Ease Into Your Exercise Program With Ease!

Has the demarcation of the New Year have you setting new goals or starting a new routine? A popular one is embarking on a new fitness routine. This doesn’t mean you should join a gym or buy a treadmill, and to be truthful these big, sudden changes can have less staying power than small adjustments over time. Introducing exercise into your routine should be slow and steady, especially if it has been a while since you’ve worked out.

Starting an exercise program can feel overwhelming, and sometimes even impossible. It doesn’t have to be that way! Let’s break it down!

How do I start?

Stretch, always stretch. Make sure you are hydrated before and keep some water nearby while you exercise. Is there any type of movement or exercise you prefer? Are you a dancer? Do you need a low-impact workout? Does cardio or strength training appeal more to you? Don’t know? Well variety is the spice of life, so the more versatile your workouts, the more you challenge your body! Pick your favorite or find your preference, but we do recommend mixing things up every once in a while, at least.

How many times a week should I exercise?

In the first phase of your program start with 2-3 workouts and then increase the frequency every month by 1 more day a week until you are at 5-6 times a week. Your body does need at least one day of complete rest, but of those 5-6 days alternate more taxing workouts with lighter ones.

Grab a planner or a calendar. For someone with more fluid schedules it is easier to set a weekly goal, let’s say you plan on 4 workouts this week, write a 4 in the margin before the week, then each day you complete a workout put a symbol on the day to keep track. If you have a very structured schedule, carve out your workout time and schedule them out.

Also, mark down when you plan to increase your frequency so you can prepare! Listen to your body, if you’re not ready to increase your frequency don’t. It’s okay! Remember, everyone is going to adjust differently and it is so much better to take your time than to rush and feel burn out or get injured.

How long should I exercise for?

It can depend on what you are doing. A more intense cardio workout will be shorter, whereas, weight lifting can take more time because there are breaks between sets and you definitely don’t want to be speed lifting. General rule would be to set 20-30 minutes aside for a workout. Starting out this is a nice way to ease in both physically and mentally. If you build up your endurance and are handling it well, add a few more minutes to the end! If the goal is to move more than you were, than any increase is great!

What if I don’t have any equipment?

YouTube is a great resource to find all kinds of workouts! Search for body weight workouts, or workout from home. You can find cardio like kickboxing, aerobics, or dance classes. Second hand equipment can be a frugal way to get a low-impact cardio machine, or free weights. Resistance bands can be a cheap, versatile, and convenient option that you can find at Target, Walmart, or even Amazon. Even a brisk walk or bike ride outside would be a great choice! Walking is an easy form of exercise to track, whether by amount of time or distance. It can also help you get some time alone to clear your mind or destress.

How do I keep myself motivated?

  • Find a workout partner or a cheerleader to keep yourself accountable! Just having a friend or family member check-in with you to see how your workouts are going can help keep you on track.
  • Keep things interesting by finding new ways to exercise that you enjoy.
  • Don’t take on too much, too fast. Ease in and plan!
  • Reward yourself, find small rewards that you can allow yourself for when you reach goals or complete a number of workouts.
  • Don’t beat yourself up if you fall off your routine or have a string of subpar workouts. Just keep pushing, and jump back on the train, you will be happy that you did!

Physical Therapists can also help you to find and begin a great workout routine that is tailored just for you! Especially if you are unsure what you can do safely at home. There is a safe and effective way for every person to get exercise and your Physical Therapist would be the best resource to get you on the most successful path!






Physical Therapy and Jaw Pain (TMD)

Temporomandibular Disorders (TMD)

Temporomandibular disorders, TMD for short, is a musculoskeletal disorder that has a high prevalence but often goes overlooked. Women between the ages of fourteen and fifty years old are five times more likely to be diagnosed with TMD than men. Steven L. Kraus, a Physical Therapist that has over forty years experience in treating orofacial pain, states that TMD ranks only second to low back pain in the United States as a prevalent musculoskeletal problem.

Physical Therapy and Jaw Pain

Current research shows that there is an 85% success rate with conservative physical therapy care for non-surgical patients. While medications and oral appliances work well in the short term, research has shown that soft tissue mobilization, joint mobilization, dry needling, modalities, postural re-education, and education about contributing habits can be addressed with physical therapy and provide long term relief of symptoms. 

 Who is Appropriate for Physical Therapy?

Anyone who is complaining of jaw, neck, or face pain, clenching, headaches, and ringing in the ears as well as cervical pain. There is a 92% correlation for those who are suffering from jaw pain, also have dysfunction in their upper cervical spine which is evaluated and treated in physical therapy.

Is Physical Therapy Covered by insurance?

Most treatments are covered by insurance. We accept all major medical insurances including Medicare and Medicaid. We also offer cash options. We bill through your medical insurance and not your dental insurance.

What do I do next?

Kyle Jones is one of our physical therapists who has extensive training in diagnosing and treating TMD and works out of both the Perry Hall and Bel Air offices. If you have any questions regarding treatment or referral of a patient, please call either office and ask to speak to Kyle directly or contact him by email. 

Kyle Jones, PT, DPT

Manipulations For Pain Relief

Manipulation is a technique we use in Physical Therapy that involves a quick stretch of a region of your body. It is sometimes associated with the feeling of a pop or crack, but not always. Some people can manipulate their own joints by “cracking” their knuckles or back. The biggest difference between a manipulation performed by you and one performed by a Physical Therapist is that a therapist can be very specific with the location of the manipulation. Self-manipulations aren’t very specific, and therefore sometimes can’t achieve the same effect as a manipulation performed by a therapist.

Physical Therapists use manipulation as a way to reduce pain and/or improve range of motion of a part of your body. Manipulation often creates a relatively short term change in the way you feel and move, so we use exercise as a way to try to maintain the improvements you can feel after manipulation. There is a growing body of evidence to suggest that manipulation and exercise used together can have a greater impact on the way you feel than just manipulation alone.

A common question people have about manipulation concerns whether or not it is a safe thing to do. Research shows that it is absolutely safe to do, particularly considering the fact that your Physical Therapist will know what questions to ask to determine whether or not you may be a candidate for this type of treatment.

We’ve filmed some videos of our Physical Therapist Chad Blomquist performing various types of manipulations that you may experience during your plan of care in the clinic. Feel free to contact us if you have any questions about manipulation specifically or Physical Therapy in general!