Both patients and studies praise the benefits as part of MS Awareness Week
To mark MS Awareness Week (24th to 30th April 2023), both charities and people living with MS are sharing how exercise can help prevent relapses and relieve symptoms of the condition.
Charity partners the MS Society and Bike the UK for MS are using this week to promote the latest scientific research and individual experiences which show how exercises such as cycling can benefit the 130,000 people living with MS in the UK.
Studies have shown that the potential benefits of exercise can include:
- Relieving common symptoms of MS such as fatigue, difficulty walking and pain
- Reduce the likelihood of relapses
- Slowing the progression of the condition after early diagnosis
However, the charity partners would like to raise awareness and attract fundraising to pay for greater research into this potential disease-modifying treatment.
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Mum and business owner Rosie Pickering, 43 from Nottinghamshire, was diagnosed with MS in 2009 and has since gone on to cycle the John O’ Groats to Land’s End and the North Coast 500 routes with Bike the UK for MS. She has been sharing how exercise has helped her quality of life with MS.
She said: “Since being diagnosed, I have gone through a full spectrum of having my first ‘full-on’ relapse and not being able to walk for a few months to my current state of living well and doing long bike rides.
“Having MS is a pain in the backside. Some symptoms I have are huge fatigue, leg pains, dizziness, muscle weakness and weird sensory encounters. I try my utmost to pretend the MS is not there but sometimes I do give myself a break and realise it’s probably my MS that’s holding me back.
“Living with a chronic illness is tough but I’m determined to live life to the fullest and do as many challenges as I can whilst I’m still able.
“I’ve done a couple of tours with Bike the UK for MS and am currently planning a few events to fundraise for the charity. Like them, I want to raise awareness of MS and change people’s perspectives of the condition so they don’t just automatically think about putting you in a wheelchair. So they don’t think of people with MS as having a disability – that’s the ultimate aim.”