Class offers support for those diagnosed with Parkinson's disease

GRANGER, Ind. (WNDU) - Parkinson's disease is a progressive nervous system disorder that affects movement. Beacon Health System provides a class to help patients maintain as much function as possible.

"We focus on a wide range of activities -- anywhere from strength, flexibility, balance, gate training, even some mental cognitive challenges as well," said Jake Phillips, clinical integration coordinator.

The class aims to help those who have been diagnosed with the progressive disease continue to do their day-to-day tasks.

"The ultimate goal is to maintain as much as possible their current level of fitness and functioning," Phillips said.

"It looks simple and repetitive, but it's not as easy as it looks," said Louis Laroche, a member of the class.

An estimated 7 to 10 million people worldwide have Parkinson's disease, and Beacon is determined to help those in our community.

Teachers says this class is the highlight of his week.

"The participants are awesome. We come in and joke around. It's fun, but it's also so rewarding to see how movement can affect and change these people's lives for the better," Phillips said.