Physical Therapy Prime Requisite
Name: Theraman Walkis
Alignment: Lawful Neutral
Class: Therapist Assistant
Mordenkainen's Gait Belt of Walking, +2 Fall Prevention
Bigby's Gloves Against Communicable Disease
2 Copper Pieces
Standard Clothing of the Flanaess
For those of you who are familiar with the Dungeons & Dragons gaming systems, I most enjoyed the original basic red box set as well as the first edition of the AD&D system. I always tried to increase my prime requisite, that is, the main attribute for the character played. As PTs and PTAs, what do we consider a main attribute for our profession? Is it intelligence, manual dexterity, a therapist's charisma when speaking with family members? Perhaps strength is what we want if a patient were to lose his balance and for all those max assist transfers we do.
For us in therapy, our prime attributes allow us to complete tasks and they may change throughout the day. In the morning, we may need the strength to get patients up and going. In the afternoon, we may have to dig deep into our memory for the intelligence and wisdom of years in the field to answer a patient or family member's question. By the afternoon, maybe it's our charisma that gets people up and motivated to come into the therapy gym. Our dexterity allows us to palpate those bony prominences and our constitution keeps us above the 85% productivity range every day.
To improve one of these requisites takes practice and devotion to the art of therapy, as well as an understanding of patient dynamics and abilities. Sure you can be intelligent, but do you have the charisma to talk to the patients and get them to the gym? Or how about if you have the dexterity to feel the psoas musculature but not the strength to assist a patient from supine to sit? The skills we have must come together and allow us to develop our whole character, not just one area of it. We also have to know when to ask for help if a patient becomes too difficult or we become stagnant in our treatment approaches.
I will always be a happy adventurer in the field of therapy as long as I don't have to go into fellow ADVANCE blogger Toni's Temple of Elemental Evil. And a special thanks to E. Gary Gygax (1938-2008), the original Dungeon Master, for those wonderful and frustrating adventures in Greyhawk.