Saturday, November 12, 2016

Exercises,Volume, and Repetitions

The purpose of this blog is to further continue and go into depth about exercises used by a physical therapist in rehabilitation. I am going to explain a couple of exercises, volume (workload), and the repetition guidelines for treatment of common injuries such as, ACL tears and hamstring pulls.

Treatment of ACL injuries usually happens in 3 phases: pre-rehabilitation, surgical recovery (if needed), and return to play. However, I am going to focus on the return to play aspect of rehabilitation. An exercise that is frequently used is the wall sit. You place back, shoulder, and butt against the wall, keeping the  feet shoulder width apart, go into a seated 90 degree position, and hold until fatigue.1 You repeat this exercise for 3 sets for a duration of 2-3 minutes per set.1 Another exercise that is very beneficial to an ACL tear is the step up. Step ups utilize a box platform and stepping up on the platform; making sure the opposite hip is fully flexed through the follow-through.1 A variation of this exercise is to add weight via dumbbells. You continue this for 3 sets of 15 repetitions.1 Depending on the weight applied, you multiply the sets x repetitions x weight to attain the volume.
Rehabilitation of a pulled hamstring involves a variety of exercises that can be used for treatment. Determining which exercises to use depends on the patron’s ability and comfort level. Good mornings is an excellent exercise that specifically targets the hamstrings. “The athlete bends forwards at the waist keeping the back straight. Be sure to have the feet shoulder width apart, chest high, and slight flexion in the knees. This also works the hamstrings as they stretch.”2 Weight could be added to the barbell to make this exercise more challenging and increase the volume. You repeat this exercise for 3 sets of 15 repetitions.2 An advance hamstring exercise is the Norwegian leg curl. “The athlete kneels down while the therapist holds the ankles. They then slowly lean forwards as far as they can under control using the hamstrings to resist the forwards movement.”2 This is then repeated for 3 sets of 15 repetitions. Workload on this exercise is relatively low.

In conclusion, I have provided an informational view on the exercises, workload, and repetition guidelines physical therapists use in the treatment of common injuries. In my next blog, I will discuss how physical therapy can impact the treatment of different conditions such as, metabolic diseases or obesity.


1Emory Healthcare. (2016, October 26). Wall Sits. Retrieved from Emory Healthcare:
2Hamstring Strain Strengthening Exercises. (n.d.). Retrieved October 26, 2016, from

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