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Thread: Ask a PT

  1. #71
    sam - you would definitely benefit from a strengthening program! It may help your pain. I'm adding a link of a YouTube video - if you have elastic bands at home, or access to a pulley system, these would be a great start. Doing some exercises with wrist weights is good. You could use a small medicine ball (weighted ball) and hold it between your wrist and bring it side to side - this simple exercise will help your shoulders and your core.

    You could also check out my website for online exercise classes to follow along with - there are 2 new workouts every week. Hope all that is a good place to start!

  2. #72
    truly - it sounds like you should try some exercises for your hip abductors! They are smaller muscles compared to you adductors, so they are frequently weak. Here are a couple:
    - laying on your back, bring your out leg to the side and back in, lead with the heel, keep the toes up - don't let them point out to the side. Do 15-20 3x. As this gets easy, try doing it on your side, lifting your top leg up to the ceiling, heel first. Try to keep the leg going backwards too - kicking forward is easy and it is your bigger muscles "cheating." When this gets easier, add some ankle weights or a elastic band around your ankles

    - try standing on one leg and keeping your pelvis level. You may want to do this in front of a mirror to make sure you aren't tilting. Try a minute at a time

    - sideways lunges

    - sideways step ups onto a small step

    Do those seem doable? Let me know if they help

  3. #73
    Thanks for the reply! My previous physio had advised me about the hip muscles and they're a problem for me, not only because of SCI but also because of the way I was injured. I hadn't connected the foot problem to the hip problem, though. This helps enormously because I am concentrating on the hips and that may take care of other things. Thanks so much for the advice!

  4. #74
    My PT has ended so im getting a pass to the gym to continue doing those exercises ive learned are good to. All my doctors have said ill be fine, that it just takes do extensive physical therapy but to make sure to rest. do u have any other recommendations? And the resting I have to much?..and nothing but sit on my butt and read a book?!

    Thanks :0)
    Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans. -- John Lennon

  5. #75
    It's fantastic that you're going to continue working out! You really are still early in your recovery.
    How much rest... I would suggest a couple of things. I would give any muscle group at least a day of rest between workouts. When you strengthen, you're actually damaging the tissue so that it heals stronger. This is why you need rest - you need the healing. If you are sore, you may need a second day. Listen to your body.
    You're daily activities should be able to be completed without interfering with "rest." If you notice that you are tired all the time, or sore, or you plateau for awhile, then you may need to back off a little on the intensity of your workouts and add more rest.
    Keep up the hard work!

  6. #76

    Smile Drop foot

    How long did you wear the AFOs?

    Quote Originally Posted by truly View Post
    Scitotalfitness, first of all, thanks so much for your contributions to this thread. I see a lot of helpful answers here.

    I have an L1 and L5 injury and operate at the L5 level. In a year-and-a-half, I've recovered pretty well and can walk with hiking poles and do lots of exercises.

    The insides of my legs are stronger than the outsides and this causes my feet to make a weird half-circle inward motion each time I take a step. I started out with AFOs on both legs because of drop foot but I can pull my feet up fine now and haven't used the AFO's in 10 months and walk fine without tripping myself.

    Is there anything I can do to encourage my feet to stop swooping inwards? It really is quite annoying even though it's not causing me any problems with mobility.
    Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans. -- John Lennon

  7. #77
    Quote Originally Posted by LIP26 View Post
    How long did you wear the AFOs?
    About 9 months. One of my feet/ankles was an SCI nerve victim and the other had nerve problems and also a lot of damage. My ortho surgeon didn't think I'd ever recover to the point of not having AFOs, so I'm pretty happy. If you can get out of the AFOs, you have a better chance to regain strength in those areas. However, AFOs can sure help if you have the drop foot problem.

  8. #78
    Hello expert PT! Question for you...

    Are you familiar with the AlterG body weight assisted treadmill?

    If so, can you give any recommendations for a PT on how to use it for 2-3x per week PT plan with goals etc.. for someone with incomplete SCI (L3 ASIA C)? My Dad has a script for gait training, and still makes slow progress - now 4 years out from injury. My father walks with forearm crutches and bilateral AFOs.

    This machine is wonderful, but the site located near my Dad has zero experience in using it for people with neurologic/spinal cord injuries. There is no plan/logic to how they use it, and even though I printed out the recommendations from AlterG re: patients with neurologic injuries/disease, they don't read it or understand. The recs from AlterG also don't really have a strategy for someone who may still be strengthening/recovering. They are more for maintenance therapy for patients with progressive neurologic disease.

    Any thoughts appreciated - thanks!

  9. #79


    I was recently perscribed by my doctor an EMS machine to use at home. I had one when I first became injured but that was 28 yrs ago & of course that machine no longer exsits.
    I live in Ontario, Canada, I have no idea which machine to buy.
    What is a good machine that doesn't cost an arm & leg? Could you assist me in this?

  10. #80
    I use the BX 1000. It is pricey.

    The test of success is not what you do when you are on top. Success is how high you bounce when you hit the bottom
    --General George Patton

    Complex problems need to be solved collectively.
    ––Paul Nussbaum

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