Exercise and physical therapy are designed to help you heal from injury, make you stronger, increase your physical fitness or some combination of the above. However, if you don’t do the activity correctly, you could make your situation much worse. In today’s blog, we share some things you should not be doing during your exercise or physical therapy routine because they can cause problems.
Exercise and Physical Therapy Don’ts
Here are a number of things to avoid during your daily physical therapy or exercise routines.
- Ramping Up Too Quickly – This is especially true if you are performing physical therapy exercises. We understand that you want to get back on your feet as soon as possible, but trying to speed up the timeline your therapist has laid out for you can increase your injury risk. We design our routines based on your physical capabilities, and while we’re always open to making adjustments as you progress, making these determinations on your own increases your risk of injury. If you’re concerned about the speed of your progress, talk to your physical therapist, don’t just try to do more than advised on your own.
- Overdoing It In The Short Term – A close cousin to the above point, you need to be cognizant about avoiding overstressing your body as you increase your exercise ability. Don’t try to run a marathon during your first spring run and don’t try to get all the landscaping done in one day. Know your limits and listen to your body. You know the difference between discomfort and pain, so don’t push activity to the level of pain. Overstressing an area of your body during activity is the most common cause of injury.
- Give Less Than 100 Percent – When it comes to exercise and physical therapy, oftentimes you get out what you put in, so give maximum effort during your sessions. This is very crucial during physical therapy because your commitment to your sessions directly impacts your level of recovery, and if you don’t put in the effort during the recovery stage, you may never truly feel like you can get back to a pre-injury state. It’s also worth noting that if you’re not focused on your running form or only half paying attention during your PT session, injury risk to other parts of the body increases. When it’s time to work out or do your PT, give 100 percent.
- Listening To Bad Advice – Obviously, if you knew that it was bad advice at the time, you wouldn’t have listened to it, so this point is easier said than achieved. However, we’ve talked to patients who “read on the internet that sit-ups do more harm than good” or who “had a neighbor who said physical therapy was pointless after his work injury.” If you have questions or concerns, bring them up to your physical therapist, don’t just rely on advice that is not relevant to your specific situation. We’d be more than happy to clear up any misconceptions, clarify some information or explain exactly why we’re doing what we’re doing when it comes to your rehab.
For more tips on what to avoid, or to learn about some things you should be doing during your exercise or physical therapy routines, reach out to the experienced professionals at OrthoRehab PT today.
PT of Costa Rican National Soccer Team for 2007 World Cup in Victoria, CAN. Clinical Instructor for University of Minnesota Doctor of Physical Therapy Affiliations
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