Exercise

Low-impact mindfully planned exercise routines can be beneficial for patients with any kind of dystonia. Pillars of the body like balance, strength, and stamina are affected by dystonia in different ways. While not treating the disorder directly, controlled physical exertion does benefit those very areas of the self that are at risk of deterioration or discomfort in combination with dystonic symptoms, while helping to maintain motor skills and physical independence.

The repetitive nature of associated dystonic spasms has the same impact on a person’s muscles as other, more common, repetitive movements like jumping rope or hitting a speed bag, in that they can drain a person’s energy quickly. A boxer can lower his gloves and a cyclist can hit the brakes. Patients with dystonia often cannot control their movements, and sometimes suffer painful physical consequences as a result. With the care and oversight of medical and/or fitness professionals, exercise routines designed with the intention of building cardiovascular or muscular strength in the patient can be beneficial.

Exercise also aids in cases of poor circulation, another secondary issue seen in localized dystonia cases. Simple movement routines, including, yoga, swimming, walking, and stretching can help patients avoid cramping and general soreness or stiffness in affected body parts.

Past the clear physical benefits, regular exercise can help reduce stress, aid sleep, and promote self-confidence in any person, not just dystonia patients.