Weighted Vest

I have just returned from San Francisco where I saw Cindy Gibson-Horn, a physio, who fitted me with my weighted vest. After a few tests without the jacket she then put it on me and immediately I was walking straighter and more balanced. Also the most striking thing was that my speech improved as did my handwriting. I can now put on my mascara without smudging! I am still jet lagged so I won’t expect my walking to improve too much until I am over that but even with jet lag I can see some improvement. Cindy gave me some daily exercises to do to help my balance. I could not see it but apparently my eye movements also became smoother. For more info go to www.motiontherapeutics.com. It is not available in Europe yet as I think their organisation is too small and they also need an introduction into the health system here which apparently is expensive. Does anyone know how they go about this?

Thanks for sharing; I’ve been and still am curious about this. Please let us know your progress after your jet-lag wears off.

Interesting! Something to look into and ask dr. about. My PCP may help me look into medicare for one if it would help me.I had heard of it but couldn't see how it could help. The videos are convincing--I'd sure like to try one. I still can't see how it can work but apparently does. Guess I'm too analytical and always want to know how things do what they do???

Got an weighted vest today. It seems to help a little bit with my balance.

:thinking: Which one did you choose, Balancewear or OTVest.

I went with balance wear.

:slightly_smiling_face: :+1: Do you have easy access to a trained Therapist if you feel the weights need to be redistributed.

It’s about 2 hours away. The weights vary so much between the ataxia patients that the therapists often have to depend on the response on how we feel. The jacket comes with plenty of extra weights to play around with. It gives a 'snuggle tight" feeling when you walk. Trick is to get through TSA security in the airports, since it looks like bombs strapped across me.

:joy: I can imagine the look. Prior to boarding for my last flight to the US, I was called aside and asked whether my walking stick was necessary, or whether it was just a fashion accessory…:roll_eyes:

Does the ‘tight sensation’ help you feel more stable :thinking:

I felt more stable walking across the airport, with my backpack on my back. When my neurologist at Johns Hopkins suggested a weighted vest, I went for it. Although it took almost 6 months to get it, it was worth the wait. It’s more of the weight, that gives less wobbly feeling when I walk. Of course the snuggle feel to it also helps. I was pleasantly surprised that my medicare and the supplemental insurance paid the whole thing.

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:slightly_smiling_face: It’s good to read such a positive review, it must make a world of difference to how you feel. This will be helpful to others who may be considering a purchase.

I want to donate my balance vest to a fellow ataxian in the USA. It didn’t help, but it has helped others. A balance vast is adjustable via velcro so it adjusts easily to your body and the weights are also velcro.
A PT familiar with the product should make the finial weight placement, but you can make initial placements to confirm that the jacket works. There are online tutorials to help determine where to put weights.
If the jacket works for you. That’s great1 If it does not help, make an effort to get its to someone else at no charge. Eventually, if will find the right person.
Do be very careful. I fell backwards wearing the jacket and that’s not good.

:thinking:That’s very kind…Is it a Balancewear Vest, or OT Vest…

It’s a balance wear. A Kaiser doctor authorized it. I went to a PT, and tried one and thought it worked.
I bought one. From memory, the $750.00 cost was 150/me and 600/Kaiser. The jacket would be delivered and the weights placed more professionally outside of Kaiser and they would contact me.
At my fitting appt. he said he could not improve the initial Kaiser weight positions.
I used it for a month, and it’s been in my closet for a few months. It’s time to get it to someone it can benefit. That’s unfortunately not me. My advice, find a shaman not a doctor or PT and fit your weights properly.
There is a label in the jacket that says BalanceWear

What a shame it wasn’t suitable for you. I tried both vests at a NAF Convention, and because I have Vestibular issues I felt the OT vest gave me more stability. But I couldn’t decide whether to get one or not, so I’ll never know if it would have been of benefit.