Motor Neurone Disease - Physical Evolution

Physical Evolution

Motor Neurone Disease

‘Engaging in a structured exercise program, enables individuals with MND to maintain their independence for as long as possible.’

What is it?

Motor Neurone Disease (MND) is a group of diseases that affect nerves known as motor neurons. Over time the neurons that control the muscles that allow us to speak, breathe, swallow and move, start to die and the muscles become progressively weaker and waste away. People living with MND usually experience breathing difficulties, joint stiffness, full body muscle weakness and increased fatigue. A loss of limb function and independence becomes more prevalent as the disease progresses.

Exercise and Motor Neuron Disease

Exercise plays a key role in the management of Motor Neuron Disease. Previously people living with MND have been discouraged to engage in an exercise programme due to the risk of further muscle damage. However, evidence indicates that low/moderate intensity resistance and aerobic exercise is advantageous to the managements of MND, without causing harmful exercise-induced muscle damage. 

At Physical Evolution, our rehabilitation team develop strategies to maximise mobility and maintain your levels of function and independence. We tailor exercise and movement interventions to help manage mobility, strength, posture, respiratory function, and fatigue for those with MND.

Due to significant increases in muscle weakness, joint stiffness and fatigue, individuals with MND often withdraw from activity and become quite sedentary. This leads to a decrease in functional ability. By implementing exercise interventions, our neurological rehabilitation team can significantly reduce the effects of deconditioning associated with MND and help prolong function and independence. Exercise can also reduce falls risk by specifically focusing on increasing joint range of motion, balance and strength.

Recent research supports exercise in the management of MND. Recent evidence has shown that an individually tailored exercise program, consisting of resistance and cardiovascular exercise, conducted in the early stages of MND, can maintain strength and function, leading to an improved quality of life.

Exercise plays a key role in the management of Motor Neuron Disease by: