How to Stay Mobile After a Stroke: Tips for Regaining Independence

Your stroke risk may increase with age, but this surprisingly common medical condition doesn’t discriminate. According to the CDC, one American experiences a stroke every 30 seconds!

If you find yourself working toward independence after a stroke, you are definitely not alone.

Because they are so common, medical professionals know a lot about stroke recovery. There are many, many resources out there for improving mobility for stroke patients. The key is finding the ones that work for you.

We’ve created this guide to share tips and tricks for recovering from a stroke. With a little hard work and support, you’ll be moving independently in no time. Continue reading to get back on your feet again!

Understanding the Stroke Recovery Timeline

If you were leading an active, independent lifestyle before your stroke, the recovery process can seem frustrating. You’re eager to get back on your feet and resume your normal activities! We’ve found that knowing what to expect from your recovery can help you keep your eyes on the prize. When you can identify the signs of recovery from a stroke, you’ll be able to stay positive during the journey.

Be on the lookout for the following stroke recovery stages: 

  • Loose, Floppy Muscles
    You might notice loose, floppy muscles on the side of your body that experienced the stroke. This is a great time to try passive exercises like stretching. This helps rewire your brain so it’s ready for action as soon as you’re feeling better!
  • Muscle Stiffness
    Believe it or not, stiff muscles after a stroke are a good sign! It means your muscles are no longer loose and floppy. If your muscles feel stiff, it means your brain and body are beginning to work together again.
  • Increase in Stiffness
    With muscle stiffness, things tend to seem worse before they seem better. Don’t feel discouraged! Instead, focus on adding more active exercise to your day.
  • Decrease in Stiffness
  • Slowly but surely, you’ll begin to notice your muscles loosening up again. You’ll suddenly find yourself capable of doing many of the physical tasks you could do before your stroke! Keep up your exercises! Recovery is on the horizon!

  • Movement Returns
    As your arms and legs start feeling better, you’ll notice your hands and feet start working better, too! With hard work, you’ll be able to rebuild your fine motor skills.
  • Stiffness Disappears
    Eventually, you’ll wake up and realize you are no longer experiencing muscle stiffness. Now is the time to rebuild strength and coordination. You might feel up to taking on your favorite physical hobbies like swimming or gardening.
  • Return to Normal Function 
  • Every stroke is different. Many people who focus on rehabilitation eventually achieve recovery. Ideally, you’ll be able to perform voluntary movement and resume your active, independent lifestyle.

A great physical or occupational therapy team is key. With a strong team behind you, full recovery is possible!

An older woman swims with a pool noodle for support during stroke recovery

Tips for Regaining Independence

The most important part of stroke recovery is patience! Healing takes time. With that said, there are a few things you can do to play an active, mindful role in your stroke recovery.

  • Eat a healthy diet that fuels your body and brain
  • Get adequate sleep to give your body time to heal
  • Don’t overdo exercises and accidentally fatigue yourself
  • Consider trying meditation to boost the mind-body connection
  • Stay positive and visualize a full recovery

Many people with mobility challenges also rely on mobility aids and tools to help them get back on their feet. Be sure to set up your space for success. Remove obstacles, and have friends or family members help put in supports.

If you need help achieving a rhythm while walking, a walking coach like NexStride can be a game changer.

Mobility For Stroke Patients Begins with NexStride

Many people with mobility changes feel more confident with someone by their side. NexStride is a compact device that acts as a mobility coach. It uses simple sound and light cues to help your brain maintain a safe, natural walking gait. For many people, it provides peace of mind after a stroke or fall.

You’ll never be alone with your research-backed walking coach at your side!

If you’d like to learn more about NexStride, you can connect with one of our knowledgeable representatives. Speak with an expert by calling (805)-779-3558 or using the live chat feature at the bottom of your screen. We can’t wait to help you achieve independence again!



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