An Overview of Physical Therapy Exercises

An Overview of Physical Therapy Exercises

by Alex Hirsch (SU)

Complete recovery from an injury usually involves physical rehabilitation through physical therapy. A physical therapist can teach and guide you through physical therapy exercises that will restore range of motion and regain functional mobility. 

The physical therapy exercises you need will depend on the type of injury you have and the recommendations of your physical therapist. One way to tell if physical therapy is working is if you notice the ease of movement, especially in your injured area.

Here’s an overview of physical therapy exercises that your doctor may recommend to get you started on the road to recovery. 

Physical Therapy Techniques

Physical therapy involves exercising and manipulations by a physical therapist, with the goal of improving muscle and joint function, balance and coordination, and range of movement.

Examples of popular and highly effective physical therapy techniques include:

  • exercises to improve range of motion after a period of immobilization – the physical therapist will perform manipulations while you lay down or are seated. this can help improve how well your injured area moves. this can also include exercises catered to improve flexibility.
  • muscle-strengthening exercises – these exercises work to improve your strength so you can put weight on your injured area without feeling pain. examples include stretching exercises and resistance training.
  • balance and coordination exercises – one of the biggest issues with injuries in the lower extremities is balance. physical therapy activities such as knee lifts, back kicks, and heel raises can help with this problem. 
  • movement exercises – this includes having you practice movements that either cause you pain or you are unable to do on your own. walking with or without assistance possibly around obstacles is an example of this.
  • conditioning exercises – aerobic conditioning exercises are great because they have less negative impact on the joints but allow you to gain strength, flexibility, and mobility in joints.

Physical Therapy Tools

Depending on your specific needs, your physical therapist may use a variety of tools for treatments and exercises, such as:

  • Foam rollers
  • Resistance bands
  • Therapy balls
  • Body balls
  • Tubing
  • Grip strengthening balls
  • Finger and hand exerciser
  • Shoulder pulley
  • Weights and dumbbells
  • Stretch wrap
  • Treadmill
  • Skier
  • A stationary bike or upper-body bike
  • Balance and wobble boards
  • Towels and straps
  • Ultrasound
  • Electrical muscle stimulation

Choosing the Best Exercises for You

If you are coming out of surgery or an injury, your doctor will likely recommend physical therapy. The only way to know for sure what the best physical therapy exercises are for your condition is to consult with a physical therapist. It starts off with the physical therapist teaching and guiding you until you can do the exercises yourself.

Personal Physical Therapy Care in Kingsport, Tennessee

At Watauga Orthopaedics, we offer comprehensive and highly individualized physical therapy services to our patients. Our compassionate, caring, and gentle staff include physical therapists, hand therapists, and athletic trainers. We work with your physician to determine the best physical therapy exercises to improve your strength, balance and coordination, and motion and mobility.

At Watauga Orthopaedics, our goal is to assist you in making a full recovery. Get back your mobility by calling Watauga Orthopaedics at (423) 282-9011 or request an appointment now. We welcome you to our Kingsport and Bristol locations in Tennessee.