How Can Physical Therapy Help with Heart Health

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How Can Physical Therapy Help with Heart Health

Heart disease accounts for 1 in every 4 deaths. That’s nearly 650,000 Americans ever year. This staggering statistic is one of the biggest reasons that February is devoted to heart health in the US. This year, we at NARA want to help everyone understand how physical therapy can benefit heart health.  

First, we want to acknowledge that each individual has different health needs and abilities. It is important that you work closely with your doctor and physical therapist to make sure your health routines are beneficial for you.  

Physical therapy can not only help prevent heart disease but can actually lessen its progression. By increasing strength training, exercise capacity and overall well-being, we can all work towards a healthier heart in 2022. 

Strength Training 

Strength training is an important part of every healthy person’s routine. Strength training increases your body’s lean muscle mass which in turn puts less pressure on your heart and arteries. Every adult should try to get 150 minutes a week of physical activity including strength training or other exercises.  

Exercise Capacity 

Your ability to perform certain exercises everyday plays a big role in heart health. A low exercise capacity has been linked with hypertension and other cardiovascular issues. Work with your therapist by starting small and slowly working to increase your routine. You should strive for 30 minutes of physical activity at least 5 times a week. 

Overall Well-being 

Beyond heart health, working with a physical therapist to establish a balanced exercise routine can increase your overall well-being. Brain health, weight management, increased balance and stamina, reduced chances of certain cancers and increased bone strength are just a few of the many benefits of regular exercise.  

This American Heart Month, take charge of your health! There is no reason for you to become a part of a statistic. Reach out to your doctor or physical therapist to set yourself up for success this year! If you’re a therapist looking for likeminded professionals, come see how NARA can help connect you with others in your field.