Are You A Good Listener?

Listening and hearing are two different things.According to several studies,  60-75% of oral communication is ignored, misunderstood, or quickly forgotten. (

When you come for physical therapy, are you just hearing the words we’re saying or are you really listening to what we’re trying to convey?

Hearing is the unconscious act of perceiving sound. You can hear someone speak without listening to the words they say or putting much meaning to them. Often this can lead to misunderstandings and confusion. 

Listening is paying attention to the words spoken with the intention of understanding the other person.  When you pay attention to something, your brain works like noise-suppressing headphones.  Signals are conveyed through brain pathways in the cortex (responsible for computations), which tunes out signs and sounds that are not as immediately important, allowing you to focus on who/what is in front of you.

Our first goal is always to carefully listen to YOU, our patient. We pay attention to each detail of your unique history as well as your personal challenges and goals. We spend extra time to assess what you're saying and connect with you as a whole person.

But sometimes we see that glazed look in your eyes when it's our turn to provide direction and insight. We see you're busy planning your objection statement or anticipating what we might say, but we are your greatest ally.

Our specialized clinical training and years of experience treating patients have given us a unique perspective. We ask that you listen and trust us as we explain why you should not run six miles or lean over to pick things up THIS week. We ask that you engage as we review the home exercise program we designed especially for you!

So what now?

We find that when you fully listen and engage with us, you are able to go beyond recovery and make greater progress than you thought possible. You can:

  • Eliminate behaviors that aggravate your injury

  • Address mental/physical roadblocks

  • Avoid frustration and further injury

  • Minimize flare ups

  • Get better sooner!!

  • Push your boundaries

  • Maximize athletic performance

  • Stay active and healthy long term

And this carries over to the rest of life as well. When we give the gift of listening, we are the ones to gain. 

Marnie Wortman

Marnie Wortman

By Dr. Marnie Wortman, PT, DPT, ART, CF-L1 with Meri Mayes, MA, Owner-Iron Physical Therapy