Resistance Band Stretching Helps my MG
Last updated: October 2021
How did people with myasthenia gravis (MG) get the nickname "snowflake"? Because we are all different just like a snowflake. No 2 people with MG are exactly alike!
Everyone with MG is different
Even the manifestations of symptoms at the beginning of MG vary greatly between people. Some may start out with swallowing issues, vision issues, or breathing issues. While others may present for the first time with problems in 1 leg or 1 arm.
There are people that have all or most of the symptoms of myasthenia gravis during their first encounter with the condition. The same thing is true for the testing we go through for the proof of myasthenia gravis.
While some of us may have all the bells and whistles that doctors look for, many of us have negative test results. This makes our diagnosis and treatment more difficult. Yet, we all have myasthenia gravis!
Finding the right exercise
So, knowing that we are all different, it makes sense that there is no single exercise that would work for all of us. Our energy levels and needs are all different. But I can tell you what I do!
A few years back I was showing symptoms of MG but had not yet been diagnosed. On top of being a lot younger, it felt like nothing for me to do hard physical work, run 10 miles a day, or go to the gym and workout.
I was strong. I could do 90-pound barbell curls, 650-pound calf raises. I was getting ready for a muscle and fitness competition. Though I never made it to the competition due to what I now know was a flare.
That left me totally disabled for 5 years. Currently, I have 1-pound weights and 2-pound weights. Most days they're too heavy to pick up.
Resistance band exercises
I have some light resistance bands I keep next to my bed. In the mornings when I wake up and have a little energy, it makes for easy access to do some stretches.
A few times a week, while still lying down, I place my foot into one of the loops that are built into the band then straighten my leg out. I go ahead and lift that leg and then slowly let it go back down.
I do that about 5 times and that is one rep for me. I do that 5-count rep for each exercise Although some days it is a 3-count instead of the 5.
Helping my fatigue
While the strap is still on that foot, I lift that leg up again using the strap (not the muscle in the leg.) I pull that leg to the right as far as I can and I hold it there until the count of 5.
Using the strap, I bring it back to its natural position then lower it back down onto the bed. I repeat that process on the other leg.
Finally, if I have the energy, I sit up or stand and I repeat the process on my arms. This routine seems to help with my fatigue.
How often do you experience MG exacerbations/flares?