I'm 64, diagnosed with PD 18 months ago but have had symptoms of no left arm swing, rigidity of torso, leaning forwards when walking, and bradykinesia for some years before that, no tremor. I was initially started on Madopar with no positive response, just bad reactions and I felt so sick I couldn't even work. Tried Sinemet instead in case it made a difference but again once I got up to a certain level I felt very ill so went off that too. I chose then not to medicate and had a year of sleeplessness and depression as I was coming to terms with my new reality but that is thankfully behind me now and I'm feeling more positive and happy.

Currently I'm on a Mao B inhibitor (Selegiline) and small dose of Nortriptyline, both of which could have helped a bit with the depression, whatever, it's so good not to feel bad I'm sticking with it.

The reason I write is that I have just finished a four week session of LSVT Big and finally have something that has actually helped improve my life and given me hope that I have taken charge of changes. It's one on one with a trained physio, four sessions a week for four weeks but as far as I'm concerned it was the best money invested in myself ever. Basically she helped my brain re-remember that I have a left arm at all, I can now swing it in time with my walking and my walking stance is much more upright and decent stride length again. She also concentrated on tasks I had found difficult like doing up buttons, dealing with change, unscrewing bottles etc, now I do them all with BIG movements, much better.

I'd highly recommend this program to anyone, particularly at an early stage of PD. As an orchardist I need my fine motor skills and I think she's given me another summer of pruning, each one counts!

7 Replies

  • ps that you tube I posted clearly isn't me, but gives an idea about the program.

  • Grower

    My PD symptoms where very similar to yours. I have completed the LSVT bIG Physical Therapy Training three years ago. The ongoing benefits continue. I too am most enthusiastic in recommending it for those recently diagnosed.


  • Hi Grower I've been doing LSVT (Lee Silvers Voice Training) for some years after a one day workshop at the London Hospital for Neurological Diseases. I don't actually do the voice training concentrating insted on the physical jerks. I don't know what precise effects they have, nothing bad certainly, but I sure enjoy doing them. They're vigorous and snappy and you feel good after them. One thing is, they challenge your balance and you can modify them to suit you. I found it hard to locate a LSVT coach but I have watched the exercises on your presentation many times in the past and copy them as best I can. Now I'm going to look out for a punchbag! Glad to know I'm not the only one doing them.

  • LSVT bIG Physical Therapy Training is great but we must exercise daily to keep Pd in check

    the exercise must be intense and varied

    i do crossfit 5 or 6 times a week

    I am able to do more than a lot of 30 to 40 year old (i am almost 62 9 years with PD)

    CrossFit is constantly varied, functional movements executed at high intensity. Ok, now that you are saying “What the *@$&”, let’s break that statement down. A functional movement is a movement that incorporates multiple joints and can move a large amount of weight over great distances in a short amount of time. By constantly varied we mean that we do not repeat specific movements regularly as part of the main workout. High intensity means that we do these movements as fast as possible as part of a timed work out in order to move as much weight over a long distance in as short amount of time as possible. Why do we do things this way in CrossFit? Well, we are trying to increase your power output (Power= (Weight*Distance)/Time) across broad, time and modal domains. CrossFit is designed for this singular purpose. We want to turn each and everyone of our athletes into a race horse, not a show horse, aesthetics are purely a by-product.

    Fitness is most easily described through the 10 general physical skills: cardiovascular/respiratory endurance, stamina, strength, flexibility, power, agility, speed, coordination, balance, and accuracy. In CrossFit, we believe that you are only as fit as you are competent in each of those skills, which requires a wide variety of exercises and workouts. This type of fitness breeds general physical preparedness, which simply means that you are not a master of one skill, but are prepared for all of them. Fitness also includes eating healthy, which is as simple as eating lean meats, fruits and vegetables, and some nuts. Being fit is not merely being healthy, it is a higher standard and harder to achieve.

    typical work out

    can be adjusted for your fitness level

    about one hour

    all done supervised by 1 or 2 trainers

    PreWod (wod is work out of the day)

    Warm Up

    Run 200meters

    150 JUMP ROPE

    30 Good Morning 945 pound bar across shoulder bend over at waist)

    20 Hollow Rocks (lay on floor and rock back and forth)

    20 Arch Rocks (lay on floor on back and rock back and forth)


    3 RM Deadlift (I did 295 pounds)


    8 Min Amrap (as many reps as possible)

    5 HSPU (hand stand push up)

    7 TTB (toes to bar hang from pull up bar and touch toes to bar)

    9 Burpees

    Cool Down

    Walk 200m

  • I am so pleased to hear about your results with LSVT therapy. I have also taken it. As a result we have a group that meets once a week with our therapist. We do the therapy and she adds some other routines. It is very helpful for our mind and body. As a result of the therapy we have also organized a Parkinson's support group in our town. Best wishes to you as you continue each day.

  • I took the LSVT BIG program and swear by it-- as a combatant to PD--if you have a qualified instructor I urge you to get going now--I am a devotee of the program and recommend it highly.

  • Great to hear that others have found good benefits too. While it's clear that any exercise helps us, LSVT Big is dealing with the PD symptoms from a neuroplasty angle, retraining those neurological pathways from the brain that are becoming unused and forgotten. Makes such sense and it's empowering to have a bit of control over something myself. Starting to sound like an ad!

    Lets hope that more physios take the training certificate as it can be hard to find practitioners, especially here in NZ.

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