What is a Therapeutic Exercise?
Therapeutic exercises refer to a wide range of activities that focus on restoring and maintaining strength, stability, balance, flexibility, or endurance. They can be active, active-assisted, passive, or progressive resistance motion exercises designed to stabilize your core or a specific joint being treated.
Walking on a treadmill is a good example of an active therapeutic exercise. This would be beneficial for a patient that needs to improve their endurance and is considered active because the patient is not being assisted in their movements in any way.
An active assisted exercise is one where a physical therapist manually assists the patient with the task or movement. For example, in the image above, the physical therapist is assisting the patient in squeezing the ball. The patient is still exerting himself to complete the task, but the therapist is helping him with the motion.
Passive therapeutic exercises are ones where the physical therapist slowly guides a patient through the range of motions without the patient exerting any effort whatsoever. These exercises are most often used for stroke victims and patients who cannot move their limbs on their own. These exercises help to prevent muscle stiffness and spasticity.
Progressive Resistance Exercises
The goal of PRE exercises is to increase the strength of weak or injured muscles by gradually increasing the resistance. Examples include adding resistance using resistance bands, free weights, weight machines, or body weight to isolated movements so that the amount of force needed for the muscle to work is increased.
Rise to Your Full Potential
Whether the goal is to improve flexibility, range of motion, strength, or endurance, physical therapists and physical therapist assistants at Rising Tide Physical Therapy create comprehensive exercise programs customized to each patient’s needs. Allowing you to safely return to work, sport, or activity.