Phone: (08) 6156 9363 – Mobile Physiotherapy Service Across the Perth Metro Area

Therapy WA Talks

Tips to Increase Push Strength



Hello and welcome back to our blog, Therapy WA Talks.


Here on our blog, we give an insight into what it is we at Therapy WA do, shining a spotlight on all thing’s physiotherapy, the weekly happenings of our therapists and giving our amazing clients a voice.


Therapy WA is a WA owned and ran mobile physiotherapy service servicing the Perth Metro area. Our focus is on making physiotherapy accessible to all, with a patient-centred, functional, and fun approach.


This week we thought we would talk about something useful for our spinal cord injury clients, or those clients who rely on a manual wheelchair for their mobility. Going from ambulating using the lower limbs to a wheelchair and relying on the upper limbs is clearly a huge change and challenge. We are not generally as strong through our upper limbs, and as such this is something our clients need to train and work on to improve push strength, efficiency, and fitness. We will generally assess clients initially using a “push test”, where we measure the distance they achieve in a specific amount of time, and then compare this later, following a program of specific training and rehabilitation.


Having a spinal cord injury or using a wheelchair for mobility presents unique challenges, but with the right physiotherapy approach, individuals can enhance their push strength and regain a sense of independence. This blog aims to provide insights into effective exercises and tips tailored to improve push strength, promoting a more active and fulfilling lifestyle.


Push strength is crucial for daily activities like transferring from a wheelchair to a bed, car, or other surfaces. Physiotherapy plays a pivotal role in developing and maintaining this strength, contributing to enhanced mobility and quality of life for individuals with spinal cord injury or lower limb weakness. Please see below some of the exercises and tips you can use to improve your push strength.



Exercises to Increase Push Strength:


  1. Seated Push-Ups:
  1. Shoulder Press:
  2. Tricep Dips:
  3. Wheelchair Sprints:
  4. Resisted Pushing:


Tips for Optimising Push Strength Progress:


  1. Consistency:
  2. Gradual Progression:
  3. Correct Form:
  4. Stay Hydrated and Nourished:


Physiotherapy is a vital component of empowering spinal cord injury clients and those mobilising in a wheelchair to enhance push strength and improve overall functional abilities. With a tailored exercise program, consistency, and professional guidance, individuals can achieve meaningful progress, fostering greater independence and an improved quality of life. Consult with your physiotherapist before starting any new exercise program or contact us at Therapy WA to see how we can help.


Please reach out if you have any questions


Take care and talk soon