Gait enhancement class – St. John’s Rehab


When I first got the leg, when they first cut it off I was astonished I don’t know what mood I was in.
I figured my life was over, there is no more I can do, I’m a cripple now. I made my mind up in the hospital that this leg
was not going to get me down and out so I’ve been working really really hard.
The classes here they get you doing a lot of
different things. They go in sort of like a circle and each thing that you have to do they’ve got
coordinated for you to do. First you’re doing your exercises, your stretches,
your bends from side to side. Then they take you to the basketball
hoop thing where you throw the basketball standing on your own one foot in front of the other one foot
behind the other. Then they got that machine
that you use for your legs. Then they bring you back to the parallel bars and you have to kick this little ball standing on this leg and that’s fascinating. At first it’s really really hard to
do because you don’t concentrate. You just kick it. But now I’ve gotten to where you just move it with your leg and tap it. That helps a lot. In the gait enhancement class
we really focus on trust training of the prosthetic leg. If clients feel like that like becomes
part of them they can use it more efficiently and
they can increase their use of the leg and their confidence
with that leg. Before I couldn’t even stand up on my leg cause I would fall, side to side but since I’ve been coming here my balance
has gotten so good I can stand up here and not even hang on to
anything. I’m a firm believer that therapy is like building a house. You
need to have a good strong foundation before you can build the structure. For me, the gait enhancement class is the
foundation of prosthetic training and prosthetic
gait. When you have those basics in place then the therapist can build on those
to make the client the best that they can be. It’s really really interesting to see the progress the people that I was in the hospital
with have made. It’s a miracle. Watching them gain what they gain, I said to
myself I can do that too. I’m very independent. Everything I do I want to do myself I don’t want anybody helping me if I can get
away with it and now I can do that. I go shower myself. I know how
to get in and out of the shower. I can transfer from this chair into another
chair. I can do all that now. I can stand up
Straight and I can balance myself with no problem
whatsoever and that was because of what I’m
doing here.

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