MND Australia
MND Info Line 1800 777 175. 9am to 4.30pm Monday to Friday.

Physical activity and MND

Finding ways to enjoy physical activity with MND can help, even as it gets harder to keep your body moving.

Generally, activities like walking, gardening, yoga, stretches and others that involve physical movement can help support your physical abilities by strengthening healthy muscles whose nerves have not yet been affected by MND. 

Physical activity can also help maintain joint range of movement, reduce stiffness and pain and support overall wellbeing and enjoyment of daily life.

Many people living with MND feel that it’s important to enjoy physical activity. Recent research finds that personal enjoyment of general physical activity is more motivating for some people living with MND than a more formal exercise program1. So you may want to think about the activities you enjoy doing, and how your healthcare team can best support you to do them.


It’s best to talk to your neurologist, GP, physiotherapist and others in your healthcare team about physical activity and how to manage:

  • fatigue
  • getting plenty of rest
  • pain and stiffness
  • aerobic, strength and endurance exercises, if they’re suitable
  • assistive technology for maintaining independence, mobility and comfort, if suitable.

It’s important not to push yourself to exhaustion while exercising and to get plenty of rest after physical activity to reduce fatigue. Even daily tasks like washing, and dressing can drain energy, and you may need to rest and take time to recover. Physiotherapist and occupational therapist assessments and regular reviews can help guide you.

  1. Walking outside the home, housework, gardening
  2. Yoga, stretching limbs with a physiotherapist, hydrotherapy (activities in a pool or water)
  3. Exploring best ways with a physiotherapist to do physical activities while sitting in a bed or chair
  4. Talking with your health professionals regarding medications that may help with discomfort
  5. Stable and supportive shoes, walkers, braces, orthotics
  6. If active movement is no longer possible, active assisted physical activity may help, such as active assisted arm or leg cycling or various team sports with your local electric wheelchair/ powerchair sports association.

Physical activity may help you to focus on things that you enjoy. You can have a break from other worries, build your confidence and sense of control, and spend time with others and feel supported by them.

Read our factsheet on Physical activity and MND

Or contact your state's MND Association or call the MND Info Line on 1800 777 175