The TheraSuit Method® was created by Izabela and Richard Koscielny (Physical Therapists and parents of a daughter with Cerebral Palsy). It is a very holistic approach to treatment for those afflicted with neurological disorders like Cerebral Palsy, Stroke, Spinal Chord Injuries, Developmental Delays, and Traumatic Brain Injuries. It combines the best elements of various techniques and methods, and has a sound rationale based on physiology of exercises.
TheraSuit Method® is based on an intensive and specific exercise program that is developed for each participant based on his/hers individual needs, strength and weaknesses. Elimination of pathological reflexes and establishing new and correct patterns of movements to improve daily functional activities that are combined with a very specific strengthening program.
TheraSuit Method® utilizes various techniques and tools such as TheraSuit and Universal Excercise Unit (UEU). One of them is the soft dynamic proprioceptive orthosis called TheraSuit®. TheraSuit® aligns the body as close to normal as possible. Reestablishing the correct postural alignment plays a crucial role in normalizing muscle tone, sensory and vestibular function.
Universal Exercise Unit includes a system of pulleys, weights and bungee cords attachments allowing for a suspension and gravity free positions to stretch and strengthen weak muscle groups. Universal Exercise Unit allows to gain range of motion, muscle and joint flexibility, as well as functional skills.
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TheraSuit, thanks to its construction and improvements creates a breathable soft dynamic orthotic. Its major goal is to improve and change proprioception (pressure from the joints, ligaments, muscles), reduce patient's pathological reflexes, restore physiological muscle synergies (proper patterns of movement) and load the entire body with weight (process similar to a reaction of our muscles to the gravitational forces acting up us for 24 hours). All of the above normalizes afferent vestibulo-proprioceptive input (information arriving to the vestibular system). The vestibular system is a very important center. It processes, integrates and sends back all the information that arrives from muscles, joints, tendons etc. It influences muscle tone, balance and the position of the body in space.
The more correct proprioception from the joints, ligaments, muscles, tendons, joint's capsule etc., the more correct alignment. The vicious cycle can be interrupted and incorrect information is replaced by " new" correct information. A patient (child) diagnosed with Cerebral Palsy and other neuro-motor disorders requires hundreds of repetitions of any particular movement. We believe that as individuals, we all have a "magic" number. For example: a baby that is trying to push-off the floor will need to repeat this movement a few hundred times in order to master it. Another one may need either more or less repetitions to learn the same skill. For a child with Cerebral Palsy however, this fairly low "magic" number grows to a thousand or more repetitions to learn and master new skills. The TheraSuit worn over a prolonged time will correct proprioception and accelerate the progress. Thanks to the TheraSuit and physical movement (therapy) the skills practiced will become more fluent and require less and less effort. Therefore, TheraSuit facilitates the development of new gross and fine motor skills like sitting, standing, walking.
Re-trains central nervous system
Restores ontogenic development
Provides external stabilization
Normalizes muscle tone
Aligns the body to as close to normal as possible
Provides dynamic correction
Normalizes (corrects) gait pattern
Provides tactile stimulation
Influences the vestibular system
Decreases uncontrolled movements in ataxia and athetosis
Improves body and spatial awareness
Supports weak muscles
Provides resistance to strong muscles to further enhance strengthening
Improves speech production and its fluency through head control and trunk support
Traumatic brain injury
Post stroke (CVA)
Spasticity (increased muscle tone)
Hip subluxation greater than 50%
Uncontrolled seizure activities
Hydrocephalus (VP shunt)