Keep Doing It

I’m not going to pretend that I understood the importance of this when I was a physical therapist.  I’m still a physical therapist, but when I was working as one – you know what I mean.  No I didn’t really and truly get this until I had a stroke and had to do it myself.  To recover a movement after a stroke, you have to do it A LOT.  Repetition is the number one, most important concept in stroke recovery.  To recover a movement, you have to do it over and over and over and over – and over.  I used to think when I was a physical therapist – because a clinical instructor of mine said it to me when I was a student and it stuck – that why would you make someone do something in the clinic when they come to PT when you’ve given it to them for homework and they can just do it at home?  Because people don’t do what they should do at home – for the most part.  That’s been my experience anyway, the majority of my patients did not do what I told them to do at home.  AND because like I said before, it takes doing something over and over and over and over – possibly millions of times.  How do you think Nolan Ryan got so good?  He pitched everyday over and over and over and over.  Now in orthopedics you can overuse a muscle, that’s usually how you get tendonitis.  But I wouldn’t worry about that when recovering from a stroke.  There are some movements I can’t even do right now, let alone overdo.

Categories: Brain stuff, Health, Recovery, Rehab, Stroke stuff

Tags: , , ,

12 replies

  1. I never could understand why people don’t do their “homework”. They don’t want to get better, or they’re stupid?? I a

    • I know, it’s extremely frustrating isn’t it. Because people don’t want to work. I know at least for me, most people would come to see me, want me to “crack a few joints” and feel better. That’s not the way it works.

    • I was never told repetition, repetition, repetition. I was making an incorrect assumption that brains would heal like any other oowie. But then my doctor was an idiot which I didn’t figure out until years later.

  2. I was completely obsessed, doing my exercises nearly every waking moment. I wanted to get my life back…..bad! I’m sure it was helpful that I saw really significant results, fast in the big scheme of things. Rehab literally consumed my life until I decided I was “good enough”, the things I’d like fixed are not cured by mass practice(fatigue, hypersensitive hearing, cognitive issues).

  3. I was bad and barely did any homework. My only excuse was spasticity would get in the way and therapists could correct that. Part of it was the NDT therapist I had, don’t do those ‘bad’ movements.

  4. When Zack gives me lip or is rude to me because he’s tired and feeling sorry for himself (which I COMPLETELY understand…I feel sorry for him). I tell him these words, “Be mean to me all you want. I am going to push you for the rest of your life because I love you.” And he usually says, “that’s why I married you.” awwwwwe. Cue sappy music. 🙂

  5. My take on what therapists call “non-compliance” is that very few therapists make exercise personal. I ALWAYS have a goal that means something personal for every exercise I do.


  1. A Therapist’s Job – mycerebellarstrokerecovery

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