Long Haul Covid

How can physical therapy help you shake off long-haul COVID-19?

Many people who get COVID-19 continue to feel the effects long after they test negative. Many people with chronic COVID-19, or “long-haul” COVID, as it’s often called, have trouble breathing and suffer from headaches and body aches. Many have also experienced symptoms related to their nervous system like dizziness and loss of taste. Other symptoms experienced include the following:

  • Fatigue
  • Loss of smell.
  • “Brain fog.”
  • Muscle aches.
  • Sleeplessness


These are exhausting symptoms, but physical therapy can help relieve these issues to aid you in your wellness journey.


3 ways PT can help those with long-haul COVID-19

There’s no standard treatment for long-haul COVID-19, which means physical therapists are uniquely positioned to help. Here are three ways physical therapy can help:

  1. Improving breathing and lung function — COVID-19 can cause inflammation in the lungs, making it harder to breathe deeply. Your physical therapist can help you improve your breathing by assessing your lung capacity and working with you on exercises that can enhance your breathing ability. They also can teach you techniques to use during daily life to improve your breathing.
  2. Relieving fatigue — Fatigue is a common symptom of long-haul COVID-19. Your physical therapist can provide individualized exercise plans and advice on appropriate levels of activity. They also can educate you about lifestyle changes that will help you learn to manage fatigue and increase your energy level.
  3. Addressing strength, coordination and balance issues — If you have trouble moving around or balancing as well as you used to, physical therapy can help you regain muscle strength and improve coordination. Your physical therapist may also recommend exercises specifically designed to help improve balance problems that may be caused by long-haul COVID-19 symptoms such as dizziness.


Don’t want to leave your home? Our COVID-19 Recovery Program helps you recover and reach your goals by using a variety of customized approaches. We can begin virtual care as soon as possible! We encourage early intervention.


What is treated during the recovery program?

  • Shortness of breath, difficulty breathing, respiratory recovery.
  • Decreased mobility and ability to walk.
  • Overall weakness and generalized deconditioning.
  • Pain, joint stiffness, and other musculoskeletal conditions.
  • Balance and neurological challenges.
  • Phased return to activity to safely perform daily activities and more.



Contact our team today for more information or to schedule an initial appointment.

About the author

Sports + Orthopedic Leaders Physical Therapy & Performance Training serves the communities of Oakland, Alameda, Berkeley, Walnut Creek, Orinda, San Francisco and beyond. SOLPT’s award winning team of Physical Therapists, Performance Coaches and movement experts has helped thousands reach their rehabilitation and performance goals to move beyond pain. We're committed to helping anyone of any fitness level move effectively and more powerfully for a lifetime. We offer rehabilitation and performance services to all populations, with specialties in Sports Rehabilitation, Active Release Techniques, and Manual Therapy Techniques plus Personal and Small Group Training, Sport Clinics and Wellness Services.