Like many runners, Steve Vighetti MPT, MTC, FAAOMPT, CSCS, was often too injured to run. His approach to the downtime was to attend running rehabilitation seminars. What he found was that they focused on identifying problems, not how to fix them. That got him thinking about how he would teach the topic.
“Many running seminars assume that physical therapists and athletic trainers know how to address a pulled hamstring or iliotibial band syndrome, but not everyone has those hands-on skills,” says Vighetti. “There is a lot of room for improvement for how we treat runners.”
With more people running in events from 5Ks to ultramarathons—and estimates that 80% of runners miss two or more days a year due to injury—the need to improve running rehabilitation is great. “As movement specialists, running is something we should be focused on,” says Vighetti.
Vighetti brings that focus, and 10-plus years of experience with athletes, to the Running Rehabilitation seminar he teaches for physical therapists and athletic trainers through the university’s Continuing Professional Education program. He incorporates his clinical experience as owner of Vighetti & Associates Sports Physical Therapy and his teaching experience in bi-weekly Movement Science labs on the St. Augustine campus. He also shares manual techniques he learned directly from Founding President and Honorary Chancellor Dr. Stanley Paris and Associate Professor Catherine Patla as a 1997 physical therapy graduate. He also earned his Manual Therapy Certification and completed the Orthopaedic Manual Physical Therapy Fellowship at the university.
One of the first things Vighetti does in the two-day seminar is write down the individual objectives of each attendee. “If there is something that participants are looking to achieve in their own practice, I want to know so that I can help them,” he says.
The seminar reviews anatomy and biomechanics, offers evaluation techniques, and covers gait analysis with opportunities to analyze a colleague in the seminar. The focus of the second day is what inspired Vighetti to create the seminar in the first place: exercise strategies to strengthen runners and prevent injuries.
“We are up and moving, putting together everything we learned in day one, trying out body-weight exercises that are effective and easy to use and teach,” he says. “The ability for therapists to move and feel what they should be looking for in their patients makes it possible for them to go back to work and immediately use the information.”
It’s not just information he teaches, but information he uses as a runner. He recently completed the New York City marathon and has a personal marathon best of 2:46 in Boston.
2018 Running Rehabilitation Seminars
- March 10-11: Chicago
- April 14-15: Atlanta
- April 28-29: Honolulu
- June 9-10: Augustine
- September 15-16: Philadelphia