Exercise is an important part of managing Parkinson’s disease, a progressive neurological disorder that affects the brain and nervous system. It is characterized by tremors, rigidity, slow movements, and problems with balance and coordination. While there are treatments available to manage the symptoms of Parkinson’s disease, the condition is progressive, meaning that it will get worse over time.
Exercise can help to improve mobility, balance, and coordination in people with Parkinson’s disease, and can also help to reduce the severity of tremors and other symptoms. Here are a few examples of the best exercises for people with Parkinson’s disease:
- Walking: Walking is a low-impact exercise that can help to improve mobility and balance. It can be done indoors or outdoors, and can be modified to meet the individual’s needs and abilities.
- Tai chi: Tai chi is a form of exercise that involves slow, controlled movements and deep breathing. It can help to improve balance and coordination, and has been shown to be particularly beneficial for people with Parkinson’s disease.
- Resistance training: Resistance training, such as lifting weights or using resistance bands, can help to improve muscle strength and function in people with Parkinson’s disease. It is important to start with light weights and to work with a healthcare professional or trained instructor to ensure that the exercises are being done safely and effectively.
- Aerobic exercise: Aerobic exercise, such as cycling, swimming, or dancing, can help to improve cardiovascular fitness and can also help to reduce the severity of tremors. It is important to start slowly and to gradually increase the intensity and duration of the exercise over time.
If you or a loved one with Parkinson’s disease are interested in starting an exercise program, it is important to speak with a healthcare professional. Your healthcare team can help to assess your needs and abilities and can recommend the best exercises for you. It is also important to remember to listen to your body and to stop exercising if you experience any pain or discomfort.