is there any way or device that can help grow muscle or maintain it without exercise?

Rlman

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Hi all,
my muscles seem to be breaking down and are very wasted throughout my body, and anytime i try to do any physio exercise my joints get injured. all joints all feel looser too and its getting hard to sit upright. i am mostly bedroom bound due to severe weakness and fatigue the past 8.5 years. neuromuscular clinic ruled out a myopathy. is there anyway to get the muscles to grow that doesn't involve exercise?
Thank You for reading this post.
 

Loomcgoo

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I don't know if this helps answer your question directly, as it's maybe more to do with neurology. A study showed that people who imagined playing the piano everyday over a period of time had the same brain mapping as people who ACTUALLY practiced playing the piano. Dr. David Hamilton (a scottish speaker - he has You Tube talks) talks about this. He talks about the placebo effect too - which is treated as a nuisance in clinical trials, but actually shows our bodies natural tendency to heal. More needs to be done on how to harness that healing power - it will come, just not yet.

There's research into how stroke sufferers recovery more quickly and fully by imagining doing everyday living tasks.

I knew of this research years ago and knew about pilots and athletes improving performance through being still but visualising physical activity. Any time I have relapsed I have used this to try to help build my physical ability because there were times I was so limited in what would cause a PEM crash. I imagined everything from drinking a cup of tea, washing my hair to running, swimming, rowing, mountain walking and tried to really feel what it felt like to do those activities.

There were times where even thinking of it was too exhausting so I stopped. Other times it felt a bit upsetting, because of the anger and frustration of not being able to do. Then when I realised this was part of the path to get back my health without using energy I didn't have, it became much easier. It's something I naturally use because it has worked for me. It did help me to keep some of my strength during a relapse.

I would do gentle flexing lying down, fingers, arms, toes, legs too. I monitored how it affected the PEM.

Let us know how things are going, hope today is a bit easier for you.
 

Pearshaped

...and then Life went pearshaped.
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@Riman
Idk about a device but
what seems to work a bit for me:

i contract big muscle groups(like bottocks,upper legs for a few secs while in bed(try it while lying on your tummy)
Or,if you have a wall near your bed, put your feet on the wall 45°(with your upper body you are still in bed while your backside is in between bed and wall)and then push against wall with your feet.
BTW: you.mentioned mainly proplems with your joints after physio...have docs ruled out EDS?
 

Wishful

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There's electrical muscle stimulation, but: 'And while EMS can temporarily strengthen, tone, or firm muscles to some extent, it will not cause long-term improvements in health and fitness, according to the FDA.' I'll let you decide whether it's worth trying. I see there are some cheap devices available, which are probably just as good at producing electrical pulses as the more expensive devices. The actual pulse generating circuit--even in the most expensive ones--probably consists of a couple of dollars worth of parts.

The Whole Body Periodic Acceleration Therapy sounds like it improves vascular health (by causing the vessels to stretch), but not muscles. It makes me think of those vibrating belts that were supposed to 'melt fat away'. :rolleyes:
 

gbells

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You really need to do some level of exercise just for general health. You can't do nothing and be healthy. Minimum exercise is getting at least 10 minutes of walking or stationary cycling daily. That will: prevent blood clots, help with depression, help maintain bone density, etc.
 
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I knew of this research years ago and knew about pilots and athletes improving performance through being still but visualising physical activity.
I've experienced some of this and, for instance: I can do the Tai Chi routine in my head without moving and feel much better thereafter. Visualizations are powerful. And I was taught in college to watch the Physical videos to improve swimming strokes, etc.
 

Moof

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Visualizations are powerful.
I'd agree. I started trying to fathom out niggles in the swimming technique I was re-learning, whilst resting & recovering afterwards. As I visualised the pull, my heart rate went up almost as much as it would in the pool. I had to stop doing it, as the whole point of sticking to the rest schedule was keeping my HR down!
 

Rlman

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You really need to do some level of exercise just for general health. You can't do nothing and be healthy. Minimum exercise is getting at least 10 minutes of walking or stationary cycling daily. That will: prevent blood clots, help with depression, help maintain bone density, etc.
I love exercising, the problem is i feel to weak to do it :(
 

Sushi

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And then there are whole body vibration machines. From Mayo:
Whole-body vibration can offer some fitness and health benefits, but it's not clear if it's as good for you as regular exercise.
With whole-body vibration, you stand, sit or lie on a machine with a vibrating platform. As the machine vibrates, it transmits energy to your body, forcing your muscles to contract and relax dozens of times each second.
https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/fitness/expert-answers/whole-body-vibration/faq-20057958
 

Rlman

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Would this not create the same problem we have now? Ie electric stim causes muscles to contract causing energy to be used up, etc. Unless the problem is upstream.
i might have energy for a bit of contracting if i dont have to be standing. however i am worried the joints would still get injured. doing quad sets (contracting the quadriceps) caused my knees to get injured, and they now feel emptier and have less tension in them than would usually have, as if i lost tissue that is supposed to be in the joint. idk what happened, did muscle rip and waste or ligament looser? idk, so weird.
 
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Rlman

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since mid 2018 all my joints feel more and more empty with less strength/tension and if i let any limb hang it feels like it will rip at the joint, and it actually happened when i let it hang too long: i was sitting on chair where legs were dangling above the ground and that caused ripping at the ankles. thankfully the seat extended under my knees otherwise they would have ripped too.

trying to do bicep curls without even holding anything (just weight of arm) causes pain at elbow and shoulder feels looser for a day. if i sit without support under arms they would start ripping at shoulders. joints easily get injured. drs thinks its all due to muscle atrophy (which has rapidly progressed since jan 2018) but i'm not sure that's fully the case. when i do the bicep curls i do build muscle in bicep but the injuries to the joints make it hard to do often and feels like will injure joints so risky. when i injure the joint they don't heal back to the strength they had before the injury it seems.

thanks everyone for all the recommendations!!! I really appreciate it.

@Loomcgoo thanks for the visualization recommendation. I had been doing that a few times a month ago, i should keep doing that. Can't say i noticed improvements from it in my case but maybe should have done it more times. I totally believe it makes muscles be used/grow plus its very enjoyable to visualize doing exercise!
 
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gbells

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While there are settings for electrical stimulation that are designed to strengthen muscles I didn't recommend it because you would lose out on all the other benefits. Use it or lose it.