This is where the staff of the Reeve Foundation is sharing up-to-the-minute information and putting some context around the news affecting the spinal cord injury and paralysis community. Not to mention insight into what's going on here at the Foundation.
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Last Thursday was my second time visiting Kessler Institute of Rehabilitation. Kessler, located in West Orange, NJ, is one of seven Reeve Foundation NeuroRecovery Network (NRN) locations.
It is one thing to read about our NRN, conduct interviews with NRN participants, and see pictures of it. But, it is quite another to see it all in person. Last time I was at Kessler I met then 19-year-old Tony Malloy. A young man ready to take on the world and live life. Read his story here. This time I met an older gentleman, Ray, who was spinal cord injured for the second time. Crazy right? I thought so, too.
But the crazy part, in fact, was the dedication Ray has to his rehab. Ray was on his 54th rehab session and religiously never misses a day. In addition to watching Ray on the treadmill performing locomotor training, I was pretty amazed by his ability to take about 5-10 steps on his own with minor assistance from a physical therapist and a walker.
Also at the NRN on Thursday was 19-year-old, Paul. Paul wasn't there for rehab that day, but took a few minutes to chat with us. If he never openly said he was spinal cord injured (C6, C7 level injury) almost a year ago, I would have never known. He was walking and standing like anyone else... though he did admit he tends to trip a lot!
Paul goes to the NRN to work his lower body, and to the gym to work his upper body. He runs eight miles an hour on the locomotor treadmill. I want you to go back and read that sentence... eight miles in one hour. I can't even do that, let alone someone who broke their back! He can also perform 10 full sit-ups (5 with no leg assistance.)
Essentially, this trip to Kessler and meeting Ray and Paul is another reason to believe in what the Reeve Foundation does.
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