Physiotherapy nearly always involves exercises and rehabilitation of some kind. A regimen or plan of physical activities is designed and prescribed for specific therapeutic goals for each individual patient. Its purpose is to restore normal musculoskeletal function or to reduce pain caused by diseases or injuries. Exercise can also be prescribed to help prevent future health problems!
Exercise is anything you do in addition to your regular daily activity that will improve your flexibility, strength, coordination, or endurance. Your physical therapist is likely to teach you how to do an exercise program on your own at home so you can continue to work toward your fitness goals and prevent future problems.
Rehabilitation is an integral part of recovery after a serious injury, illness or surgery. Rehabilitation starts with the acute onset of the injury and follows various stages until you regain optimum function. You may need to regain your strength, relearn skills or find new ways of doing things you did before. The type of therapy and goals of therapy may be different for different people. An older person who has had a stroke may simply want to be able to perform activities of daily living independently. A younger person who has had a heart attack may go through cardiac rehabilitation to return to work and normal activities. Someone with a lung disease may get respiratory rehabilitation to be able to breathe better and improve his or her quality of life. A sportsperson has to be rehabilitated to be able to return to sport and remain.
In the event of a chronic condition such as fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome and even failed back surgery, the rehabilitation might take a different approach namely “graded exposure”. Physical activity starts very slowly and gradually increases over time. The golden rule is “what you do today you should not pay for tomorrow”! This method avoids the extremes of the “boom – bust” cycle of over exercising during times where you feel good and not exercising at all when you experience symptoms. Enough time for recovery and slow but continuous progression is key to the success of this approach.
- Rehabilitation is key to improve mobility and stability after surgery, injury or pain.
- Below is a link to rehab exercises (with courtesy of The Prehab Guys) we would recommend:
- Good functional movement standards are of utmost important to prevent injury.
- Below is a link of a reputable source teaching good functional movement standards for weight lifting: