Parkinson’s disease affects the control of automatic movements. As a result, people with Parkinson’s often suffer from disturbed gait, impaired balance and decreased postural responses. It is important to try to maintain an upright posture. Poor posture can lead to an increased risk of falls, neck and back pain, a reduced range of movement and problems with breathing, speaking and swallowing. Taking part in regular exercise can help improve posture. Below are a few Bounce Back tips and exercises to promote good posture and spinal alignment.
BBE video to improve balance and posture (10 minutes) – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tSR1vQSPjdY&t=356s
BBE video to improve strength (12 minutes) – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VRkr2M6fV_0&t=620s
Stooped posture makes the muscles in the front of the body less flexible and the muscles in the back of the body weaker. These 5 exercises aim to increase the flexibility of the muscles on the anterior side of the body (chest, shoulders and neck) and increase the strength of the upper back muscles.
Repeat each exercise 10-15 times. Repeat the circuit 2-3 times.
How to do it: Keep your head, shoulders and lower back pushed back, into the wall. Slowly lift the arms above your head. Squeeze your shoulder blades together as you bring your elbows down to your body.
Muscles targeted: Upper back muscles (latissimus dorsi)
How to do it: Facing forwards, tuck your chin into your neck, hold for 5 seconds the relax to the neutral position.
Muscles targeted: Muscles that keep the head pulled back (deep cervical flexors, lower cervical extensors).
How to do it: Pull your elbows back, opening up your chest. Hold for 5 seconds, then relax.
Muscles targeted: Strengthens muscles of the upper back and stretches the chest muscles. Helps relieve tension in the upper back.
How to do it: Squeeze your shoulder blades together. Hold for 5 seconds, then relax and repeat.
Muscles targeted: Upper back muscles (trapezius, rhomboids, and latissimus dorsi)
How to do it: Sit back onto your heels, reach your hands up above your head. Hold for 30 seconds.
Muscles targeted: Stretches the upper back (latissimus dorsi), chest muscles and hips.