Work Hardening & Conditioning
Work Conditioning and Work Hardening are rehabilitation programs that are designed specifically to return an individual to work. Traditional therapy typically aids a patient in returning to their daily living tasks however, if the nature of their job includes heavy workloads or repetitive tasks are carried out for a significant portion of their day, work conditioning or work hardening may be needed to fully prepare them for those workloads.
Work conditioning uses strengthening and conditioning tasks to restore function. These individualized programs use hourly sessions, up to five days a week, for one to three months. Depending on the level of a patient's deficiencies, each session lasts one to three hours.
Work Hardening unlike work conditioning, work hardening is a more aggressive approach. With work hardening, a worker attends daily sessions (Monday through Friday) for four consecutive hours during the first week. With each week of progress, he adds one more hour to daily sessions until he's worked up to eight hours-a full workday.
Work hardening focuses on the functional aspects of a job. These sessions consist of work simulation tasks, with small components of strength and conditioning blended in. This option is appropriate for workers who can't tolerate various positions or job demands, but who also lack strength and endurance.