We understand that physical therapy and standard exercise routines may not be your favorite thing to do, but at the same time, we hope that these activities aren’t something you dread. That’s because finding enjoyment in an activity is one of the main factors in keeping you coming back for more.
We all know people who have started new diets or exercise routines only to see them fall by the wayside because they dreaded the activity, and eventually they fall back into more comfortable or enjoyable routines. This is why we work so hard to make physical therapy enjoyable. Again, we know that physical therapy won’t always be the highlight of your day, but we want you to find some enjoyment in the activity so that you keep coming back or doing your home-based exercises, because the biggest threat to your recovery is failing to follow through on your PT. Below, we take a closer look at some of the ways we work to make physical therapy enjoyable, and how you can make your home-based therapy or your exercise routine a little more fun.
Finding Enjoyment In Exercise
As a physical therapist, we want to create a PT routine that is tailored to your specific needs and goals. We find that patients are more likely to stick with their physical therapy routine if they can tangibly see how the exercises relate to the actions they perform the most. If you’re hoping to return to your job at the factory or get back on the tennis court following joint replacement surgery, we will develop exercises that strengthen the motions that you use most. When we develop an individualized program tailored to your specific needs, many people find more enjoyment in their routine than if they had pursued a generic PT plan they found online.
Some other tips and tricks we use and we recommend that patients use when working to develop a PT or exercise routine that they enjoy include:
- Variety – Don’t just go for a run on the treadmill or lift some weights at the gym. Switch up your exercise routine, and you may find that you enjoy certain exercise activities more than others. If your routine is feeling stale, try something new.
- Get Social – Exercise and physical activity is more enjoyable when you do it with friends or family. Go to weekly yoga sessions with a friend, or set up a regular walking schedule with a close family member. If you’re bored during your PT exercise, pick up the phone and call a friend to help take your mind off your exercises.
- Try Something New – Step out of your comfort zone and try a new exercise or activity that you haven’t done before. Head to the pickleball courts or try swimming laps at the community pool. You may be surprised at what activities you find enjoyable!
- Check In With Yourself – Finally, regularly check in with yourself both during and after exercise. Are you happy and excited during the activity, or are you constantly looking at your watch, waiting for your time to be up? Are you feeling energized once the activity is over, or are you feeling tired and fatigued? How you’re feeling during and after activity can help suggest whether you’re enjoying the activity or if you should switch things up.
If you can keep these tips in mind and you make it a point to try and find enjoyment in your exercise or PT routine, we’re confident that it will be easier to stick with. For help finding a routine that you enjoy, or to work with a team who will help you find enjoyment in exercise, reach out to the team at OrthoRehab Specialists today at (612) 339-2041.