You may have heard of actor Alan Alda, singer Neil Diamond, and former Attorney General Janet Reno.
What do they have in common? All are notable figures with Parkinson’s disease, a progressive nervous system disorder that affects movement, causing rigidity and smaller, slower gestures and actions.
Symptoms can manifest differently but usually affect balance, walking, and performing activities of daily living, like simply buttoning a shirt.
Nearly one million people in the U.S. have Parkinson’s—the second most common age-related neurodegenerative disorder after Alzheimer’s disease.
Recognizing the impact this chronic condition has on older adults and their loved ones, The Birches at Newtown and its on-site therapy provider FOX Rehabilitation are bringing two new programs to Bucks County residents.
Beginning in April, The Birches will host a monthly in-person support group for family caregivers and FOX’s BIG for LIFE, a weekly exercise class for people who have completed LSVT BIG® treatment.
FOX Optimal Living Director and LSVT BIG certified clinician Kristin Fitti Hafer leads the classes using exercises to help manage symptoms with proven benefits to posture, balance, range of movement, strength, and endurance. Space is limited; a reservation is required to participate.
“Our goal is to provide a fun and engaging class, working on improving BIG movements in everyday life, giving those with Parkinson’s the ability to maintain their independence,” Kristin said.
Parkinson’s is challenging; however, understanding the disease and making lifestyle changes can help manage symptoms, maintain independence and improve quality of life.
To RSVP, please call 215-240-4829 or visit our events page at www.thebirchesatnewtown.com.
PHOTO CAP: Brendan Black, a FOX Rehab physical therapist and LSVT BIG certified clinician, assists resident Alice with her movement. The Birches and FOX Rehab previously collaborated to create a six-week, non-combat boxing program to help relieve Parkinson’s symptoms: bradykinesia, tremors, and rigidity.