1. What is the best time to do my exercises?
It depends on you and your daily needs. Doing your exercises in the morning before you start your day allows you to integrate what you’ve been posturally cued to do in your every day routines. If you plan on exercising, doing your program right before a workout will again cue your body into better postural habits and movement patterns. However, if it helps you sleep, do your program before going to bed. If your free time is limited, doing them whenever you can is far better than not at all.
2. How often should I perform my exercises?
Typically, programs are designed to be completed at least once a day. Most of our daily activities repeatedly promote poor postural alignment. To make a dramatic change it is essential to intervene with good postural habits at least once a day. If you feel the need to do it twice a day, try and leave an eight-hour window in between to avoid muscle fatigue.
3. How long should I rest in between sets?
Rest for a minimum of five seconds in-between sets to teach your muscles the difference between working and resting. If your feel that you need a longer rest period, it is okay to take 20 to 30 seconds or more, if you need it.
4. Can I do half my program in the morning and half in the evening?
The programs in the Pain Free Program are designed to be completed all at once.
5. Is the order of the exercises important?
Yes! Corrective Exercises should be performed in the order that they appear on your program. Your program is designed so that each exercise builds on the previous and prepares you for the next exercise. If they appeared in a different order in a previous program, it may be that the focus was slightly different.
6. Can I do one or two exercise in my program without doing the rest?
If you have already done your program in its entirety you may do a couple of favorites at a later time. Even though certain exercises may make you feel considerably better than the rest, all of them are very important to the design of your program.
7. What if an exercise hurts or reproduces pain when I do it?
Pain is contrary to our philosophy of providing an environment for your body to heal. Although you may feel sensations within a muscle group, your exercises should never reproduce your existing pain. First refer to your program to make sure you are performing the exercise correctly. If you are still feeling pain, stop doing the exercise.
8. Can I add exercises to my program?
This is not recommended without a private consultation. Although it may feel good at the time, you want to make sure that it isn’t counterproductive to the overall goals of your program.
9. What if I prefer to hold exercises longer than the suggested time?
Sometimes it is beneficial to hold a stretch until you notice a release in the muscle. However, there is a diminishing return to holding a stretch for too long and you may not necessarily benefit more by holding the stretch for a longer duration.
10. Can I continue with my normal exercise routines?
That depends. It may be a good idea to initially refrain from certain exercises, such as resistance training, to help your progress. If your chosen form of exercise exacerbates your pain, it is probably best to stay away from it.
11. If I am working out, when should I do my program?
Ideally, do the program right before working out. This gives your body the opportunity to reinforce good habits and integrate the learning “cues” your Function First program provides. Doing your program just prior to a workout is like is like prepping the body for exercise. The Function First exercises then become a tool for proactive pain management instead of reactive.
12. Should I continue with my medications?
That is a decision between you and your doctor. We ask that you refrain from taking painkillers before your program to avoid masking any symptoms. It will also allow you to better determine if there is an actual difference before and after the exercises.
13. Should I continue with my chiropractic treatments, physical therapy or massage while going through the Pain Free Program?
Typically, passive treatments, such as chiropractic, acupuncture, and soft tissue work will not interfere with your Function First program. The exercise program from Function First should be an excellent complement to these forms of treatment. Sometimes other movement therapies can be counterproductive to our approach and we try to limit that as much as possible. If you feel like they are helping you then it is probably best to continue with them.
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