Posted on 24th May 2017 by Fiona
By definition, rehabilitation is the restoration of optimal form (anatomy) and function (physiology). It is a structured process, designed and delivered by your therapist, to reduce time-loss from injury, promote recovery, and maximise your functional capacity, fitness and performance.
After sustaining an injury, the rehabilitation process should start as soon as safely possible. It can run in parallel with the therapeutic interventions that your physiotherapist will deliver.
Should an injury require surgery, rehabilitation can also start before or immediately after to enhance your outcomes. This is well evidenced with research showing people who engaged in rehab prior to undergoing their surgery had much better outcomes than patients who only had rehab after surgery.
There is also evidence to show rehab is as beneficial as some surgeries for various shoulder, hip, knee and lower back conditions.
At the centre of the rehabilitation plan is you! Planning starts at the first appointment, and during our appointments, we will be gathering lots information about you and your activities to ensure we prepare you to return safely to the same environment in which the injury occurred. This is the perfect time to focus on not just your injury, but other aspects of your performance to ensure your ability to perform will be better than before!
When planning rehabilitation, it’s crucial to consider the injured structure involved and where you sit in relation to the body’s natural phases of healing. There are 5 overlapping stages to consider and doing so allows the appropriate load to be applied at all times to promote tissue healing. This is where our experience, training and knowledge really come into their own. If you’ve suffered an injury and just rest until it feels better and then go straight back to what you were doing before, you can really increase your risk of re-injury or other problems. If you’re serious about looking after your body, investing in long term durability so you can keeping what you love, rehabilitation is crucial.
On a more detailed level, as your body heals, controlled therapeutic stress is necessary to optimise collagen matrix formation, but too much stress can damage new structures.
So, choosing the level of load that neither overloads nor underlaps the healing tissue is therefore crucial to a successful rehabilitation process, and your therapist will be able to use their expert knowledge to prescribe suitable exercises throughout the process.
To do this, we ensure rehabilitation is delivered in sequential phases that has specific therapeutic and rehabilitative objectives for each phase; as well as measurable, objective criteria for progression to each subsequent phase.
Overall this acts to promote:
- Healing of injured tissues
- Preparation of these tissues for return to function
- Use of proper techniques to maximise rehabilitation & re-conditioning
With all this in mind, to supplement our existing and well established physiotherapy service, we are now adding a dedicated rehabilitation service at goPhysio. Rehabilitation has always been a key part of what we do here at goPhysio. However, this has often been on an advisory basis, giving you programmes that you can take away and do at home or in your gym. The ultimate outcome of such self administered programmes can be dependent on your adherence, how well you are doing the exercises and the frequency of the programme.
With our new Rehabilitation service, you will be given the support and opportunity to take part in supervised rehabilitation sessions, either as small groups or on an individual basis. This can be done in conjunction with physiotherapy treatment or when you reach a point in your recovery when rehabilitation is all you need.
In summary, the ultimate goal of the rehabilitation process that goPhysio delivers is to limit the extent of your injury, reduce or reverse the functional loss, and prevent, correct or eliminate the problem altogether. This process is crucial to preventing re-injury and improving YOUR overall performance. We look forward to seeing you in our newly developed ‘strong room’ for your rehab sessions!
We’re very excited to be able to offer this service at goPhysio – we’ll be launching it in a few weeks, so watch this space!