January 17, 2013

"BIG" Exercises for Parkinson's

Shortly after my Parkinson's diagnosis in late 2009, my neurologist gave me a prescription (the needed pass for getting my sessions covered by Medicare) for the BIG exercise program, designed for people with Parkinson’s by the same organization – Lee Silverman Voice Treatment (LSVT) – that developed the LOUD speech therapy for people with PD. The BIG program incorporates some of the features of the voice program, like shouting out your exercise counts in a strong voice. If you are interested in finding someone to work with on either of these programs, go to the LSVT home page and click on the “Find a Clinician” button.

The BIG physical therapy program is pretty intense and probably works best for those in the early stages of PD. It also requires a commitment of four weeks, with one-hour training sessions twice a week.

I was doing fine with this programs, and stuck with it because I could clearly see it was a BIG help. Then came the August 2011 car crash and the resultant lower back pain that still troubles me. I used that discomfort as an excuse to stop taking my daily walks and doing my BIG exercises. I paid a big price for the neglect.

Fortunately, my neurologist at my regular November checkup gave me a new physical therapy prescription, suggesting I use it for a refresher course on the BIG exercises and to strengthen my core muscles. I'm just a few weeks into the new PT program, and I'm already seeing BIG results.

My physical therapist suggested we use my iPhone to record the BIG exercises. Then I'd transfer the videos to my computer for future reference.

With great misgivings, I've decided to post the videos. Jane Fonda I'm not!

1.  Floor to Ceiling

2.  Side to Side

3. Step and Reach -- Forward

4. Step and Reach -- Sideways

5. Rock and Reach -- Forwards/Backwards

6. Stop and Take a Bow

Well, once again, I've managed to embarrass myself.


kaitlyn roland said...

this is a great resource! thanks for sharing these exercises. I attended a wonderful presentation by Dr. Becky Farley (developed BIG) in the fall. if you're interested, there's info here: Parkinson Wellness Recovery – Exercise 4 Brain Change!


kaitlyn roland said...

ooops better link here: http://kaitlynroland.wordpress.com/2012/11/05/parkinson-wellness-recovery-exercise-4-brain-change/

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mahesh said...

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Anonymous said...

When I learned the Big exercises they had two more: a twisting exercise at the waist and a standing up from a sitting position.Are there differnt versions? Terri

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Donnie Bruno said...

My husband is 80 years and has been suffering from PD for the past 15 years. Lately he started hallucinating and I didn't know how to handle the situation. He cannot sleep and tried to find and catch the imaginary people who he thinks are real. he was taken Entacapone with Levodopa, Carbidopa, and Pramipexole and started physical therapy to strengthen muscles. nothing was really working to help his condition.I took him off the Siferol (with the doctor’s knowledge) and started him on parkinson’s herbal formula i ordered from Health Herbal Clinic, his symptoms totally declined over a 5 weeks use of the Parkinsons disease natural herbal formula.i read reviews from other previous patients who used the herbal formula, my husband is now active, he can now go about daily exercise!! his symptoms so much reduced that now I hardly notice them.Visit there website www. healthherbalclinic. net com or email Info@ healthherbalclinic. net