Jeff Shady is an Obstacle Course Racing Physical Therapist based out of Monterey Bay in California. When he’s not caring for patients or taping up fellow athletes, he’s training for his next big race. 

Why did you get into physical therapy?

I grew up with a soccer ball at my feet and a basketball in my hand. Growing up as a multi-sport athlete in a big family, I had my fair share of injuries and physical therapy. I greatly respected and appreciated the work of my physical therapists and I have always looked up to them as I wouldn’t have had the ability to perform at the level I was able to without them. I have always had a passion for promoting an active lifestyle as well as helping people, so it was a natural fit for me to become a physical therapist. My daily goal is to help each person I work with to be the most capable version of themselves’ and to play a role in helping them achieve their goals.

What do you do for exercise / do you play a sport?

When I’m not caring for my patients, I live an active lifestyle where I am constantly training for my next obstacle course racing (OCR) event. I started racing by chance in 2013, when I won a free entry into a local OCR race and finished 2nd and got hooked on the competition and camaraderie of the sport. Over the past couple years, I have had fifteen podium finishes and 30 top ten finishes highlighted by a 3rd place finish in my age group at the OCR World Championships in 2014. Most weekends, you can find me racing in either a Spartan Race or a BattleFrog Race.

Tell us about your practice. What do you specialize in?

Since graduating with a Doctorate in Physical Therapy from Ohio University in 2013, I started working in a high volume outpatient orthopedic clinic where I refined my skills as a sports physical therapist. Over the past couple years, I have been working as a travel physical therapist up and down the west coast and am currently residing in Monterey, California. I am proud to say that I recently became a FMT Level 1 and 2 clinician to further my skill set and better treat my patients.

What was your first experience with RockTape?

image4My first true experience with RockTape was during this past years Spartan Race World Championships held at Squaw Valley in Tahoe, California. I took part in the grueling 14 mile race through the extensive muddy barbed wire crawls, in and out of the frigid icy water, up and over walls, and through many other demanding obstacles. Even after these extreme and strenuous conditions, the RockTape was still strongly adhered to my skin and provided the support that I desperately needed to finish the race strong. At this point, I became a believer in the product for not only personal use, but I also became confident that this is the product that I should be using with my patients. As a PT and an OCR athlete, the OCR community will commonly come to me seeking medical advice as they start having aches and discomfort*s. For the majority of the cases, I will recommend appropriate taping techniques to allow them to effectively return to discomfort* free activity. RockTape has been the one product that I continue to tirelessly recommend!

How do you use RockTape in your practice?

RockTape surprisingly has a lot of uses in the clinic! It isn’t a cure-all, but it’s definitely a game-changer during the rehabilitation process. RockTape is a great go-to for decreasing discomfort*, improving posture, decreasing scar tissue, improving proprioceptive input, and decreasing inflammation. I not only treat athletes, but I also have a handful of geriatric and pediatric patients who have sensitive skin and wouldn’t be able to handle the H2O or standard tape so the RockTapeRx is perfect for them. It is designed to be less aggressive and easier to remove, but is still just as effective.

Prior to using the RockTape, I always perform some form of mobility work using the either RockBalls and/or the RockNRoller in conjunction with some form of instrument assisted soft tissue work with the RockSauce.

What’s your favorite RockTape pattern/product/etc?

As an OCR athlete, I solely use the H2O RockTape as it is the strongest, most waterproof. Just like the rest of their tape line, it’s extremely durable and is able to keep up with my active lifestyle and is perfect for endurance and OCR athletes.