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JohnWBurns
@johnwburns

Posts: 300
Joined: Jun 02, 2015

Peripheral Neuropathy - Stretching and Exercise

Posted by @johnwburns, Sep 21, 2016

Exercise and stretching help most things, and peripheral neuropathy is no exception. I know that stretching will give me some relief when other things have failed. PN also throws off my gait and even negatively impacts how I sit, and stretching helps reset things as well as providing near-immediate pain relief.

Here are some articles and videos:

https://www.foundationforpn.org/living-well/lifestyle/exercise-and-physical-therapy/

http://www.consultant360.com/articles/exercise-patients-diabetic-peripheral-neuropathy-getting-right-foot

REPLY

Thanks for posting Jim. Exercise is key to feeling better and staying mobile. I recently found some hand exercises that I use for my arthritis/PMR in my hands – http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/arthritis/multimedia/arthritis/sls-20076952?s=5

I posting a message to this older thread to bump it back to the top of the discussion board in the Neuropathy group. What exercise and stretching do you do to help alleviate the pain and numbness of peripheral neuropathy?

Hi Colleen (@colleenyoung), I ride a recumbent exercise bike 30 minutes in the morning when I first get up (4 to 5 days a week) to get my legs and joints limber. Then during my breaks during the day I have an exercise resistance band I use for upper body stretching of the arms and shoulders. I probably don’t do the bands as often as I should.

@oldkarl, @anduarto, @gman007, @ujeeniack, @parus, @jersey, @jimhd, @kevinking, @artscaping, @venki do you have any exercise or stretching that helps you alleviate the pain and numbness of peripheral neuropathy?

John

I go to the gym every day that I can – which is usually 5 days a week.
I do believe exercise helps, in many ways. My neuropathy produces weakness, so exercise is not particularly fun, but it does help.
No particular exercise. Good luck.

@johnbishop

Hi Colleen (@colleenyoung), I ride a recumbent exercise bike 30 minutes in the morning when I first get up (4 to 5 days a week) to get my legs and joints limber. Then during my breaks during the day I have an exercise resistance band I use for upper body stretching of the arms and shoulders. I probably don’t do the bands as often as I should.

@oldkarl, @anduarto, @gman007, @ujeeniack, @parus, @jersey, @jimhd, @kevinking, @artscaping, @venki do you have any exercise or stretching that helps you alleviate the pain and numbness of peripheral neuropathy?

John

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@colleenyoung Sorry, Colleen, but the more I exercise, the weaker I become. I have AL, and the fibrils get into any bodily tissues, pulling and pushing them apart. The heart begins to fail from stiffness, the nerves from the brain to the heart get shorted out so the heart does not beat. The Urethra stiffens from the invasion, as does the liver and the prostate. PN multiplies in severity, and vision becomes blurred. And the cerebellum cortex fills with dead mis-folded protein. No, exercise is not a one-size-fits-all, especially if your have Amy in any form. AL, MM, WG, , hATTRwt, AGel, ACys, etc.Cardiac, pancreatic, pulmonary, etc.

@johnbishop

Hi Colleen (@colleenyoung), I ride a recumbent exercise bike 30 minutes in the morning when I first get up (4 to 5 days a week) to get my legs and joints limber. Then during my breaks during the day I have an exercise resistance band I use for upper body stretching of the arms and shoulders. I probably don’t do the bands as often as I should.

@oldkarl, @anduarto, @gman007, @ujeeniack, @parus, @jersey, @jimhd, @kevinking, @artscaping, @venki do you have any exercise or stretching that helps you alleviate the pain and numbness of peripheral neuropathy?

John

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OldKarl, thank you for that slap of reality! You’re so right that exercise is not a one-size-fits-all solution, however I would’ve thought some form of movement would usually provide benefit. Clearly I am wrong. One needs to be clear what is right for them. Thanks for setting me straight.

@colleenyoung

I posting a message to this older thread to bump it back to the top of the discussion board in the Neuropathy group. What exercise and stretching do you do to help alleviate the pain and numbness of peripheral neuropathy?

Jump to this post

@colleenyoung

I’ve never been one to exercise, and the pain in my feet has kept me from walking. But I’ve been feeling better lately, and have been walking more in spite of the pain. I’m working on the psychological component of pain, using the ACT therapy model. I’ve only been trying it for a week, so I don’t have enough experience to make any conclusions.

