Use it or lose applies to your body

When the strokes affected my body, I quickly learned that my body prioritized what was important to do or I would imagine doing it. If I did not do an exercise or a function of my affected hand, wrist, arm, or shoulder, it went away. It is called learned disuse or non-use. For the at least my last five years I have not done much with my right upper limb. It shows. 

In one study, stroke patients that have hemiparesis (weakness on one side), suppresses the use of the affected extremity. This condition is called learned non-use. This lack of training leads to the progressive deterioration of the motor function of the limb. In this study, researchers exposed the patient to amplified goal-oriented movements in virtual reality that match the intended actions of the patient. (Belén Rubio Ballester et al, 2016). Versus the control group, the patients showed more progress in using the affected appendage.

Flint Rehabilitation, a rehabilitation company is very active on the Internet posting videos, a blog, and PDFs. They have developed some products that are innovative. Their website or their YouTube channel are excellent sources for stroke thivors. In one post, they recommend some exercises for the whole body. Check it out!

Earlier this year, I have realized that by encouraging the non-use of my right (affected) limb, I was not going to get better. It is only by using my affected limb repetitively, will it get better! I have been doing better and I have boosted my use. Others can benefit as well when they use their bodies more! Too, I am going to hold a group training later this month. You can find out more about it at

Besides, I have started the Stroke Survivor’s First Aid Kit (SSFAK) Group ( It serves as a place where we can post our comments, questions, and answers about what is on our minds and bodies! I know there are numerous stroke groups on Facebook, but this one will augment my philosophy and others. Tell me what you find is useful and I will explore it further.

Please leave your comments!


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