Physical activity for spinal cord injuries


Well currently there are about sixty
thousand people in the UK living with spinal cord injury and a lot of those
are inactive, we know that a third to a half of people with an impairment are
not active enough for health so it’s quite a significant amount of the
population. Healthcare professionals play an important
role in encouraging people who are physically active and within the
rehabilitation setting they often have great knowledge, but when patients leave
and go back into the community it’s much more difficult. We’ve done some recent work here at Loughborough University where we’ve identified that
sort of clinicians, the physios, health workers are very important people to be
the messengers for physical activity guidelines. What’s important is that they
are derived from the scientific literature but they’re done in a
meaningful way and that’s really where we’re generating some evidence, some
guidelines that could be actually on a platform such as a European website
where we can do some translations. Really some exciting work to really sort
of engage people, i.e. the end user with people within the National Healthcare Service. For the whole process we’ve worked with people with a disability and
particularly with spinal cord injury because it’s very important that we’re
working with them rather than just producing guidelines for them. And that’s
really what’s been impactful through the whole journey of this project. The spinal cord injury guidelines that have been proposed by Loughborough and their
partners from other universities and organisations all around the world can
help because they’ll give you the quickest, most succinct way to maximise
your time in terms of exercise so that other things, where where you may not
have been as physically fit, go from being a bit of a chore to a pleasure, and
then it opens the world up. All of a sudden you’re telling me if I do this
ten minutes here of specific exercise it’s gonna make my, you know, my trip to
the park of my children a far far better, easier, more enjoyable thing to do.

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