Stroke recovery exercises - Amber group - Week 1 Strength
This set of exercises are for the first week of our four-week stroke recovery exercise programme. It is aimed at stroke survivors who are in the amber group. This group can exercise independently but may require support. Watch the introductory video for families and carers before starting this activity.
Mark: Hi. My name is Mark Watterson. I'm a physiotherapist who specialises in musculoskeletal injuries and neurological rehabilitation. My main passion in life is helping those recover from their stroke. I'm proud to bring you these activities in the videos you are about to watch.
Craig: In this set of activities, you will need: a pillow, your chair, your bed if needed. A weighted object such as a bottle with water in it. 18 or a light dumbbell. You may need a carer or family member to assist you with your balance or weaker arm. Before starting the warm up to this activity, it is very important that carers and family members watch the "Advice and exercises for carers" video.
Mark: Okay, so for this exercise, we're gonna go through your warm up for your Amber Group regarding your strength exercises. So this can be done sitting or standing. If you choose to do it standing, make sure you are supported and safe throughout. If you're gonna choose to do it sitting, make sure you're sitting unsupported, your back off the chair. What you want to do. Make sure you are nice and tall through your trunk, and you want to bring your arms up to your chest like so. If you struggle to get this position with your weaker side, support your weaker arm at the elbow and hold it up. Like so. From this position, we're just gonna turn from side to side. As far as you can. We're going to do this now for 30 seconds. Here we go. Keep it going. Make sure you stay upright and tall. Don't allow yourself to slouch as you get tired. And as time goes on, try and increase the movement. Okay. And relax there. Next warm up, you're going to place your hands down the side of your legs and your slowly going to lower yourself down to touch your feet on the floor if you can, you're gonna keep your back arched as you come back up and we're going to repeat this now for 30 seconds. So here we go. Again, be nice and controlled with the movement. Make sure you're not straining or forcing yourself into any pain or discomfort. Just doing what comes naturally. Okay, give yourself a few moments now to go through the coaching points for the video you've just seen.
Craig: Sit on a chair and sit up right away from the back of the chair. Alternatively, you can stand making sure you have a support for balance. Cross your arms over your chest. If this position is difficult, support your weaker arm with your stronger arm and let it just rest above your tummy. Turn your body to look to the left and then the right for 30 seconds. Move your hands to touch the floor in front of you and then return to sitting upright. And repeat for 30 seconds. When sitting up, hollow your back. Make sure to control the movement, making sure you do not force yourself at all.
Mark: Okay, amber group. This is your first exercise for your strength category. So what you're gonna need, you're gonna need a chair behind you. And what we're gonna be doing, is we're going to be standing in front of it, and you're gonna get your foot position nice and equal, shoulder width apart. Key thing to do before we do this exercise is make sure you're not favouring one side. What I mean by that is you may tend to find that you distribute your weight onto your stronger leg. Give yourself a moment and bring your weight in between both legs. So you're distributing your weight evenly. What we're gonna do from here is we're gonna slowly sit down for three seconds. We're not going to sit down as soon as you feel the bum on the chair. We're going to stand up. You can put your hands on your legs for support. Let me give you a demonstration. One, two, three and up. One more time. One, two, three and up. As soon as you feel the chair, we're gonna stand up. We're not going to sit down. Let's give 10 reps of that. Now, here we go first rep. And down. And one. One, two, three and up. That's two. One, two, three and push. One, two, three and up. One, two, three and up. Halfway there. Well done. One, two, three and push. It might start to feel it now. One, two, three, up. One, two, three and up. Two more. One, two, three up last one. One, two, three and up. Give yourself a minute. Catch your breath. We're gonna do that one more time and again, especially as you get tired, make sure you're keeping your weight between both legs. Okay? If you're ready. Here we go. 10 more reps and one, two, three and up. One, two, three and up. One, two, three and up. As you get tired, use your hands. One, two, three and up. One, two, three, up. Keep going halfway there. One, two, three. Well done. One, two, three and push. One, two, three, up we get. Two more. One, two, three and up. Last one. One, two, three. And up. There you go. Well done. Give yourself a moment now to go through the coaching points for this activity. We have just shown you.
Craig: Stand with your feet, hip width apart and ensure that you have a chair behind you. When doing the activity, try to keep your weight even across both legs. Go to sit down slowly for a count of three. As your bottom touches the chair, stand back up again. Complete this 10 times. Rest and repeat. If you get tired, slide your hands along your thighs to balance yourself.
