Flint Rehab, a neuro-rehabilitation device company, is proud to celebrate the one-year anniversary of FitMi, their revolutionary technology that is used for strengthening the full body after stroke. Since its launch, FitMi has improved the mobility of thousands of stroke survivors by enabling them to perform over 30 million reps of therapeutic exercises from the comfort of their own home. To date, survivors are averaging a collective three million reps per month with FitMi.
Flint Rehab’s underlying motivation is that stroke survivors are not getting enough therapy. From the first day of inpatient therapy to years after discharge, FitMi gives survivors a tool they can use to get the therapy they need. FitMi provides stroke survivors with a fun, affordable, and evidence-based therapy program that keeps them motivated as they work to regain their strength and independence.
“As stroke survivors spend less time with a therapist, they are expected to continue rehabilitation at home by following exercises printed on paper, which does nothing to motivate them to reach their full potential,” says Dr. Nizan Friedman, CEO and Co-Founder at Flint Rehab. “We’ve pioneered ‘consumer rehab technology’ to provide survivors with affordable alternatives that are clinically proven to be more motivating and effective than the conventional approach. By using gamification and real-time feedback, our therapy tools have enabled survivors to vastly improve the amount of recovery they can experience through at-home exercise.”
Now officially one year old, FitMi is a universal exercise-sensing system that uses two wireless, puck-shaped devices to detect specific movement patterns made by the user. Through the accompanying computer app, FitMi guides users through a comprehensive set of rehabilitation exercises for the full body. As users exercise, FitMi counts their repetitions, provides real-time feedback, and monitors their long-term progress. FitMi is complemented by Flint Rehab’s earlier product, the MusicGlove, which is a sensorized glove that promotes recovery of finger and hand movement. Stroke survivors use MusicGlove to exercise along with a music-based game, completing specific grips in time with notes that scroll down the screen.
“We’re proud to have a team of researchers at Flint Rehab that have invested their lives into improving recovery after stroke, traumatic brain injury, and spinal cord injury,” says Dr. Dan Zondervan, Vice President and Co-Founder at Flint Rehab. “Our mission is to empower every stroke survivor to reach their full potential through education, community support, and innovative technology. We’re dedicated to pushing the industry forward, because we believe survivors deserve better solutions for getting back to the activities they love.”
Stroke is the leading cause of long-term adult disability, with one in six people experiencing a stroke in their lifetime [sources: CDC and World Stroke Campaign]. When a person has a stroke, insurance only covers a few days of inpatient rehabilitation followed by sparse one-hour sessions with a therapist. A few months later, stroke survivors are transitioned from managed to unmanaged care, and reimbursement is eliminated for time with a therapist even though recovery may not be complete.
“I had a stroke almost two years ago, in December 2016, and lost movement on my entire right side,” says James Dooley, stroke survivor and retiree in Moorseville, North Carolina. “After my stroke, I couldn’t walk, couldn’t talk, and was a total invalid. Professional therapy helped with some walking and arm movement. Now I’m using FitMi and MusicGlove at home and my motor skills have really improved with Flint Rehab’s products. I’m walking and driving now, and FitMi did the most to help me be able to do that again. As a stroke survivor, I know therapy is a process and you can’t give up. My first step was being able to walk and drive. I do that now and it gets better every day.”