How Progressive Strengthening Can Help You Recovery Faster From Injuries
Jan 2, 2019


Often during rehabilitation, progressive strengthening is used to increase muscle function, tone, strength, and size. Other names for progressive strengthening are “progressive resistance”, “overload principle”, and “exercise progression”. The goal is to help increase the ability of the muscle so that you can fully recover and go back to the quality of life you once knew. Ideally, you will go through a progressive treatment plan that involves several types of rehab options. That way, your body can get stronger as you regain the functionality you need to live your life fully.

Comprehensive Treatment Is Just What The Doctor Orders

Following any type of an injury or illness that left your muscles atrophied, you need to make sure you have a comprehensive treatment plan to help rebuild your muscles. If you do not work to rebuild your muscles the right way, the current condition of your muscles may become permanent. Call AICA Orthopedics and let us help you manage your condition. We can see where your muscles are currently at and work with you to develop a plan to rebuild your muscles through progressive strengthening exercises.

Progressive Strengthening

When you have suffered from an injury or disease like a traumatic brain injury, stroke, or other neurological condition, your muscles may be weakened. Being placed on bed rest or having long periods of inactivity can cause your muscles to waste and atrophy. Progressive strengthening exercises help to rebuild your muscles by slowly increasing the amount of resistance or weight you are using while exercising. You will start off with little more than the weight of your own body, and progress as your muscle tone increases.

If it is indicated, your doctor may refer you to a physical or occupational therapist for this type of strengthening exercises. It all depends on the current condition of your muscles and the reason that they began to atrophy in the first place. During your initial evaluation with our Atlanta orthopedic doctors, we will evaluate the strength of your arms and legs. Measurements will be collected to determine how strong your muscle function is and how well your joints move. Those measurements will be the basis of the treatment plan we use, as everyone needs a unique set of treatments to re-strengthen their muscles.


Your balance and posture will also be evaluated in both sitting and standing positions. If you have any specific concerns or goals, this is the time to mention them. The type of progressive strengthening program that is designed for you will be based on your initial function during this first examination. If anything becomes uncomfortable at any point during these measurements, it is important to tell us so we can add that into our notes. This tells us there is a part of your body that may be slightly stiffer than the others.


Your individual progressive strengthening program will involve repetitive lifting with a set amount of weight and reps. When your muscles begin to strengthen, and you are finding these exercises easier, your therapist will increase the amount of weight and resistance. Your therapist can also alter some of the exercises you are doing to help build up additional muscles at the same time. For example, doing a simple bicep curl can increase the tone and strength of your bicep. However, with a slight adjustment, the exercise can include a reach backwards before you begin the curl again. This works both your biceps and your triceps.

Never Ignore Weak Muscles As They Only Progressively Get Worse

There are many different ailments that can lead to atrophied muscles. Strokes are just one of the many problems that can leave you unable to move your body as you once could. This could happen as the result of a car accident, a fall, or even an illness. When you find yourself unable to move your body as you once did, those muscles struggle. Over time, the struggling gets worse. These muscles will begin to fail if they do not get used the right way. They can become painful, but that is not always the case. Some muscles get weak without pain, which may make you feel as though the problem came on out of nowhere.


If you notice that your muscles are struggling to function the way they once did, it is important you get checked out. You can reach out to your general physician, but chances are, they do not have the specialized training that AICA Orthopedics has to diagnose and treat the problem. Save yourself the time and call us directly. We want to see what is going on so that we can show you what can be done to help. You do not need to live life like this. There are ways of being able to treat your muscles so they function as they should once more.

Call AICA Orthopedics For More Information

This process will repeat until your goals are met or exceeded. We will also do regular evaluations to make sure that you are doing the best exercises to meet those goals of yours. If you would like more information on our progressive strengthening programs, call (404) 855-2141.

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