Jill Tompkins has been using the Thera Trainer
The Centre recently received a Thera trainer, it is an exercise bike but with a difference. I’ve been lucky enough to start using it and it’s great!
Firstly, it doesn’t matter if you’re in a wheelchair you can still use it, there is no seat like a conventional exercise bike. You cycle with your legs, feet and lower legs supported so you feel really safe. You can also cycle with arms to help maintain upper body strength, again your wrists and lower arms are supported. For those of us with MS exercise can be difficult, but the Thera trainer is adjustable to make cycling as easy or hard as you can manage.
Another thing that makes exercising so much easier with it is you sit facing a screen that contains graphics that give you something to concentrate on rather than thinking about how many minutes you have to cycle for. For example, when I was exercising my legs I was cycling along a road and I had to navigate around obstacles in the road, I got so involved in it I could feel my body shift slightly left or right depending on where the obstacle was.
When exercising my arms I was trying, not always successfully, to get a football down the pitch to the penalty spot, then past the goalie and into the back of the net. The caricature of the goalie even moves as well! Again I got so involved trying score a goal that I didn’t notice the time passing.
There are all sorts of different options to help me achieve my exercise goals. It’s a great piece of equipment that can be used anyone.