Yoga Therapy for Parkinson’s
Yoga as a therapy for Parkinson's disease (PD) has positive effects on quality of life including reduction in tremor and rigidity, as well as management of depression and fatigue. Rather than viewing common effects of Parkinson's disease –slowed walking speed, reduced range of motion, freezing, speech difficulties– as obstacles which need to be 'fought' or 'crushed', yoga therapy can help one regain a connection with a sometimes reluctant body through movement linked to breathing patterns, visualization of movement / actions and speech before moving or speaking, and improving balance and proprioception through awareness rather than rote exercises. Hand-eye coordination (visuomotor skills), techniques for rising from a low chair or from a fall, as well as direct implementation of practical skills may all comprise part of a customized yoga therapy session– acknowledging the challenges of Parkinson's while considering the person as a whole.
From experience, we find that in-home therapy sessions with calm, familiar surroundings result in fewer (if any) falls, and less dyskinesia caused by anxiety, stress, and fatigue. Parkinson's clients are at ease, not attempting to emulate others rather than listening to their own body, or challenging themselves beyond their safe boundaries.