Jim

@colleenyoung

I posting a message to this older thread to bump it back to the top of the discussion board in the Neuropathy group. What exercise and stretching do you do to help alleviate the pain and numbness of peripheral neuropathy?

Jump to this post

Hi Jim (@jimhd) – I had never heard of the ACT therapy model so had to Google it. Interesting reading about it. I don’t have pain in the feet/legs but my lower back keeps me from walking much. I don’t mind stores so much if I can push a cart for support. Had a long walk from the parking ramp up to a room at St. Mary’s Hospital to see a friend a few weeks ago and was not doing real great by the time I got back to the car. I know I need to walk more but it’s my least favorite thing to do. I can go short distances with no problem but I have trouble if I stand too long, sit too long or have to walk too far.

Would be interested to hear how it goes for you.

John

@colleenyoung

I posting a message to this older thread to bump it back to the top of the discussion board in the Neuropathy group. What exercise and stretching do you do to help alleviate the pain and numbness of peripheral neuropathy?

Jump to this post

For anyone interested ACT stands for Acceptance and Commitment Therapy.
Here is how it is defined on https://www.getselfhelp.co.uk/act.htm
“ACT differs from CBT in that instead of challenging distressing thoughts by looking for evidence and coming up with a more rational response (CBT), in ACT, the thought is accepted as a thought, e.g. “I’m having the thought that this boat is going to sink”, and then defused using a variety of techniques, which may include mindfulness, metaphors and language. ACT uses three broad categories of techniques: mindfulness, including being present in the moment and defusion techniques; acceptance; and commitment to values-based living.”

@johnbishop

Hi Colleen (@colleenyoung), I ride a recumbent exercise bike 30 minutes in the morning when I first get up (4 to 5 days a week) to get my legs and joints limber. Then during my breaks during the day I have an exercise resistance band I use for upper body stretching of the arms and shoulders. I probably don’t do the bands as often as I should.

@oldkarl, @anduarto, @gman007, @ujeeniack, @parus, @jersey, @jimhd, @kevinking, @artscaping, @venki do you have any exercise or stretching that helps you alleviate the pain and numbness of peripheral neuropathy?

John

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Good morning. I am responding to John Bishop’s request about exercise and peripheral neuropathy. Most of us have led active lives that include physical activity and regular exercise. My annual 50 mile inn to inn walks in Europe, the US and Canada were total peak experiences. The Grand Canyon, the Ring of Kerry, the Monterrey Bay (mostly in sand) top a long list of places I have walked with my walking group. I loved every minute of the training, the preparation and the total experience. Now I am lucky to walk a block or two and then I usually pay the price the next day when the chronic myofascial pain begins on top of the peripheral neuropathy. I think that the first thing we need to do is to acknowledge and grieve for this loss of activity potential which came way too suddenly and way too soon even for those of us who are in the aging years. Exploring the grieving process with your CBT, ACT, or other support professional may be helpful. The next challenge comes when we attempt to find a replacement for our loss. There are lots of hours in the day that need to be filled with rewarding and healthy activities.
Here is what works reasonably well for me. Just think…..Keep Moving! How about dance? How about pickleball instead of tennis? How about a 30 minute walk instead of a 3 hour hike? I requested a personal set of Yoga poses based upon my physical abilities from my Yoga teacher. I also learned that Yoga is a practice that needs to be a ritual to receive the most benefit and that doesn’t mean once a week…it means every day at the same time if at all possible. In one pose I raise my legs up ….called legs up the wall…..and point and flex my feet. In the next pose I turn my ankles several times in one direction and then the reverse. Just this one pose and its options has kept the numbness in my feet and ankles to a minimum. And I rarely have pain or discomfort any more in my feet. The stretches and twists in my program are held for six breaths to build suppleness. The strength poses are done very slowly to build up muscle tone. I add a quick body scan in shavasana to relax ankles, knees, jaw, neck, etc. And then I do 8 – 10 guided meditations for that mind/body connection..
At this point I have found that if for some reason I miss my “Keep Moving” routine, my day just doesn’t go as well and I don’t feel as positive….sort of out of sync.
I hope this inspires some of you to just “Keep Moving.” I am happy to share whatever might be helpful from my experience. Be joyful!

