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Best Exercises/Activities For Progressive Supranuclear Palsy

Progressive supranuclear palsy is a type of uncommon neurological disorder, which causes progressive impairment of walking and physical balance. It also causes impairment in eye movements, especially towards downward and rigidity i.e. abnormal toning of muscles, speech difficulties, and problems in eating or swallowing foods.(1)

Best Exercises/Activities For Progressive Supranuclear Palsy

Exercises Recommended Under Physiotherapy by Physiotherapist

Most of the research studies confirmed the significance of motor cognitive, multidisciplinary, aerobic, goal-based, and intensive approaches to rehab patients suffering from the condition of Progressive Supranuclear Palsy. Most of the interventions related to physiotherapy for the condition of PSP consist of an exercise regimen, which consists of-

  • Transfer or balance training exercises
  • Aerobic exercises
  • Gait training exercises
  • Application of weighted tools to avoid the incident of backward falls
  • Intensive routines
  • Flexibility training
  • Visual tracking
  • The accomplishment of various goal-oriented tasks
  • Motor cognitive types of exercises
  • Prism lenses in some cases for the training of gazes

Research studies also recommend future trails related to adopting methods categorized under CERT i.e. Consensus on Exercise Reporting Template. This gives a comprehensive description of physical activity and exercise, along with their interventions in progressive supranuclear palsy patients. Doctors often recommend exercise programs based on the aforementioned guidelines and that too for approximately 1hour to 2hours in one day, 5days in one week to come with drastic health improvements.(4)

Particularly, your physiotherapist will advise you to make the most of your mobility based on exercises and at the same time, he/she makes sure to avoid the situation of overexertion. Regular exercise helps you to strengthen the muscles, improve your body posture, and avoid stiffening in your bone joints. Your physiotherapist will advise you about the use of the right equipment, especially a walking frame or special shoes to reduce your risk related to slip and fall.

Other than this, a few of the physiotherapist train you in certain breathing exercises to apply whenever you have your food. This will reduce your risk related to developing the condition of aspiration pneumonia i.e. chest infection caused by food particles entering your lungs.

Exercises Recommended Under Language And Speech Therapy

Your language and speech therapist helps you to improve your swallowing and speech-related problems. These types of therapists teach you different techniques to make your voice clear and advise you suitable aids and/or devices related to communication to manage progressive supranuclear palsy. Other than this, your therapist advice you various swallowing techniques and work with your nutritionist to suggest the necessary alterations in your food consistency to make swallowing of foods easy.(5)

Loss of balance at the time of walking or movement is a major symptom of progressive supranuclear palsy. People experience unexplained numbers of falls and stiffness combined with awkwardness in the gait. With the progression of the disease, many people develop blur vision and related problems to control their eye movements.

Affected individuals even have difficulty related to the voluntary shift of their gaze in a vertical way and may face difficulties to control their eyelids. This leads to a requirement of moving heads to look at diverse directions, involuntarily closing of eyes, infrequent or prolonged eyes blinking, and difficulty in opening of the eyes.(2)

The condition of progressive supranuclear palsy takes place whenever brain cells present in the brain stem area suffer damages. However, no one knows the exact reason behind the damage of the respective cells.(3)


Patients suffering from progressive supranuclear palsy have to undergo varieties of therapy-based treatments categorized under physiotherapy and the combination of language and speech therapy to manage the underlying symptoms, avoid slip and fall incidents and overcome speech as well as swallowing difficulties.


Also Read:

Sheetal DeCaria, M.D.
Sheetal DeCaria, M.D.
Written, Edited or Reviewed By: Sheetal DeCaria, M.D. This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer
Last Modified On:July 31, 2020

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