I use it a lot for patients who have orthopaedic conditions with pain and stiffness in their joints on weight bearing e.g for those with back, hips, knees and feet problems and who cannot run normally, however when you are able to offload some of their body weight they are able to exercise without pain. We use it post operatively for patients who have had an injury or joint surgery and for recovery from sports injuries or for strengthening programmes to enhance sporting performance. We have two local high profile teams who use it regularly.
It is great for strengthening and conditioning in a fall-safe environment for elderly patients or allowing those participating in weight loss programmes to exercise at a reduced body weight or for gait training and strengthening for neurological patients. It can also be used to assist with trunk balance and hold someone safely so they can then work on their arms.
We find that it is proving very helpful with cancer patients who may be still be feeling fatigued after treatment as we can reduce their body weight and provide support, reducing the strain on their muscles and joints in a graded way and allowing them to start to rebuilding some muscle strength again.
The psychological sense of well-being it provides is a really important part of the treatment on the Alter G , as some patients whom perhaps have a long term condition and are unable to walk under normal conditions can find they can walk normally whilst on the machine, this gives them a real boost.
We are aware that many professional football and rugby clubs and elite athletes such as Paula Radcliffe and Mo Farrar have their own Alter G's . It allows these elite sportspeople to train, increase and maintain their muscle endurance and cardiovascular fitness without pounding their joints away.