Physical & Occupational Therapy

Cheshire Home Receives Rise & Walk
Improving the Lives of Our Residents

Cheshire Home’s Physical & Occupational Therapy Department is excited to announce that our Rise & Walk machine has arrived! Cheshire Home is the only facility in the region to have the Rise & Walk or anything like it. When a young person experiences a traumatic spinal cord injury, nothing about the life they knew will ever be the same.

To be able to give our residents the experience of walking again is an exciting moment. The Rise & Walk machine has the possibility to completely change the lives of our residents, restore their hope for the future, and provide motivation in their daily lives as they work towards their goals. It is true cutting-edge science.

The Rise & Walk works via a harness that suspends an individual in the air, just enough to get each foot into the machine’s footplates. Each arm is given a handle, and the person’s arms and legs are moved via the machine, simulating the arm-swinging and leg motion of walking. The Rise & Walk helps individuals who cannot walk, get up on their feet in a dynamic way to practice these motions.

“We are so excited to welcome the rise and walk to our rehab gym at Cheshire Home!  Our residents are at the center of everything we do. We are always looking for new an innovative ways to enhance their quality of life and provide the best treatments possible. The Rise and Walk is an amazing addition to our rehabilitation program and we are so excited to see the positive impact it will have.  This device will help many of our residents regain their mobility and independence and achieve their rehab goals.”

Cheshire Home Director of Therapy,
Lauren Rosario, OT, MSOT

Cheshire Home opened in 1981 and since then, over 250 young people with debilitating, life-long disabilities have come through our doors. Cheshire Home provides a communal residence geared towards this population, providing hope, and

changing the landscape for what our residents can achieve in the rest of their lives. Cheshire Home is not meant to be a long-term, permanent residence; instead, our goal is to discharge all residents to independent living and community re-integration.

Our residents want to experience the feeling of walking again and using the Rise & Walk to get this

sensation will greatly improve their emotional well-being. The Rise & Walk also helps with trunk control, range of motion, increased blood flow, improved bone health for our many residents with osteoporosis, reduced muscle atrophy and cardio-pulmonary endurance.

“The rise and walk will definitely alter the trajectory of our outcomes in the therapy department. It’s a cutting-edge piece of equipment that is so versatile and has the potential to train and improve residents at varying levels of functional ability. We’re really excited to implement it regularly into our programs.”

Cheshire Home Lead Physical Therapist,
Bethany Greenfield, PT, DPT

Cheshire Home’s mission focuses on allowing each resident to reach their maximum level of independence and the Rise & Walk machine will now play a large role in helping our residents graduate out of Cheshire Home and back into the community. Having the Rise & Walk at Cheshire Home will help shift the mindset of our residents, allowing them to set new goals for their physical and occupational therapy regimen, as well as overall health and wellness.

Cheshire Home’s Physical and Occupational Therapy Department is proud to be on the cutting edge of technology. Our team of therapists follows the research in spinal cord injury and is informed on the latest and greatest technological advancements being made. The Rise & Walk is one of the many advancements that we are excited to provide for our residents.

Meet the Therapy Team

Cheshire Home Director of Therapy,
Lauren Rosario, OT, MSOT

Cheshire Home Occupational Therapist, Lauren Rosario, earned a Bachelor’s degree in Exercise Physiology from William Paterson University.  She worked as a certified nursing assistant (CNA) at a rehabilitation facility while in college.  Her favorite part of the job was helping people participate in their morning routines. She earned a reputation for being able to naturally come up with creative ways to help people be more independent without it appearing therapeutic.

An occupational therapist at the facility tracked Lauren down after patients were talking about the “CNA who was doing therapy with me.” Being a college student who was just learning the profession, Lauren thought she might be in trouble. Quite the opposite.

“She asked me to come shadow her for the day and that is when I fell in love with the profession,” Lauren said. The seed was planted, and her passion for helping people was beginning to grow.

After graduating college, Lauren continued her education earning her Master of Science in Occupational Therapy from Columbia University in 2014. 

“My first job as an OT was working with individuals with brain and spinal cord injuries,” Lauren said. “I haven’t looked back since.”  Eight years later, she empowers Cheshire Home residents by helping them strengthen their bodies, which over time leads to independence.

Lauren uses creativity to help Cheshire residents solve problems, allowing them to increase their independence and live life to the fullest.  “My favorite part of the job is watching a resident participate in an activity they previously enjoyed but stopped doing due to their injury,” she said.  

When not at Cheshire Home, Lauren’s other full-time job is being a mom to four perfect children.  “When I am not at work you can find me outside playing with my kids. We love to be outdoors at parks, the zoo, the aquarium, and the beach. I also love to cook and bake and bring those skills to the resident kitchen at Cheshire Home,” Lauren said.

An occupational therapist is defined as a healthcare professional who helps you reach your utmost potential, one who facilitates independence allowing you to live a more meaningful and happier life, also known as a “miracle worker.” Cheshire Home is lucky to have Lauren, and our residents are grateful to be able to work with her as she continues to change their lives daily.

Cheshire Home Lead Physical Therapist,
Bethany Greenfield, PT, DPT

Cheshire Home is excited to have Bethany Greenfield join the Physical and Occupational Department team as their new Lead Physical Therapist. Bethany has been a physical therapist for eight years working in sub-acute facilities, assisted living facilities and home care. She received her Doctor of Physical Therapy from Drexel University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Her career has spread her talent among a diverse population of clients, always favoring the neurological population.

Bethany is married and has two young sons. In her free time, she enjoys playing volleyball and spending time in the Adirondacks.

Welcome Bethany! We are excited to have you in the Cheshire Home Family.

Bryan Tobin, PTA

Cheshire Home welcomes Bryan Tobin to the Physical and Occupational Therapy Department. Bryan is a graduate of Essex County College where he earned his Physical Therapist Assistant license. He continued his education at the National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM) where he became a Corrective Exercise Specialist.

He enjoys working at Cheshire Home where he helps residents with their physical therapy exercises as he motivates them to work towards achieving their goals.  Bryan comes to Cheshire Home with experience in multiple physical therapy settings including out-patient facilities and hospitals. He looks forward to meeting all the residents and encourages them to come and meet him in the physical therapy gym. In his spare time, Bryan enjoys doing yoga. 

Welcome Bryan! We are happy to have you in the Cheshire Home Family! 

A look inside our Physical & Occupational Therapy Center.

Cheshire Home’s Physical & Occupational Therapy Center is a hub of activity for our residents.  Our licensed therapists and aides supervise each resident during their therapy sessions. They are dedicated to assisting each resident perform specific exercises to help improve their strength and mobility, which sets them on the path to their goals of independence.

Physical and occupational therapy are key components of rehabilitation following spinal cord injury. As varying degrees of mobility loss permanently affect muscle function, a consistent regimen of therapy and exercise enhances the rehabilitation process.

Physical therapy helps individuals with paralysis improve blood circulation, regain a measure of stamina, increase strength and range of motion, and maintain muscle tone in paralyzed limbs while strengthening and toning less

affected or unaffected muscles. Potential improvement in balance, coordination and strength is maximized, and in some cases, mobility is restored.

In conjunction with physical therapy, occupational therapy assists our residents in improving arm and hand movement and coordination and boosting their capacity to perform personal tasks. The work done with Cheshire Home’s Occupational Therapist helps residents gain the mobility needed to dress, cook, eat without help, handle personal items and more.

In 2018, we expanded our on-site Physical and Occupational Therapy Center. The extended space offers more room for additional state-of-the-art equipment, which benefits resident results. Our center upgrade was partially funded by the F.M. Kirby Foundation.