If you’ve ever been to a physical therapist, chances are you’ve received a home exercise program (HEP) to complement your treatment plan. Did you perform that home exercise program as prescribed?
I educate patients on how important home programs are to their recovery, but sometimes life gets in the way and the home program doesn’t get performed on a regular basis.
Completing your home program aids in a faster, more successful long-term recovery. So here a few ways to make it a bit easier to fit those exercises or stretches into your daily life.
Ask your physical therapist for a prioritized list
Ideally, there aren’t more than 5 exercises or stretches in the first place. Your physical therapist should be able to show you why each exercise or stretch is prescribed and how it’s going to help you reach your long term goal. When you understand why and how each movement facilitates the outcome you’re looking for, it’s so much easier to make a home program a habit.
Use technology to your advantage
Gone are the days of leaving your physical therapist’s office with hand drawn stick figures on pages of easy to lose paper! Ask your physical therapist to take a video of you doing the exercises on your phone and you’ll always have your program with you wherever you go. I also use a top notch program that allows me to text you pictures and videos of your stretches and exercises.
Visualize your goal on a daily basis
Set a picture or quote that represents your goal as the background image of your phone and computer. Have a consistent reminder of what you are going to achieve and why the effort you put in is worth it!
Make a commitment to your health
Once you’ve decided to commit yourself to your health, wellness and recovery, it’s much easier to incorporate a program into your daily routine, even with the busiest of schedules.
I hope these ideas help you on your journey from injury to long lasting health. Feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
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