The home exercises are probably the most important part of a rehabilitation program. That being said, you “traditional exercise equipment” might not be the most appropriate for the exercises that will help to restore normal movement patterns. I have set up many of home gyms for my patients over the years, and here is a lift of the items that I think are the most critical and the most versatile to cover a wide range of movement retraining activities.

1. Mat Table

The most important piece of equipment every stroke survivor needs is a treatment/mat table. A mat table provides a firm surface to perform exercises. Most mat tables are height adjustable making it easy for anyone at any level to transfer onto and off of.

A folding mat table is easy to store out of the way when not in use.

how to fold a mat table

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2. A step stool

You can hold on to the hand to help with balance

stretching holding on to a step stool

You can also use a step stool to get on and off the floor

getting up after a fall step one

Or to get into a better position to work on arm exercises

floor transfer step two

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3. A bedside table

A heigth adjustable bed side table is also super important. The adjustable height feature allows you to support the elbow at the right height while performing are exercises.

hand exercise1 hand exercise with bedside table  theraputty with bedside table

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4. Full length Mirror

A very common problem after a stroke is for the brain to lose the ability to know where the body is in space. We call this proprioception. A mirror can be a critical tool to retrain this part of your brain. It is also valuable to make sure you are maintaining good form when you are performing your exercises.

patient standing in front of a mirror

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4. Foam Wedge

A foam wedge is great for stretching the ankles. This

ankle spasticity stretch with lateral wedge ankle spasticity stretch with a wedge

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5. Nylatex Wraps

Nylatex wraps come in different sized and it can be used to hold and arm, hand, or leg. The thing that makes this type of wrap the best on the market for this purpose is that they are rubber on one side to prevent it from slipping and the velcro is second to none in keeping the straps secure.

Here is how to use this if your hand has a tendency to fall off the walker.

image of nylatex wrap on a walker

The nylatex wraps are also great for positioning the arm for stretches

shoulder stretch 2 with nylatex strap shoulder stretch 3 with nylatex wrap shoulder stretch 4 with nylatex wrap

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