Healthwatch: Mandatory Exercise


Healthcare officials say exercise is important for everyone, but especially people who are recovering from a major surgery or illness.

Tara Holowka is a physical therapist at Meridian's Specialty Hospital. She says everyone needs exercise -- just to different degrees.

"For some it may be walking more. For some it may be doing household chores. For others it may be joining a gym," said Holowka.

Fifty-four-year-old Neal Barney from Union is one of Holowka's patients. He says since having major surgery a month ago, he can tell how exercise is making a difference.

"No, it's not bad. It makes you feel good. It makes you sleep real good," said Barney.

'Good,' is how therapists say exercise should make you feel. They say the problems start when it does the opposite.

"When you start feeling more fatigued," said Holowka, "experiencing more nausea or unusual tingling, then you should contact your physician. However, if you just feel normal tiredness while doing the exercise, then you just have to learn to endure it."

Here's a note for family members: Holowka says sometimes doing everything for a recovering patient can do more harm than good.
Therefore, if cleared by a doctor, she says you should let the person do some of the simple, everyday tasks. In the long run she says this can help.