CINDY EVANS

MEd BPE

I have been training, conditioning and supporting people with disabilities that want to have a healthy life as a full time vocation for over 30 years.  Research relating to conditioning the unique body, and the practical application of the knowledge attained by that research, is the main pathways that I have chosen to use to achieve the vocational goals that I set in my life. 

 

I completed two degrees in Sport Science through the University of Western Australia where most of my time was spent working with elite athletes using weight training and intense aerobic physical conditioning.   For a decade after that I worked for cerebral palsy societies in the UK and New Zealand trialing and testing different methods of training that would be effective for the wheelchair athlete and the athlete with cerebral palsy.  It was after 10 years of this that I began a PhD at the Auckland University of Technology through the department of bio-mechanics.  The topic was conditioning and training the wheelchair rugby athlete safely and effectively.  The aim was to prove that effective core body conditioning was a more effective way of training wheelchair athletes than weight training.

 

After more than 15 years of research, practical application, and long term monitoring of individuals - AMT massage units are the only electrical circulation conditioning tools that I recommended.  I recommend them because they are powerful, effective, efficient, and safe. 

 

AMT massage units will increase circulation.  This I have seen over and over again.  AMT massage units will increase blood flow to the body of the person with still muscles and skin that may become sensitive to touch and pressure without putting that body under stress or danger of injury.

 

As a sport scientist it is my mission in life to educate the individual on the benefits that can be achieved by using these machines in their daily life.  In my daily work I teach people with disabilities how to use AMT massage units to warm their body up before movement and exercise, how to cool their body down after exercise, and how to use the increase in circulation that results from these massage units to benefit the body of the person that does not have running and walking in their life.

 

The research and the practical work that I have done during the past 5 years that I have been working with AMT massage units empowers me to say this with confidence:

 

AMT massage units enable people to experience the benefit of exercise for circulatory health with independence and freedom of choice.

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Wheel Sport Science is the company that I have formed to enable me to continue my work, my research and my voluntary jobs in the field of disability, sport and leisure.  I hire myself out to government, corporate, and private individuals as a disability consultant and sports scientist or I gift my skills for free.

My vocation is to create options out there for people so that, if they want to, they can challenge themselves.  Independence with joy, that is what I want Wheel Sport Science to be about.  AMT have the ability to enhance both independence and joy in the lives of people that have little of either in their lives.  It is my mission to teach people how to be empowered through health and vitality and AMT are there beside me all the way.

Cerebral Palsy & Arapal AMT®

Cerebral palsy is a movement dependent condition that increases the tightness and tension held in some or many of the muscles of the body.   If a person has cerebral palsy a small part of the motor section of their brain was damaged while they were developing and this has interfered with the growth of nerve pathways that service their muscles.  The result of this damage to the muscles of the body is referred to as upper motor neuron generated spasticity.

Upper Motor Neuron Generated Spasticity (cerebral spasticity)

Due to the injury to the brain the affected nerve pathways do not transmit information about how long and/or how tense the muscle is correctly.  A muscle affected by upper motor neuron spasticity actively and powerfully resists changing its length and is constantly tense.   The reaction to movement is an automatic braking response that stops the muscle, or group of muscles, from getting any longer by triggering a powerful and explosive response from the opposing and stabilising muscle groups.  The spastic reaction increases with the speed of the movement and the amount of nerve damage.  The muscle tone of the body, or the tension held within the muscles, is high when any form of spasticity is present, and this tends to increase as the person ages.

In essence spasticity:

  1. Stops the person from being able to move joints through their range, which is the main way lymphatic fluid is moved.   

  2. Increases tension and tightness held within the affected muscle placing pressure on all of the fluid pathways within it.

  3. Creates an unbalanced standing and seated posture.

  4. Produces powerful and constant unbalanced strength building movements.

  5. Interferes with the ability to deep breathe, as every muscle fibre in the front of the chest must change its length to do so. 

  6. Creates unique patterns of movement that shape the body in a way that creates circulation blockages and bone deformation.

 

Due to these restrictions and changes to the way the body is able to move the lymphatic and arterial systems are challenged.  Ageing accelerates these challenges and areas form over time where there is no movement of fluid at all. 

