The Oxford Dictionary defines rehabilitation as the action of restoring someone to health or normal life through training and therapy after imprisonment, addiction, or illness. It’s the action of restoring something that has been damaged to its former condition.
What does rehabilitation mean to you?
No matter what you’re trying to overcome, whether its injury, illness, drug use, alcohol addiction or chronic disease management, there are a range of responses and interventions to help get you on track.
Interacting with your environment, exercise, and psychological interventions, coupled with support are ways to go from feeing lost and broken to better quality and function.
Our mission is show people they aren’t defined by their trauma. So, before moving forwards, take a moment to look back. Reflect on Chapters 10, 11 and 12 and relate it directly into your rehabilitation goal.
I’m assuming your overall goal is to regain independence, function, ability and a positive mindset. When faced with big mountains we need to understand how to pace ourselves and be patient with the process. In accomplishing any goal these two factors play a large role in the success of the individual.
Grab a drink, find a quiet space and take some time to read through this blog. This first action is to provide you with base knowledge on what’s to come.
By Deanna Niceski, Accredited Exercise Physiologist
Our world is ever-changing and constantly evolving. Our culture is shifting and advancement in technology is making everything conveniently accessible. I mean, we can UberEats without getting off the couch and find the love of our life by swiping right. There is little demand for movement or any physical effort beyond a touch of a screen.
So, it makes sense that we aren’t moving as much as we should be, and as a direct result, our bellies get bigger, we injure easily, chronic health problems occur and we constantly feel sluggish, unhappy and in pain.
“We have progressively killed inherent motivation for movement and tried to replace it with something that’s not natural” – David Fleming
SO, HOW DO WE COMBAT THIS AND WHERE DOES AN EXERCISE PHYSIOLOGIST FIT INTO THE MIX?
An Accredited Exercise Physiologist (AEP) is a university-qualified allied health professional that specialises in providing individualised, effective exercise interventions.
We’ve heard it before, exercise is medicine and through the influence of movement an AEP provides people with the tools for success and empowerment. And, in a world where comfort is safe, we help people push the boundaries, step into where the magic happens and overcome and manage trauma, pain, injury, self-doubt and chronic disease.
THERE ARE MANY REASONS TO SEE AN AEP, BUT HERE ARE 7 OF THE MOST COMMON REASONS WHY:
1. Successful Ageing:
We begin ageing the moment we are born. Unfortunately, we can’t change that, but we can create the right environment for your body to develop, maintain and feel good.
Introducing regular exercise designed to address your individual needs is one way we can help your body adapt, stay strong and improve function.
By reducing the limiting factors to feeling like a ‘spring chicken’ we can provide improved function through adaptations in your oxygen uptake, stress management, cell and tissue health, hormone regulation and overall strength and conditioning.
“The body needs force/movement to create a more robust and strong architecture. This is critical to health and wellbeing”. – Michol Dalcourt
2. Chronic Disease Management:
By understanding the complexities living with a chronic condition has, an AEP uses their knowledge to help reduce risk factors, manage comorbidities, improve limitations in movement and safely improve quality of life to gain independence.
3. Chronic Pain Management:
We learn to tolerate pain and assume it’s a natural consequence of ageing and life but it’s a message altered by our system to indicate danger. We load dysfunction and wonder why our movement problems aren’t solved or promote more discomfort.
It’s because “pain is not the problem, it’s the signal” and as an AEP we provide strategies and education to help individuals conquer their trauma to improve overall function.
4. Injury Prevention & Rehabilitation:
Muscles, ligaments, tendons, bones and connective tissue, all that make up our beautiful bodies and musculoskeletal system.
Life is unpredictable and sometimes unfortunate events occur that cause injury to any of these structures, so we require rehabilitation. An AEP is well equipped to handle restoring the body to its original state through exercise intervention. They also provide blueprints to ensure prevention strategies are implemented to reduce the risk of further injury.
5. Fundamentals & Foundations:
What does a standard 9-5 day look like for you? Is it being seated for 8hrs? Is it being in a job that makes you feel unhappy? Do you then spend the night sitting on the couch watching Game of Thrones drinking a nice shiraz or craft beer to unwind?
We are movement creatures, designed to walk, run, jump, climb and throw. Our bodies crave sunlight and primal movement. Our feet crave a connection with the earth (not 10cm foam on a platform shoe) and we crave connections with our human counterparts.
By helping reinstate our foundations and biomechanics we allow our body to be more efficient. AEPs improve posture, walking ability, muscle sling connections and restore neuromuscular patterns.
Performance is achieved when we have mastered our interaction with our environment, the ability to control and move our mechanical system, and then control load or effort into our action. If we are dysfunctional at any level along the GPTQA flow, then our athletic performance is diminished. Exercise Physiologists can implement change and find the missing link along this flow to ensure your optimal performance is being achieved.
7. Connection between Physical and Mental Health:
Exercise is nature’s mood booster. It promotes the secretion of our ‘happy hormones’ within our brain called endorphins and the more we exercise the more physiological changes occur and the more smiles we see.
Exercise is such a powerful tool to help prevent and manage mental health conditions and AEPs are uniquely qualified to establish engaging programs that improves self-confidence and provide social connections through a sense of community.
“The only bad workout is the one that leads to injury”.
Exercise should be an experience that future proofs your body and establishes connections well beyond an 8-week challenge. Programs designed should help you move with how nature intended and provide you with the education and awareness to self-manage.
An Exercise Physiologist understands the importance of movement integrity and training with an integrated approach to help you “move in rhythm, to master the ability of harnessing momentum to create seamless, integrated movement and by doing so reduce aches and pain, the risk of deconditioning and other potential risk factors associated with inactivity.”
Find an Exercise Physiologist near you to start your transformation and kick ass.