Hi, all! Dana here with a new post sharing my experience with the latest, greatest FES addition to CORE… the RT200! Let me preface this by saying I am not the biggest FES fan out there. I only say this because even though I’m “paralyzed,” I don’t really ever sit still. Yet, to ride the traditional RT300 FES leg cycle you essentially have to sit still. For an hour. UGH. Luckily at CORE we have a flat screen with cable, a Wii system and awesome trainers with new, funny jokes every day.
Still, even without all of those little luxuries CORE clients are spoiled with I can’t argue with the known benefits of FES and I would put in my miles every week no matter what. For those of you who don’t know a lot about this technology, FES stands for Functional Electrical Stimulation. In the world of neurorecovery it is a critical component to any activity based exercise program. According to the CORE website, FES uses controlled pulses of electrical current to stimulate physical or bodily functions lost through nervous system impairment. FES is applied to peripheral nerves that activate and contract specific muscles or muscle groups to evoke purposeful, patterned movement. FES simulates the physical activity a person without a neurological disorder normally experiences during an average day. CORE Clients with a range of neurological conditions use functional electrical stimulation (FES), including vent dependent quadriplegics. Studies have shown multiple benefits, although they vary from user to user, such as:
•Reversal of Muscle Atrophy
•Maintained or Increased Range of Motion
•Reduced Incidence of UTI’s
•Reduced Risk of Pressure Sores
•Prevention of Osteoporosis
But, for me, the most important thing is they make my legs look better in skinny jeans. Haha With all of these benefits I cycle anywhere from 5-15 miles per week, but again, I have to sit still to do it. So, imagine my joy and excitement when I heard of this wondrous new version of FES equipment called the Magical RT200 (Ok, I added the Magical part…) that would allow me to cycle while simultaneously participating in an upper body cardio workout! AHHHHH!
The RT 200 was delivered this week and I was one of the lucky chosen ones to try it out first. The fine folks at Restorative Therapies joined the CORE Team to train them on the ins and outs of the new RT 200.
Take a look at the setup with Matt S. and how it works…
So, once you’re all padded up with the electrodes the motor kicks in and your legs move in a type of push/pull motion. After a two minute warmup the stim starts and you have the ability to crank up the action by working out your arms for a full body workout, similar to how one would on a regular elliptical in a gym. The trainers can up the resistance based on the client’s strength and abilities and before you know it this thing is kicking cardio butt! My heart rate went from resting at 72 to over 111 by the end of my twenty minute session! Needless to say, I was breathing hard! But, it felt SO GOOD!
All of the FES technologies, the RT 200, 300 and 600, have their benefits and uses. The important thing is that those who are seeking optimal neurorecovery and improved health incorporate some type of FES into their program. It has changed my life and could change yours, too. If you or someone you love could benefit from FES, please don’t hesitate to call us at CORE or visit http://www.coreflorida.com for more information.