The impaired muscle coordination that comes with cerebral palsy can make it difficult for people with the condition to do what they might really want to do. If you’ve had the condition for years, you might struggle with symptoms like chronic pain, or you may require assistive technology, such as a wheelchair. Some people experience the symptoms of cerebral palsy differently, such as slurred or slow speech or impaired cognitive function.
Cerebral palsy is often diagnosed in childhood. In many cases, accommodations are put in place to help a person grow and adapt to the condition through their formative years. Unfortunately, for many people, advocacy and care seem to fall away by the time they reach adulthood. The disease doesn’t get worse — the attention to it does. Because of that, it’s easy for adults with cerebral palsy to feel disheartened, especially if they feel like they’re limited in what they can do.
Hobbies and interests are just as important for adults with cerebral palsy as they are for children. You might feel discouraged thinking you can’t do activities you really want, but that isn’t necessarily true. No matter how your cerebral palsy affects your day-to-day life, it doesn’t need to limit you from doing what you want to do. It also shouldn’t keep you from trying new things you might be interested in. Let’s take a look at some fun activities you can try and how they can benefit you.
Horse Riding Horse therapy has many benefits. It can help to lower blood pressure, reduce stress levels, and even improve hand-eye coordination. Even if you struggle with muscle coordination, you can benefit from riding a horse.
Riding a horse can help to give you more control over your muscles and movements. It can help your core strength and neck strength, as well as improve your overall balance. Because of these benefits, horseback riding can even help to build your confidence and maybe the motivational tool you need to try other hobbies.
Water Exercise You don’t have to give up spending time in the water just because of your condition. In fact, water exercise can be great for people with cerebral palsy. There is virtually no impact on the joints, and it can help to improve muscle strength.
If your condition has made it hard for you to exercise in other ways, working out in the water is a great way to stay in shape and boost your body image. It can help you become the strongest version of yourself and focus on your long-term fitness goals.
Bowling Bowling is a great way to socialize and meet new people, and it can become a hobby that both children and adults can enjoy. From picking out the right ball to finding a technique that works for you, bowling is a low-impact way to have fun and learn something new.
Think your condition might stop you from bowling? Think again. Many bowling alleys have accommodations that can make it easier for you to get involved, from wheelchair ramps to bumpers on the lanes. There are even ball ramps that can help you push the ball down the lane. If you have a child with cerebral palsy, bowling can help to boost their confidence, especially when you know no “gutter balls” are involved. Bowling is one of the best ways to get the family together so everyone can enjoy playing the game.
Going to Concerts Do you love music? Attending concerts for both locally and nationally touring acts can help you to meet like-minded people who enjoy the same kind of music. While alternative transportation may be necessary to make it to some venues (and depending on your mobility needs), most music venues will accommodate your individual needs. In fact, this might even mean that you’ll even end up being able to get closer to the band!
The best part about attending concerts is that they are always different. If you’ve been feeling limited in the types of activities you can do, attending multiple concerts is a great way to feel rejuvenated and excited, and it always gives you something to look forward to.
Cooking and Nutrition People with cerebral palsy are often at risk for poor nutrition. Depending on the severity of your condition, you might have a hard time using eating utensils, swallowing, or drinking.
Proper nutrition is important in order to stay strong and keep your immune system as healthy as possible. If you have specific dietary needs, why not turn them into your new hobby?
Learning more about food can inspire you to start cooking healthy dishes for yourself. Not only can cooking help to reduce stress levels, but there are many additional health benefits. You’ll know exactly what’s going into your food and where it came from, you can ensure you’re getting the nutrients you’ll need.
It’s even easier on your wallet since you can buy ingredients on sale and you don’t have to worry about going to pricey restaurants. Cooking is something fun and exciting you can do in the comfort of your own home, and you get to reap the rewards right away.
As you can see, there are plenty of activities adults with cerebral palsy can enjoy doing on a regular basis. This list is just the tip of the iceberg. Don’t be afraid to get creative with new things you want to try or hobbies you want to make a part of your life. Often, with a few adjustments, people with cerebral palsy can find ways of participating in a variety of exciting and fun activities.
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