A home exercise program is a set of exercises patients receive to complete at home. These exercises help maintain strength and expand therapeutic gains. Home exercise programs are personalized for each patient based on their injury and individual history. For example, two patients with a torn meniscus may not have the same program because their needs are different.
Following a home exercise program comes with many benefits. Not only will it help with the recovery process, but it also helps a person mentally. As someone successfully completes exercises and gets stronger, their confidence in the ability to conquer their injury grows. Also, because a person’s body is regularly exercising with an at home program, their body is going to heal more naturally. When the body starts to heal more naturally, this can decrease stress on a person being they are more capable of doing everyday tasks.
Many people struggle to use their at home program. 50-65% of patients do not adhere to their home exercise program. The 35-50% of patients that do, tend to see a difference in as little as two weeks of physical therapy. These patients have also gone on to discharge at a quicker rate than those who do not utilize their at home program.
When discharged, it is important to keep up with your home program too! Many patients end up returning to therapy weeks later because their pain will come back. Doing the home program helps maintain the built up strength and healing gained during therapy.
If you find yourself struggling to use your home exercise program, find a support team outside of your therapy sessions such as a friend or spouse to confide in when you feel like giving up. Having support while rehabilitating an injury is very important and can help boost your self esteem. Just remember only you are in charge of your choices and only you can make yourself do something.
Article Written By: Beth Ann M.