Resolution 2011 - Start an exercise program and stick with it. First Steps
Resolution 2011: Start a Parkinson’s exercise program and stick with it!
As the New Year is upon us, millions of us resolve, once again to start exercising or be more consistent. Major retailers try and sell us barbells, yoga mats and all kinds of exercise contraptions.
Health club parking lots are crowded with cars in January and February but by March the numbers start to fade.
How can this year be different?
Most people with Parkinson’s know that exercise is important and many of their doctors have encouraged them to do so. But often specific guidelines and goals are lacking and good intentions often get pushed to the back burner. It’s hard to know just what to focus on and there’s only so much time (or energy) in a day: Cardio or strength training? Stretching? Pilates or yoga? Water exercise? Tango dancing? Tandem cycling? Treadmill? Pole dancing? Yikes!
That’s where your friendly neighborhood physical therapist can come in; to assess your physical status, help prioritize what specific PD-related impairments can be addressed through exercise and recommend a tailor-made exercise prescription just for you. They are skilled in adapting a routine based on your specific health conditions and keeping safety and avoidance of injury a top priority. They may recommend a series of sessions or only 1 or 2 but the focus is on teaching you a program you can eventually carry out on your own. So do not hesitate to request a referral from your physician to consult with this member of your wellness team.
Resolution 2011 Part 2
has more helpful tips if you’ve recently completed a course of PT, or are just thinking about getting started on a program without a specific plan of action.
Be sure to see other articlea in the Fighting Parkinson’s one step at a time Series:
Exercise Safely- Avoid Injuries
Author: Maria Walde-Douglas has been a physical therapist for 20 years. She works at The Struthers Parkinson’s Center in Golden Valley, MN, a National Parkinson Foundation Center of Excellence. She teaches a yoga class for persons with PD and is certified in the LSVT BIG method of exercise for Parkinson’s. Her treatment philosophy is a holistic team approach to the management of PD and that fun and laughter and exercise are not mutually exclusive!