Expert Physiotherapy, Chiropractic, and Orthotics Services for Optimal Health

5 Kinds of Physiotherapy Exercises to Help with Weight Loss


Posted by Dr. Scott Wilson | 01-Dec-2023

Achieving your weight loss goals can sometimes feel like fighting an uphill battle. When it comes to enjoying lasting success, the key is changing your behaviour and transforming your overall health through a combination of diet and exercise. And when it comes to exercise, incorporating physiotherapy exercises into your weight loss journey can be a game-changer. Physiotherapists are trained health professionals who can design exercise programs tailored to your individual needs, goals, and health conditions. In this article, we’ll explore five kinds of physiotherapy exercises that can help with weight loss, their benefits, and how they can be incorporated into a balanced exercise routine.

How Can Physiotherapy Exercises Help with Weight Loss?

Physiotherapy exercises offer a multifaceted approach to weight loss. They can enhance your metabolism, burn calories, and build muscle mass, increasing your body’s energy expenditure. Additionally, they can improve your cardiovascular health, flexibility, and endurance, supporting sustainable weight management by introducing a balanced fitness regimen into your life.

Exercise 1: High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT)

High-Intensity Interval Training, or HIIT, has gained popularity as an effective exercise method for weight loss. HIIT involves alternating intense bursts of exercise with periods of lower-intensity exercise or rest. This form of exercise challenges your body and has been shown to burn calories, improve metabolism, and promote fat loss. The intense bursts of exercise push your body to its limits, promoting weight loss by burning calories both during and after your workout.

Examples of HIIT Exercises

There are several HIIT exercises that can be incorporated into a weight loss program. Examples include:

  • Sprint Intervals: Alternating between sprints and walking or jogging.
  • Jumping Jacks: Performing a set of jumping jacks, followed by a short rest.
  • Burpees: Combining squat, plank, and jump exercises for a full-body workout.
  • Mountain Climbers: Alternating knee drives, mimicking climbing a mountain, at a high intensity.

While HIIT exercises can be highly effective for weight loss, it’s important to prioritize safety. Proper technique is essential for minimizing your risk of injury when performing any exercises, but it’s even more important when performing exercises at a high intensity. Progressing gradually in intensity and duration is also important as this allows your body to adapt and avoid overexertion. By balancing intensity, duration, and recovery, your can safely incorporate HIIT exercises into your weight loss program.

Exercise 2: Strength Training

Strength training exercises, like weightlifting or resistance training, play a crucial role in weight loss and weight gain prevention by increasing your muscle mass. This increase in muscle mass boosts your metabolism and helps you burn calories more efficiently, leading to sustainable weight loss results. Additionally, strength training exercises target major muscle groups, improving overall strength, balance, and agility. By incorporating strength training into your exercise routine, you can achieve your weight loss goals and maintain a healthy weight. What’s more, exercise, particularly weight bearing physical activity and resistance training, can increase bone mineral density to reduce the risk of, or help in the management of, osteoporosis and osteopaenia.

Examples of Strength Training Exercises

Various strength training exercises target major muscle groups, promoting weight loss and overall strength development. Examples include:

  • Squats: Targeting your lower body, including glutes, hamstrings, and quadriceps.
  • Lunges: Working your lower body, especially glutes, hamstrings, and quadriceps.
  • Push-Ups: Focusing on your chest, shoulders, triceps, and core muscles.
  • Plank Exercises: Engaging your core, back, and glutes for stability and strength.

To maximize your impact, try to incorporate strength training exercises into your routine at least two to three times a week. As you progress, gradually increase the weight, resistance, or duration of the exercises to continue challenging your body. By progressively challenging your muscles, you can achieve optimal weight loss results by combining strength training with 30 minutes of moderate aerobic activity, at least 5 days per week.

Exercise 3: Cardiovascular Exercises

Cardiovascular exercises, also known as aerobic exercises, are an essential component of weight loss most programs. They increase your heart rate, improve your cardiovascular health, burn calories through increased energy expenditures, and promote overall physical activity. These exercises also help boost your metabolism which allows your body to continue burning calories even after you’re done exercising. By incorporating cardio exercises into weight loss programs, you can achieve greater weight loss results and effectively manage your body weight.

Examples of Cardiovascular Exercises

There are various forms of cardio exercises, each suitable for different fitness levels, goals, and preferences. Some examples include:

  • Running or Jogging: Effective exercises that can be adjusted in duration, intensity, and terrain.
  • Cycling: Low-impact exercise with adjustable resistance, suitable for all fitness levels.
  • Swimming: A whole-body exercise that is gentle on your joints, making it ideal for individuals with joint pain or injuries.
  • Dancing: A fun and energetic activity that can be tailored to different dance styles, music, and intensity levels.

For sustained weight loss results, it’s important to incorporate cardio or aerobic exercise into your daily routine. Try to choose activities you enjoy, as you’re more likely to stick with them, and be sure to schedule sessions throughout the week. Aim for at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity activity or 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity activity per week. Also, try to find opportunities for physical activity in your everyday life. This could mean taking the stairs instead of the elevator or going for a brisk walk during lunch breaks.

Exercise 4: Core Strengthening Exercises

A strong core, consisting of the muscles in your abdomen, back, and pelvis, plays a vital role in weight loss. It provides stability, improves your posture, and supports overall body strength. When incorporated into your weight loss programs, these exercises help maintain proper body alignment, allowing you to exercise with proper form, avoid injuries, and burn calories more efficiently. By strengthening your core, you can improve your weight distribution, balance, and overall physical performance. This, ultimately, helps with achieving your weight loss goals.

Examples of Core Strengthening Exercises

There are various exercises that target your core muscles. Some effective core exercises include:

  • Plank: Engaging your entire core, including abs, back, and glutes, for stability and strength.
  • Bicycle Crunches: Working your abs, obliques, and lower back, promoting calorie burn and strength development.
  • Russian Twists: Targeting your abs, obliques, and back muscles, providing stability and toning benefits.
  • Leg Raises: Focusing on your lower abs, hip flexors, and lower back, improving strength and stability.

When performing core exercises, it is important to progress gradually to avoid muscle strain or injury. Start with exercises suitable for your fitness level, focusing on proper form and body positioning. As you gain strength, gradually increase the duration, resistance, or complexity of exercises. By progressing in a controlled manner, you can continue challenging your core muscles, achieve strength gains, and support your weight loss goals.

Exercise 5: Flexibility and Mind-Body Exercises

Flexibility and mind-body exercises, such as yoga and Pilates, can play a significant role in weight loss by enhancing your physical performance, reducing stress, and promoting overall well-being. Flexibility exercises improve muscle elasticity, range of motion, and physical performance. Mind-body exercises, such as yoga and Pilates, promote mental relaxation, body awareness, and stress reduction. By integrating flexibility and mind-body exercises into your program, you can add a holistic approach to weight loss, addressing your physical, mental, and emotional well-being.

Mental and emotional well-being are crucial for achieving weight loss goals. Your mental and emotional state influences your motivation, discipline, and overall lifestyle choices. Mindfulness practices, such as meditation, promote stress management, emotional balance, and a positive mindset towards weight loss. By cultivating a sense of mindfulness, you can enhance your weight loss efforts, make healthier choices, and develop sustainable habits that contribute to your long-term weight management. Exercise can also play a significant role in managing your weight by changing the levels of specific chemicals within your brain. It can lower stress hormones and raise other “feel-good” hormones, such as endorphins and serotonin. This chemical balance can further support mental well-being and contribute to your weight loss success.

Creating a Balanced Exercise Routine for Weight Loss

Optimizing your weight loss efforts includes creating a balanced exercise routine that incorporates various types of exercises, including cardio, strength training, core exercises, flexibility, and mind-body exercises. Incorporating a variety of exercises allow you to engage different muscle groups, prevent boredom, and enjoy continuous improvement. By incorporating diverse exercises, you can achieve comprehensive workouts, target various body parts, and minimize the risk of plateauing.

Creating a personalized exercise routine is key to optimizing your weight loss efforts. To develop a routine that suits your needs, consider the following:

  • Goal Setting: Set specific goals, such as weight loss, strength gain, or improved cardiovascular health.
  • Professional Support: Consult with a physiotherapist to assess your individual needs, health conditions, and goals.
  • Exercise Selection: Choose exercises that align with your goals, preferences, and fitness level.
  • Ramping Up: Gradually increase exercise duration, intensity, or resistance to continuously challenge your body.

It’s important to note that consulting with a physiotherapist can ensure that the exercises you choose suit your individual health needs, goals, and limitations. A physiotherapist can assess your health condition, create a personalized exercise program, and provide professional guidance throughout your weight loss journey. By seeking professional advice, you can maximize your weight loss benefits, avoid exercises that exacerbate existing conditions, and ensure the exercises contribute to your overall health and well-being.


Physiotherapy exercises can be highly effective in supporting your weight loss efforts. By incorporating a variety of exercises such as high-intensity interval training, strength training, cardiovascular exercises, core strengthening, and flexibility and mind-body exercises, you can maximize calorie burn, build muscle mass, and enhance overall physical, mental and emotional well-being. It’s important to create a balanced exercise routine that targets different muscle groups and includes both cardio and strength training. Seeking professional advice from a physiotherapist can help tailor your exercise routine to your specific needs and goals. Remember to start gradually, focus on proper technique, and listen to your body to avoid any injuries.

If you’re struggling with achieving your weight loss goal, we can help. Contact us today and let us show you why, at Physiomed…Healthier Starts Here.

Frequently Asked Questions About Physiotherapy Exercises for Weight Loss:

Q1. Can physiotherapy exercises be tailored to my specific needs and goals?

Yes, physiotherapy exercises can be tailored to your specific needs and goals. Your physiotherapist will assess your health condition, limitations and goals. Based on this, they can create a personalized exercise plan that addresses your individual requirements while ensuring that exercises are safe, effective, and aligned with your weight loss goals.

Q2. How often should I do physiotherapy exercises for weight loss?

How often you perform physiotherapy exercises for weight loss depends on your individual needs and goals. At least three to four times per week is generally recommended. However, this could vary depending on your health condition, fitness level, and the exercise program created by your physiotherapist. Consistency is key, so aim to incorporate regular physiotherapy exercises into your routine for optimal results.

Q3. What precautions should I take when starting a new weight loss exercise routine?

When starting a new exercise routine, it is important to take certain precautions to ensure safety and prevent injuries. These precautions include consulting with a healthcare professional, such as a physiotherapist, before starting any new exercise program, especially if you have pre-existing health conditions. You should always start slowly and gradually increase the intensity and duration of your workouts over time. Warming up before exercise, including dynamic stretching, to prepare your muscles for activity is recommended. As is cooling down after exercise with static stretching to aid in muscle recovery and to reduce muscle soreness. Of course, you should always listen to your body and stop exercising if you experience pain, dizziness, or any discomfort.

Dr. Scott Wilson

Dr. Scott Wilson is the Founder & Chairman of Physiomed; one of Canada’s largest franchised networks of inter-disciplinary healthcare clinics. A graduate of Canadian Memorial Chiropractic College, Dr. Wilson founded Physiomed in 1994 and has since grown Physiomed to over 30 clinics in Southern Ontario and British Columbia. With hundreds of practitioners from over a dozen disciplines, Dr. Wilson and Physiomed have helped over 100,000 Canadians with physiotherapy, chiropractic, massage therapy, orthotic therapy, compression therapy and clinical conditioning as part of a program of rehabilitation and health optimization. In addition to helping patients improve their physical and mental well-being, Dr. Wilson has also mentored hundreds of practitioners to provide better care while enjoying more fulfilling careers. He is also a keynote speaker on many health related topics including how physiotherapy, chiropractic and health & wellness treatment can help with stress, weight loss, and unlocking the true potential within to achieve lasting physical well-being.

Top Blogs

Jul 15

Osteoarthritis Treatments: What You Need to Know...

Key Highlights: Osteoarthritis treatments focus on pain relief, restoring joint…

Read More
Jul 01

Runner’s Knee: Symptoms, Causes & Treatme...

Key Highlights: Runner's knee, or patellofemoral pain syndrome, is a…

Read More
Jun 15

Upper Back and Neck Pain: Causes and Solutions...

Key Highlights: Upper back and neck pain can be caused…

Read More
Jun 01

Slim Down: How to Lose Belly Fat Naturally...

Key Highlights: Many people want to lose belly fat for…

Read More
May 15

Restoring Balance with Vestibular Physical Therapy...

Key Highlights: Vestibular physical therapy, or physiotherapy, is a specialized…

Read More
May 01

Tennis Elbow: Top Exercises for Relief & Recove...

Key Highlights: Tennis elbow, or lateral epicondylitis, is a condition…

Read More

Ready to Get Started?

Book Your

Get Healthier... Stay Healthier!