Can Physiotherapy Help With Weight Loss?


physiotherapy-weight loss

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

  • Physiotherapy can be an effective tool for weight loss. It can help to improve your mobility, increase your physical activity level, and reduce your risk of injury during exercise.
  • Physiotherapy can be combined with other weight loss strategies, such as dietary changes and behavioural therapy, to achieve greater and more sustainable weight loss results.
  • When using physiotherapy for weight loss, it’s important to work with a qualified and experienced Physiotherapist. It’s also important to recognize that weight loss is a complex process. Patience and persistence are key to achieving long-term success.

Weight loss can be a challenging process that often requires a multi-faceted approach. Focusing on diet and exercise is the typical approach. However, physiotherapy can also be a helpful tool for those seeking to lose weight. It can help with improving mobility, increasing physical activity and reducing the risk of injury. All of this helps with achieving success.

In this article, we’ll explore how physiotherapy can help with weight loss. We’ll also discuss the benefits of combining physiotherapy with other strategies. Finally, we’ll offer some considerations for adding physiotherapy to your weight loss journey. 

Whether you’re just starting on your journey or are looking for ways to optimize your existing efforts, physiotherapy can help you with achieving your weight loss goals.

How Can Physiotherapy Help With Weight Loss?

Working with a Physiotherapist offers a few important benefits. It can help with improving your mobility, increasing your level of physical activity, and with reducing your risk of injury. 

  1. Improving Your Mobility: One of the primary ways in which physiotherapy can support weight loss is by improving mobility. Individuals who are overweight, particularly those suffering from obesity, often have compromised mobility. This is often due to joint pain, limited range of motion, or other physical limitations. By working with a Physiotherapist to address these challenges, you’ll find it easier to engage in physical activity. This will help you to burn calories and, ultimately, lose weight.
  2. Increasing Your Activity Level: In addition to improving mobility, a Physiotherapist can also help with increasing your level of physical activity. Your Physiotherapist can create a personalized exercise plan that incorporates a variety of activities. These might include stretching, resistance training, and aerobic exercises. This plan would be based on your health condition and any physical limitations you may have. This helps to remove potential barriers to increasing your physical activity and can increase your chances of success.
  3. Reducing Your Risk of Injury: Finally, working with a Physiotherapist can help prevent injury during exercise. This is particularly important if you’re struggling with obesity, haven’t been active for some time or have a chronic health condition. Your Physiotherapist can teach you proper exercise forms and can provide guidance on how to increase intensity gradually. Both of these can help to prevent injury and increase your chances of success.

Combining Physiotherapy with Other Strategies

Combining physiotherapy with other weight loss strategies, such as dietary changes or behavioural therapy, can lead to greater and more sustainable weight loss results.

Research has shown that exercise alone is often not enough to achieve significant weight loss. However, when combined with dietary changes, such as reducing your caloric intake or increasing your protein consumption, exercise can be an effective technique for losing weight. By working with a Physiotherapist, you can create an exercise plan that complements your dietary and nutritional strategy. Ultimately, this will help to support your overall goals.

In addition to dietary changes, behavioural therapy can have a big impact on your ability to achieve success. With behavioural therapy, you identify and address any underlying psychological factors that may be contributing to your weight gain. This might include factors such as stress, depression, and emotional eating. By working with a Psychotherapist or Naturopathic Doctor, in conjunction with a Physiotherapist, you can address both the physical and psychological aspects of weight loss. This combined approach can actually lead to more sustainable and long-term results.

Another benefit of combining physiotherapy with other strategies is the potential for increased social support. Many weight loss programs incorporate group exercise classes or support groups, which can provide a sense of community and accountability. By participating in these programs, you can receive support and motivation from others who are also working towards similar goals.

Key Considerations When Incorporating Physiotherapy

While physiotherapy can be a valuable tool for weight loss, there are some important considerations to keep in mind.

First, it’s important to work with a qualified and experienced Physiotherapist. As discussed above, a qualified Physiotherapist can help identify any physical limitations or health conditions that may affect your ability to exercise, and can adjust your exercise plan accordingly.

Second, it’s important to recognize that weight loss is a complex process that requires a multi-faceted approach. While physiotherapy can help improve mobility and increase physical activity, it’s not a cure-all. To achieve significant and sustainable success, you’ll likely need to make dietary changes and address any underlying psychological factors that may be contributing to their weight gain.

Third, it’s important to be patient and persistent. Significant weight loss takes time and effort, and it’s important to set realistic goals and expectations. By working with a registered Physiotherapist and other healthcare professionals, you can create a comprehensive plan that is safe, effective, and that produces sustainable results for the long term.

Finally, it’s important to recognize that physiotherapy can be a valuable tool for maintaining results once your goal has been achieved. Regular exercise and mobility work can help you maintain your target weight, improve your overall health and well-being, and prevent the recurrence of any weight-related health conditions.

FAQs on Physiotherapy & Weight Loss

Q1: Is physiotherapy good for weight loss?

Yes, physiotherapy can be good for weight loss. Physiotherapy can help by improving your mobility, increasing your physical activity levels, and improving your overall health and well-being. When combined with other strategies, such as dietary changes and behavioural therapy, physiotherapy can help you achieve greater and more sustainable results. However, it’s important to work with a qualified and experienced Physiotherapist and to recognize that weight loss is a complex process that requires a holistic approach.

Q2: Can physiotherapy reduce belly fat?

Physiotherapy can be effective at reducing belly fat, but only as part of a larger weight loss strategy. Regular physiotherapy exercises can increase your muscle mass and metabolic rate, which can lead to the reduction of body fat, including belly fat. It can also support lifestyle changes that can contribute to weight loss and improved body composition. Additionally, physiotherapy can help improve muscle tone and posture, which can help reduce the appearance of belly fat.

Q3: Does physiotherapy burn calories?

Yes, physiotherapy can help you to burn calories. Physiotherapy involves physical activities that can raise your heart rate and increase your energy expenditure. This leads to the burning of calories. Of course, the amount of calories burned during a physiotherapy session will vary depending on the type, intensity, and duration of activity. For example, cardiovascular exercises like cycling and walking can burn a significant number of calories, while strength training exercises can increase muscle mass and boost metabolism, leading to continued calorie burning even after the session is over. In addition to burning calories, physiotherapy can also improve overall fitness and promote long-term weight loss and management.

Physiotherapy as a Holistic Approach to Weight Loss

Physiotherapy can be an effective tactic for weight loss. It can help to improve your mobility, increase your physical activity level, and prevent injury during exercise. By working with a qualified and experienced Physiotherapist and by incorporating dietary changes and behavioural therapy into your overall strategy, you can achieve more significant and lasting results. 

So, if you’re looking for a safe and effective way to lose weight, consider adding physiotherapy to your overall plan. With the guidance and support of a physiotherapist, you can improve your mobility, increase your physical activity levels, and achieve your goals safely and sustainably. Remember, weight loss is a journey, and physiotherapy can be a valuable tool to help you achieve and maintain your desired weight over the long term.

If you or someone you know needs help with losing weight, contact us today and let our team of highly skilled Physiotherapists, Nutritionists and Psychotherapists show you why, at Physiomed, Healthier Starts Here.


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.

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