What type of exercise is recommended for AMN sufferers?

I am now 68 years old with AMN and my mobility is slowly getting worse. I have tried various types of exercise and recently started a programme of walking on a treadmill for several minutes followed by weights exercises for the legs - leg press, leg curl etc.

I think the treadmill may be beneficial but I don't think the weights exercises work for me.

I am interested to know if this type of exercise works for anyone with AMN, otherwise what else is recommended please?


8 Replies

  • Hi Geoff

    Are you going to the weekend? If so I will try and remember to bring my exercises with me that I have been given by a neuro physio at Oxford. They are in addition to a wobble board to help with balance. I have had a go on a board at my physio session but unfortunately since I have bought one I have been involved in a car accident and have rather a lot of back pain at the moment.


  • Hi Geoff, I've been having mobility problems for the last couple of years and having tried various things I have found Pilates to be the most effective. I have a one on one session once a week and when I can by myself at home. It's good for core strength which helps with balance and maintains flexibility. I also suffer back pain and it definitely helps to ease it. I think one on one classes, although more expensive, are the way forward as the exersises can be tailored to you. Good luck.


  • Hi Geoff

    I am a big believer in exercise and also in stretching. I go to the gym 3 times a week. I do 12 mins on the bike, and 3 sets of 10-15 reps on various upper body machines (chest press, shoulder press, pull down, push up etc). The whole lasts about 45 mins.

    One fact of life is that exercise increases the tone in muscles. So I find that, on the day after the gym, my legs are stiffer than normal. But I accept this, as my philosophy is to keep my body as healthy as possible even if there are temporary disadvantages. Actually, I seem to have less bed-time leg twitching on the day when I do my biking.

    The other thing is stretching. Our joints get stiff because the muscles and ligaments are not as loose as they should be. So I do 45 mins or so of stretching every morning. All my stretches have been derived from many visits to physios over the years, so now I have my own routine. I try not to miss any morning without at least some of the key stretches. I feel much better from them.

    As with Dave381, I also do a few pilates exercises. Core strength helps the walking. I went to a series of pilates classes a few years ago and have added a few things from that to my daily dozen.

    The most important thing I think is to try a few things and work out a routine that works for you.

    As with Cherie, I'd be happy to demo any of my stretches at the AMN weekend. I am there for both nights.

    All the best


  • Hi Cherie, Chris and Dave,

    Thanks for your prompt and helpful responses. I think the emphasis on leg strengthening which I have been doing recently is not right and I am interested to learn more about what you do. I have in the past done core strengthening exercise and will go back to that in the short term.

    Pauline and I are going to the AMN weekend and will be there both nights, so we look forward to seeing you.

    Sorry to hear about your car accident Cherie and we hope you are better soon.

    Best wishes, Geoff

  • Thank you GeoffMahy, Cherie, Chris and Dave,

  • Dear All:

    Like many of you, I have found that rigorous exercise helps maintain motor skills, fluidity and balance. I try to work out every day. My favorite is Pilates (using a Reformer for most of the sessions) which stretches me and works 'core strength'. I also do Physical Therapy with pulleys & kettle bells, for both weight-bearing and balancing. The regimen is inspired by Jen Keller who is a top expert for PT for AMN sufferers (based at Kennedy-Krieger at Johns Hopkins).

    The rest of the time, I swim, do some road cycling, and walk in the hills with my dog, a Golden Retriever puppy whom I have painstakingly trained not to pull but instead walk at a leisurely cadence in sync with her Papa!

    And I try to get a massage at least once a month, with special emphasis on the lower back where my axons have degenerated to a state of great weakness.

  • Hello Brittanyspaniel,

    Thanks for your ideas. Unfortunately I can't do many of the things you do so I assume my AMN is more advanced. I haven't been able to safely ride a bike for about 20 years because of balance problems. I can only walk significant distances with the help of a rollator ( 4 wheeled walker). You don't give your age but I am guessing it may be a lot less than my 68 years. I do try core-strengthening exercises and am looking into pilates with a Reformer.


  • Would you please guide me on these rigorous exercises. Thank you

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