Below are some useful ways to learn more about relevant exercises to keep health and wellbeing top of mind.
Mobile/Tablet Apps can be a great way to vary your exercises and keep things fresh.
The following apps are useful for ideas to complement your exercise program (costs may apply so check before downloading). If available, start with the ‘free version’ and see if it’s right for you. The key to many apps is actually using it regularly, so it becomes part of your routine.
Apps for physical exercise and balance
PD Warrior App – 10 core PD Warrior exercises available for free. See PD Warrior site
You can also find a range of PD Warrior exercises by searching on Youtube. Search up PD Warrior exercises in the search engine.
Clock Yourself App – Available through the App store or Google play; an app for balance and change of direction based on moving to different positions on an imaginary clock face.
Apps for brain training
Lumosity – an app for brain training, great for concentration, attention, problem solving, memory, recall of words, quick maths, word finding…Try out the free version 3 exercises a day..
Apps for Mood and Mental Health
The Resilience Project app – a useful app to help to identify your mood and its impact on your actions. Designed initially for use with school children, its simple user friendly emojis and check -in questions helps to focus your mind on the challenges and successes in your day. Each day has a daily meditation to help you focus on your breathing and reduce anxiety levels.
Headspace another app for mindfulness and reducing anxiety, improving focus and clarity of thought.
Parkinson’s education and support
Parkinson’s Victoria Parkinson’s Victoria are a great resource if you are struggling with an issue and not sure where to turn next. Their helpline is manned by allied health staff who can help point you in the right direction for help on a particular Parkinson’s issue. Parkinson’s Victoria have support groups in various suburbs across Victoria that tend to meet once a month for education and support. They also have a support groups for young onset Parkinson’s and newly diagnosed people. Contact them to find your nearest support group or trouble shoot a difficult Parkinsons’s problem. 1800 644 189
Michael J Fox Foundation Find the latest in educational content across a range of subjects. Material available in downloads and webinars.
Life Mobility -Supporting independent living. Stores in Bayswater and Mornington
Hand function and dexterity
Art For Kids Hub A drawing website for the family that may help improve fine motor control in your dominant hand, and visuo-spatial relationships through helping to encourage pen use.
If you want to improve your fine motor skills then this drawing website may be something fun you can engage by yourself or with grandchildren by your side. The key to any improvement is repetition and specificity in your practice. So if you want to improve your pen control.. you will need to put a pen in your hand to help improve your dexterity. Try to keep in mind the PD impairment based exercise principles you have learnt from your 1:1 sessions.
If you are interested in the evidence behind the exercises have a look at these articles. Research is showing that Parkinson’s symptoms can improve through high effort, high intensity exercise. If you want clarification on what you’re reading drop me an email or ask me at your next session and I’ll explain it to you. BE ENCOURAGED by the science..NOW IT’S UP TO YOU to do the work!
Cortical and motor responses to acute forced exercise in Parkinson’s disease
Jay L. Alberts, Michael Phillips, Mark J. Lowe, Anneke Frankemolle, Anil Thota, Erik B. Beall, Mary Feldman, Anwar Ahmed, and Angela L. Ridge
Take home message: When exercising with increased motor output (such as cycling with increased RPM focus as per study protocol) dopine is released in the brain in a siliar manner to what occurs when you take your Parkinson’s medication. The article is further evidence for an exercise is as important as medicine approach to your symptom management.
Take home message: Focusing on increasing the size and quality of your arm and leg movements is a rehab strategy that will also bring you improved speed of movement.
Intensive Rehabilitation Treatment in Early Parkinson’s Disease: A Randomized Pilot Study With a 2-Year Follow-up
Giuseppe Frazzitta, MD, Roberto Maestri, Gabriella Bertotti, Giulio Riboldazzi, MD, Natalia Boveri, Michele Perini, MD, Davide Uccellini, MD, Marinella Turla, MD, Cristoforo Comi, MD, Gianni Pezzoli, MD, and M. Felice Ghilardi, MD
Take home message: people in the 4 week intensive exercise program followed by home exercise program showed less increase in medications required for Parkinson’s than those who did not complete the intensive exercise program. Regular intensive exercise can help slow the progression of your Parkinson’s symptoms in the early to moderate stages of the disease. This is best done under the guidance of a health professional for best results.