Giving Parkinson’s Disease a One, Two Punch

Patients see improvements in balance and more, along with finding comradery.

Getting a Parkinson’s diagnosis isn’t a death sentence, but it can certainly feel that way at first when all the information is unexpected and foreign. The disease of 20 years ago may have immobilized people, but as of today, there have been significant advances in research, medications, and here at Family Health West (FHW) – we have Rock Steady Boxing!

People are often asking, do I have to be the next Mike Tyson? And what does this have to do with Parkinson’s disease? Great questions. 

Rock Steady Boxing is a non-contact group class for people with Parkinson’s disease. It is circuit-based training specifically designed to reduce symptoms often associated with Parkinson’s disease. The overall goal of the class is to fight back against the symptoms a person is experiencing and improve overall health and fitness. The program is designed with a regiment for fitness and includes exercise for speech, facial expressions, hands, and cognition, as well as balance and coordination.

“We can work with anyone if they can get to our classes in Fruita!” Kara Griffith, FHW Wellness supervisor, said. “At almost five years into offering Rock Steady Boxing, I am amazed by the results I see in every class. It’s rewarding to design workouts for people who want to feel empowered and work so hard.”

Three levels are available, featuring modifications for different needs and medical history.  Classes are held for one-hour multiple days and on average participants attend two-three classes per week in our FHW Wellness clinic. They build strength, confidence, and most report staving off further symptoms or further deterioration over a long period.

Patients can self refer and join Rock Steady Boxing at any time, however, many neurology physicians refer patients to this program with some traveling from Rio Blanco County, Delta County and across the Grand Valley. We encourage those interested, but unsure, to come watch a class and chat with us. If you or someone you know may be interested in this class, please connect with Kara Griffith, by calling (970) 858-2502, or visit the website at https://fhw.org/services/rocksteady-boxing/.

Special Note: Scholarships are available for class participants. Contact Kara for details on how to qualify for a scholarship.

A recent Rock Steady Boxing client who dressed up for class on Halloween day. This group also has a lot of fun!

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