So you’re scheduled for physical therapy, but now what? If you’re the type of person who likes to get prepared and know what to expect, we have some tips for you. Because there are things that you can do that will help you get the most out of your physical therapy sessions. Here are the three important things that you can do to set yourself up for success with pt:
1. Be Engaged, Ask Questions
Even though you’re a patient of your therapist, it’s important to stay engaged and ask questions throughout your rehabilitation. Some patients end up just going through the motions and following the directions, and this provides a very one-sided therapy routine. If you want to get the most out of working with your therapist, you must do just that- work WITH them. Take notes of questions that come up outside of therapy to bring to your next appointment. Ask questions about why you’re doing certain exercises or treatments so that you can better understand the process and method being used to treat your injury/condition.
2. Do Your Home Exercise Program
More often than not, your physical therapist will put together a home exercise program for you to do on your own outside of your appointments. Take it from us; these are not put together for the pure sake of enjoyment/thrill for the therapist! These are custom programs designed to help you continue making progress outside of your appointments. They are often necessary if you want to make progress, especially if you’re only seeing your therapist once or twice a week or every other week. If you forget to do your exercises or for some reason are unable to do them, be honest and let your therapist know.
3. Get Your Mindset in Gear to Work Hard
There are many reasons to get upset, down, sad, even depressed after an injury or surgery. When we meet with patients for the first time, we often try to assess the mental state of each patient, because of the effects certain conditions can have on your daily lives. However, as your physical therapists, we come to work every day with the goal of helping patients take steps towards improvement, see progress and meet their goals. If you go into every appointment doubting anything about the rehabilitation process or even doubting your abilities to work through your injury, physical therapy is not going to help you get better. It often takes a mindset that you are going to work hard and push yourself to accomplish little milestones so that you can accomplish the big goals.
How to Maximize Your Physical Therapy Sessions