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    Need some suggestions

    I ended up confined to a wheelchair in 2003 after numerous back surgeries for hyper extensions of my neck from car accidents and a body surfing accident gone bad and spinal stenosis related to achondroplasia dwarfism. Yes, I'm a dwarf 4'6 which is a walk in the park compared to the tetraplegia and the other things that go with it. Such things as excessive pain, being dependant on others for most all of your care and the hardest part

    Since 2003 I've been dependent on my spouse For all of my care with exception of feeding myself, getting something to drink and using a urinal for bladder control during the day.. This leaves her to get me in and out of bed, in and out of the wheelchair for bed, bathroom and shower duties.

    For pain I'm on 2700 neurontin and 4 tables devoiced a day. This pretty much keeps my pain on a even level.

    I attend a community exercise class three days a week at a local rehab gym. The class is an hour long and has a therapist and an aide running it. Most days there are 15 to 20 people in attendance. I'm able to use the arm bike,, pullies, upper-tone, rickshaw and standing frame. Since I'm in my chair 95 % of the day my hip-flexors are very tight and look forward to the standing frame when Im in class. Here is my problem the class does have a kennatron machine and thread mill but neither are made for a short statu red person that weighs 150 lbs. It seems that most all companies that supply equipment for a persons with a disability to exercise with fail to take into consideration little people. I do have use of my legs but there are very weak I can stand with the aide of a platform walker and even can take a few steps, but not without help from someone.. Being that I'm on a fixed income and my wife works we can pay our bills but not to hire an aide to assist me. Because a person has to be destitute before he becomes eligible for IHSS. I've thought about trying to fid a water exercise class but becaus5e of th rods in my back if I putt my face in the water I can't pick my head up. In order for me to go I'd have to hire an aide so I'm back at square one.

    Any ideas of equipment or anything else for me to get my legs stronger would greatly appreciated

    I know you asked about strengthening legs, but for tight hip flexors try lying on your stomache for awhile each day or throughout the night. I can't sleep that way, but know people that do.

    And hi.
    Aerodynamically, the bumble bee shouldn't be able to fly, but the bumble bee doesn't know that, so it goes on flying anyways--Mary Kay Ash


      I used to have really tight hip flexors when I was in my W/C. I agree that lying on your stomach can help, if you have control of your stomach muscles, engage them to rotate your pelvis up too. It will help to reduce strain on your low back and has reduced some of my pain. I do walk now, but over use my hip flexors and need to keep on top of them with daily stretches.

      I do really recommend the pool exercises. It seems like it's going to be difficult for you to figure out how but the plus side was great for me. There was a long time I could do things in the pool that I couldn't do on land. I found a good rehab hospital in my area that had a pool and got in there. My brother also came and helped out. My parents have a pool so I spent lots of time in there. My dad even made me a set of parrallel bars so I would have them there too. Good luck on finding a way.

      The other things I did to stregthen my legs was while laying in bed I would basically move every muscle I could, pretty much as much as I could. For example, when I started to move my quad a little, I would put a towel under my knee and tried to lift my heal, which for a while was just some of the muscle engaging at first but I basically did it until I couldn't move it anymore. Then I could lift it once, then over time twice, then more time and three times. I'm not sure what you can and can't do so I hope this is helpful.

      Last edited by Bud Magic; 23 Nov 2008, 11:35 PM.


        Are you a veteran of the military?