shutterstock_125411387_1.jpegWork conditioning is an extremely effective option for patients who have sustained a work-related injury and are looking to return to work safely. Work conditioning is specifically designed to give you confidence in your body as you get back on the job – but what exactly is work conditioning, and how is it different from other types of physical therapy?

At Barrington Orthopedic Specialists, we’re proud to have a dedicated workers’ compensation department, as well as work conditioning services for those who have sustained injuries. Here’s an intro to work conditioning and the ways it can help you:

What Is Work Conditioning?

Work conditioning is a type of rehabilitative therapy that was designed specifically to help patients regain their musculoskeletal, neurological, and cardiovascular functions before returning safely to the workplace following an injury. By asking patients to perform real or simulated tasks that replicate their work environment, our work conditioning program helps to prepare patients’ bodies and minds for their transition back into their daily occupational activities.

How Work Conditioning Helps You

Following physical or occupational therapy, some patients still feel that they need additional support and training. Work conditioning offers an intense training plan for targeting specific skills you need to safely return to your job. Professionals who benefit from the work conditioning programs at BOS include:

  • Airline Workers
  • Police Officers
  • Firefighters
  • Construction Workers
  • Delivery Drivers
  • Electricians
  • Plumbers
  • Mechanics
  • Factory Workers
  • Healthcare Providers
  • Post Office Employees
  • Food Services & Hospitality Workers

Depending on your industry, you may need additional expertise in helping you to regain your finger dexterity, or re-conditioning your arms and legs to perform heavy lifting. By conditioning your body for your specific line of work, you can feel confident in your return and help prevent re-injury or future injuries from occurring.

What Does Work Conditioning Look Like?

At Barrington Orthopedic Specialists, our work conditioning program is an intense period in which patients work to restore their bodies to full function. We primarily focus on training in the following areas:

  • Strength
  • Mobility
  • Power
  • Endurance
  • Motor Control
  • Functional abilities

Each of these core focus points will be tailored to your specific needs as a patient in order to ensure that you’re ready to return to work with full confidence in your performance and safety.

Ready to Get Back to Work?

Work conditioning is an excellent option for those who need additional treatment following physical or occupational therapy in order to return to work safely. Liz Bauske, PT, DPT, OCS, ATC is the work conditioning coordinator. She has 10+ years of experience with treating work-related injuries and preparing injured workers for return to work. Liz is an excellent communicator who will work directly with adjusters and case managers to ensure efficient coordination of care.

If you’re ready to take the next step toward a full recovery, the comprehensive work conditioning program at Barrington Orthopedic Specialists can help. Additionally, our dedicated workers’ compensation department is committed to your total recovery and eager to help you navigate the workers’ compensation process. Ready to get started? Request an appointment here. We look forward to serving you!

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the difference between work conditioning and work hardening?

Work conditioning is a specific and functional program for an injured worker who needs additional training and rehabilitation to safely return to their jobs while work-hardening programs are more generalized physical conditioning programs that focus on overall strength and cardiovascular conditioning, aimed at improving overall physical abilities and preparing individuals for physically demanding occupation. Physical therapist works closely with you to design a functional program designed specifically for your physical abilities and job demands.

Is work conditioning covered by workers’ compensation?

Yes, work conditioning is often a covered service under workers’ compensation benefits. This type of therapy is designed to help injured workers return to their jobs safely and efficiently and therefore may be included in your treatment plan. Our dedicated workers’ compensation department can assist you with determining if work conditioning is covered

How long does a typical work conditioning program last?

The length of a work conditioning program can vary depending on the individual's specific needs and progress. On average, most programs range from four to six weeks, with patients attending multiple sessions per week. The frequency and duration of the program will be determined by your therapist based on your injury, physical abilities, and job requirements.

Can work conditioning help with back and neck pain?

Yes, work conditioning can be beneficial for those who have experienced back and neck pain. Our program focuses on improving strength, mobility, motor control, and functional abilities to prepare you for the physical demands of your job. By strengthening these areas, we can help alleviate any discomfort or pain you may be experiencing in your back and neck.