ONS physicians present free health seminars in the community on topic related to orthopedics, neuro/spine, sports medicine, physiatry, and physical therapy. At the end of each seminar our audience has a chance to ask questions. Here are some of their questions and the doctors’ answers:
“Exercise as Treatment for Chronic Pain“
Speaker: Dr. Sahler
Q) How important is it to stretch before activity and how do I get around the pain when I’m stretching?
Warm up is done to increase the temperature of the muscles and joints. It’s best to get the heart rate up and warm the muscles instead of stretching cold muscles where you may feel pain or injure them. Start with dynamic movements like lunges or walking up and down stairs. Stretch after you’ve warmed up.
Q) If you have chronic pain and you are starting exercise is it good to stop exercising when you feel discomfort or push thru discomfort?
What is suggested is to exercise in increments, for example, if you plan to walk for 5 minutes and feel discomfort after 1 minute, sit down and rest then resume walking after you rest some. Repeat this over and over until you get your time in. Soon those minutes will get longer and you will be able to go the straight 5 minutes without rest.
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