May. 2021

Stroke survivor sees clear benefits of using EvolvRehab at home and says "It’s magic!"


Hobbs Rehabilitation in Winchester has been using EvolvRehab since November of 2020 to provide personalised telerehabilitation services to chronic stroke survivors in a project funded by the NIHR Brain MIC.

Dave Lea was one of the first persons to begin using the Evolv RehabKit as part of the Hobbs Telerehabilitation project. His use of EvolvRehab at home is a good example of why telerehabilitation can make an important difference in patient care by providing an engaging way of performing repetitive therapeutic activity and increasing adherence to treatment.

In the 5 months that he used EvolvRehab, Dave performed over 11,000 reps and 20 hours of exercise activities in the 100 exergame sessions he completed. Hannah Woods-Hier, the physiotherapist who supervised Dave’s treatment plan, remotely tailored the activities to Dave’s specific needs and would meet with him virtually via Microsoft Teams to review his progress.

We spoke to Dave to discuss his thoughts on receiving rehabilitation at home using our RehabKit, and how EvolvRehab has made an impact on his quality of life. We also spoke to Dave’s wife Sara to see what she thought of Dave’s use of EvolvRehab and its benefits.

Please tell us a little about yourself Dave.
Dave: I’m 60 years old. I worked at BAE Systems in computer design. I’m married to Sarah and we have 3 girls.

Can you tell us about when you had your stroke and how it has changed your life?
Dave: March 2015. I’m 6 years post stroke. I miss playing sports.

How has COVID-19 affected your life and your rehabilitation?
Dave: All therapy groups are online so there is minimal social contact.

Have you used a technology solution before as part of your rehabilitation?
Dave: I’ve only used Zoom with a physio.

What do you think about receiving telerehabilitation as a means of augmenting the amount of therapy you receive?
Dave: It’s excellent.

What do you find be the biggest differences between telerehabilitation vs traditional therapy?
Dave: You can do it at home. It’s developed to your needs and can be constantly changed depending on your progress. You don’t have to be concerned about keeping up with others.

Do you think the NHS should implement telerehabilitation as part of the stroke and brain injury care pathway, even after the Covid-19 crisis is over?
Dave: Yes as it is a clever concept which can be adapted to specific needs and gives a sense of achievement.

Has using EvolvRehab helped you? If so, in what way?
Dave: Yes – it’s magic! It’s improved my range of movement and I can now do amazing squats!

Outside of your physical wellbeing, has using EvolvRehab helped you in any other way?
Dave: Yes, it has kept me motivated to continue exercising and challenged me to go up levels of difficulty.

How do you like using the RehabKit hardware? Do you find it easy to use?
Dave: Yes,it is easy to set up for me to exercise

Would you recommend EvolvRehab and its use for telerehabilitation to other stroke and brain injury survivors
Dave: Definitely!

Do you have a favourite virtual activity?
Dave: No not really, they are all good

Goal setting is important in the process of rehabilitation. What are some of your goals? Has EvolvRehab been able to help you with any of your goals? If so, how?
Dave: Yes, it sets good goals. It’s helped me improve my range of movement and made me stretch and challenge myself more.

Do you have anything else you would like to share about using EvolvRehab and the RehabKit?
Dave: This is a great program and easy to use and keeps on challenging me. It has made me stronger and helped with my walking.

We spoke to Dave’s wife Sarah about how she felt about his use of EvolvRehab at home and the improvements she saw in Dave over time.

What are some of the challenges for you as the spouse of a stroke survivor?
Sarah: Adapting to a different way of life and giving ongoing support and encouragement continually.

Do you think technology can help with these challenges?
Sarah: Definitely!

What you do you think of Dave using EvolvRehab at home as part of their therapy?
Sarah: It has kept him focused and motivated to keep on doing well and challenged him to try and get to harder levels.

Have you seen any improvements in Dave since he started using it?
Yes. I have definitely noticed that Dave is stronger in lots of areas including reaching and stretching low and high. His walking is stronger, and his squats are fab!

What are your thoughts on the NIHR-funded Hobbs and EvolvRehab Telerehabilitation programme?
Sarah: I’m so impressed with this program. It’s one of the best that Dave has participated in. It has really motivated him to continue exercising every day and to strive to do better each time he uses it.

I would highly recommend this to other stroke survivors, and I will miss Dave coming out from the room saying “Yes, I managed no mistakes” or “I must do better next time”.

Dave is a motivated person and still 6 years down the line wants to improve and is not satisfied yet!

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