Weight gain and an inactive lifestyle can make your joints and muscles weaken over time. However, you can improve the function of the upper extremities with exercises that tighten the muscles. You should choose an expert such as Dr. Daniel Brereton in La Jolla who understands your goals. The doctor should develop exercises that keep the upper part of the body strong and flexible. Here are some exercises and techniques that can help improve the functions of the upper limbs.

Neurodevelopment Treatment (NDT)

The NDT approach uses neurodevelopmental techniques, which include proactive neuromuscular facilitation. The approach mainly focuses on motor control which controls abnormal muscle patterns and muscle tones that arise from issues such as stroke. The procedure develops normal patterns that can facilitate functional and voluntary movements. Although NDT is still in a clinical setting, it can help strengthen muscle tone, dexterity, and promote motor relearning.

Bilateral Upper Limb Training

Bilateral upper limb movement insists on the simultaneous use of both upper limbs. For instance, when moving one arm actively, the other arm can be moving actively or passively. This upper body training applies mostly to patients who have undergone stroke and other musculoskeletal problems. The coupling of the upper extremities works through neutrally dependency between the right and left arms and can facilitate training-related plasticity of the brain.

Exercises That Help Improvements of the Arm

Lie on your back with both arms at the side and raise them overhead while keeping the elbows straight. Then bring the arm from the side up close to your ear, hold the hand close to the ear for a short time. You can repeat the procedure several times a day. Still lying in the same position, you can raise the arms out to the side while keeping the elbow straight. Then, bring the arms close to your ear and repeat the procedure several times during the day. Still lying on the ground, with the elbows straight out from your shoulders, bend the elbows and keep them on the floor. Bring your hands to touch the floor by your head, then down to touch the floor by your waist. Finally, while standing, hold your arms out with the palms of the hand facing upwards. Bend your elbows so that the fingers almost touch your shoulders. Straighten your arms and repeat the procedure several times during the day.

Why You Should See a Physical Therapist

The physical therapist will examine your upper extremities and develop an exercise plan that suits your needs. They are experienced with joint and muscle issues that arise due to weakened muscles and help you get better. Moreover, it can be difficult to achieve certain movements by yourself, and the physical therapist will help you manipulate your upper extremities. Although you might rely on the therapist at first, eventually, you will learn how to manipulate your upper joints by yourself.

The Bottom Line

You can develop weakened joints and muscles on the upper extremities due to diseases, injuries, and different conditions. Fortunately, you can manipulate the upper extremity using physical therapy and exercises that strengthen the muscles and increase the joint’s range of motion.