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The Benefits of Exercise in Parkinson's



Parkinson's is a neurological condition that affects the part of the brain responsible for movement. It is in this area of the brain that dopamine is produced. In Parkinson's not enough dopamine is produced and this can lead to an array of symptoms which may include:

  • Tremor
  • Slowness of movement
  • Stiffness or rigidity
  • Poor coordination
  • Freezing
  • Poor balance
  • Changes to mobility
  • Poor sleep
  • Fatigue

These symptoms may result in day-to-day activities becoming challenging such as dressing, writing, feeding yourself and walking.

The Benefits of Exercise in Parkinson's

Physiotherapy and exercise can have a positive impact on managing these symptoms and supporting you to continue to carry out things that you wish to do independently. National guidelines suggest that everyone diagnosed should be seen by a physiotherapist as soon as possible to help you stay independent, improve your fitness and posture, manage your falls and mobility and to provide pain relief.

It is recommended that people living with Parkinson's should exercise regularly. The right kind of exercise has been shown to slow down the progression in Parkinson's and manage symptoms effectively as well as having benefits for non-motor symptoms. These include improving sleep quality, fatigue, memory, and mood.

The exercise programme we will support you with does this through making changes to your brain (neuro-plasticity), protecting the dopamine producing cells (neuro-protective) and reversing some of the affects already seen (neuro-restorative).

Our approach is varied and tailored to meet your individual needs. It is designed to improve your function, maintain your independence and quality of life and will look at your balance, speed and size of movement, strength, co-ordination and posture.

Parkinson's Exercise Class

We believe that everyone should be able to access an exercise programme to manage their Parkinson's and ours has an open to all approach. It is aimed at people with early to moderate stage Parkinson's and is based on the principals of exercise prescription in Parkinson's supported by strong evidence of its success.

Exercising in a class setting has been shown to provide multiple benefits including improved physical outcomes, peer support, social engagement and long-term adherence.

It is also fun!

For more information or to discuss anything within this article, please contact us here, or give us a call.

Jodie Thorpe

Neuro-physiotherapist / Parkinson's Specialist

Jodie Thorpe

Neuro-Physiotherapist (Parkinson's Specialist)

Jodie qualified with a BSc (Hons) in Physiotherapy from Sheffield Hallam University in 2006.

Jodie Thorpe

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