The importance of exercise for Parkinson’s patients; one sufferer’s experiences.

I have always enjoyed exercise of some kind but now, nearly 3 years after the Parkinson’s diagnosis, it feels more important than ever. Looking at research I like the idea that exercise can help with the management of symptons and possibly slow down the disease progression – “it puts the patient, not a pill at the centre of care”. I know each person has different symptons and what works for one person will not suit another but it seems to help me. I do a mixture of things, lots of Pilates, walking, swimming and, of course, my favourite activity, badminton.

I play at a friendly club rather than League now and have learnt to adapt my serve, a tremor is not helpful with this, and still get a real kick out of playing. I was thrilled to be asked to play in a match a few weeks ago and although the results were not in our favour I enjoyed the whole experience. Unfortunately we were using different shuttles and I soon realised I had tennis elbow, a few weeks without play will sadly be necessary. I must fit in another lot of exercises for that!

However, I could still be a Parkinson’s ballerina! Having failed at my first attempt to join a class run by English National Ballet they have emailed me about two taster classes in July, fingers crossed I can get into one of them. It just sounds a wonderful idea, people with Parkinson’s working with ballet professionals.

At the end of May we joined ex colleagues of the amiable husband in Bath and spent time exploring that beautiful city, in particular the Roman Baths. We were staying just outside and were lucky enough to be able to travel to the centre of Bath by boat.

At the Roman Baths in Bath.

At the Roman Baths in Bath.

I recently celebrated my third birthday with Parkinson’s and enjoyed champagne and canapes with friends in the garden one day and then, on the actual day, went to the beautiful National Trust gardens at Sissinghurst where we spent time in the “white garden” and were able to see the roses at their best.

At the National Trust gardens, Sissinghurst, Kent.

At the National Trust gardens, Sissinghurst, Kent.

We are off to Lake Como in Italy this week and look forward to seeing lots of places in that area. When we get back from there the lovely daughter flies in from Australia; July will be busy!

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