NRAS demonstrates interconnectivity between the methods of therapy we offer. Physical therapists oversee a variety of supplemental treatments, such as yoga and virtual reality, while tailoring gait-training, spasticity reducing, and neuromodulating protocols to each patient. Neurological Recovery for the Armed Services specializes in advancing the theory of neural plasticity:
Neural plasticity is the theory of a mind-body connection and the establishment of neural pathways around a damaged area in the brain. By engaging patients with goal-driven exercise and providing functional goals, therapists can expedite the healing process, using cognitive and physical stimulation simultaneously to increase the formation of synaptic connections. “Plastic” within the phrase “neural plasticity” refers to the ease with which patients make these new synaptic connections; the more easily a patient’s brain wires a new route for a neural arc, the more “plastic” it is. NRAS strives to increase neural plasticity in patients by creating treatment plans with incentivizing goals and captivating stimuli, which research has shown to be more effective in brain and spinal recovery than repetitive and impersonal therapies.
Further, therapists at NRAS use neuromodulation methods, which enhance neural activity through targeted stimuli on specific parts of the body. Promising research has been conducted on synchronous neuromodulation and robotic gait-training to improve motor function and stiffness.
Upon founding the precursory clinic to NRAS, Bruce Conti, president of Neurological Recovery for the Armed Services, purchased rehabilitative machines from the company Hocoma, ultimately establishing the largest robotic gait-training facility in the world. Therapists at NRAS came to the clinic with knowledge of how to best utilize new technologies for physical therapy practices, such as proprioceptive training, weight bearing practice, and joint mobility.
Proprioceptive Training- Proprioception is the body’s awareness of its position in space. Increasing proprioceptive input helps to repair lost motor function.
Weight bearing- Weight bearing in neurological rehabilitation reduces spasticity after injury or impairment to the nervous system.
Joint mobility- Therapists improve joint mobility through reflex inhibition responses to target specific muscle groups affected by spasticity or impairment. Stretching techniques increase range of motion.
Therapists at Neurological Recovery for the Armed Services use these practices and more in specialized treatment protocols. Gait-training, fine motor control, spasticity reduction, and other symptoms of brain and spinal injury are compartmentalized to treat comprehensively from start to finish.