FES technology

What is FES?

Functional Electrical Stimulation is a rehabilitation technique where electrical current is applied to an individual with a disability to enhance that person's ability to function and live independently.

FES is used to stimulate peripheral nerves, the "lower motor neurons" that connect the spinal cord to your muscles.

Stimulating these nerves evokes patterned movement of the legs or the arms.  This is how FES enables your muscles to perform work even though you may have has lost all or some voluntary control of the muscles.

With our systems, you also have the ability to stimulate your "core muscles" during your therapy sessions.  These muscles are the erector spinae muscles in your back and your abdominal muscles.  These muscles are important for many activities including posture, transferring, reaching, balance and coughing.


Posterior electrode positions


Active and Passive Therapy

Passive therapy is when your arms or legs are moved mechanically, e.g. by the motor of a cycle or by a physical therapist's manipulations.

Active therapy is when your muscles are doing the work to complete a movement under your own volitional control, activated by FES or a combination of volition and FES.

Active therapy is required to reverse muscle atrophy because it is only in active therapy that your muscles actually perform work.

Motorized ergometers

The motor is an essential component of RTI systems.


Anterior electrode positions (abdominals not shown)
The motor can provide both assistance and resistance depending upon the phase of your therapy session.  Our Dynamic Motor Support will help to maximize your outcomes.

When you first start using an Restorative Therapies FES system it is likely that your muscles will tire quickly.

However the motor on the device will allow you to complete a full duration therapy session in your home from day one in spite of this early muscle fatigue. 

As you progress with your therapy and your muscles strengthen the motor will provide resistance against which your muscles will work.

Contact us at 1 (800) 609-9166 or support@restorative-therapies.com for more information.