Lymphatic Circulation

The main benefit of the Pain Management NZ mechanical massage units for the individual with cerebral palsy is the effect it has upon circulation, especially the impact it has upon the lymphatic system. 

  1. The Lymphatic system

    1. Major circulation system of the body containing 4 times more fluid than the arterial system

    2. Carries minerals and nutrients to the cells in the form of oxygen, protein, fats and hormones

    3. Removes waste products such as proteins, large protein molecules, fat, toxins, micro-organisms and metabolic waste.

    4. Lymphatic vessels lie beside muscle fibres.  When the fibre contracts the fluid in the vessel is moved forward.

  2. Lymphatic drainage

    1. Lymphatic fluid is moved by muscle contraction, movement of the body, breathing and arterial pulsing.

    2. As cellular activity increases lymphatic drainage increases.

  3. Lymphatic terminals are one-way valves that open and close during movement and deep breathing.

  4. Removal of Blood protein

    1. Every day over 3 litres of blood fluid escapes from the veins and arteries into the spaces between the cells

    2. The sodium contained within the blood protein upsets the delicate sodium/potassium levels within the cell.

    3. Degeneration of muscle and bone occurs when trapped blood proteins and toxic waste between the cells is not removed.

  5. Movement and lymphatic drainage

    1. The lymphatic system has no pump like the heart.  It uses movement and changes in pressure to push the fluid through the one way valve system. 

    2. Gravitational changes such as those created by standing and walking greatly enhance lymphatic drainage.

    3. The lungs act as a suction pump for the lymphatic system so deep breathing is necessary.

    4. Movement changes the position of the muscles in relation to each other physically pushing the fluid forward and onward toward the heart.

    5. When a muscle contracts it shortens and tightens, effectively squeezing out lymphatic fluids contained within it and surrounding it.

 

Arapal®AMT  Therapy

The joy of the Arapal®AMT wave from a therapeutic perspective is that it cannot be used incorrectly, only more effectively.  The massaging effect of the waves emitted by the motor has been used in the home by people in constant pain for over 4 decades for reason such as enhancing circulation to the bones and muscles, providing drug free pain relief using the bodies own endorphins, and to relax and stretch out tight muscles that are endangering nerves and causing pain.  The machine can be used as a tool to change and alter the shape of the body just as effectively as it can be used to relax and relieve pain created by muscle tension and posture.  Improving circulation is a must for individuals with spasticity. The longer the waves move through the body the longer the recipient gets the benefits, no matter what position they are sitting or lying in.

 

Independence and owning our own rehabilitation

The massage machine produced by Pain Management NZ can give a person with cerebral palsy the option of being independent and owning their own physical therapy.   It is a powerful tool that optimises and enhances their bodies own natural healing processes without asking or requiring assistance from others.  By doing no more than relax the individual will benefit the health of their own body.  By using it as a therapeutic tool (actively including it in exercise routines and lifestyle demands) the shape of their body can be changed for the best.  Ownership brings with it the motivating knowledge that improvement in body health is not created by someone else’s hands, a drug or surgical intervention. 

Conclusion

Chemicals and processed ‘natural’ products that are manufactured alter the natural internal chemical balance of the body in a hit and miss manner.  Long term chemical or supplement use is never good for the body.  By increasing circulation and lymphatic drainage the individual can reduce or even get rid of many chemicals from their daily lives.

A vibrator, a massage unit that uses pounding and manual deep tissue massage push and compress the muscles to increase the flow of blood.  Individuals with cerebral spasticity have many places within their body where lymphatic vessels are full of stagnating liquid and pushing into these areas ruptures some of the one way valves within the lymphatic vessels making that drainage point unusable.  Lymphatic vessels take 4 times longer to heal than arterial vessels, and if the muscle does not move the vessel does not heal.  Never use pounding massage units, never let a person without comprehensive knowledge of the body massage a person with CP.  AMT products do not move the muscle so they do not put delicate lymphatic structures at risk.

