Studies have shown that pain, injury and inactivity can disrupt our neuromuscular system. They alter our brain’s capacity to switch on the right muscles, at the right time, and with the right amount of strength. This loss of muscle control impairs our ability to properly stabilize a joint through its range of motion. As a result, we tend to compensate with other muscles, leading to abnormal movement strategies, muscle strains, and even more pain and restriction.
This is a vicious cycle that physical therapists frequently see in the clinic. Here is an image illustrating how a de-activated shoulder stabilizing muscle (i.e., serratus anterior) limits the range of motion of the arm. As this condition worsens, there is a tendency for other muscles along the kinetic chain to take over for a “weak link” that exists in the shoulder. Therefore, muscle imbalances often exist in areas far away from where the person actually experiences symptoms, such as in the trunk, hip, knee, ankle or foot. Shoulder dysfunction can get deep rooted in these other areas, requiring a more holistic treatment approach.
NEURAC aims to reverse this pain cycle by re-activating the person’s neuromuscular system in a completely painless manner. The process begins with a comprehensive movement assessment, from head to toe, to see how the body moves as a whole unit. The physical therapist searches for muscular deficits and abnormal movement strategies contributing to the root cause of the person’s pain. There is also a standardized NEURAC grading scale to quantify the person’s baseline scores and to help “map out” the body. Based on these scores, a treatment program can be tailored for that person.
NEURAC involves a series of suspension exercises combined with high levels of neuromuscular stimulation to help restore strength, stability and movement control. Essential to its success is the provider’s unique ability to apply neuromuscular overload during the exercises, without provoking pain. This is accomplished through Redcord’s patented “bungee assistance” system. Similar to floating in a swimming pool, this weightless environment allows users to focus on each precise movement pattern, without the interference of pain and compensation. Their body weight is slowly added into the routine as they start to re-establish proper control of the movements.
The results can often be dramatic, sometimes with immediate relief of pain and improvement in function. A home exercise program helps keep muscles “activated” between treatment sessions. The physical therapist can provide education about the condition, why it is happening, and viable strategies to resolve or manage it. Compliance with a home exercise program is absolutely necessary for long term success.
Redcord NEURAC is an effective treatment for countless musculoskeletal conditions. It can also be applied for rehabilitation of all types of orthopedic surgeries. Futhermore, Redcord NEURAC has shown to improve strength, stability and balance for those suffering from a neurological condition, such as Multiple Sclerosis, Stroke, Parkinson’s Disease or Spinal Cord Injury.
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