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Rehab the Right Way After Sports Injury

Daril Pacinella, golf professional and certified Titleist Fitness Instructor at Longhi’s Golf in Southwick, knows the dedication it takes to stay at the top of your game.

Pacinella had been golfing for over 30 years before being diagnosed with spinal dural arteriovenous fistulas (lesions on the spinal cord). He had surgery, and during recovery, he threw his back out.

“I knew right away I needed to seek out someone who understood what I needed and would help me get back to the swing of things as quickly as possible,” he says. “And just feeling better wasn’t good enough. I wanted to get back to the way I felt prior to all my back problems.”

Pacinella met Jim Maloney, a physical therapist at Baystate Rehabilitation Care, at a golf conference. “I was immediately impressed with Jim’s knowledge of the Titlist Performance Institute (TPI) and his expertise of how the body performs when playing golf,” says Pacinella.

“You have to learn how the body performs for each sport before you can apply your expertise to it,” says Maloney. “The key to recovering quickly is to address the injury before it starts affecting other body functions. For example, if you hurt your shoulder, you naturally begin to protect it, often stressing other body parts. If don’t address the shoulder injury, you may soon find your neck hurts, and then you’re dealing with multiple issues.”

Rehab the Right Way

“Jim ran me through some tests to see where my strengths and weaknesses were,” says Pacinella. “He pinpointed what I needed to do to get strong again. He and his team at Baystate Rehab taught me to rehab the right way. I stuck with the plan they gave me and in no time I was feeling better.”

Both Maloney and Pacinella agree that physical screenings are important for athletes looking to improve their games, whether it’s golf or any sport.

“When you’re young, you have plenty of flexibility and not as much strength,” says Maloney. “As you age, you have more strength, but you lose flexibility.”

Baystate Rehabilitation Care offers a free, monthly Sports Injury Clinic, including Selective Functional Movement Assessment Screenings. For more information, call 413-794-9755.