The Align Conference (@align_conf) is finally upon us. This week, hundreds of rehab professionals will converge on downtown Denver for one of my favorite conferences of the year. The location alone is awesome. The conference will focus on topics such as neuropathic pain, radiculopathy, neurodynamics and calming a sensitized nervous system. We are privileged to have Michel Coppieters and Michael Shacklock along with Steve Schmidt as keynote speakers. Not to mention all of the other speakers who will be present. Here are three ways I feel will allow you to get the most out of the conference.
Get Active, Get Feeback
For those that have been to the previous conferences hosted by EIM and its family of brands (Manipalooza, ISPI’s Clinical Conference, etc.) knows that these events pack some great content via active lab-based learning. Nothing drives me bonkers than sitting all day at a conference listening to presenters talk. As a physical therapist myself, there is little physical about most conferences. The focus on the active lab-based learning will allow attendees to get some solid practice through active learning vs. sitting around. The other aspect of the Align conference that I am excited for is the amount of faculty that will be present. There are a number of faculty that will be assisting in the labs so that folks can get feedback from more than just their partners. Be sure to engage with faculty and get as much feedback as possible!
This conference will have hundreds of folks from all over the country (and world) in one place with one mission: grow. Be sure to engage with the people in your sessions. Introduce yourself to faculty. Ask questions. Network with as many people as possible. I know several folks that have learned about new opportunities from engaging with others at conferences and given the topic area and like-minded individuals that will be attending, this is the time to get social. If you can’t be at Align, follow on social media via #align2018. Give me a shout on Twitter (@ShepDPT). There will also be a few planned social events so be sure to check those out as well. Sometimes the most meaningful conversations happen outside the conference sessions!
Bring it Home
Many folks know that attending a 3 day conference will not change clinical practice alone. Align is designed with less talk and more action which will help increase your confidence and allow for refinement, but you will need to bring this knowledge and skill base back to your “home clinic.” Share clinical pearls with your coworkers. Practice on each other. Most importantly, apply to your patients next Monday!
So, as the week progresses and the migration to Denver starts, I hope to see (and meet) many of you all there. For those of you who will not be there, please follow the hashtag #align2018 on Twitter or Instagram.
As we get pumped for the conference, what are you looking forward to?