Parkinson’s disease greatly compromises a person’s muscles, balance and movement overall. Muscles lose elasticity, thereby decreasing an individual’s strength. Howard, an 86-year-old man, living in his own apartment, came to us looking for help. When Tandem Strength & Balance® met him, he was having difficulty controlling his legs, was needing assistance from both a walker and a spotter, not able to climb stairs, and was struggling with car transfers. One month into his twice-weekly program, his strength and balance had afforded him the freedom to walk within his apartment with the assistance of his walker only. Over time, he was able to walk indoors with the aid of a cane only. Howard gained enough muscle strength to walk safely and confidently in his home. This was a major accomplishment for him.
Fast-forward 5 years of working with Tandem Strength & Balance®, Howard has increased his frequency of workouts to 4 days/week and is still living in his apartment. Despite the progression of his Parkinson’s, he continues to require minimal help standing up and getting in and out of bed. Although Howard walks under the guidance of a Tandem Strength & Balance® physical therapist, and a walker, he continues to move and work through transfers. Howard’s ability to live with his symptoms so successfully would not be possible without the leg strength, balance and confidence he gained in therapy.