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If you’re active and have been referred to physical therapy in New Jersey, you may wonder why you need to see a specialist. After all, isn’t physical therapy just fancy exercise? Can’t you just do your workout at the gym, or watch a few internet videos for your condition? Keep reading to see why working with a trained physical therapist is so much different than DIY exercise.

Different Goals Between Physical Therapy and Exercise

The main difference between a workout and a physical therapy plan is the intention of your activity. You may exercise to feel healthier overall, to lose weight, to bulk up muscle, because it feels good, or just because you like the social scene at the gym. You might be taking your doctor’s advice and getting 20-30 minutes of exercise daily for your blood pressure. But when you work with a physical therapist in NJ, your goal is to recover and improve your mobility. If you have a specific injury, your goal is to recover and regain the mobility to that body part—sometimes, people see a physical therapist for just a knee, or just a hand, or just a foot. If you struggle with general fatigue and deconditioning, your PT may help you to rebuild core strength and endurance.

Physical Therapists in NJ Consult with Your Medical Plan

In addition to clearly defining and working toward a goal, physical therapists in NJ consult with your medical team and medical plan! A personal trainer may get to know you and your body, but a physical therapist has a background in rehabilitative medicine, and will go beyond this to get to know your surgical history, injury history, and medical recommendations. They work with your medical team to help you recover in the best evidenced-based manner.

Keep Exercising—Physical Therapy Only Goes So Far

Now that we’ve convinced you that physical therapy is so much more than exercising, you may wonder… should I still work out when I’m in physical therapy? Often, the answer is yes! But, like any exercise plan, always consult with your doctors first. Obviously, if you are receiving physical therapy for a specific body part, such as physical therapy for carpal tunnel syndrome, you should still be out there moving the rest of your body. If your injuries are more widespread, or if you are struggling with a chronic disease or disorder, follow your medical provider’s recommendations on the amount of activity and exertion you should do.

If you have experienced a change in mobility, don’t feel stuck with it! Contact the team at Home Rehab Consultants today to start planning your physical therapy recovery plan.