Mark: Okay. Amber Group, this is your second exercise now for your strength category. So what you're gonna need you're gonna need some weighted objects. You can use anything as a household objects. You've just got a couple of cans here or you can use some dumbbells if you have them at home. If not again, you could use anything around the house. A bottle of water fill it up with water and it just weight to what you need. So what you gonna do. You gonna stand shoulder width apart, making sure you are secure with your balance. You gonna a pick up your weighted objects like so and you're going to bring them up to chest height, and we're going to start punching away like so. Now, if you struggle to get the height with your weaker arm, that's perfectly fine. Do what range you can, even if it's just down here. There's nothing wrong with that. If you can get shoulder width high, that's great again. If not, don't worry. If you struggle with any grip or strength in your weaker arm, just do it without the can and do what you can, do what suits you. Make sure it's comfortable. Make sure you're not in pain. So find where you at. We're gonna do 15 reps. Here we go for your first set and punch away. One. Two, three, four. Five. Six, seven eight. Nine. 10, 11, 12, 13 14, and 15 and relaxed there. Give yourself a moment. Make sure you feel the weight. Slow it down if you need to. Don't go too fast. We're gonna do this another two times now. So when you're ready, give yourself a moment. If you want, you can increase the weight like I'm about to do so. And we're going to do it again. Here we go. And one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight. Nine, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14 and 15. And relax. Well done. Again give yourself a nice few deep breaths. You should start feeling your shoulders, in your arms. Do what you can. Two sets might be enough. If you can do the third one, that's great. It's something to build up to. If you're ready, we're gonna do your last set now. If you wish to make it harder, increase the weight or go a little bit higher, which I'm about to demonstrate. Here we go, the last one up in the air and away we go. One, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight. Nine, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14 and 15 and relax. Give yourself a few moments now to go through the coaching point for this activity we have just shown you.
Craig: Stand holding your weights. Ensure weight is even through both legs. Bring your hands up to your chest. Punch your hands alternately away from you. Don't worry if you cannot hold the weight with your weaker hand or keep your arms at chest height, just do what you can. It's the movement that counts. Remember: go at your own pace, with or without the weight. Do 15 repetitions. Rest and repeat another two times. To progress, you can increase the weight of the object or add more water to the bottle.
Mark: Okay, Amber Group. This is your third and final activity for your strength category, so you will need to be able to lie yourself down on the floor. Or, if you're unable to do so, you can use your bed. It's perfectly fine. If you feel more comfortable doing that, then go ahead with it. All you're gonna need is a pillow, one or two. It's entirely up to you how you want to make this exercise easier or harder. So what's going to be doing is lying down flat, and we're gonna be doing some sit ups working on our abs and our trunk control and our core strength. So have your pillow behind you, and you're gonna lean yourself back so that the pillow is tucked in right underneath you. And just fall back like so. You're gonna have your knees bent, okay? And what you want to try and do, if you've got the movement in your weaker arm, you want to try and reach forward to the back your knees. If you don't have the movement, you can hold on to your weaker arm with the stronger arm and lift yourself forward. Don't pull the arm. Just do what's comfortable for you. Whichever way you decide to do it, we're gonna come up. We're going to hold it and we're gonna come down for three seconds for a nice stretch. We're gonna come up and down nice and slow for three seconds. Don't pull with your head. Don't lift with your head, feel it from your stomach lifting the shoulders up. We're gonna start with 10 reps. So here we go. One and down for three. One, two, three and up. One, two, three and up. One, two, three and up. One, two, three and up. One, two, three and up. One, two, three and again. One, two, three. A few more. One, two, three. Last one. One, two, three and relax. Give yourself a moment there. You should start to feel it in your upper abs and your lower abs, especially as you get to your last few reps. If you do want to make it harder, you can take your pillow away. So you've got more movement to achieve. But, if you're perfectly fine with that, then leave the pillow and we're gonna do our last set, one more time. Knees bent up. Make sure you're breathing throughout. I'm gonna try the different variation in case you can't reach behind your legs. Hold your weaker arm. And here we go. And up. One, two, three and up. One, two, three and up. One, two, three and up. One, two, three. Keep it going. One, two, three and again. One, two, three. A few more reps, keep it going. Two, three. Nice and controlled. Two, three, on the way down. One, two, three. Last one. One, two, three and relax. Give yourself a moment now to go through the coaching points for this activity that we have just shown you.
Craig: Lie on the floor or if this is too difficult, you can lie on your bed. Place a pillow at the base of your spine and rest your back into it. With knees bent reach forwards with both arms to the back of your knees. If the movement is difficult with your weaker arm, clasp your hands together and slide them both towards your knees. Do NOT pull your weaker arm. You are trying to move your body with your tummy muscles. Try tightening your tummy to bring your shoulders forward away from the pillow. Slowly return to the start position for a count of three. Repeat this 10 times. Have a rest and repeat again. To progress you can remove the pillow.