“Life Force” Describes Deb Shaw’s Work with VR Therapies for Stroke Recovery
LOS GATOS, Calif., March 2, 2022 — Champion the Challenges, a nonprofit organization committed to reimagining stroke rehabilitation, today announced that Deb Shaw, the Founder and President, has been praised for her use of virtual reality therapies in a new book by celebrity life coach Tony Robbins.
Co-written by Peter Diamandis, M.D., and Robert Hariri, M.D., PH.D., the book is titled, “Life Force: How New Breakthroughs in Precision Medicine Can Transform the Quality of Your Life & Those You Love.” “Life Force” explores the latest advances in health technology to help maximize energy and strength, prevent disease, and improve health.
In a chapter on “Your Brain: Treating Strokes,” Robbins describes Deb’s work to help develop the REAL System by Penumbra, a company based in Alameda, Calif. The REAL System allows stroke patients to gamify their rehabilitation with the aid of a VR headset, some sensors, and a tablet. Penumbra has begun shipping this FDA-approved therapeutic tool to some hospitals, inpatient rehab facilities, and outpatient clinics.
Penumbra’s developers created a fun game to inspire Deb’s tedious rehab reaching exercises. In a VR world called Happy Valley, a little bird lands in Deb’s hand and she must place it back in its nest. This process is entertaining, but it also engages her shoulders, fingers, and hands in productive exercises.
“You’re transported to another world where anything is possible,” Deb said. “It was like night and day. It immediately took my therapy to the next level.”
During these VR treatment sessions, a tablet collects information about Deb’s every movement. In this way, her occupational therapist Lisa Calloway gets valuable data to assess which areas are improving, and which ones need more attention. Calloway noted that Deb is always motivated to beat her prior score in the game, which has speeded up her physical recovery much faster than her standard hand exercises.
In addition to exploring VR, Deb has tested many other types of cutting-edge therapies for stroke patients including cranial acupuncture, hydrotherapy, and a hyperbaric oxygen chamber. For more information on how Champion the Challenges is reimagining stroke recovery, visit https://www.championthechallenges.org/
About Champion the Challenges
Champion the Challenges is a non-profit foundation with a mission to help stroke survivors, therapists, family, and friends reimagine stroke rehabilitation. This is a journey everyone needs to be a part of to achieve the best results. Founded in 2021, Champion the Challenges provides inspiring ideas and helpful resources for everyone to use and share.
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