@johnbishop

Hi Colleen (@colleenyoung), I ride a recumbent exercise bike 30 minutes in the morning when I first get up (4 to 5 days a week) to get my legs and joints limber. Then during my breaks during the day I have an exercise resistance band I use for upper body stretching of the arms and shoulders. I probably don’t do the bands as often as I should.

@oldkarl, @anduarto, @gman007, @ujeeniack, @parus, @jersey, @jimhd, @kevinking, @artscaping, @venki do you have any exercise or stretching that helps you alleviate the pain and numbness of peripheral neuropathy?

John

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Hi Chris (@artscaping) – that’s pretty much my mindset also, one day at a time, one step at a time. I’ve been thinking of getting an Apple watch to remind me to get up once an hour…too much sitting at the computer. Hope you are safe from all the fires out there…was thinking they are west of you…right?

John

@johnbishop

Hi Colleen (@colleenyoung), I ride a recumbent exercise bike 30 minutes in the morning when I first get up (4 to 5 days a week) to get my legs and joints limber. Then during my breaks during the day I have an exercise resistance band I use for upper body stretching of the arms and shoulders. I probably don’t do the bands as often as I should.

@oldkarl, @anduarto, @gman007, @ujeeniack, @parus, @jersey, @jimhd, @kevinking, @artscaping, @venki do you have any exercise or stretching that helps you alleviate the pain and numbness of peripheral neuropathy?

John

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Good move, @artscaping, I have gog myself a calm and lifely little dog, who loves to discover nature and meet the neighbours dogs. I try to join my kids and grand kids on sports events or musical activities, playing card or chess with them –  rather than running behindtennis, ping-pong or squash balls. When they go skiing, I may sit in the nearby terrace and enjoy the sceenery or watch them race.Such activities can reduce pain levels remarkeably.

@johnbishop

Hi Colleen (@colleenyoung), I ride a recumbent exercise bike 30 minutes in the morning when I first get up (4 to 5 days a week) to get my legs and joints limber. Then during my breaks during the day I have an exercise resistance band I use for upper body stretching of the arms and shoulders. I probably don’t do the bands as often as I should.

@oldkarl, @anduarto, @gman007, @ujeeniack, @parus, @jersey, @jimhd, @kevinking, @artscaping, @venki do you have any exercise or stretching that helps you alleviate the pain and numbness of peripheral neuropathy?

John

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@artscaping

Thanks, Chris. I have days when I just sit and do things online like this group. Depression has a way of shutting me down some days. Often, we go to town, which is usually for church or doctor appointments – and shopping. I used to out shop my wife, but neuropathy pain in my feet has put some limits on the number of stores I’m willing to browse. I sometimes resort to the electric shopping carts in big stores, but my service dog doesn’t like them. But those are good days for strengthening my legs and knees.

I’ve been through CBT sessions several times over the years, and I’m just beginning to give ACT a go. I’m noticing that the pain isn’t bothering me as much lately. No complaints there. My wife has benefited from the exercises she’s learned from PT. I should try the yoga moves you described. They sound like they’d be helpful.

Jim

@johnbishop

Hi Colleen (@colleenyoung), I ride a recumbent exercise bike 30 minutes in the morning when I first get up (4 to 5 days a week) to get my legs and joints limber. Then during my breaks during the day I have an exercise resistance band I use for upper body stretching of the arms and shoulders. I probably don’t do the bands as often as I should.

@oldkarl, @anduarto, @gman007, @ujeeniack, @parus, @jersey, @jimhd, @kevinking, @artscaping, @venki do you have any exercise or stretching that helps you alleviate the pain and numbness of peripheral neuropathy?

John

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Thank you for writing so beautifully about two points I have difficulty expressing. The grief – and that is the right word – over the loss of our beloved physical activities and the search for replacements. I have difficulty even watching a movie or video set in the mountains (Lake Tahoe was my favorite hiking spot.) I have discovered photography is particularly effective at focusing on people,plants,animals OUTSIDE OF MYSELF AND MY ILLNESS. I will kept this posting with me as a guide.

@keeptrying I so hear what you are saying. I miss hiking/birding/horseback riding/-the list goes on. I can find a happy place in painting the things I so love. Mostly nature and the creatures dwelling therein. @kevinking Yes, exercise does help. The more muscle we lose the weaker we become. I do the best I can and had to slow the pace :(. No particular exercises. Some stretching, mild Tai Chi and walking.

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