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Extra reading

When we do things, we do them with you in mind - connecting you to the services and info you need.

There is a truckload of information out there and we know sifting through to find what’s actually relevant can be a headache, so we’ve created a blog with everyday topics that are actually things you’ll want to know about.

We’ll be bringing you a new topic as often as we can. No mumbo jumbo, no airs and graces, no scrolling for days... just the facts in an easy-to-digest format!

What we really want is for you to tell us what you want to hear more about – so drop us a line.

blog 1: exercise

We hear it all the time… get 30 minutes of exercise a day. Or get in your 10,000 steps.

But for someone with a neuromuscular condition (NMC) you’re probably thinking “yeah, that’s easier said than done”. So we thought we’d address the ever-asked questions like: Can someone with an NMC exercise? Should they be exercising? And what are some safe exercises to do? Of course, your first step should be to ask your GP, specialist and physiotherapist about what’s best for you as everyone is different.

Research proves that exercise has many benefits including weight management, reduction in the risk of disease (e.g. heart disease) as well as improvement in bone density, mood and sleep patterns.

Having an NMC shouldn’t exclude you from participating in exercise. What we do know is that it can help make the most of your unaffected muscles, improve heart and lung function, prevent physical de-conditioning, reduce pain and maintain (or in some cases improve) range of movement in your joints. It can also prolong your ability to perform functional activities such as walking or brushing your hair.

We’ve heard (and are all too familiar with) the saying “if you don’t use it, you lose it” but the golden rule for people with an NMC is that exercise should be passive rather than strenuous, and definitely shouldn’t cause any pain. It’s also recommended that you should avoid exercising very weak muscle groups.

Which exercise is right for you will depend on the condition you have and your level of function – unfortunately there isn’t a blanket answer for everyone. However, low impact exercise like swimming, aqua aerobics, cycling, yoga or Pilates are all activities that can be modified to suit your individual level of strength. And they are pretty darn enjoyable to do!

Our friends at Muscular Dystrophy Campaign have put together a really thorough overview of exercise for adults with an NMC that is super easy to understand – read it here.

Just remember, before you start exercising, chat with your specialist and allied health team. Here’s a handy doc you can take with you.

So don’t let having an NMC stop you from getting outside to enjoy the fresh air and sunshine. Roll or stroll wherever your heart desires.

Oh and we’ve compiled a list of hydrotherapy and heated pools as well as a list of locations in WA where you can hire beach wheelchairs. Happy swimming!

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