Isometric exercises are static contractions of a particular muscle or group of muscles. These exercises are a form of exercise involving contraction of the muscles WITHOUT any visible movement in the angle of the joint.
We often hear from patients that they have pain with movement especially when there has been an injury to a joint. Sometimes exercises feel too difficult or too advanced.
Isometric exercises help to begin to engage the muscles of movement without actually doing the movement.
These exercises are excellent in the first phase of recovery, and while they are not effective in increasing strength they are effective in maintaining it. They are safe and important because they allow us to maintain strength and engage the muscles of movement while reducing the risk of further injury. Once you can do your isometric exercises without pain you can move on to muscle contractions with motion involving the joint - termed eccentric(lengthening contraction) and concentric(shortening contraction) movements.