A national charity is hosting a free taster session to help north-east people with Parkinson’s this weekend.
Specialised exercise classes for those with the condition are becoming increasingly popular, with a raft of proven benefits.
Research has shown that two-and-a-half hours of physical activity can help with managing symptoms and improving moods.
And earlier this month we spoke to participants at a regular session in Aberdeen, who sang the project’s praises.
Now Parkinson’s UK is hosting a free event in Newmachar to offer people introductions to the likes of Nordic walking, table tennis and pickleball.
‘My posture and walking have improved’
Stanley McCallum, 63, was diagnosed with Parkinson’s nine years ago.
He has a tremor and some issues with mobility, but travels from his home in Ellon to Peterhead every week for an exercise class.
“I’ve noticed small but discernible differences,” he said.
“My posture has improved and my walking has improved.
“I’m also managing to get out of bed by myself when my medication is at its low point.
“I used to be extremely stiff and would need help getting up.”
While he was nervous the first time he went to one of the sessions at Peterhead Leisure and Community Centre, he soon realised there was no need to worry.
“There is no pressure, no embarrassment, and there will be help and support from the instructor,” he added.
“We’re all on this journey and we are here to help each other.”
The Parkinson’s UK taster session will run from 10am to 1pm on Sunday April 2 at the Axis Centre in Newmachar.
Chloe MacMillan, the charity’s area development manager, said: “Being physically active is important for everyone, but crucially, can make it easier to live well with Parkinson’s.
“We are really happy to offer this opportunity for people to try a range of activities, suitable for people with mild to moderate symptoms.”
Places must be booked in advance by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or calling Chloe MacMillan on 0300 123 3679.