7 Ways to Move More During the Day with Parkinson’s Disease

According to a new study from The University of Michigan, increasing everyday physical activity, or puttering, may be enough to help improve Parkinson’s motor symptoms. Puttering may even make a bigger impact than vigorous exercise.

Of course, if you have a movement disorder this is often easier said than done. Motor symptoms like gait freezing make the activity more difficult. Meanwhile, non-motor symptoms such as apathy, fatigue, and depression can sap motivation to move.

Our community shared their favorite ways and best tips to get more movement in their days.

1. Schedule an alarm on your watch, computer or phone to get up and move around. If you’re working on a project, you may find taking a quick walk or stretch helps improve focus, too.

2. Set a modest goal. Fitness trackers like FitBit and Pebble can help you track how much you move and set goals for small improvements. For example, you may vow to take 100 more steps than you did yesterday.

3. Listen to music. Play favorite songs that make you feel like getting up and moving. Research suggests that music can even help Parkinson’s symptoms like gait freezing. Many people with Parkinson’s find that moving to a rhythm helps them break out of a freezing spell.

4. Plan out specific chores that will get you moving during the day. When dividing up labor with a loved one, choose a few that require some activity, like watering plants or cleaning out a closet.

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