My day begins commuting to Yehud where I work at Sport Clinic, under sports medicine professional Ido Dana and his team of physiotherapists. Sport Clinic specializes in rehabilitation and treating sports injuries in professional athletes from Israel’s basketball, soccer and all other professional Israeli teams. Some of the amazing athletes I’ve worked with are basketball professional Gal Mekel and Maccabi Tel Aviv player Dor Perez. My day-to-day work includes evaluating patients, providing manual therapy, using rehabilitation machines and constructing rehab exercise programs. We see a range of injuries that prevent our clients from being active. Outside of work, Dana has arranged for us interns to gain experience in the field as well by shadowing orthopedic surgeries, visiting professional rehabilitation and training facilities to learn from other professionals in Israel as well as being able to observe the practices of the players we work on.
Having the freedom to create my own exercise programs as well as construct rehabilitation plans for clients has helped me see direct results in the planning I do. This internship has given me great insight to the health system in Israel as well as the many sports medicine professions that are essential for successful sports rehabilitation and injury prevention. A big takeaway I have been learning is etiquette of the relationship between patients and professionals, specifically the role of physiotherapists in not only physical improvement, but also the mentality and motivation of patients as they go through the return-to-play process. Providing a balance of empathy and strict encouragement has been shown to be vital in rehab progression and I will continue to use these strategies when working in the future.
Emma Askew, University of Vermont ’22, is an exercise science major interning at Sport Clinic through the Boston Onward Israel program. 125 students from Massachusetts colleges have professional internships in their fields of interest in Tel Aviv, Jerusalem and Haifa this summer.
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