I have to admit this piece of research made me feel vindicated. I have done some marketing work for a local chiropractor and he said he couldn’t see just doing home exercises for osteoarthritis would work. He said people needed to see the therapist to get the exercises taught properly and to make sure they comply and keep up the exercises patient. He recommends visits at least every other week for people with OA.
I said people seemed to understand my program fine. I didn’t think it mattered how often they saw the therapist compliance was always a problem.
So it felt rather good when I was scanning Google scholar and came across this piece of research on whether a couple of extra sessions with a physio boosted compliance to home exercises for osteoarthritis.
Two booster sessions with a physiotherapist did not influence pain or physical function outcomes, or measures of home exercise adherence.
I couldn’t agree more with their statement
These findings suggest other more effective strategies are needed to maximise longer-term adherence with the aim to achieve greater improvements in clinical outcomes from exercise in this patient population.
Why Won’t People Do Home Exercises for Osteoarthritis?
It never ceases to amaze me that I get at least one email a week from people who have bought one of my How to Treat Osteoarthritis, enthusiastically start their program, get to week 4 and feel loads better. Then they stop- just as the program starts to decrease.
WHY??? You have done the hard part! Then they ask should they start again as they were feeling so much better but now they feel as it they are back to square one. Funny that as they probably are- though usually we can get away with restarting them further along the line.
I do my exercise program 3 times a week- Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Are there days I miss? Of course there are but it is really is the odd week when I only always manage twice.
I often do more massage than that. I use a TENS machine as it is my spine that is badly affected and you can use one of these or massage by hand in front of the TV at the end of the day so that really should be no excuses for not doing that.
Do I want to do them? Of course I don’t but not doing them is far worse as I want to keep leading an active life!
I was diagnosed at 28 and I have just turned 52. So I will have my silver anniversary of living with OA next year! Yet today I hefted 6 bags of horse food (25kg each) out of the back of my truck, carried them into the shed and emptied them into bins. My back must be pretty strong if I can do that still. I believe it is because I have taken the time to keep it like that.
My program takes about 15 minutes and, even with the massage, all my programs take less than 20 minutes to complete. That works out at an hour a week to keep your pain in check which to me seems worth it!
I believe you MUST have the self motivation to keep going with home exercises for osteoarthritis. There are no magic pills or treatments on the horizon. They have been proven again and again to work.
You can mask the pain with drugs and mess up your body. But they don’t keep the soft tissue around the joint from getting dysfunctional and weak so you are still limited in what you can do.
How to Get Your Home Exercises for Osteoarthritis
Click on this link to get your home exercise program.
Buying the book is the easy part (and it will tell you some great cheat methods to relieve your OA pain) but, to get really good long term benefits, you need to do the exercises. Don’t worry they won’t be too strenuous for you as the questionnaire will make sure you do the right number for the amount of degeneration you have.
And yes if you fall off the wagon and want advice you can email me!
Have I forwarded the link about home exercises for osteoarthritis to my colleague? Of course I have- how could I resist and apparently it won’t help your self motivation to keep paying him!