Movement based therapies automatically create disharmony and conflict within the body of a person with cerebral palsy.  When they attempt to move, their body stops it.  The faster they try to move the more severe the muscle braking reaction.  For this reason the best way to increase length in the muscles of a person with cerebral palsy is to teach them how to relax and breathe in positions that enhance length in the muscles most affected by their spasiticity.  Relaxation is always good for the soul, breathing is always good for the body. Relaxing and deep breathing on AMT products increases the effects of the wave on circulation throughout the body making this effective and efficient circulation enhancing tool even more effective.

Long-term training and conditioning of the bodies own natural processes are a necessary for quality of life.  It is for this reason that individuals with cerebral palsy are pushed into movement-based therapies in the first place.  As a movement specialist with over two decades of experience working with adults and children with cerebral palsy I have never found anything as effective or efficient at placing tight, spasticity containing muscles into a state of acceptance of stretch.

It is my personal belief that individuals with cerebral palsy should own and use this tool to replace the movement based functions within their body that they lack, and to assist those functions that are struggling.  It is also my firm belief that before asking a child or adult with cerebral palsy to participate in therapeutic exercise they should have a session on Arapal AMT equipment to increase the amount of circulation within that person’s body.  The more blood contained within the muscles, the more effective the exercise session will be as the muscles are more accepting of stretch and movement when circulation is present and their is less chance that damage will occur.

Cindy Evans MEd BPE

 

Spinal Cord Injury & Arapal AMT®

Daily circulation therapy at the touch of your finger

It is a well-documented fact that the main ingredient of the human body is water.  Our cells are filled with it, our muscles and fibres are surrounded by it, and our food and wastes are transported by it.  Even the chemical reactions that create life and movement take place in the fluid state so a healthy body requires a healthy circulation systems. When a person has a disability or an injury that makes them still, that reduces the range of movement at any joint, or makes them move in a bio-mechanically inefficient way, there will be areas within their body that struggle to move lymphatic fluid away from the cell wall, which is the primary cause of constant pain.

 

Daily therapy that focuses upon the health of the circulation systems is one way for the individual with spinal cord injuries to optimise their chances of physical quality of life in the long term.

 

Circulation Systems

The body uses two systems to keep the fluids within it circulating – the arterial and the lymphatic.  The arterial system is contained within the arteries and veins, and uses changes in pressure created by the heart to pump fluid around the body. The lymphatic system, which  contains 3 times more fluid than the arterial system, includes all of the fluid outside the cells, arteries and veins.  It is the lymphatic system that the Arapal AMT® massage units benefit the most.

Lymphatic Drainage

Rather than a pump, the lymphatic system uses a complex construction of one-way valves that always feed toward the heart. Fluid is pushed through to the next valve either because of pressure created by muscles and fibres sliding over each other as a body part is moved, or by changes in pressure created by waste products and excess tissue fluids being pushed out from the cells into the spaces surrounding them.  This system provides the ‘oil’ for the body for as long as there is new fluid entering the spaces between the muscles and fibres, they will move smoothly over each other.  The most efficient way to keep this system healthy is to regularly move every joint in the body through the full range that it was designed to be moved in, and/or to ensure that every cell is active and being supplied with oxygen-rich blood.  A cell that is being fed is both fluid and excreting waste, and as the waste product is excreted the lymphatic fluid sitting beside the cell wall is forced forward and into the next one way valve. 

 

Arapal AMT®Therapy

The Arapal AMT® mechanical massage system promotes lymphatic circulation (while the recipient relaxes) by fitting especially designed motors into portable units, chairs or beds.    The motors generate three-dimensional pulses that cause every particle they contact to rotate upon its own centre of gravity in a way similar to the vortex energy systems that we see in nature such as the tornado or the whirlpool. The movement that it induces in the cell is natural.  The machine provides the energy to get the cells active, and as the activity increases the cells excrete extra waste products and demand more circulation to feed them.  This moves the lymphatic fluid in that area effectively giving the body a ‘grease and oil’ change.  By creating activity within the cells of the muscles the unit also benefits the arterial systems.  When a muscle is active it becomes more fluid - visualise what happens when you shake a cold, glued up bottle of tomato sauce as this is effectively what happens to the state of our muscles when we exercise[1].  A muscle in this fluid state places less pressure on the tiny arteries and veins that service it; which effectively improves the arterial circulation without having to increase the pressure provided by the heart.  In addition, arteries and veins travel within the lymphatic fluids. The more efficiently the lymphatic fluid flows, the easier the arteries and veins within it can function.  Simply by inducing relaxation and increasing circulation, pain, and many other conditions can be greatly relieved. 

