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Blood Flow Restriction

Are you ready to discover the advantages of blood flow restriction?

Are you recovering from an injury or attempting to gain strength? If this is the case, you may be a good candidate for blood flow restriction treatments at Movement Physiotherapy & Performance in Uniontown, PA.

This may appear counterintuitive; you may wonder, “Why would I want to restrict my blood flow? Isn’t it good for the blood to circulate?” While these are valid points, blood flow restriction treatments can have several benefits, particularly for athletes and people in rehabilitation.

Blood-flow restriction training can help you increase your strength gains while lifting lighter loads, reducing overall limb stress.

Compression is commonly used to restrict circulation to the affected area(s) while exercising. This encourages strength gains, increases muscle mass (hypertrophy), and prevents disuse atrophy (loss of muscle mass).

How does blood flow restriction work?

During blood flow restriction treatments, compression devices, similar to blood pressure cuffs, are used. These compression devices generate enough pressure to obstruct blood flow within the affected muscles by 50-80%.

The widely held belief is that the treatments cause a “local hypoxic event,” in which the tissues in the affected area are temporarily deprived of oxygen. This local hypoxia promotes the accumulation of more metabolites, which helps to regulate how the body gains muscle protein during exercise (i.e., the anabolic response system).

Restricting blood flow to the affected area promotes the formation of more muscle protein, resulting in increased strength and muscle growth (aka hypertrophy).

Other physiological reactions to blood flow restriction include:

  • Increased anabolic growth factors
  • Fast twitch fiber recruitment
  • Muscle fiber synthesis
  • Heat shock proteins
  • Nitric oxide synthase
  • Decreased expression of myostatin

Blood flow restriction can be used to improve muscle function during rehabilitation or to enhance athletic performance. Our physical therapists at Movement Physiotherapy & Performance are experts at determining the best methods to achieve the best results!

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Will restricting my blood flow help me?

At your first appointment, one of our Uniontown, PA physical therapists will conduct a physical examination, review your medical history, and discuss your symptoms to determine if blood flow restriction is the best treatment for you.

Blood flow restriction has been used to treat almost any upper or lower body injury and is also a form of post-surgery rehabilitation. The compression device measures the pressure applied to the affected area for the patient to complete each targeted exercise.

The goal of restricting blood flow during the exercises is to fatigue the affected area to stimulate the body’s natural healing and tissue-building processes. Muscle soreness may occur for a day or two following treatment, and “limb fatigue” may occur for 20-30 minutes but should pass quickly.

Please contact Movement Physiotherapy & Performance as soon as possible!

Contact our Uniontown, PA physical therapy office right away if you are recovering from an injury or surgery and want to learn more about blood flow restriction treatments.

Our licensed physical therapists are well-versed in this treatment and would be happy to talk with you about how it might benefit you. Set up a consultation with Movement Physiotherapy & Performance today to begin your journey toward pain relief, increased strength, and overall functional improvement!

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