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Corporate Wellness, Exercise

Exercises For People Recovering From Surgery

Every person is unique and so is their ability to recover. The time it takes for recovery will vary based on that, their previous health, and the type of surgery performed. Exercising can cut the time recovering from surgery, but that’s also based on the individual. One thing that doesn’t change is that you influence the outcome and recovery by the steps you take during healing. When you’re recuperating, you can slow healing or speed it up. There are general rules to follow, but they should never override your healthcare professional’s suggestions. Use the exercises they provide.

Exercising after surgery is a balancing act.

Trying to do too much too soon is as bad as not getting enough exercise. Doing too much can impede wound-healing and put you back in the hospital or bed. Your doctor probably gave you a list of things you can do and things you shouldn’t, such as it’s okay to walk but don’t lift. Follow it. While throwing caution to the wind is bad, so is being too cautious. If you’re scared to do anything, you could slow healing and create other problems, such as pressure ulcers or blood clots. Moving increases circulation, boosts the healing process, aids digestion, and adds to your energy level.

Learn your limitations before you start exercising.

For most people and most types of surgery, the first type of exercise is functional. Getting up and walking, whether unassisted or assisted, is often first on the list of exercises. If you’ve had shoulder surgery or other surgery for your upper limbs, getting up and walking daily should be no problem. If you’ve had abdominal surgery or a hip replacement, walking is vital for healing.

Start your workout in bed.

Doing ankle rolls and other foot exercises can help prepare you to walk and prevent other problems caused by inactivity. Unless otherwise ordered, rolling from your back to your side can help keep muscles strong. If you are able, use light weights in bed to prepare for walking with the assistance of a walker or lift your body off the bed. Changing your position every two hours in bed can increase energy.

  • While bedridden, practice deep breathing or coughing techniques exercises for ten minutes every two hours. Shifting your position from side to side at least once every two hours or more can also improve recovery.
  • If you walk outside, walk on a flat surface that isn’t rocky or cluttered. Take shorter walks at first and gradually build the distance and the speed. Always walk with a friend when walking any distance.
  • Try gentle stretches. Some types of movements may be prohibited, depending on the type of surgery you had. Twisting or bending after back surgery is an example.
  • Many doctors provide stretches and exercises that are surgery specific. They can help speed recovery. Do them as frequently as recommended. Build on those exercises as your recovery progresses.

For more information, contact us today at Travel Trim