The Beneficial Link Between Exercise and Parkinson’s

The beneficial link between exercise and Parkinson’s is being researched in a number of studies.
The beneficial link between exercise and Parkinson’s is being researched in a number of studies.

 

Studies have shown that regular exercise can actually improve symptoms for people diagnosed with Parkinson’s. To learn more, read our latest blog post.

The benefits of remaining physically active throughout aging are significant, yet for people who have Parkinson’s, it could truly be a game-changer regarding the progression of the disease. Several studies are revealing direct links between exercise and Parkinson’s, like the largest clinical study to date, in which patients who exercised at least 2½ hours per week realized a higher total wellbeing than those who refrained from physical activity. And that is only the start.

The onset of Parkinson’s symptoms occurs following a loss in the brain cells that make dopamine. Experts believe that exercise helps the mind revive lost connections, form new ones, and keep those that remain in place. Additional studies show:

  • Gains were discovered in stride length, gait speed and balance after treadmill exercise – after as little as just one single session, and persisting for many weeks afterwards.
  • Motor function and coordination were enhanced in people who pedaled at a faster rate on a stationary bike – once again, with results lasting for weeks after the study was over.
  • Recognizable improvements regarding the normalcy of movement were discovered in individuals with Parkinson’s who participated in a routine workout program compared to people who did not.

It’s important to note that the results achieved were dependent upon consistent, ongoing exercise. The clinical tests revealed that any protective benefits occurring were discontinued after the amount and intensity of physical exercise was reduced or was implemented just for a short period of time. The essential criteria for sustainable results appear to be exactly like those necessary to help those who’ve suffered a traumatic brain injury or stroke: intensity, specificity, difficulty and complexity.

Additional research is underway to hone in even more on the advantages of physical exercise in persons with Parkinson’s disease, and the precise reasoning behind it. For the time being, in the event your loved one has been diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease, it’s certainly beneficial to ask his/her primary care physician for a recommended exercise routine.

For help with safe, dependable transportation and accompaniment to a doctor’s appointment or exercise program, or encouragement and motivation to engage in a regular exercise regimen at home, call Golden Harmony at 919-426-7522. Our professional elder care in Raleigh and surrounding areas can help improve wellbeing for anyone with Parkinson’s disease, or another condition of aging. Email us to find out more.

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