5K fosters movement for people with Parkinson’s disease

Deb Knapp, clinical education supervisor for the Indiana Parkinson Foundation, helps Tom Grabill with exercises at the Noblesville CLIMB location. (Photo by Larry Gindhart Photography)

By Desiree Williams

Tom Grabill was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease in 2008 and has fought  the symptoms ever since.  After participating in a trial therapy program through the University of Indianapolis, Grabill joined the CLIMB approximately five years ago.

Parkinson’s disease causes patients to lose motor control due to the loss of dopamine-producing cells in the brain. The CLIMB therapy program works ease  those symptoms. A program developed by the Indiana Parkinson Foundation in 2011, CLIMB provides exercise classes that focus on stretching, muscle re-education, balance, coordination and cardiovascular health. The program also offers a support system for members.

“It really helps reinforce and encourage people to continue to work at it and exercise and to use what we have,” Grabill said.

To raise funds for the CLIMB program and support Hoosiers with Parkinson’s, the Indiana Parkinson Foundation will host the fifth annual Choose to Move 5K run at 9:30 a.m. Sept. 16 at Witten Park, 13256 Saxony Blvd.

Check-in begins at 7:45 a.m. The 5K will be timed, and the winner will get a $250 cash prize and a gold Chairman’s Cup. The runner-up will receive a $50 gift certificate. After the run, there will be a kid’s zone and health fair.

Those interested can register online individually or join a team to support one of the eight CLIMB locations throughout the state. Tickets are $40 for the run and $35 for the 1-mile walk.

“What that means is that we’ll have the resources to continue to keep the gym open and for people to interact and to continue to fight against the symptoms of Parkinson’s disease that everybody sees,” Grabill said.

Grabill exercises at the Noblesville CLIMB location six times per week with his trainer, Kim Williams. He is assessed every six months to create an updated individual program.

For more, visit indianaparkinson.evrconnect.com.


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