Leigh immersed herself in our Stand. Walk. Run. program immediately following discharge from inpatient rehab after having an incomplete spinal cord injury.
Stand. Walk. Run. is an intense exercise program that can be tailored to each individual and their goals linked to achieving standing, improving walking or returning to sport. The high intensity approach was chosen for Leigh to optimise her functional recovery by using high dose of practice specific to her goals to stimulate natural recovery of the spinal cord via neuroplasticity- the central nervous system’s ability to rewire itself following injury.
As part of this intense exercise program, Leigh received high dose of exercises from various members of the ARC team including Exercise Physiologists, Physiotherapists, Allied Health Assistants and group therapy. Leigh built up her exercise tolerance to 3 hours a day for 5 days a week, which was then later reduced to 2 hours a day for 3 days supplemented by a home exercise program. These sessions were conducted both at the clinic and in the community to incorporate ‘real life’ challenges to her training.
Leigh has always had high expectations from herself and she wanted to get back to running and tennis. When we first met Leigh, she was using a walking stick particularly for outdoor mobility and her balance and walking quality were compromised by weakness and reduced joint position sense (called proprioception).
Leigh (often supported by her wonderful family and friends), has never been afraid of hard work. She has been incredibly motivated, always sets the bar high for herself and won’t stop until she achieves it. Needless to say, Leigh has been such a joy to work with and she certainly kept her therapists busy thinking of creative ways to keep exercises challenging enough for her!!
Leigh has now been with us for over 6 weeks and she is already running on the treadmill and for short distances outside. Every week, Leigh is getting closer to achieving her goals.
We are all very proud of Leigh and she definitely deserves a gold star!!