Restless Legs Syndrome – Simple Movement Relief

According to the Mayo Clinic, “Restless legs syndrome (RLS) is a condition that causes an uncontrollable urge to move your legs, usually because of an uncomfortable sensation….[It] can begin at any age and generally worsens as you age.” 

Lora’s Restless Legs Syndrome

Lora was 68 when she started with biomechanist Katy Bowman’s Restorative Exercise™ program (now known as Nutritious Movement®). She had suffered from restless legs syndrome for 50 years. It would awaken her from a sound sleep. She moved blankets to the floor and propped her legs up on the mattress hoping to go back to sleep. Working 12-hour shifts as a nurse, she needed adequate rest to keep her brain functioning optimally.

RLS wasn’t just a nighttime problem. It happened during the day with involuntary kicking and burning pain. While sitting on a bus or at a desk or on a date in a movie theatre it could happen. Traveling, where she had to sit for extended periods of time, caused all kinds of problems with her legs.  She sought medical care and medication without success. Movement can offer temporary relief. There is no known cure for RLS.  

Simple Movement Relief – the Calf Stretch 

Lora was invited one day to go to a  class taught by Katy. She was introduced to the Calf Stretch. Placing  the ball of her foot on top of a half-cylinder foam roller and lowering her heel to the floor  helped stretch out her calf muscle. She went home and did the Calf Stretch three times a day for a minimum of one minute on each leg. Within a week, she realized her legs were no longer moving uncontrollably.

Lora decided to put half-cylinders throughout her home – wherever she stood for long periods of time. She has one in front of the kitchen sink and the bathroom sink and in front of a counter where she does her daily Sudoku. Many times she holds the stretch longer than one minute because it can add more benefit. Now, nine years after discovering Katy Bowman’s work and at age 77, Lora no longer suffers from RLS.

Lora in First for Women Magazine

Lora's Restless Legs Syndrome Article in Fit for Women magazine
Lora’s Restless Legs Syndrome Article in Fit for Women magazine

In August 2018, thanks to Katy’s PR person, Melissa McNeese, Lora was chosen to share her RLS story. First for Women magazine staff writer, Alyssa Rosenthal,  asked Lora to be the model for an article in the Movement as Medicine section. In the two-page spread Lora tells her story and how the Calf Stretch changed her life. The magazine hit the stands on December 13, 2018 dated January 7, 2019.

 

Lora’s Photo Op

Lora invited me to join her for her professional photo shoot with ZStudio owner/photographer Christopher Zsarnay. Professional makeup consultant Melissa Duker in Ventura, California did her makeup.

Lora doing Calf Stretch modified
Lora doing Calf Stretch modified
Lora doing traditional barefoot calf stretch for restless legs syndrome relief
Lora doing traditional barefoot calf stretch

The magazine article does not show Lora actually doing the Calf Stretch. These photos show two variations. For the greatest benefit, barefoot is better. For more instruction on how to do the Calf Stretch, see our book, Dynamic Aging, at pp. 60-61.  Or check out this link to a brief video by Katy.

 

 

Lora and Joan
Lora and Joan
Co-author Lora with book Dynamic Agingn
Co-author Lora with book Dynamic Aging

The photographer took our photo at the end of the shoot. We are celebrating Lora’s photo op and the opportunity to share her success story. Her diligence in integrating the Calf Stretch into her daily life has truly paid off.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

6 Responses
  1. Ruth Miille

    Another great blog topic. I don’t have restless leg syndrome but whole body restless syndrome. It seems to take a while at night for my body to slow down enough to sleep. I find myself on the move all day long.
    Lora looks great in her photo shoot, should be proud. Hope the New Year brings all of you new and exciting challenges.

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This site is about personal experiences and opinions based on years of training and practice. It is in no way intended to instruct, recommend or suggest that anyone try the activities shared.

CO-AUTHORED BY JOAN VIRGINIA ALLEN, SHELAH M. WILGUS, LORA WOODS, AND JOYCE FABER

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