A Tallahassee gym is sparring with Parkinson’s.
Parkinson’s patients face the loss of their motor skills and balance over time, but at SWEAT Therapy Fitness, they’re not taking that sentence lying down.
“We do balance exercises and strength-based, and they get to punch something. It helps alleviate the tremors, it helps for their range of motions, it enhances their quality of life, and it gives them a sense of empowerment. And plus, they’re a little pissed off, so let’s punch.”
SWEAT Fitness owner Kim Bibeau says the boxing program increases patients’ dopamine, the chemical responsible for regulating movement and emotional responses. It’s the chemical that Parkinson’s slowly takes away from its victims, so exercise is highly recommended. Another benefit, Bibeau says, is the camaraderie of the group, battling the disease together.