Our feet handle a lot of stress with every step we take, so if we suffer an injury or are recovering after a foot surgery, it can be difficult to move around without overloading the area while it’s in a weakened state. Working through a foot injury can be extremely difficult because of all the problems it can cause for your mobility, but you can make this process simpler by connecting with a physical therapist. In today’s blog, we explain how a physical therapist can help get your back on your feet following an injury or surgery.
Getting Back On Your Feet With PT
Research has shown that our feet bear an immense amount of stress with every step we take. In fact, one study found that we absorb roughly two times our body weight with every step we take when we’re walking, and anywhere from 2-4 times our body weight when we’re running. That means if you’re a 200-pound person going for a run, your feet are absorbing anywhere from 400-800 pounds of force every time you land on your feet!
Now, you may not be going for a run after spraining your ankle or undergoing bunion correction surgery, but your feet will still be handling forces greater than your body weight when you take a few steps in any direction. This can make recovering from a foot injury both difficult and uncomfortable, but that’s where a physical therapist comes in.
Physical therapists specialize in finding the best exercises for your feet based on your abilities. That means if you can handle partial or full weight bearing, we can find some exercises that your body can handle. But if you’re stuck in a cast or have been told that you won’t be able to bear weight for weeks following a surgical operation, know that you don’t have to wait until you can put weight on your foot in order to start a PT routine.
Our team can develop a routine that involves non-weight bearing exercises, range of motion techniques, flexibility training and proprioceptive testing to develop key muscles and help stabilize areas so that they are better equipped to handle the stress you’ll soon throw at it as you progress through your recovery. Whatever stage of recovery you’re at, we’re confident that we can develop a rehab plan that fits your needs and has you working towards your end goals.
Also, connecting with a physical therapist after a foot injury is important to help prevent injury recurrence as you work back to full strength, especially if you are an athlete. Finding that balance as you take on more of a challenge without overdoing it and exposing your body to injury is a difficult balance to strike, but it’s easier if you have a physical therapist by your side. We can see how you are progressing in real-time and alter your routine if it’s too easy or too hard so that you get the most out of your therapy session without increasing your risk of reinjury.
And finally, working with a physical therapist can make it easier to hit your long-term goals. If you just want to get back on your feet and walk without pain, that’s fine, but if you’re hoping to get back to running or playing a specific sport, it’s helpful to have a professional who can help foster your physical health and your conditioning so that you can return to athletics at full strength when the time is right. Far too many patients only make a partial recovery because they don’t know the best way to overcome their foot injury, but we can help you get back to pre-injury levels of fitness or we can even help you come back stronger than you were prior to your injury.
Foot injuries can linger because of all the stress we put them through each day, but they don’t have to if you trust your treatment and recovery to the team at OrthoRehab Specialists. For more information, or to talk to a physical therapist about the pain you’re dealing with, reach out to our team today at (612) 339-2041.
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