Whether it’s joint pain or a pulled muscle, physical injuries can be painful. And though the best way to work through an injury is to set up a consultation for a Phoenix physical therapy session and get some specialized training from the pros, there are also a number of easy at home exercises aimed to target different muscle groups and keep you in shape.
Try our list of five safe workouts to help you stay active between physical therapy sessions. If any of these simple exercises is painful, stop immediately and consult your physical therapist before continuing your workout.
- The Side Lunge: Start by standing with your feet facing forward about hip width apart. While keeping your mid-section tight and your hands relaxed in front of you, step to the right and bend your right knee 90 degrees. Your right foot should remain in line with your knee, and your other leg should remain straight with your foot flat on the floor. Hold the lunge for 30 seconds, and return to your starting position. Then, repeat with the left leg.
- The Reverse Crunch: Take a break from your typical crunches by working your abs with the reverse crunch. Start by lying on the floor with your hands behind your head and your knees at 90 degrees in front of you. Tighten your mid-section and lift your knees toward your chest. Hold for 5 seconds. Relax your knees to the starting position while exhaling, and repeat.
- Hamstring Step Ups: Start by standing in front of your staircase with your hands on your hips. Keeping your head straight and your hips aligned with your feet, take a step up – first with your right foot, then your left. Once both feet are on the stair, step back down again, one at a time. For a more advanced hamstring step up, bend at the knees with one foot placed squarely on the step and the other in the air behind you. Hold for 10 seconds.
- Line Hops: Lay out a jump rope and stand to the right of it with both feet facing forward. With your feet close to each other, hop over the line sideways. Make sure to bend your knees slightly when you come back down, and repeat for 3 minutes.
- The Bicycle: Begin by lying flat on your back with your hands behind your head and your knees bent on the floor in front of you. Work your obliques by bringing your right elbow and left knee toward each other, meeting in the middle. Return to your starting position and do the same with your right knee and left elbow. Repeat in a cycling motion.
For more tips to help you stay in shape and recover from an athletic injury, make an appointment with Foothills Sports Medicine Physical Therapy Centers, the leading and trusted choice for physical therapy in Phoenix and throughout Arizona.