ROCK STEADY BOXING
FIGHTING BACK AGAINST PARKINSON'S
Rock Steady Boxing (RSB) gives people with Parkinson’s disease hope by improving their quality of life through a non-contact boxing-based fitness curriculum. Budo Canada runs the “Rock Steady Boxing Toronto” program.
Parkinson’s disease is a degenerative movement disorder which can cause deterioration of motor skills, balance, speech and sensory function. Parkinson Canada estimates there are more than 100,000 Canadians who have Parkinson’s Disease and that number continues to grow each year.
Rock Steady Boxing is the first boxing program in Canada dedicated to the fight against Parkinson’s.
In our sessions, exercises are largely adapted from boxing drills. Parkinson’s boxers condition for optimal agility, speed, muscular endurance, accuracy, hand-eye coordination, footwork and overall strength to defend against and overcome opponents. At RSB, Parkinson’s disease is the opponent. Exercises vary in purpose and form but share one common trait: they are rigorous and intended to extend the perceived capabilities of the participant.
Since the early 1980s, various studies have supported the notion that rigorous exercise, emphasizing gross motor movement, balance, core strength, and rhythm, could favorably impact range of motion, flexibility, posture, gait, and activities of daily living. More recent studies, most notably at Cleveland Clinic, focus on the concept of intense “forced” exercise, and have begun to suggest that certain kinds of exercise may be neuro-protective and actually slow disease progression.
Academic institutions (such as University of Indianapolis and Butler University) are reporting and documenting the improved quality of life among our boxers, and our boxers heartily agree! Discovery of a cure might be many years away, but there is increasing evidence that improvement is being made by those participating in the Rock Steady Boxing program. This improvement is both cognitive and physical, and occurs for people at various stages of Parkinson’s.
Call today to schedule an appointment to visit a Rock Steady session, speak privately with a RSB coach, or watch a class in action. And, as with any exercise program, please consult your physician before beginning training.
All boxers must complete a 90-minute application and assessment process. The cost for the initial assessment, which includes a boxing kit (boxing gloves, hand wraps, and carry bag), is $80+HST. Saturday-only or once-weekly classes are $75+HST. Unlimited weekday classes at your assessed level are $150+HST.
- Symptoms mild, inconvenient but not disabling
- Able to reach maximum heart rate
- Caregiver assistance is not a requirement
The focus of this class is to improve over-all fitness level, postural imbalances and maintain a healthy body. Classes are high intensity and transitions are rapid between exercises.
- Symptoms are bilateral
- Minimal disability
- Posture and gait affected
- Very little assistance needed
The focus of this class is to maintain fitness level, address postural imbalances, encourage deep breathing, improve balance and stress accuracy of movements. More time is given for transitions. Modifications for specific exercises are taught. Caregiver assistance is required if the Boxer has issues with balance.
- Significant slowing of body movements
- Early impairment of equilibrium on walking or standing
- Generalized dysfunction that is moderately severe
This class provides one-on-one training in a safe environment. Classes address high balance risks, improving postural imbalances, encouraging deep breathing techniques, voice therapy and are attentive to cognitive impairment issues. Caregiver assistance may be required.
- Severe symptoms, rigidity and bradykinesia
- Can still walk to a limited extent
- Cognitive impairments
- Tremor may be less than earlier stages
This class focuses on a more narrow selection of Parkinson’s specific issues. Flexibility, balance, self-awareness in space and improved gait are stressed. One-on-one training is guaranteed. Caregiver support and attendance (at no additional cost) is required.
ROCK STEADY BOXING COACHES
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