Thursday, June 28, 2018

Standing Progress (Video Update)

An update on my progress.  My balance while standing has improved quite a bit (compare this March video).  In the first half of this new video (June 2018), I'm able to move around much more easily - and in the video's second half, trying something new: working on a tilting balance board!
P.S. Thank you to Justin and the rest of the wonderful staff at Biofit!

Friday, June 15, 2018

Five Years Today

Today marks five years of fighting a spinal cord injury. Always a step further.  Thank you to everyone who has helped along the way!

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Video Update: Porch Swing

A new first this month: back to moving a porch swing without help.  It’s hard not to let your body compensate with other muscles, but this is definite progress.

It is also another reminder that almost anything can be used for careful and creative physical therapy.  I sometimes think that I have used just about every type of home device or activity for rehabilitation - including the kitchen sink (literally).  Trying the porch swing was inevitable.

Monday, June 4, 2018

About the Spinal Cord

Most people have a basic idea of what the spinal cord is, but it is not uncommon for them to ask more about it.  Your spinal cord is about a foot and a half long and runs down the center of your backbone.  Protected by bone and tissue, it carries nerve signals for reflexes and movement.  Injuries to the spinal cord occur in any of the four main regions of the spine: cervical, thoracic, lumbar, and sacral.

Cervical segments of the spine control your head through your hands.  The thoracic region covers the bulk of the upper body, ranging from the upper to lower back.  Chest and abdominal muscles are included in this area.  Lumbar nerves control hip flexors, quadriceps, and other key muscles of the lower back and legs, extending all the way down into the toes.  Sacral nerves reach down the back of your legs into your heels and feet.

In short, the spinal cord is an integral part of your nervous system.  When it is damaged, bruised, or disconnected, there are serious consequences for your body.  Injuries can affect or impair the performance of any nervous function at or below the injury site.  Enabling mobility is only one task of the spinal cord.  Your body relies on your spinal cord for healthy internal functions and responses. 
Still curious?  See more on spinal cord anatomy here.