Why Exercise is Important to Stroke Recovery

Stroke is 20% likely to recur within five years after the first occurrence. To reduce the chances of getting another stroke, patients are advised to exercise. Here are the benefits of exercises for patients recovering from a stroke.

Stroke may be prevented by regular exercise.

People who have had a stroke are less likely to engage in regular physical activity because of weariness, depression, and difficulty accessing exercise facilities. On the other hand, research reveals that physical exercise may be an effective recovery. People who have had a stroke are advised to engage in physical activities like weightlifting and yoga to enhance their fitness, balance, and walking capacity.

You may reduce stroke risk by exercising three or four times each week.

Although there is some disagreement on the ideal length and intensity of exercise, it is generally agreed that physical activity may help prevent future strokes. Maintaining a regular exercise routine that includes at least three or four aerobic sessions weekly is an effective strategy for improving mobility and independence and lowering risk factors for stroke.

Physical exercise may help with brain function after a stroke.

Stroke recovery programs often have difficulties with memory, concentration, and abstract reasoning for the victims. Patients and their loved ones might find difficulties with hand-to-eye coordination, focus, and memory irritating.

There is evidence that exercise may help improve brain function after a stroke, and cognitive improvements can be shown in as little as 14 weeks, even in people who have had a long-term stroke.

Aerobic workouts aid in the prevention of future attacks.

Physical exercise advice for stroke survivors is tough since each person’s experience, age, and handicap are unique. As a component of stroke therapy, aerobic exercise has been demonstrated to maximize heart and brain benefits and reduce the chance of recurrence occurrences.

It is essential to start the heart beating to enhance blood flow in all body parts and lower the risk of narrowing blood vessels and blood clots that may lead to stroke.

Many options exist for modifying workouts after a stroke.

Getting back to the amount of physical activity one used to before a stroke may be difficult for many stroke survivors. To maintain good mental and physical health, frequent exercise is recommended. You may improve balance concerns by switching to seated exercises like stationary cycling or martial arts like Tai Chi, emphasizing gradual, controlled movement.

The American Heart Association recommends the following best practices:

  • Exercises that focus on gait should be given great attention to assist patients in returning to their “pre-stroke” levels of activity as quickly as possible. Training one’s gait may help one become more independent in performing Activities of Daily Living and increase one’s tolerance for extended periods of physical exercise. Your physical therapist will need to assist you with gait training to get the best results.
  • In addition, making time for aerobic activity should be a priority to help avoid another stroke. After having a stroke, aerobic activity for 30-60 minutes each day, three days to seven weekly, is recommended by experts. The patient’s fitness level should be considered while determining the appropriate dosage.
  • Reversing muscle atrophy, which often occurs during and after a victim’s hospitalization, may be accomplished via strength-training exercises. When designing strength-training routines, it’s important to use relatively modest weights that allow for at most one set of 20 repetitions. The recommended frequency for strength training is two to three times per week, with eight to ten exercises that target the main muscle groups.
  • Exercises that increase flexibility and range of motion, such as stretching and ranging, are advised to help avoid contractures and enhance flexibility.
  • Patients who are likely to suffer from an increased risk of falling should exercise to strengthen their core and enhance their balance.

Bottom Line

You should create exercise objectives with the help of your medical team after a stroke.

Some patients might need gait training as a priority to cultivate the motivation necessary to engage in regular aerobic activity. Gait workouts and other types of aerobic exercise could also be appropriate for those with just minimal side effects.

When it comes to recovery after a stroke, it doesn’t matter what your physician or therapist tells you; consistency and repetition are the most critical factor.

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