ESCAPE Pain: helping people stay active in the time of Covid-19


We have been developing a relationship with ESCAPE-pain, a great initiative that works with people who have chronic knee or hip pain - something that many Nordic Walkers are all too familiar with. Like us, they have had their face-to-face activities restricted by Covid-19 but like many of our instructors they are taking their support online - much of it might well be useful and enjoyable even if you are not living with knee or hip pain.

Here's what they have to say about their current activities in their own words...

ESCAPE-pain is a rehabilitation programme for people with chronic joint pain of the knees or/and hips, also known as osteoarthritis, that integrates simple education, self-management and coping strategies, with an exercise regimen individualised for each person. There is lots of information on our website 

The programme is usually delivered as a face-to-face class to groups of about 10 people in Physiotherapy Outpatient Departments, leisure or community venues. Over 290 venues across the UK now deliver ESCAPE-pain. However, the COVID-19 epidemic has meant these venues have been forced to suspend face-to-face classes. This has encouraged us to find new ways of supporting people with knee and hip pain who are now confined to their homes. 

We hope our free-to-use ESCAPE-pain smartphone app and online programme can help people remain active and manage their joint pain during this time: 

  1. ESCAPE-pain Online can be viewed on a range of mobile devices but is best viewed on a computer; 
  1. The ESCAPE-pain app is available on Android devices from the app site. 

Both tools require users to register and then follow a 6-week programme, with 2 sessions each week, using exercise and educational videos and measuring the user’s ability at the start and end so they can see their progress. 

However, we have now made the exercise and educational videos freely available so that people don’t need to create an account, for people who don’t wish to follow a structured programme and just want a reminder of how to do an exercise. 

  1. The exercise videos are designed so that the exercises could be done in a home setting using everyday household items like chairs or steps. They are simple and easy to follow with audio instructions. Just click on each video to get started. You don’t have to do them all, choose a few you find easy, then add or drop exercises as you want. If you want to view the exercise in full screen mode, click on the bottom right hand corner of each video where you can see a small square. Why not also look at our top tips on how to exercise safely in your home? 
  1. The educational videos – these videos can be viewed at any time to learn more about your joint pain. They give simple advice and information to help people learn about how to better manage their condition. Just click on each video to get started. If you want to view the video in full screen mode, click on the bottom right hand corner of each video where you can see a small square. 
  1. In addition some ESCAPE-pain sites have started delivering virtual ESCAPE-pain classes twice weekly. So, if you’re one of those people who would benefit from the interaction and would find it more motivating then follow us on Twitter @escape_pain to find out where and when these are happening. 

Finally, we recommend reading through our ESCAPE-pain support tools guidance which contains our top tips for getting the best out of the tools. 

Please keep in touch, and contact with any questions.

The ESCAPE-pain Team

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