Why do people exercise?
It seems like such an obvious question, but it doesn’t mean everyone has the same reasons for working out.
Think actors who get ripped for a role. Or basketball players who do strength training to improve their performance on the court.
And then there are regular folks who need to do it for health reasons. Maybe their doctors prescribed it for disease management or as part of a recovery plan.
The last bit is where therapeutic exercise comes in. That said, let’s discuss what therapeutic exercises are, as well as their benefits. We’ll also talk a bit about what you can expect from a therapeutic physical therapy session.
What Is Therapeutic Exercise?
You can join a class, hire a trainer, or work out on your own if you want to incorporate regular exercise in your routine.
But with therapeutic exercise, you’ll need to consult a physical therapist (PT). Your PT will recommend a plan or program based on your specific rehabilitation needs. And this will include a range of activities or exercises that will help you recover from your injury.
This is one of the reasons why it’s not advisable for anyone to do therapeutic exercises alone. Without a PT’s supervision, you could injure yourself further. And you may not be able to do some of the activities without help.
Benefits of Therapeutic Exercise
Therapeutic exercises can help injured athletes, as well as those who’ve been in an accident. They’re also helpful to people who have recently undergone surgery, stroke patients, and so on.
But the primary goal of any therapeutic exercise program is to reduce pain and inflammation. After addressing that, the goals could shift to improving a patients range of motion or rebuilding strength. It could also aim for injury prevention, improving cardiovascular and pulmonary function, and so on.
All throughout the process, your PT will track your progress. And if needed, he or she will make changes to your therapeutic exercise plan.
Consulting a Physical Therapist
A good PT will take your medical history and check your current physical condition and capabilities. He or she will then come up with a treatment plan based on that initial assessment. And this will include the right blend of therapeutic exercises that will help restore the function/s you’ve lost.
Some examples of these therapeutic exercises include strength training, ROM (range of motion) exercises, balance and coordination activities, and so on. It’s important that you do these exercises as instructed so you can get back to your level of activity before your injury.
Looking for a PT in Tampa or St. Petersburg?
You’ve come to the right place. We have 3 convenient locations in Tampa and St. Petersburg and we’re just a call away.
If you have any questions about therapeutic exercise, pain and injury treatment, recovering after an auto accident, and so on, don’t hesitate to call (813) 644-7232. You can also email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more health and wellness tips and advice, we have tons of articles you’d enjoy reading. Check out 5 exercises to improve shoulder mobility or 7 common knee injuries and how to treat them.
The impact of a car crash can cause your neck to violently swing back in a forth in a way that looks and feels entirely unnatural. When your neck moves forcefully enough, you may end up with whiplash, a genuine neck injury.
How can you tell the difference between a stiff neck and an injury? These are the most common signs and symptoms of whiplash.
1. Neck Pain
The first signs of whiplash appear within 24 hours of your accident or injury. One of the most common symptoms is neck pain (or neck stiffness).
Neck pain is a vague term, but the pain is unlike a crick in your neck. Because it is an injury to the soft tissue, it will feel more like a sprain. You might recognize the feeling if you ever sprained a wrist or an ankle.
2. Loss of Range of Motion and Difficult Movement
A classic sign of whiplash is the loss of range of motion. If you turn your neck to the right, you get pain in the right side of the neck and vice versa.
If the soreness or pain intensifies when you look left to right or up or down, then you may have whiplash.
Is moving your head incredibly painful? See your doctor immediately for a check-up to ensure your injury doesn’t extend past whiplash.
The damage to your neck may also cause headaches. These differ from migraines or sinus headaches and have a distinct neurological and physiological cause.
If you have a whiplash-induced headache, then the pain likely starts at the base of your skull (top of your spine). When you have whiplash, you have an injury to your cervical facet joints, which inflames and irritates the nerves in your spinal cord and your brain stem. The nerve damage is what causes the headache.
Applying heat to the back of your neck can ease the headache, but you still need an exam to identify the extent of any nerve damage.
4. Tingling in the Arms
Injuries to the muscles in your neck can cause the nerve roots in your spine to become inflamed or compressed. When your nerve roots are out of place, they can impact your shoulders and arms.
The most common signs of whiplash-related nerve issues include tingling in your arms. However, it can also escalate to numbness or weakness, ranging from your shoulder down into your fingers.
If you experience tingling, numbness, or weakness in your shoulders or arms, then see your doctor immediately. You’ll need a CT or MRI to assess any damage to your spinal cord or nerves.
Do You Recognize the Signs and Symptoms of Whiplash?
Whiplash is a very real injury, and it is distinguishable from a stiff or sore neck.
A stiff neck, loss of range of motion, headaches, and tingling are the most common signs and symptoms of whiplash.
Did you receive a whiplash diagnosis in the ER and get told to go home and rest? Around 40 percent of people who experience whiplash will struggle with persistent pain even after diagnosis and rest. Get in touch for a consultation to learn how we can help you recover more fully.
There’s nothing more demotivating than pain associated with using your arms.
Whether it’s an auto accident, slip & fall, workplace injury, or simply moving the wrong way, accidents happen and the shoulder is a common site for injury and pain.
The shoulder is a ball and socket joint at the base of your arm that contains bones, ligaments, cartilage, and tendons. That’s to say, as, with any other complex joint, a lot can go wrong.
After an injury heals, your shoulder(s) are often left stiff and with a shortened range of motion. Not only is this a nuisance in everyday activities, but it can also make your shoulder joint more prone to injuries in the future.
It’s important to maintain a full range of flexibility and mobility in the shoulder, no matter what injury you are recovering from. While regular physical therapy
can be crucial in the event of a shoulder injury, there are some things you can do at home to improve shoulder mobility.
Here are three essential quick exercises to do to improve your shoulders in no time!
The cross-arm stretch is very straightforward and can be done in a normal standing or sitting position.
Pull your arm, outstretched, across your body while also pulling your shoulder blade back. This will focus the stretch into the rotator cuff
. Do this 3 times on each side, holding each for 30 seconds at a time.
It is recommended that this stretch is part of your active warm-up phase for any workout routine to prevent injury and increase mobility.
Got a doorway in your house? Great! Then you have everything you need to do this simple shoulder stretch.
Put both hands on either side of an open doorway, and slowly lean forward until you feel the stretch in your pectoral (chest) muscles.
This will elongate the tendons of the shoulder and stretch/strengthen the muscles that lead into the shoulder for better stability. Use this one for shoulder mobility, and to alleviate tightness
after a set of chest flys, for example.
This one is great to do as a pre and post-workout stretch, as well as occasionally throughout the day. You can do this one on a bathroom break at work, or even sitting at your desk!
Doing this stretch every day will combat the slumped, rounded shoulder posture many of us slip into when working on a computer in a seated position.
To do this stretch, clasp your hands
behind your back and straighten your elbows. Sit up with a tall posture as you pull your arms up and back. Focus on squeezing your shoulder blades together as you move into the stretch. Stay here for at least 15-30 seconds and take short breaks between reps.
As with any stretching and strengthening routine, it’s important to listen to your body.
If you’re feeling pain while doing these stretches, it’s best to stop and consult with a physical therapist who can work with you to find what’s best for your body.