Exercise is a key component of injury recovery, prevention and overall health. Some of the benefits of exercise as it pertains to treatment of injury or dysfunction, include:
- Restores strength, endurance, and bulk to detrained muscle groups. This is the fundamental basis of returning to prior functional capacity.
- Increased blood flow to injured tissues to quicken the healing process.
- Prevent formation of abnormal scar tissue and adhesions with muscle contraction and joint motion, and reduce those that may have already formed.
- Areas of the body that haven’t been moving properly due to splinting, casting or altered biomechanics, or pain in an area can be re-trained to move through a more complete range of motion to prevent future compensation or pain.
- Restore aerobic capacity to preinjury levels if the patient’s job or normal activities demand it. There are also some studies that show aerobic exercise alone has a significant effect of reducing low back pain.
- Restore confidence that normal tasks can be performed and use the injured region in a normal manner. This can result in a return to normal activities quicker.
- Exercise releases endorphins- our natural pain killers, and other natural substances that can alter perception of pain.
Individualized exercise recommendations may consist of a combination of stretching, strengthening, balance and cardiovascular conditioning.