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Parkinson's Exercise Class

Parkinson’s patients exercise for balance, mobility and daily life

It’s not uncommon for individuals with Parkinson’s Disease to experience gait impairments, difficulty in linking movements together smoothly and episodes of freezing.

This Exercise is Medicine class at HFM’s Wellness Center can help recently diagnosed patients by:
  • maintaining their function
  • improving balance
  • strengthening and stretching muscles
  • gaining confidence in performing daily activities
  • increasing walking speed and endurance
  • reducing ‘freezing’ and muscle cramping
This series of specially designed exercises is led by a physical therapist and exercise specialist. All participants start with an initial assessment, then a personalized program is developed that includes a combination of walking on the treadmill, stretching exercise and strength training.

The class fee is $25/month for Wellness Center members and $40/month for non-members. The initial and follow-up assessments are included in the fee. Classes are held on Tuesdays and Fridays from 2-3 p.m

Exercise can offer the right prescription

The HFM Wellness Center offers other Exercise is Medicine classes to help individuals live as actively as possible:
  • Total Control for urinary incontinence
  • Strong Women Program to build strength
  • Pilates for Cancer
  • Arthritis classes (Tai Chi, Aquatics, Exercise)
  • Arthritis Walk with Ease Class
  • Sportsmetrics to help individuals prevent an ACL injury

    For details or information on upcoming classes, see the Wellness Center page or call 320-4600.

    Learn more about our Exercise is Medicine classes!

It’s been a little over a year since Jean Krupka was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease ...and in that time the Manitowoc woman has found another type of “medicine” to complement the prescription medications she is taking – exercise.

Jean is a participant in the HFM Wellness Center’s Parkinson’s Exercise Class, a program designed to strengthen muscles, improve balance, enhance walking speed and distance, and reduce muscle cramping.As a regular class member attending twice weekly, Jean has experienced marked improvement in her health. “When I first joined the class, I was like a slow toddler trying to walk. Now I am able to walk normal again,” she raves. She credits the Parkinson’s Exercise Class for playing a major role in this, as well as the Parkinson’s Balance Class that she attends weekly.

“Before the classes, I could not even get off the ground by myself. I needed something or someone to pull myself up with. Even getting out of a chair was a challenge. Now I am able to do both without any assistance.”

During the Parkinson’s Exercise Class, participants begin on the treadmill then do a series of stretching and exercises in a group setting. According to Pam Posvic, HFM Rehab Plus physical therapy assistant who leads the class, “Exercise is an important part of healthy living for everyone. However, for people with Parkinson’s disease, exercise is not only healthy, but a vital component to maintaining balance, mobility and daily living activities.”

The impact of exercise is evident for people like Jean, who appreciate how it has helped her regain her life again. “Summer is coming…. I can’t wait to cut lawn and do my gardening … to stay young!”