Sunday, March 8, 2009

Stroke Struck. Rock Roll.

"I know a rock star. His name is Dave Grohl. He was the drummer in the band Nirvana and now heads the Foo Fighters.

I haven't talked to him since a thrilling evening in Atlanta backstage at a Nirvana concert in 1994. But I know how he got to be an amazing drummer. And it wasn't easy. First, let me tell you why his story has everything to do with (stroke recovery)."

I wrote this article last year. It's really about the power of very intense bursts of repetitive practice on learning (or relearning) movement.

Play me until you get blisters

I'm a drummer as well. Drumming is interesting because it hits (heh heh) on so many leading-edge topics in stroke recovery. One is cognitive. It turns out that there is a company that uses keeping a beat to drive better cognitive recovery. Drumming is also inherently bilateral (left, right); and bilateral training is a hot stroke-recovery idea. It may even help with the only long word I remember from school, dysdiadokinesia, an inability to do alternating (bilateral) movements after brain injury. Why did I remember it? Dude. I'm a drummer. And this brings up the next point: use what you love to drive recovery. The more intensely you love doing something the less it becomes therapy and the more it is just plain fun. Whats the old saying, "If you love your work, its not work."

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