Physical therapy is the key to making a strong and effective recovery. To make sure that you have the best physical therapy experience possible, you need to set goals ahead of time. Here is how to set physical therapy goals.
Establish Realistic Goals
Whatever goals you set, make sure that they are realistic. Your goals will help keep you motivated and focused during physical therapy. If you set unrealistic goals that you can’t achieve, you run the risk of losing motivation and making the process harder for yourself.
When you set your goals, base them on realistic timeframes and expectations. Many people expect to recover faster than they can or expect to make more progress than they should in a short amount of time. Work with your therapist to determine what your goals should be.
Consider Incremental Goals
One of the best ways to set your goals is to set incremental goals. That means breaking your end goal down into smaller, more achievable milestones. Large, long-term goals are hard to stay focused on because they take a long time to reach. Having milestones will let you make measurable gains, which will also help you stay motivated by feeling like you are making progress.
Determine Time Frame
Setting time frames for your goals is crucial to making them achievable. You can only progress so quickly in physical therapy since progressing too quickly or too slowly can be detrimental to your recovery. Your physical therapist and doctor can help you determine the appropriate rate that you should meet milestones. Each milestone takes a different length of time to get through and your times should be a range rather than a specific date. Everyone is different, and you will progress through your recovery at your own rate.
Discuss Goals with Physical Therapist
Work with your recovery team, including, your physical therapist to develop your goals. Physical therapists have extensive training and experience guiding patients through their recovery, and they are your best resource for developing achievable goals. Before beginning your physical therapy, schedule time to work through a plan with your physical therapist based on your needs. In some cases, you can meet with your physical therapist before a planned surgery. However, you need to reassess your needs after the surgery and make adjustments as necessary.
Ask for Advice
Aside from your medical team, you can ask for advice from other trained personnel. The administrators and nurses that work in physical therapy offices can give you advice on how to plan and get through physical therapy. They have extensive experience with patients and multiple treatment methods, so they have the experience to help you make better decisions about your physical therapy program.
Use a Team Approach
Alongside asking for advice, make sure you assemble a care team. Your team should include your doctor, physical therapists, and caregivers. By getting your team to work together, you can stand a better chance of staying on track and making a strong recovery. You will need multiple forms of support, and you can only get all of the care that you need from a team.
Ready to Get Started?
If you need someone to guide you through your recovery, contact Manhattan Physical Therapy and Pain Center today at (212) 213-3480 to learn how we can help.