5 On-the-Go Podcasts and Blogs for PT Growth
Finding ways to charge my professional battery so I am ready to go, full of enthusiasm, energy, and knowledge is easier than ever these days. It’s one of the few ways I am good at multitasking! I listen to podcasts during my commute, when walking/hiking, or even doing home tasks such as gardening or cleaning when I am alone. A pleasant and easy way to absorb info. Blogs I read as I can – the photos often draw me in first – but I appreciate the stories behind them.
Here are 5 of my favorite sites for keeping up-to-date in the pediatric disabilities and pediatric physical therapy worlds, expanding my skills and perspective, and challenging me each day.
- Family Synapse blog: My first introduction to a parent leading the way to share information and their perspective through all the complex pieces of raising their wonderful son, Aidan, with a disability while juggling “normal” life. Heather and her family have been writing about “life, disability, and the power of connection” from “her little corner of the internet.” She writes beautifully, honestly, and sometimes with painful truths that make me gasp and rethink my interactions with parents, kids with disability, and my PT-oriented recommendations. And she’s funny, creative, and visionary! I love how she challenges me and others.
- Stronger Every Day podcast and blog: I recently met the author and speaker Bo Bigelow at Maine’s first Rare Disease Day on February 29, 2016 – Leap Day. He and his wife have a daughter with a rare chromosomal anomaly, and Bo was a stay-at-home dad for years before recently re-entering the work field as a lawyer for disability rights. His blog and podcast are unique, well-presented on topics that I need to hear about such as how parents with children with special needs juggle work and their complex home situations, prejudice, discrimination, and friendships, and the struggle to obtain services. Like Heather, Bo writes and speaks from the heart in an amazing way as he shares their journey with “the T-bird,” Tess. Beware, Bo tells us at the start of each episode that he includes swear words in his podcasts. While I am not a fan of such words, I see how they honestly reflect his thoughts.
- PediaCast podcast: “A pediatric podcast for parents” by Dr. Mike at Nationwide Children’s Hospital in OH. Although primarily geared toward parents, this evidenced-based podcast gives me updates on the latest research and clinical expertise on a variety of topics that impact the children and families I work with (ADHD, sleep, bullying, ear infections, brain tumor treatment, and so much more) – a great way to stay current. I especially appreciate his clear ability to sift through the current research, combined with his expertise as a physician at a large children’s hospital, to make sense of an issue. Experts in the field are interviewed and listener questions are answered. I appreciated his recent take on “W-sitting” that was based on evidence but respecting the clinical expertise of physical therapists – this can be a hot topic in our field – and his answer was comprehensive and balanced. There is also a PediaCastCME version for medical providers that dives deeper into the science and research evidence.
- Michael Hyatt’s “This is Your Life” podcast: a weekly podcast that I look forward to on my Monday morning commutes north. He writes and speaks on “intentional leadership” with topics on communication, trust building, productivity, priorities, team building and so much more. Not a medical field specific podcast, but so applicable to my life as a therapist, team member, mentor, educator, writer, as well as wife, mother, and sibling.
- The Mighty: “We face disability, disease, and mental illness together.” A larger blog, written by a diverse array of authors who write about their experiences for themselves or other loved ones. It also has a news feed that curates current news about disabilities. The more perspectives from the parent side of the parent-therapist relationship I can glean and try to understand from these parents, the better I can provide my therapy services.