Top 10 Physical Therapy Exercises You Can Do at Home

Providing various stretches for whatever area is hurting has been the most common "do-at-home" intervention for patients.

Physical therapy is a treatment method used before or after surgery to help patients regain function and movement while boosting healing and pain relief. It can benefit patients of all ages who have medical conditions, illnesses, or injuries that make it difficult to function normally. It also promotes active and healthy lifestyle changes to improve overall health and well-being. Specific exercises like stretching and strengthening provide a holistic approach ensuring correct, painless movement. Even if you aren't scheduled for surgery or aren't recovering from an injury, incorporating stretching and strengthening exercises into your daily routine can help relax tense muscles, relieve aches, and make you feel better overall.

Providing various stretches for whatever area is hurting has been the most common "do-at-home" intervention for patients. Stretching can help to reduce pain, improve muscle contraction efficiency, and release entrapped nerves. 

The next most common and best exercise at home is resistance exercises that build strength, stamina, and endurance within the muscles and in the heart and lungs. 

Strength training has been shown to alleviate musculoskeletal (MSK) pain.

Below are some easy stretching and strengthening exercises that you can perform to improve overall function, flexibility, endurance, power, and health. 

Bridging

Using a bridge position, you activate your core and back musculature. This is an excellent warm-up exercise. It improves spinal flexibility and allows your body to strengthen its core and abdominal muscles, improve balance, and reduce knee and back pain.

Chair squats 

The squat exercise is arguably one of the most essential movements required to improve sports performance, reduce injury risk, and promote lifelong physical activity. When done correctly, the squat exercise boosts metabolism, protects against injuries, strengthens the core, and improves balance and posture. It recruits your gluteal muscles and core muscles and helps strengthen them. But, it is essential to remember that performing squats after specific knee injuries and operations might be harmful and is also a contraindication. Consult your physiotherapist before performing the same. 

Hip abduction

Hip abduction is the movement of your hip that causes your leg to move away from your body. The hip abductors are muscles that run from the thigh bone to the pelvis and support when walking, standing, or engaging in physical activity. Strengthening these muscles allows us to perform our daily tasks more easily. Regularly performing this exercise can help you avoid hip pain and injury.

Bird dog exercise 

This exercise is also known as the quadruped exercise. The bird dog is a simple home exercise that strengthens the spine musculature, provides stability, strengthens core muscles, and aids in the relief of low back pain. It improves your core strength, hip musculature, shoulder girdles, and back muscles. It also improves posture and flexibility. It is an excellent exercise for improving back stability, movement, and strength in the back and hip area.

Stationary lunge

A good lunge exercise can help you build a stronger, more stable core muscle. It also trains the unilateral side of your body independently of the other. This will assist you in achieving proper body balance and coordination. Lunges provide far superior stabilization benefits than other exercises such as squats and deadlifts.

Knee pushup 

This exercise will benefit your health by strengthening your muscles, increasing your metabolic rate to burn fat, and providing cardiovascular support. When performed correctly, this exercise helps to strengthen the lower back and abdomen.

Plank to downward dog 

Downward Dog stretches your hamstrings and back while Plank works your upper body, abs, glutes, and legs. Core exercises, such as this one, have been shown to activate muscles more effectively than isolated exercises.

Child pose 

Child pose provides the required stretch for your back, hips, knee, and ankle musculature gently and progressively. It also helps stretch the upper back and your scapular musculature. This pose helps you with low back pain issues. 

Cobra stretch

Cobra Stretch, also known as Bhujanasana, is an excellent exercise if you suffer from low back pain during flexion on bending forward. This exercise promotes extension of your back. It works on your cervical musculature and opens your chest for better respiratory exchange. 

Calf stretch 

Tight calf muscles can lead to cramping and severe pain while walking or other functional activities. Calf stretches can improve flexibility and impact your gait cycle as you resume normal weight-bearing. These stretches can be performed in various ways, including the support of a wall or a chair, or even on stairs! 

You must perform the above exercises under the supervision and discontinue if you elicit pain and discomfort. More often than not, the duration it will take to see improvement in your condition depends on your injury or pain and your commitment to performing the exercises. If your pain persists and interferes with your daily life, consult a physiotherapist for a more personalized exercise regimen.

Radian provides comprehensive online physical therapy services for various conditions and connects you to the best physiotherapists to ensure you get the best at-home treatment plan. Visit Radian Mobility for more information.

Be sure to book Managing Joint Pain by Radian Physiotherapy with Chris Pedra, and explore the best options for managing joint pain without trying too hard. In this session, we will get active and learn to take care of our joints through a series of mobility exercises.

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