THERACYCLE… My “Wonder Drug”!

How easy it is to begin a day with an exercise program that gives me immediate satisfying results. I call it “instant gratification,” and that is what I experience when I use the Theracycle.

After experiencing months dealing with balance and gait issues, and suffering from many falls, in August of 2013 at the age of 68, I was diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease. Medication was prescribed, which seemed to help, but I continued to have occasional minor falls. At this time, the presence of Bradykinesia, rigidity, and tremors in my left hand were subtle. As these symptoms became more noticeable in 2015, another medication was prescribed. This medication does help but is not always effective for me and may wear off sooner than expected.

Through friends and network television news stories, my husband and I became aware of a surprisingly new discovery for the treatment of Parkinson’s Disease… The Theracycle. Both of us were very skeptical, but out of curiosity, we decided to research the bike and subsequently ordered it in the spring of 2016. When the bike arrived, I immediately began a passive regimen each day of cycling for 20-30 minutes at 12 mph. Within 2-3 weeks, I experienced improvement in my balance and have had no falls since I began using the Theracycle.

Within the past six months, I have discovered that the Theracycle helps my medication become effective quicker and last a little longer between doses. I now cycle for 60 minutes each day (a 10 minute warm-up, 40 minutes of voluntary cycling at 15 mph, followed by a 10 minute cool-down). I wish I could say the Theracycle has replaced my medication, but that is not the case. However, riding it for 15 minutes or so will “jump start” a dose of medication that is taking longer than it should to relieve the uncomfortable symptoms of rigidity and Bradykinesia. The Theracycle has become my “break through” prescription when I am experiencing “off” times with my ropinirole and carbidopa/levodopa.

The Theracycle was a sizable investment for my husband and me, but the benefits have far outweighed the cost. During the past 12 months, walking two blocks at one time has increased to almost two miles. The tremors in my left hand are almost non-existent. My medications work more efficiently. I have been able to continue my work as a part-time pharmacist technician. My strength, mobility, endurance and energy have all greatly improved, and at an age of almost 72, I feel much healthier than I did one year ago. I contribute all of these quality of life improvements to the Theracycle… which I now call my “Wonder Drug”!

— Willodean H., High Point, NC

Exercise – It’s as Important as Your Prescriptions!

Per an article in today’s New York Times, a group of researchers from different institutions around the country recently concluded a clinical study with 128 subjects who had been newly diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease (PD) within the last 5 years. These subjects were split into 3 different groups – one group did not exercise at all, one group exercised moderately, and one group exercised more intensely. The first two groups showed an increase in their PD symptoms after 6 months while the group who exercised intensely showed no increase in PD symptoms.

These positive results are very similar to research that has been done with PD subjects who have undergone a “Forced Exercise” regimen on either a tandem bicycle or a motorized stationary exercise machine. “Forced Exercise” is defined as riding a bicycle at a higher cadence (80–90 RPM’s) for a longer duration than a person with PD can do on their own. Functional MRI’s of these subjects after a “Forced Exercise” regimen have shown actual changes in brain function and improvement in their PD symptoms.

If a person with PD has the requisite strength and endurance to participate in an intensive exercise program, by all means they should be advised to do so. However, if they are not able to maintain such a program, following a “Forced Exercise” regimen on a motorized exercise bicycle may be able to replicate these same promising results.

Read the complete New York Times article »

Sometimes Starting Is The Hardest Part

We all know that exercise is good for you both physically and mentally. But sometimes it is easier said than done. Most exercise equipment requires a certain level of health. Your arms and legs need to be able to support your body at least minimally. You need to be strong enough to remain stable.

But what if you can’t control your limbs because the pain is too much or the flexibility has been lost or you no longer have the strength to keep them in one place without help?  Something that seems like it should be so simple can be a huge undertaking if your body isn’t equipped to handle it.

The Theracyle is built to enable people to exercise who otherwise could not. The feet are secured to the pedals. The seat is built with clients who are not confident in their ability to maintain balance in mind. The Smart Motor helps move their legs, starting the process of regaining muscle tone and flexibility.  A regime designed around forced exercise is initiated and physical fitness through exercise is possible again.

It might be a little slow getting going, but at least it is going. Soon, muscles are strengthened and stretched. With that comes more stability and a better sense of balance. And you don’t even have to leave your house to do start on the road to fitness again.

 

April Is Around The Corner: The Parkinsons Unity Walk In Parkinsons Awareness Month

 Theracycle is by design proactive, giving the customer a positive tool in the fight against  the physical and mental challenges caused by neurodegenerative disorders. This is why the people at Theracycle love April.  It is the time of year that sheds the winter blues, ushers in the renewal of spring and, in the spirit of positive productivity during Parkinsons Awareness Month, brings on the Parkinsons Unity Walk.

The  Parkinsons Unity Walk takes place April 26 in the heart of New York City. Participants generally work in teams, supporting each other’s efforts to raise money during the fundraising process and then celebrating the spirit of community with a 1.4  mile walk through beautiful Central Park.  Last year the Unity Walk raised 1.7 million dollars with 100% of all donations going directly to Parkinson’s Disease research.  To donate or to find out other ways to contribute to this great event, check out www.unitywalk.org

Couldn’t ask for a better month!