 

Spasticity and Movement

Cerebral spasticity is a movement-dependent condition that impacts upon motor control and creates restrictions to the range in some or all of the joints.  Spinal spasticity can be tension and posture related and also creates restrictions in the range of movement of some joints.  The more spasticity of any type contained within the muscles, the larger the challenge on movement dependent lymphatic drainage.  In addition the resistance provided by spasticity increases the tightness of the muscles that are affected by it in every case.  Tight muscles challenge the ability of the tiny blood vessels contained within them to work and as the person ages and becomes tighter less and less blood vessels contained within the spastic muscles can work effectively.

Immobility and lymphatic drainage

If any of the muscles of the body are paralysed lymphatic drainage is a problem because movement of the lymphatic fluid surrounding the muscles of the body is largely dependent upon movement of the muscles.  When a person has a spinal cord injury this process is no longer an easy option as manual manipulation of every joint of the body takes too long to be a practical every day option, and it would soon exhaust the caregivers or movement therapists involved.  To give the individual the option of long term quality of life they need to address the lack of movement in their body and the effect that has upon the speed of degeneration of the muscles in the long term.

 

Arapal AMT®and Spinal Cord Injury

The joy of effective mechanical massage for the individual with spinal cord injury is that it has a beneficial effect on both circulation systems without requiring manual manipulation of the body.   Clearing the lymphatic fluid from within the tissues is one of the primary aims of physiotherapy, deep tissue massage and movement based physical therapies recommended as interventions for people with spinal cord injuries.   The wave induces a state of activity within the muscles that gets them into exercise state and therefore producing waste products and increasing movement due to the arterial system by making it move more. As there is no change in muscle length spasticity is not activated, and instead of being challenging and disabling, conditioning the circulation system of a person with a spinal cord injury can be relaxing and enjoyable. 

Arapal AMT® wave and PACT exercise therapy

This therapy is an exercise so drink more water, but it cannot be overused as the machine merely acts as a catalyst for the body to initiate its own natural processes to induce healing.  Every Olympian is a living example of our body’s ability to endure excessive training and conditioning and this is not an Olympic exercise.  Arapal AMT® Therapy as a passive exercise will not adversely affect the body, no matter what physical state that body is in.  Quite the opposite in fact as by enhancing the body’s ability to drain lymphatic fluid every day the person improves their potential for quality of health in the long term. 

It is very important to note that Arapal AMT® alone is a maintenance therapy. The machine will not cure what is causing the circulation problems that the individual has, merely enhance and condition certain aspects of the systems.  It can be used as an excellent tool to increase the effectiveness of any form of physical training and it is for this reason that I have chosen to use it in PACT, a form of therapy that trains the nervous system to release and lengthen unnecessary or ineffective postural tightness.  PACT introduces daily postures and movements that maintaining length and strength in the muscles of the body that keeps the pressure off the joints that they cross, the cause of so much pain and degeneration. By ensuring that the muscles are oiled, stretched, and ready to move before and while they are being used, the individual is less likely to injure themselves and the session itself should be more effective because the body is ready to receive it.  This has been the case in my experience with the Arapal AMT® wave. 

 

Pain Management Systems NZ

These massage systems are produced by Pain Management Systems NZ, and designed by Arapal technologies, both Christchurch-based companies that have been operating the South Island and Australia for many years.  The systems that they have developed are innovative and adaptable and can be used effectively and easily by people with disabilities and their primary support people.   The company take pride in the quality of the chairs, beds massage pads and hand units produced and the research and development team are always keen to look at new projects.

 

Cindy Evans MEd BPE
 

[1] Enoka R, The Neuromuscular basis of Kinesiology

 

Attention:

We do not claim cures for any medical conditions.