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#59 - Role of Physical Therapist for Return to Activity

In this series, we’ve covered the benefits of physical therapy for concussion management and the three main areas of treatment physical therapists oversee. If you missed these flash briefings, make sure to go back and listen. Today, we’ll be discussing the role of physical therapists for return to activity.

Returning patients to work, school, or a sport is a gradual process. Physical therapists play an active role by monitoring their patients’ heart rate and symptoms as they take on more activity. Here is a return to activity strategy plan that provides general rehabilitation steps:

  1. Medical assessment
  2. Rest
  3. Symptom limited activity
  4. Light Exercise
  5. Sports-specific exercise
  6. Non-contact training
  7. Medical clearance
  8. Full contact practice (for athletes)
  9. Return to sport (for athletes)

If at any time during this plan a patient is outside of the target heart rate recommendations or reports an increase in symptoms, it’s likely the activity is too aggravating. Physical therapists can make adjustments and suggest alternatives to progress the patient along at a safe pace.

OTHER FLASH BRIEFINGS YOU MIGHT FIND HELPFUL:

Taking care of your brain is a no brainer