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MS Exercises and MS Therapy

Using Theracycle as a Supplement for MS Physical Therapy Exercises and Treatment

Exercises for MS patients and overall MS physical therapy have been helping patients relieve MS symptoms at traditional physical therapy clinics for years. Now the benefits of MS exercises as supplemental MS physical therapy treatment can be achieved at home with the Theracycle home exercise bike for MS.

Does MS Exercise Help Stall MS Disease Progression?

dMultiple sclerosis is incurable. Pharmaceutical treatment can help reduce relapse rates and lesion burden. Dietary and lifestyle changes can be essential at limiting the severity and frequency with which symptoms impact your life, but have not been shown to be as effective at preventing the disease’s progression.

A recent review of randomized controlled trials found exercise had a beneficial effect for MS patients. For inclusion, studies had to include subjects with a clinical diagnosis of MS free of exacerbation, and the intervention had to center on exercise therapy, measured as activities of daily living (ADL).

A second survey of existing research, this one published by German researchers in the EPMA Journal, similarly focused on ADLs, and made the point that exercise and physical therapy should be seen as part of the solution in a multimodal treatment plan that includes both drug-based and non-drug based treatment approaches such as occupational therapy and psychotherapy.

A third independent study from University of Illinois researchers found that any exercise helped limit cognitive difficulties associated with MS (compared to no exercise or quiet rest for a control group). Other evidence, like the story of Roxanne LeBlanc, is anecdotal but paints a no-less-compelling picture.

How Does Exercise Help MS Symptoms?

Challenge: Rigidity and Fatigue from MS

Theracycle Solution: The Theracycle’s motor makes the difference. It provides an ideal complement to traditional MS therapy treatments. Using the Theracycle at home enables you to control the environment so you can avoid overheating.

The biggest challenge for many MS patients is finding the strength to fight the instinct to curl into the fetal position and pull the blanket over your head. As MS-certified physical therapist Diana Duda, PT, DPT, MSCS, explains, MS patients should see exercise as essential for their physical, mental, and emotional health.

Challenge: Limited Mobility due to MS

Theracycle Solution: Many traditional exercise bikes are difficult for MS patients with mobility challenges to mount and dismount. This creates safety and injury concerns, which only adds to the frustration of multiple sclerosis exercises.

Theracycle’s step-through design, ergonomically designed seat, and wheelchair accessible models, along with its sturdy construction, give MS patients optimal stability. With a Theracycle, you can use the bike independently and feel secure doing so.

Challenge: Muscle Spasticity in patients with MS

Theracycle Solution: MS patients’ muscles stiffen, preventing normal blood flow; in turn, that causes the muscles to remain contracted, which effects patients’ ability to exercise. A 2006 comparative study published in Neuroscience Letters, however, found that a 20-minute cycling intervention resulted in “prolonged reductions in … MAS [modified Ashworth scale] scores compared with the control condition. This provides converging evidence for the anti-spastic potential of … cycling in individuals with MS.” The question for patients was, “How do we safely exercise with spasticity?”

A Theracycle motorized exercise bike allows MS patients to engage in assisted cycling therapy. The whisper-quiet ½ horsepower engine delivers all of the benefits of rigorous exercise even on days when your symptoms may otherwise prevent you from safely working out. This makes it ideal for patients experiencing spasticity.

Challenge: Balance Issues for MS patients

Theracycle Solution: Every MS patient will have a different suite of symptoms, and will experience those symptoms with varying severity. Balance issues are among the most common, and can relate to many of the challenges described above—for instance, muscle spasticity might lead to issues with your gait, which might cause you to lose balance if you walk without a mobility aid.

For MS patients with more mild symptoms, specialized equipment might be as simple as attaching a side-view mirror to your handlebars, as MS patient and evangelist for the positive effects of cycling Christie Germans did soon after her diagnosis. If and as symptoms worsen, MS patients can pursue options such as recumbent bikes and handcycles. Patients can decide at any point to supplement (or replace) their existing road cycle with an in-home motorized Theracycle that allows for safe assisted exercise regardless of the weather OR the severity of your symptoms.

Our multiple sclerosis customers love their Theracycle. Theracycle is the in-home MS therapy solution for MS physical therapy exercises and supplemental MS physical therapy treatment.

Customer Testimonials

Patients who have used the Theracycle have shown increased range of motion and decreased spasticity, improved muscle tone, strength and balance control. Further, use of the Theracycle has increased the physical endurance and improved the psychological outlook of these patients.” Dr. Thomas F. Morgan
Assistant Professor of Clinical Neuroscience
Brown University School of Medicine
Theracycle has been great for me. I used to be very athletic. I was a 5K runner, and a downhill and cross-country skier. My MS has stopped me from doing these things. After sitting in a wheelchair all day, Theracycle helps unstiffen my legs and reduce the swelling in my ankles. By using the Theracycle, I get that same feeling back in my legs I once felt by running and skiing. Also, it helps keep my blood pressure down. This machine has already given me more of a workout than I have had literally in years!” Mark Mathews
New Mexico
The Theracycle helps me to move my legs every day. This exercise has lessened my circulation problems, loosened the stiffness in my thighs and calves, and reduced painful leg spasms.” Mary Smith
South Windsor, CT

Read more testimonials from Theracycle users with Multiple Sclerosis »

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Additional Information on MS

MS Symptoms  |  Types of MS