fan of PT. THere has actually never been a study showing it to be effective (yes really) and I have found it not be be helpful at all for the more mysterious back / nerve problems.

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