People living with a disability may be prescribed exercise as part of their treatment plan. In this blog post, we’ll discuss how exercise can help people living with a disability improve their quality of life and maintain independence.
According to the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, more than four million people in Australia – or around 18% of the population – have a disability. Working with Exercise Physiologists can help people living with a disability manage their symptoms. We’ve outlined some of these benefits below!
1. Improves Overall Health
Many people living with a disability may have health issues either directly or indirectly related to their specific condition. For example, a person with intellectual disability may also have asthma, diabetes or hypertension.
Whatever the reason, improving overall health such as cardiovascular fitness, weight management and strength and coordination will have a positive effect on the life of the individual.
2. Improves Coordination and Balance
Disabilities that impact body development, neurological or muscular conditions, can have pronounced effects on coordination and balance.
In many cases, improving balance and coordination will not only lead to increased independence but is also extremely important in falls prevention. This becomes crucial in individuals who have lower bone mineral density or in cases of immune deficiency to prevent infections.
3. Weight Management
Many medications prescribed to people living with a disability can cause unintended weight gain or weight loss, especially if the medication decreases appetite. An individual’s ability to independently exercise will also have this effect.
With the help of a trained Exercise Physiologist, exercise and a diet plan can be prescribed to help participants manage and maintain a healthy weight using a tailored program.
4. Encourages Socialisation
It is just as important for a person living with a disability to have the opportunity to engage in social activities and with Australians loving the outdoors so much, many social interactions revolve around physical activities.
Exercise increases an individual’s opportunity to participate in various activities such as school sports or recreational sporting activities with their peers.
5. Supports Independence
Maintaining a certain degree of independence may be one of the goals of a person with a disability. These can include anything from being able to walk to the shops all the way through to training for specific sporting and athletic goals.
An Exercise Physiologist will work with individuals to target activities of daily living or more specific goal-oriented tasks which can be improved.
6. Challenges Stereotypes
Often those people living with a disability may be perceived as unable to participate in physical activities. Exercise challenges this public perception and can encourage greater inclusivity in team sports!
Access Exercise Physiology support with NDIS
Australians living with disability may be eligible to receive funding through the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS), which funds Exercise Physiology and other supports. As an NDIS registered allied health provider, Better Rehab can offer Exercise Physiology support to those funded through the NDIS.
Don’t hesitate to give us a call if you’d like an Exercise Physiologist to meet and work with you so you can achieve your life goals through exercise.