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  • Writer's pictureKevin Kapka, PT, DPT

What Is Prehab?

Updated: Oct 10, 2023

Prehabilitation is defined as “interventions aimed at augmenting patients’ physiological fitness prior to a surgical intervention to allow them to increase their metabolic reserve and retain a higher level of functional capacity over their entire perioperative trajectory”(1) In layman’s terms, this portion of physical therapy will occur before your surgery and help you reach your functional goals at a faster rate. Kinetik Performance and Rehab wants to fully understand what you are trying to return to or begin doing once you are out of surgery. After we devise a plan together, we will allow you to be as functional as possible before surgery and make it easier once you are out of surgery. These sessions will also consist of education on post operative care and things to consider.


Is prehab only for patients having surgery?


Absolutely not! Here at Kinetik PaR, we often help our elderly patients that are at a fall risk or have difficulty with endurance or everyday activities. Patients have been shown to demonstrate a 17.7% decrease in disability with everyday activities following an exercise regimen focused on functional decline(2) We also assist our athletes with movement analyses that focus on motion restrictions and muscular imbalances that may be hindering their performance. All in all, there are a multitude of reasons to visit a physical therapist, but if you are struggling with any movement or functional activity, don’t wait until you have pain. If you are in the Mission Viejo area and think you, or someone you know, might benefit from some physical therapy, please don’t hesitate to reach out!


1. Marchand, A. A., Houle, M., O'Shaughnessy, J., Châtillon, C. É., Cantin, V., & Descarreaux, M. (2021). Effectiveness of an exercise-based prehabilitation program for patients awaiting surgery for lumbar spinal stenosis: a randomized clinical trial. Scientific reports, 11(1), 11080. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-021-90537-4

2. Gill TM, Baker DI, Gottschalk M, Peduzzi PN, Allore H, Van Ness PH. A prehabilitation program for the prevention of functional decline: effect on higher-level physical function. Arch Phys Med Rehabil. 2004 Jul;85(7):1043-9. doi: 10.1016/j.apmr.2003.10.021. PMID: 15241748.

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