Exercise Essentials topic of next St. Rose Parkinsons meeting

If they want some competition, maybe a round of tennis or golf would be in order.

These are just a couple of ideas behind Parkinsons Exercise Essentials, which will be explained at the upcoming support group meeting at St. Rose Ambulatory & Surgery Center.

The meeting is set for 7 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 25 in the basement-level St. Dominic Room. It is free and open to anyone who wants to learn about Parkinsons disease.

Pam Perry, St. Rose Rehab Services director, said each participant will receive a free video that outlines the exercise program. The Davis Phinney Foundation for Parkinsons donated the DVDs to St. Rose.

This great video demonstrates various exercises and how each can be adapted to a persons abilities and needs, Perry said, noting she is grateful to the Foundation. People affected by Parkinsons shouldnt be concerned about what exercise is best for someone with the disease. Instead, we want to help them discover what is best for each of them personally.

They can tell us what they enjoy and we can figure out what exercise is best, Perry added. Research shows that physical activity can have significant positive effects on strength, mobility and balance. And because it has emotional benefits, it helps people feel better.

Christa Lassen-Vogel, marketing director of the Davis Phinney Foundation, said the non-profit organization based in Boulder, Co., is eager to provide resource materials to support groups.

The Foundation serves a unique purpose, Lassen-Vogel commented. Our mission is to help people with Parkinsons live well today. While it is critical to find a cure, we feel strongly that those with Parkinsons need information, inspiration and tools that motivate them to take action to improve quality of life right now.

We fund innovative, early-stage research to discover therapies that enable people with Parkinsons to thrive, she continued. Our message is one of action; dont just wait for a cure. There are so many things you can do to improve your outlook and quality of life today.

Lassen-Vogel also noted that men and women from age 34 to 73 are represented in the video; some are long-time exercisers and others are just getting started.

The common theme is that each has experienced profound benefits from exercise, Lassen-Vogel said. They have done it by engaging in activities they enjoy from yoga to swimming to biking and hiking. They found ways to make exercise a natural part of daily life.

Foundation founder, Davis Phinney, was diagnosed with young onset Parkinsons in 2000 at the age of 40. He is an Olympic medalist and one of the most successful professional cyclists in U.S. history.

For more information, visit www.davisphinneyfoundation.org or call toll-free, 855-346-7564.

St. Rose is part of Centura Health, which connects individuals and families across western Kansas and Colorado with more than 6,000 physicians, 15 hospitals, seven senior-living communities, physician practices and clinics, and home-care and hospice services.