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Thread: Running ever possible?

  1. #1
    Junior Member sizzlefarmchick's Avatar
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    Running ever possible?

    Any incompletes out there ever run again? I am an incomplete C5-6 - "walking quad" - I tried a run walk thing once - I can run about 10 steps but have lots of spasticity so it looks a bit goofy...then I would walk for a minute then try to run another 10 steps. Did this for about 20 mins and I was exhausted. Is there any hope that if I forced this over time my muscle patterns could strengthen and reboot???

  2. #2
    Though I do not know your specific case, we have several incomplete quads who are running again.

    Here is one of their YouTube videos...

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DivRJm65ADc

    Jamie has improved well beyond that video, and he just left our program last week. We should have a new video of Jamie up on our site soon.


    Eric Harness, CSCS
    Founder/President
    Neuro Ex, Inc
    Adaptive Performance and Neuro Recovery

  3. #3
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    I tried a run walk thing once - I can run about 10 steps but have lots of spasticity so it looks a bit goofy...then I would walk for a minute then try to run another 10 steps. Did this for about 20 mins and I was exhausted.

    This sounds just like my attempts, but, I'm not giving up, and plan to try pool therapy before the summer. I've been told it is the best way to learn to run again. Meantime, I will keep on trying any other stunts in my brain, jumping is another "lost art". I'm working on that in the 38 degree water with waders on now. Soon, but, no date of delivery yet.

  4. #4
    Hi Sizzle,

    I sent you a message earlier. I can run, but not as well or as fast as pre-injury. My weaker left leg doesn't quite have the "bounce" needed to sprint. It lands much harder than the right leg.

    In the gym I use the Precor elyptical trainer because it is low impact. I can run and adjust the difficulty and the incline. I can do this just as well as pre-injury and get a great cardio workout.

    I'm sure I could be a much better runner if I pushed myself. I never ran for pleasure so its not a big deal to me...

    Good luck!

  5. #5
    I'm more of a fast hiker who sometimes jogs downhill. Like gvinton I have a weaker left side and no serious problems with spasticity or neuropathic pain.

    About this time last year I went for an outpatient physical therapy session and my PT did some measurements to see how I was walking. She also had me jogging (which by that time I knew I could do), running (which I didn't know I could do) and jumping (similarly I didn't know I could still do this).

    If you do a site search for 'central pattern generator' you may find some info that to me seems to say that the same neural circuitry that makes us able to walk also enables us to run, jog, and jump. This stuff apparently is located way down below our cervical injuries and needs relatively little to work.

    About once a week when the weather is good around here I go for a training hike in the late afternoon or evening of about 9-10 miles, with 2400' elevation gain. I've hiked 20 miles in one day, and climbed Mt. Shasta. I'm back to rock and ice climbing. I'm not as strong as I was before, but I certainly can't complain. I've read of other walking quads competing in marathons.

    I suppose one could say that there are no guarantees, but it's also true that a sure way to fail is to not try. Good luck !

  6. #6
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    Cool try running in water

    as a c-7 incomplete quad, I can only walk short distances with a cane, but water makes a huge difference(3-4.5ft). I can walk and even simulate running and even jump and dance lol I walk backwards, do knee bends, calf raises and so forth, things I could not possibly do on land. And of course falling in water is no big deal lol

    John
    Chicago
    sci post 17 years

  7. #7
    Junior Member sizzlefarmchick's Avatar
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    Good to hear....I think I need to start doing more locomotor type movements, i.e. jumping. I tried pool running and it was a lot easier - probably should try that more regularly. The biggest thing is my lame right leg that starts to drag. Same as shooting a basketball, I feel all jerky and can't coordinate the movements....do you just keep doing it or do you have to break down each movement to increments? Rhyang good to hear you are climbing, I was a big mountaineer/ climber pre-accident too - haven't yet tried skiing but hopefully????

  8. #8
    Senior Member mj23's Avatar
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    whats the run walk thing?
    C-5, 6 SCI. Took about 6 months to walk. Walking full time. Without any assistance since Nov. 2003 and will make a full recovery

  9. #9
    I wish I could start skiing, but my neurosurgeon said it would be a bad idea for me - most of my neck is fused together (C5 down to T1) and he said I should avoid 'axial' forces on my cervical spine. Anyway, I'd probably suck at it

    Sometimes when I'm jogging down a hill I feel a bit jerky .. also usually for the first 15-30 minutes of hiking I feel a little unbalanced (left vs. right leg), but that all seems to go away after a while. I think you might just need to be persistent, but that's just a guess.

    I think I read on this board somewhere that muscle memory is mainly neurological (search for serotonin). I'm still working on being more fluid and smooth in my movements while climbing. I don't know about you, but for me climbing requires constant practice and good warmups. Probably because I'm old

  10. #10
    Junior Member sizzlefarmchick's Avatar
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    Rhyang - Do you have pain from such a big fusion? I am pretty unmotivated right now - climate -30 average temp, live 30 mins outside of town - have to dress two kids under 3 to haul to town to workout. Need to start doing my own stuff at home, am thinking about buying a rowing machine (works the whole body best for me). I am pretty weak though so I could do a lot with just body weight. Are you on any meds? Baclofen? I am off all and hate drugs but doc says maybe my spasticity is out of control. I would like to get this back through physical therapy. Only issue, once I work out I am so tired and so finding time in my day with the kids seems challenging right now - summer is a lot easier!

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