Parkinson's Disease and Exercise

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Parkinson's Disease and Exercise

Topic Overview

Exercise is an important part of home treatment for people with Parkinson's disease. It has benefits in both early and advanced stages of the disease. Regular exercise can help you:

  • Maintain muscle strength and improve coordination.
  • Maintain and increase endurance.
  • Improve flexibility and range of motion.
  • Improve cardiovascular fitness.
  • Control weight.
  • Reduce the likelihood of becoming constipated.

Exercise also can promote a sense of well-being and improve your mood.

A physiotherapist can help you learn exercises and stretches to do at home to improve posture, strength, flexibility, and endurance.

A physical or occupational therapist can also help you to:

  • Plan more efficient movements for daily living activities (such as bathing and dressing) so that these activities are easier and less tiring.
  • Improve balance and walking.
  • Use walking aids (such as canes or walkers) correctly.

For more information, see the topic Fitness.

Credits

By Healthwise Staff
Primary Medical Reviewer Anne C. Poinier, MD - Internal Medicine
Primary Medical Reviewer Andrew Swan, MD, CCFP, FCFP - Family Medicine
Specialist Medical Reviewer G. Frederick Wooten, MD - Neurology
Last Revised February 1, 2011

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