Keeping mobile is important for all people affected by muscular dystrophy. There are no guidelines about the type or intensity of activities however it is recommended that any exercise undertaken is done within your limitations and ensuring you remain comfortable.
Extreme tiredness, muscle pain and cramps during or after activities can mean that you have pushed yourself too hard and therefore those activities should be avoided. Swimming is a good activity because it promotes movement of all muscles without increased strain.
Joint contractures (tightening) are not a frequent feature in LGMD2L however they can occur as consequence of reduced mobility, and regular physiotherapy is therefore recommended. This can be carried out by a physiotherapist or people can be taught to do this by themselves in their own home. These types of exercises can include the stretching of all joints, in particular the ankles.
Foot drop can occur in LGMD2L. An orthopaedic opinion may be needed and orthoses (splints) are sometimes worn to help with this problem.
Breathing problems are uncommon in LGMD2L. However with progression of the muscle weakness, people with LGMD2L are at risk of developing mild breathing difficulties. Therefore regular monitoring of respiratory function (forced vital capacity – FVC) is recommended. Regular cardiac assessment is usually not required because to date there is no clear evidence of heart muscle involvement in this condition.