According to MSKTC, “Between 30 and 65% of TBI survivors suffer from lack of core strength and balance.” A weak core is common after traumatic brain injury, which can further complicate living functionality and the recovery process. The core is the powerhouse for the rest of the body and it is also the center of balance as well. With that said, it is very important to develop and maintain core strength because that is the source of power for walking, hip alignment, holding the body upright, balance, and so much more. While there are medications that might be able to help with balance, such as Amantadine. there is absolutely nothing that can replace the core. There is an old adage that says, “A strong core, a strong everything else.“ The core muscles aid the fundamental support for daily living however, it is also common to be adversely affected by TBI. With that said, here are several tips for core strengthening after TBI.
The Versa Disc is an inflatable disc that you sit on and it exaggerates your weight shifts and thereby tests your balance. The Versa Disc is a great way to start working with balance because if you are bound to a wheelchair, and don’t have any core strength at all, this disc does the work for you and at the same time mobilizes your hips and combats atrophy. Additionally, there are many full body exercises you can do that will translate directly into functionality such as seated marching, leg lifts, or seated reaches. Furthermore, if you are someone who is high functioning, you can still get a great core workout in your leisure time whether you’re watching TV, working on a computer, or just hanging out. There are many exercises you can do with a Versa Disc for improving both balance and core strength, just get creative and have fun with it. Here are some Versa Disc exercise ideas to get you started.
Core strengthening requires hard work, exercise, and discipline, there is no way around it. When you workout your muscles, in this instance your core, you are not only exercising, you are making neurological connections recruiting different muscle groups, and coordinating these things together to improve a bio-mechanical function. With that said, to remedy a weakened core, exercise is absolutely mandatory. Below is a video demonstrating numerous beginner core exercises executed from a seated position.