The Valley of the Sun Jewish Community Center, 12701 N. Scottsdale Road, offers a range of fitness classes specially designed to help those who have been diagnosed with Parkinson's disease. These fitness classes at "The J" include Parkinson's boxing, Tai Chi, cycle/stretch, pole walking, stretch & move, chair yoga and PWR! Moves Exercise, which is specifically designed to use exercise for symptom management. This specific class utilizes exercises that target four foundational skills shown by research to impact everyday mobility (tall posture, weight shifting, trunk mobility and stepping.)
"The Parkinson's Fitness Program at The J is a challenging and fun lineup of classes that help to alleviate the symptoms associated with the disease. Classes work on flexibility, strength, balance, cognition, voice and so much more," said Jonell Mertens, the Parkinson's Coordinator at The J. "But the best part of our program is the much-needed social support that has been created among the participants and instructors. It's kind of like the old TV show "Cheers" where everybody knows your name, and The J makes you feel very comfortable being a part of a program that is focused on only people with Parkinson's."
Tony Siegle is one participant in the program who was diagnosed with Parkinson's disease eight years ago and has been regularly attending the boxing classes at The J ever since.
"The day I was diagnosed, I was told to enroll in a Parkinson's boxing class, so I started coming to The J right away," said Siegle. "Exercise is a crucial retardant against the spreading of the disease and the more exercise, the better it is for a Parkinson's patient...I am so glad and grateful that The J offers these wonderful Parkinson's fitness classes."
Everyone is welcome at The J - all faiths, ages and abilities. For more information about the Parkinson's Program, call Mertens at 602-502-5344 or visit vosjcc.org.