UP N' OVERS (ARM)
Today’s exercise addresses the affected arm, and all of if - the shoulder, the bicep, the elbow, the wrist and the hand. If you’re just starting out - post-stroke, like me! - you will probably need someone to support your movement and help when necessary. Luckily, I’ve got Tom to help me through my therapy sessions. Even if you’ve reached the point of physical independence after your stroke, it’s still nice to have someone supporting you emotionally and mentally through these exercises.
The reason I like this exercise is that it builds strength and mobility throughout the entire arm. Since doing this exercise regularly, I’ve noticed my ability to perform tasks that I used to be able to do (and no longer could do immediately subsequent to my injury) has improved.
As mentioned in my video, and something I will continue to stress throughout my posts, it is pivotal to perform as many of these exercises in front of a mirror/reflection as possible. I will describe in another post the reasoning behind this in more detail. It is our job now to train the neurons from our brain to re-engage with our muscles.
SETS x REPS
2 x 25
Start by standing in front of a mirror with both arms relaxed at the side of your body. Your partner will hold just above the wrist in order to help facilitate the movement. Next, with the help of your partner, bring the arm “up n’ over” your body. At the peak of this movement, your hand should be placed alongside your opposing shoulder. Once you’ve reached the opposite shoulder, you can bring the hand back down to your side. As mentioned above, repeat 25 times before resting.
Rest. Complete second set before moving to next exercise.
I recommend doing this exercise at least 3 times throughout the day. The ideal times to get in your reps, in my opinion, are as follows: 1) right after breakfast, 2) right after lunch, and 3) right before dinner. Up n’ overs are to be completed with the other arm exercises I have provided/will provide on the blog.
Remember, it is crucial to keep the mind focused on your arms’ relationship to the rest of your body during this exercise. Think about how all the muscles in your body are working together to enable this movement. How is this possible? What exactly am I moving to produce this motion? How can I replicate this myself? What daily chores/routines call to use this type of movement?
Many post-stroke victims are not limited by actual strength, but by the loss of muscle memory provided by some of the brain’s most elementary functions. Think of these exercises as brain games just as much as strength/mobility activities and you will be on your way to independence in no-time!
Leave a Reply.
Here you'll find drills, places of support, emotional guidance, and everything in between!