Combining FES and Rowing Proves Beneficial for Spinal Cord Injury Patients

As the epidemics of obesity and inactivity grow to encompass almost two-thirds of adults, one high-risk population has received little attention; people with disabilities--specifically, those with some form of spinal cord injuries.

Services for this high-risk group have been limited despite the significant incidence of cardiovascular health issues.

Based on the success of recent research conducted by Andrew Taylor, PhD, at Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital, Boston, combining functional electrical stimulation (FES) and the sport of rowing, Spaulding established the Exercise for Persons with Disabilities or ExPD program at its main facility and it has partnered with Community Rowing Inc (CRI) to add another location at CRI.

"The goal of the program is to provide effective methods of exercise to increase overall health and wellness to an underserved and at-risk population, the community with disabilities," said Taylor, director, Cardiovascular Research Laboratory, Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital, in a statement. "The installation of these machines at CRI will enable the program to expand its ability to reach this population in the Boston area in an engaging and active environment,"