New Beginnings Here at Walk it Off Spinal Cord Recovery Centre!

left to right: Matt, Alyssa, Rebecca (click to enlarge)

left to right: Matt, Alyssa, Rebecca (click to enlarge)

There are new beginnings happening here at Walk it Off Spinal Cord Recovery Centre! Three of our trainers are starting new chapters in their lives:

SCI Recovery Trainer/Physiotherapist, Shannon Davidson is hanging out a shingle as she starts her own physiotherapy practice based from her home in Bradford. SCI Recovery Trainer, Talal Chaudhry has been hand picked by Rugby Canada and given the opportunity to attend a Rugby referee development program in British Columbia. We all wish him luck as he gears towards refereeing at a national level. Lastly, SCI Recovery Trainer, Ashley Richardson will be completing a Masters degree in Kinesiology and Health Science at York University this coming year. We are not saying good-bye to Ashley. She will be reducing her hours here at Walk It Off as much of her time will be spent on her scholastics. Help us wish these tremendous individuals farewell and best of luck in their future endeavors.

Please welcome 3 NEW Spinal Cord Injury Recovery Trainers to the Walk It Off Team (pictured above):

Alyssa Wolter is a Registered Physiotherapist earning her Masters degree from the University of Western Ontario. Alyssa had an extraordinary experience working with SCIs in Cape Town, South Africa. This opportunity gave her a different therapeutic outlook and approach. We look forward to her innovation.

Rebecca Wheeler recently graduated from The University of Ottawa with an Honours Bachelor degree in Human Kinetics and a minor in Psychology. Rebecca was born and raised here in Newmarket and has been an asset to the community, taking part in volunteer programs. Her therapeutic skills include working with Post-Stroke and ABI programs.

Matt Andrews obtained his Bachelor of Science (Kinesiology) degree from Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia. Matt’s interest in neuromuscular rehabilitation and disability management lead him to work with the community of Halifax as the Adaptive Recreational Coordinator where he worked with amputees, and individuals with Acquired Brain Injuries and neurodegenerative disorders.

These 3 remarkable individuals have been training over the last 2 months in preparation for a seamless transition. They each bring with them a set of unique experiences and we are excited to have them as Walk It Off grows.  Please click here to read their individual bios.

We’d love you to come in and see the Centre and meet our new staff! You can also call if you have questions! You can reach us by email or telephone, or leave a comment right here on the site. Interested in our newsletter? You will find the signup link in the sidebar to the right or click here.

Until next time,

Heather

Spinal Cord Recovery Program – Whole Body Vibration Therapy

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click image to enlarge

As part of our spinal cord recovery program here at Walk It Off, we encourage our clients to get active and out of their chairs during their workout sessions. One of the components of a workout session is getting the clients standing with a trainer.  We are able to offer our clients the option to use vibrational therapy by way of the Vibe Plate during this standing session. Standing offers many health benefits to individuals with spinal cord injuries, some of which include increasing bone mass density, bowel and bladder function. The Vibe Plate uses Whole Body Vibration (WBV) technology, which offers additional health benefits to the individual standing on the equipment. It has been suggested that using the Vibe Plate for 10 minutes, three times a week will result in improved range of motion and flexibility, increased blood circulation and muscle strength, and increased bone density to help fight osteoporosis. Continue reading

Functional Electrical Stimulation (FES) for those with Spinal Cord Injury

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click image to enlarge

Hello there! My name is Talal and I am a trainer at Walk It Off Spinal Cord Recovery and Wellness Centre in Newmarket.  I would like to share information regarding one of the training modalities we use with our spinal cord injury clients called Functional Electrical Stimulation (FES).

After a spinal cord injury, many individuals will have weaker muscles or muscles that can only be activated through external stimulation. We use two techniques to stimulate contraction: Nervous System Activation Technique (NSAT-discussed in our previous blog) and Electrical Muscle Stimulation (EMS). EMS is a modality that is used by placing electrodes over the skin of a targeted muscle group and then a current is passed through to generate muscle contractions.

