multiple sclerosis Information sessions

Information sessions with Dr Gretchen Hawley

Spasticity – What it is and practical ways to manage spasticity

Pre-recorded session

This is a recording from Dr Gretchen Hawley where we discuss what spasticity is, how to recognise spasticity vs tightness and how you can manage its effects independently using the power of stretching. The recording is approximately 60 minutes with questions at the end.

Session outline

  • What is the difference between tightness, spasticity and spasm?
  • Which muscles tend to get tight/spastic?
  • Stretching parameters
  • Practice of different stretches
  • Questions and answers

Please see our MS-UK’s Choices booklet on spasms and spasticity which provides an introduction to what spasticity is, the causes and self-management techniques.

How to book

To join this session, please login or register in our Portal area. The session is free to join if you have a monthly or year subscription. You do not need a subscription to join, as you can register and provide a donation for the class. The suggested amount for the class is £5. If you unable to make a donation, please contact us to see how you can access the online classes via

If you purchased a ticket for the session when it was held originally in June 2023, you will be able to access the recording via the ‘My tickets’ area.

If you would like to know more or you are having trouble registering, please contact us at

Joining the class

Once you’ve purchased a ticket, a blue button saying ‘Join class’ will appear at the bottom of the page. Simply click on this to start watching!

The information sessions with Dr Gretchen Hawley, will not only answer those questions, but they’ll leave you feeling empowered and informed. You’ll understand the process your brain goes through to create new neural connections, resulting in improved strength and movement. You’ll also learn appropriate exercises and techniques to improve your balance and muscle tightness, leading to better function in your day-to-day activities.

About Dr Hawley

A Doctor of Physical Therapy, with years of clinical practice experience, Gretchen is a Physical Therapist and Multiple Sclerosis Certified Specialist through the Consortium of Multiple Sclerosis Centres based in the USA.

She has a special interest in the management and wellness of MS patients, and presents as the Keynote Speaker at numerous MS events including Living Well with MS events sponsored by the MS Society in addition to MS Views & News. Other collaborations include national MS organisations, including the National MS Society, MS Association of America, and MS Foundation. Additionally, Dr Gretchen shares her expertise to MS support groups, podcasts, and on her own YouTube and social media channels.

If you would like to know more about Dr Hawley please visit our website to see Dr Hawley’s previous blog or visit Dr Hawley’s website The MSing Link

Just a note to say how inspiring I found this presentation to be. Having had MS for approx 30 years. I must admit to feeling fairly sceptical that I would hear anything new. In fact, it wasn’t so much that this was all definitely new, but it was the way it was conveyed to people like me. I think it took away a continual feeling of failure and replaced it with a new mindset – Chris
A really excellent presentation. Incredibly informative and made so much sense
I thought yesterday’s presentation was fantastic. The Dr was inspiring and enlightened me to things I’ve being doing not quite right for years. I certainly took a lot away from it and thoroughly enjoyed listening – Pam
Just wanted to let you know how much I appreciated Gretchen’s talk on neuroplasticity this week. I had rather given up on exercise as not really helping me (I am in my 70’s) but Gretchen’s advice has motivated me to try again and try better. So, I am resuming my exercises and paying more attention to carrying them out correctly. She was spot on about the need to change one’s mindset too. I do equate walking with fatigue and difficulty and should endeavour to get out of this negative thinking cycle