Anti-gravity treadmill

HealthBeat

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — It’s been a long six months of recovery for one woman after breaking her leg.

She’s gone through surgery and started physical therapy to get back up on her feet.

Kelly Thurman is an avid biker and runner, but after falling off her bike six months ago she had to put activities like those on hold.

Since having surgery the only biking she’s able to do is stationary during physical therapy.

“When I first broke my leg I really couldn’t do anything. So after I had the surgery it was like I could bend my leg maybe 10 percent,” Thurman said.

But thanks to the AlterG treadmill at the Avera Human Performance Center, Thurman’s recovery is going smooth.

“Basically you put on these really cute, fancy shorts, zips you in, fills up with air and it gives us an opportunity to offload patients so they can walk on a treadmill,” Brandon Whitten said.

Avera physical therapist Brandon Whitten says the treadmill can benefit anyone with weight bearing issues, including post-surgery patients with lower extremity injuries like Thurman.

“She was switching from non-weight bearing on the right leg to full weight-bearing. So that transitional period where the leg doesn’t feel so good when we’re walking using full gravity gave us an opportunity to start walking a little bit sooner,” Whitten said.

After about three months of being non-weight bearing, the anti-gravity treadmill is helping Thurman get back on her feet.

“It kind of transitioned into me being able to put weight on my leg and putting more weight and building up my strength. And now with the AlterG I can walk unassisted and really work on my mechanics,” Thurman said.

Kelly has been using the AlterG for about four weeks, and now with her progression she’s looking forward to getting back into exercising on her own.

“I’ve been missing doing everything. I’ve been kind of sitting on my bed and in the house a lot, so yeah I’m excited to get back to being outside and exercising,” Thurman said.

For more information on physical therapy with the AlterG, click here.

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