The Power of Grit

One of the many challenges to starting a business or platform is picking the “right” name. It should be original, meaningful, and memorable. Grit Physical Therapy, we believe, meets the above criteria. The purpose of this post is to explain why we chose this name, the meaning behind our logo, and the meaning of grit.

Grit is a unique characteristic. When Googling “grit”, a plethora of definitions emerge sharing similar terminology: courage and resolve; strength of character; perseverance and passion for long-term goals. Synonyms are just as powerful: fortitude, resilience, determination, tenacity, and bravery. When someone has that “extra something”, it’s usually grit. Angela Lee Duckworth, a professor at the University of Pennsylvania and grit subject-matter-expert, defines grit as “the ability to persevere in pursuing a future goal over a long period of time and not giving up… It is having stamina… Grit is living life like it’s a marathon, not a sprint.” Here she is on the TED stage:

If you are reading this article you likely possess grit, whether as a clinician, coach, or athlete. It’s what gets us through the challenges along our lifelong journeys. For clinicians, grit is needed to get through school, study for the licensure exam, and grind through a patient load. For coaches, grit gets them up every early morning, to work the long days, and to sacrifice for their athletes. For athletes, grit is finishing the workout, tracking nutrition, and working on weaknesses. At some point, we have all used grit to forge through to another day.

Sustaining an injury and going through the rehab process requires grit, perseverance, and resilience. If you’ve ever been injured, you know. The graphic below by Adam Meakins (The Sports Physio) illustrates the frustrations with injury recovery. What we want is a linear predictable progression, improving each day. However, that’s rarely the case. Working through an injury is a roller coaster ride accompanied with highs and lows but ultimately trudging towards recovery. The dips, slides, and plateaus are challenging and taxing. A person’s grit and fortitude determines if they keep grinding towards the end state or waive the white flag. Unfortunately, too many pick up that flag and slide into the abyss of chronic pain and dysfunction.

Our current company logo consists of two components: our name in stencil font and a mule silhouette. The stencil font is representative of and an homage to our military community. We have military roots and can testify to the level of grit possessed by our uniformed service members. The mule is our symbol of grit. This animal possesses many attributes associated with grit (strength, resilience, perseverance, and fortitude), allowing it to carry large loads over long distances with limited resources over harsh terrain (#crossfit #workcapacity).

So, how “gritty” are you? Can you think of moments in your life that required grit, fortitude, and perseverance? Below is a link to Dr. Duckworth’s Grit Scale, a well-known and well-researched tool to measure an individual’s grit level. Check it out and find out how you measure up.

Life is a series of interconnected journeys woven together, and each journey will possess its own challenges. Grit allows us to overcome those challenges and embrace the journey. And it’s through the journey we learn and experience the moments that define who we are.

Thanks for reading.

- Pat

1 Corinthians 15:58 (ESV): Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain.

Luke 21:19 (ESV): By your endurance you will gain your lives.

#grit #resilience #rehab #recovery #crossfit #workcapacity

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