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  • Writer's pictureMark Austin

Why You Should Keep Your Physio Appointment, Even If You Haven't Been Keeping Up With Your Exercises


I never chastise patients for not getting their exercises done. We aren't in grade school, and I've been guilty of letting my obligations (or 'relaxation' time in front of the TV) get the better of me and falling behind on my own exercises, too! Life happens. Sometimes, just finding the time to attend an appointment can be challenging. It's not uncommon for me to see a patient cancel or reschedule an appointment because they don't feel like they've made much progress with the homework since their last visit. I've even seen others rebook their appointments several times over, continuously kicking the can of getting around to things a little further down the road. It's often feels easier to put the responsibility for getting the work done on our future selves, rather than making it happen in the present moment. Are you finding yourself in this situation? Don't stress; however, rather than bail on your visit, it's vital to understand that every appointment, whether you've kept up with your routine or not, plays an essential role in your healing and wellness journey. Here’s why:

1. Check-in are Always Beneficial: Even if you haven't made much progress with your exercises, a check-in session to assess your current situation can be a huge help, and the information gained here can be invaluable for charting the course ahead. It's easy to fall off-course when we navigate recovery alone, missing the forest for the trees. Despite not making much progress with your exercises, a session to check-in and assess your current situation can give you a bird's-eye view of how you're doing and help you in see the bigger picture, keeping your feet moving in the right direction.

2. Accountability and Motivation: Sometimes, just the act of coming in and discussing what's been going on can reignite that motivation. Remember, physiotherapy is not just about the physical—it’s about building a mindset of continual improvement, especially for most of the patients I see in my practice.

3. Tweaking the Program: If you're not keeping up with exercises, there might be a reason, be it pain, time constraints, limited accessibility to equipment, being unsure of correct form, or a lack of motivation. These sessions provide the perfect opportunity to discuss these barriers and adapt the program to better suit your current situation. Maybe we can prioritize the most important exercises; or there might be shorter or more convenient exercises you can do; perhaps a slight modification and some positive energy is all that's needed.

4. Continual Education: Physiotherapy is not just about exercises. It’s about understanding your body, how it works, and how to take care of it. Sometimes you may not fully understand or remember the reasoning behind your exercises, which can make them that much harder to do. Every session you attend, you learn something new about your body, movement, and healing.

5. Maintaining the Momentum: Even if you feel you've not made any progress by not doing the exercises, attending your appointment ensures you don't lose the momentum-- we are going to work together to keep you focused and on track. Rather than putting things on the back burner until next week, next month, or even next year, it's much easier to pick up from where you left off than to start all over again.

6. Emotional and Mental Support: Physiotherapy provides not just physical support but emotional and mental support too. Sometimes your pain or injury can make getting things done extra challenging. Maybe you are facing challenges with work while being injured. Perhaps your home life isn't very conducive to recovery. The challenges we face in getting better, like exposing ourselves to pain, can be scary too. Sharing your concerns, frustrations, or even your achievements can make a world of difference in how you approach your healing journey.

In Conclusion It’s easy to fall into the trap of thinking that missing out on exercises means you've lost all progress, but don't beat yourself up. Look back on all the effort that you've already made, even by just booking your first visit. Remember, every step, even the tiny ones, counts. Your commitment to attending your appointments, regardless of the exercises done, speaks volumes about your dedication to getting better. It's rare for me to see a dedicated patient not hit their goals, even those with the most complex presentations, or debilitating injuries. Your sessions at physiobox are always judgement-free, and navigating road blocks with exercises is a welcome part of the process that we all at some point face along our way. Looking for expert physiotherapy in Calgary, Alberta? Book in here and start your journey to feeling better today.

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