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Nervous System Activation Technique (NSAT) for Spinal Cord Injuries

NSATHi, I’m Ashley, one of the SCI Recovery Trainers at Walk It Off. We use a variety of equipment and exercise techniques that provide a wide range of health benefits to our Spinal Cord Injury (SCI) clients. One method that makes the Walk It Off experience unique is Nervous System Activation Technique (NSAT).

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2 New Trainers Welcomed to the Walk it Off Team

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click image to enlarge

Spring marks growth and new beginnings at Walk it Off Spinal Cord Recovery and Wellness Centre as we announce the addition of two new Spinal Cord Injury (SCI) Recovery Trainers to our team; Talal Chaudhry and Ashley Richardson.

Talal is a recent graduate of the Kinesiology and Health Science program at Brock University. Talal brings clinical experience working with SCIs. As part of his studies, he worked in the Power Cord Exercise Program lab at the Brock-Niagara Centre for Health and Wellbeing. The goal of the Power Cord program is to promote healthy living through exercise for those living with SCIs. Talal is a devoted rugby fan who served as an Athletic Trainer for the Brock Badgers rugby team. In his spare time, he acts as a referee for the Ontario Rugby Union.

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4th Annual 5K Run-Walk-&-Roll for Spinal Cord Injury Recovery

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click image to enlarge

Walk If Off will be holding our 4th Annual 5K Run-Walk-&-Roll for Spinal Cord Injury Recovery on Saturday, May 31, 2014 in Newmarket, Ontario. This is a chip-timed event for all who want to race. Walkers and Rollers can come out and get some exercise for a good cause (strollers and leashed pets are welcome). Walk It Off asks for pledge collection from our participants to help our cause but we also offer the option for participants to collect pledges for specific Walk It off clients. One hundred percent of Pledge collections for Walk It Off clients go directly on credit to that individual’s account at Walk It Off.

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Walk It Off Spinal Cord Wellness Centre Celebrates 2 Years!

Walk it Off Spinal Cord Recovery CentreWalk It Off (WIO) fundraised for 1-1/2 years to reach the goal of $30,000 to officially open the doors to the facility. Since that date, we look back on the accomplishments of our organization and our clients as we celebrate 2 years of operation.

January 21, 2012 was the grand opening of Walk It Off Spinal Cord Wellness Centre Inc. and the start of reaching milestones.

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WIO – December Donations Discount Member Program Fees

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click image to enlarge

We all look for a way to give this time of year. What better present than the gift of health in the form of donation? Walk If Off would love your generosity to assist with our Members’ Recovery Programs. For the month of December, all donations will be directed to discount our members’ program fees. Please give generously and be a part of Spinal Cord Injury Recovery.

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Importance of Standing for Those with Spinal Cord Injuries (SCIs)

click image to enlarge

click image to enlarge

In a previous post we talked about the importance of standing for those who have decreased mobility. We talked about the benefits standing has on preventing and slowing the process and osteoporosis and joint contractures (joint immobility).

At Walk It Off, our entire program is out of the wheelchair.  We incorporate not only standing in a session but other weight bearing activities with the body in various planes. The attraction to our facility is not just about the equipment we use for standing, but the one-on-one personal attention that our program calls for. We get EVERYONE up on his or her feet!

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Decreased Bone Mineral Density & Joint Contractures for Those with SCIs

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click image to enlarge

In our last blog post, we talked about the potential complications of immobility for those with spinal cord injuries (SCIs).  In this blog post, we’ll elaborate on issues such as decreased bone mineral density (BMD) and the potential for joint contractures (joint immobility).

Bone Mineral Density

In a healthy individual, the body goes through a cycle of reabsorbing minerals from the bones to use (or in a sense, borrow) for other bodily functions and processes to keep the body in homeostasis (regulating properly). The body then replaces the minerals, adding them back to the bone. At about the age of 30, bone density starts to slowly decrease, as the body reabsorbs the minerals faster than it can be replaced in the bone. There are other factors that may speed bone density loss, such as:

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