Phone: 866-782-6258

Physical Activity for Patient's with ALS

Jennifaye V. Brown, PhD, PT, NCS

April 19, 2016



What are some recommendations for physical activity for patients with ALS? 


Special equipment can enhance patients' independence and safety throughout the course of ALS.  For the acute phase, gentle low-impact aerobic exercise such as walking, swimming, and stationary bicycling can strengthen unaffected muscles, improve cardiovascular health and help patients fight fatigue and depression.  For the middle phase, ROM and stretching exercises can help prevent spasticity and contracture of muscles.  For the middle and advanced phase, devices such as splints, ramps, braces, walkers, and wheelchairs that help patients conserve energy and remain mobile are important. 

jennifaye v brown

Jennifaye V. Brown, PhD, PT, NCS

Jennifaye V. Brown, PT, PhD, NCS has a BA-Psychology (Emory University), a MS- Physical Therapy (University of Miami-FL) and a PhD-Exercise Science (University of South Carolina).  Dr. Brown has 27 years of clinical experience focused in neurorehabilitation across the continuum of care and has presented numerous continuing education courses on adult neurologic assessment and treatment intervention for acquired brain injury.  Dr. Brown’s special interests and extensive clinical background include gait analysis and training.  Her approach to effective gait analysis and treatment is to know the lesion site, understand neuroanatomical functions and along with past medical history, environmental, psychosocial and cultural factors, determine prognosis and devise realistic goals reflective of the client and caregiver’s lived experiences.  She is the creative force behind the Stroke Gait Center, which is a collaborative effort to partner with healthcare professionals to fabricate AFOs (specializing in accommodating ladies’ footwear) utilizing 3D printing based on a full spectrum gait-related physical therapy evaluation. Her current research agenda explores the perceptions and opinions of individuals with stroke regarding their experiences with AFO fabrication, modification and maintenance. As an Advanced Credentialed Clinical Instructor by the Clinical Instructor Education Board and a three 10-year term board certified neurologic clinical specialist by the American Board of Physical Therapy Specialties (ABPTS) of the APTA, Dr. Brown has taught at PT and PTA programs in Georgia and South Carolina (SC). She is a member of the APTA, Neurology Section of the APTA, SC Chapter of the APTA, American Heart Association/American Stroke Association, Aerobics & Fitness Association of America, and the Neuro-Developmental Treatment Association.  Dr. Brown is currently an Assistant Clinical Professor at Ohio University in the Physical Therapy Program.

Related Courses

Put Down the Drugs: Evidence-Based Interventions to Reduce Unwanted Behaviors with Dementia
Presented by Kathleen D. Weissberg, OTD, OTR/L, CMDCP, CDP, CFPS
Recorded Webinar


Kathleen D. Weissberg, OTD, OTR/L, CMDCP, CDP, CFPS
Course: #3072Level: Intermediate1 Hour
  'Very practical ideas for use in the clinic'   Read Reviews
PTs can apply evidence-based interventions to improve dementia care. This session reviews the etiology of common behaviors. Cognitive-emotion, multi-sensory, animal-assisted, and exercise interventions to reduce agitation are discussed as well as specific strategies for improving task-related engagement. This course is directly related to the practice of physical therapy and is therefore appropriate for the PT and PTA.

Complex and Chronic Impairment in Concussion
Presented by Laura Morris, PT, NCS
Recorded Webinar


Laura Morris, PT, NCS
Course: #4353Level: Intermediate2 Hours
  'good content and easy to implement'   Read Reviews
This webinar will include an exploration of the various etiologies of dysfunction following mTBI, including, headache, visual/oculomotor impairment, chronic dizziness, and pain. The challenging issue of prioritizing intervention and appropriate referral to other medical practitioners will be discussed. This course is directly related to the practice of physical therapy and athletic training and is therefore appropriate for the PT/PTA and AT.

Editor's Note: Regarding Pennsylvania credits, this course is approved by the PA State Board of Physical Therapy for .5 hour of general and 1.5 hour of Direct Access CE credit.

Interdisciplinary Approach To Stroke Rehabilitation: Outpatient, Home Health, And Community Rehabilitation Phase
Presented by Alaena McCool, MS, OTR/L, CPAM, Katherine George, PT, DPT
Recorded Webinar


Alaena McCool, MS, OTR/L, CPAMKatherine George, PT, DPT
Course: #4609Level: Intermediate2 Hours
  'Knowledgeable presenters of a relatable subject'   Read Reviews
The unique relationship between the occupational and physical therapist when treating an acute, subacute, or chronic stroke diagnosis will be distinguished in this two-part series. Part two will focus on the subacute and chronic stroke, differentiating the home, outpatient, and community phases of rehabilitation, as well as examining the evaluation, evidence, and interventions in each setting to optimize independence for the patient.

Wounds in Patients With Neurological Impairments
Presented by Quyen Catania, PT, DPT, CWS, CLT, NCS
Recorded Webinar


Quyen Catania, PT, DPT, CWS, CLT, NCS
Course: #4357Level: Intermediate2 Hours
  'Glad to see pictures of wounds provided'   Read Reviews
This webinar introduces participants to the different types of wounds commonly found in patients with neurological impairments. It provides clinicians with basic treatment and risk reduction techniques to utilize in their practice settings. This course is directly related to the practice of physical therapy and is therefore appropriate for the PT/PTA.

Exertion and Challenge at Just the Right Level: Strategies for mTBI Rehabilitation Across the Lifespan
Presented by Karen McCulloch, PT, PhD, MS, NCS(E), FAPTA
Recorded Webinar


Karen McCulloch, PT, PhD, MS, NCS(E), FAPTA
Course: #4359Level: Intermediate2 Hours
  'I really enjoyed learning about the BCTT'   Read Reviews
The focus of this course is to review current standards and guidance to return individuals post-concussion to activity, including considerations for self-report and performance-based assessment to identify impairments that require intervention, and methods to progress challenges in therapy to approximate the conditions that are necessary for individuals across the lifespan. This course is directly related to the practice of physical therapy and athletic training and is therefore appropriate for the PT/PTA and AT.

Our site uses cookies to improve your experience. By using our site, you agree to our Privacy Policy.