Why you have to exercise:

According to the National Center on Health, Physical Activity and Disability, 80 percent of all lower-extremity amputations are caused by peripheral vascular disease and diabetes; the amputation occurs when blood is no longer able to flow to and from the lower extremity properly. Exercising aids proper blood flow and improves the health of the cardiovascular system, reducing peripheral vascular disease and other diabetes complications that could result in the need for additional amputations!

After an amputation, your overall activity level may decrease – and it is important to modify your diet to manage your weight. Weight gain can lead to heart disease, increased cancer risk and other health problems. Exercising burns calories and helps you lose unwanted weight. This will not only improve your overall health but may make walking with a prosthesis easier.

Amputation changes your balance. Exercise can improve your balance while you sit or stand and also increasing your agility and dexterity at\s you perform common tasks. The National Limb Loss Information Center recommends that balance exercises be performed both with and without prosthetics, if possible. However, in order to get the best heart healthy workout, be sure you are safe and stable to push the intensity.

What you need to be cautious of with exercise

Always check the skin on the residual limb. This is especially important after activity. Exercising with an ill-fitting prosthesis can cause injury to the skin.

Check with the doctor before beginning an exercise program. Some of the most common causes of amputation include peripheral vascular disease and complications associated with diabetes. These conditions can also affect other parts of your body, including your heart. Your doctor can prescribe a stress test to determine how hard you should exercise, and help you create a safe exercise program based on the results of the test.