What is Therasuit Method Intensive Program?

 

TheraSuit and the TheraSuit Method is an Intensive Program, offered for 3 hours per day, 5 days a week for 3 weeks. This program will utilize The TheraSuit Method, a holistic approach to treatment for those with neurological disorders like Cerebral Palsy, Developmental Delays, and Traumatic Brain Injuries. Therasuit is an intensive strengthening program established for the participant based on their individual needs, strengths, and weaknesses. 

TheraSuit Method utilizes various tools and exercises, including the TheraSuit and Universal Exercise Unit (UEU). The UEU is an open metal cage equipped with pulleys, weights, straps, and elastic cords. This dynamic system allows us to isolate and strengthen desired muscle groups and improve specific, functional movement patterns. The UEU, which is commonly referred to as the “Spider Cage”, uses a belt and bungee cords to provide dynamic assistance to maintain an upright position. The spider cage can allow a child to stand without a therapist’s assistance while allowing freedom of movement and facilitating balance.

The goals of the exercises performed in the spider are to improve functional skills such as sitting, crawling, and walking. It also helps to improve balance, coordination, and sensory-motor integration. The ultimate goal of the spider cage is to promote independent movement, but it can be a great way to regulate the sensory system.

The TheraSuit is a soft, proprioceptive, dynamic orthotic consisting of a cap, vest, shorts, knee pads, and shoe attachments that are connected to each other through a system of elastic bands. It is a safe, effective tool used in combination with our intensive exercise program and the UEU to accelerate the child’s progress.

For entry into the program, our licensed, TheraSuit certified therapists must screen, evaluate, and recommend the patient for inclusion in the program. The child must have clearance from his or her physician as well as a hip x-ray done within six months. 

A child does not have to be a current patient at Big Leaps to participate in TheraSuit Method. 

The Therasuit Method is recommended for children with:

  • Cerebral Palsy 

  • Developmental delays 

  • Traumatic Brain Injury 

  • Post stroke (CVA) 

  • Ataxia

  • Athetosis

  • Spasticity (increased muscle tone) 

  • Hypotonia (low muscle tone) 

  • Hypertonia (high muscle tone) 

  • Other neurological disorders and syndromes (Spina Bifida, Down Syndrome) 

 

Precautions: (child will require special medical clearance to participate in an intensive suit therapy session)

  • Hip subluxation less than 50%

  • Uncontrolled seizures

  • High blood pressure

  • Hydrocephalus with a V-P shunt

  • Diabetes

  • Heart conditions

  • Kidney problems

  • Osteoporosis/ Osteopenia

 

Benefits of the Therasuit:

  • Re-trains central nervous system

  • 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

  • Improves balance

  • Improves coordination

  • 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

  • Promotes development of both fine and gross motor skills

  • Helps to decrease contractures