09 | Sports in Rehabilitation

Optimising Functioning – A Target of Sports in Rehabilitation

General Introduction

Persons with spinal cord injury (SCI) tend to be less physically fit than the general non-SCI population.1 2 Impaired physical functioning associated with SCI can lead to physical inactivity and reduced physical fitness. This can, in turn, lead to secondary complications and difficulties in activities of daily living. Exercise and sport can break this vicious cycle. 3 4 5

Read more: General Introduction

Sports – A Major Chapter in Lisa's Story

Lisa's Story

Lisa "lived" sports...Athletics played a major role both in her private and professional life, as she was an accomplished athlete and a respected high school physical education (and geography) teacher. Following her spinal cord injury (SCI), Lisa’s fitness and athleticism were significant contributors to her overall recovery.

Read more: Lisa's Story

Assessing Functioning from Different Perspectives


During the initial assessment phase of the Rehab-Cycle®, both Lisa and members of her rehabilitation team provided insight into Lisa's functioning in terms of body functions and structures, activities and participation, and environmental and personal factors.

Read more: Assessment

Swimming as a Rehabilitation Intervention

Assignment and Intervention

Specific interventions for each of the intervention targets were determined and assigned to the appropriate member(s) of the rehabilitation team. With special emphasis on sports in this Rehab-Cycle®, Lisa's rehabilitation team also included a sports therapist and psychologist in addition to the regular team members.

Read more: Assignment and Intervention

Exploring New Waters


Two months after starting the Rehab-Cycle®, Lisa had progressed, meeting the goals set for two of her three cycle goals  – independence in self-care and increased participation in recreation and leisure.

Read more: Evaluation

Moving Toward Independence


Sports and other physical activities can play an important role in the rehabilitative process of persons with spinal cord injury (SCI).

Read more: Discussion


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