What medical conditions can an Exercise Physiologist help with?
Exercise physiologists are able to help with a broad range of medical conditions to maximise your health. Just a few of these conditions are Diabetes, Osteoporosis and Osteopenia, Arthritis, High Cholesterol, High Blood Pressure, depression, anxiety, back pain, injury rehabilitation and general de-conditioning
An Exercise Physiologist (EP) can help you by advising, educating and instructing you on how to utilize exercise to maximize your health. If you have any of the following conditions, an EP can help improve or maintain your quality of life and help you manage your illness or health targets to help you get the best long term benefits.
How will an Exercise Physiologist help with my condition?
Exercise provides several important benefits to the patient with diabetes. Benefits include; improvement in blood glucose control, improved insulin sensitivity, decreased risk of cardiovascular disease, reduction in body weight and decreased levels of stress reducing medication requirements and allowing them to work effectively. Regular aerobic exercise can also assist in the prevention of Type II Diabetes, especially in patients with impaired glucose tolerance, a family history of diabetes or those who have had gestational diabetes.
Osteoporosis and Osteopenia
Regular exercise can assist patients with oesteopenia and those at risk, as it can significantly decrease the age related decline in bone mass, delaying onset of clinically diagnosed osetoporosis. Therapeutic exercise can also improve muscle strength, posture, balance, thereby reducing the risk of falls and subsequent fractures in both patients with osteopenia and osteoporosis.
Therapeutic exercise has been shown to be a very effective method of decreasing pain and increasing functional ability in patients with arthritis. In particular there is strong evidence of the effectiveness of exercise in the management of patients with knee and hip osteoarthritis.
Regular aerobic exercise has been shown to directly and indirectly cause positive changes in lipid and lipoprotein concentration in both patients with normal and abnormal lipid profiles. Exercise directly affects this profile by decreasing triglyceride concentration, increasing HDL concentration, and increases in enzyme activity thereby enhance reverse cholesterol transport. Indirectly, exercise can decrease body fat percentage also aiding this process.
High Blood Pressure
Elevated BP (hypertension) is one of the major modifiable risk factors for cardiovascular disease. In most cases the first line of treatment is to reduce BP by beginning lifestyle changes, of which regular aerobic exercise is a principal component.
Along with the well published physical benefits of exercise, positive psychological benefits have also been shown to be linked with exercise. Studies have shown that aerobic exercise provides an anti-depressive effect not only decreasing depression and anxiety but improving mood, self-esteem and work behaviour.
It is now generally clear that participation in some activity is better than none, and that more is generally better than less, at least up to levels meeting national physical activity guidelines. There are well defined physical and psychological issues associated with cancer which respond well to exercise participation. Therefore exercise should be seen a vital adjuvant therapy for maintaining, improving function, alleviating symptoms, assisting the recovery of survivors of slowing the decline of palliative care patients
De-conditioning is very common in people suffering from chronic injuries and also in people who have long term decreased levels of activity. If you are not as fit as you used to be or you feel yourself physically going backwards you may certainly benefit from the reconditioning services offered by an EP.
Exercise programs can be specifically designed to manage and improve back pain.These programs can be designed on a standalone basis or in conjunction through consultation with Physiotherapy treatment.
Specific exercise programs can be utilized specifically to aid with rehabilitation from a specific sporting or work related injury. If you are currently under the care of another health professional (eg, Physiotherapist) your EP can communicate and integrate an exercise program to assist and optimize your recovery or maintain your current health and fitness without jeopardizing your injury.