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George Gervase

I have been a bowler since age three. I have bowled eight sanctioned 300 games. Despite my Parkinson’s disease (PD) diagnosis at age 65, I have continued to bowl in United States Bowling Congress (USBC) sanctioned leagues. My feet do not “freeze” when I am bowling. Recently, at age 70, I bowled an 811 series in a mixed league that I bowl with my wife and some friends.

For this achievement, I thank my Parkinson’s team at Central DuPage Hospital, a Northwestern Medicine affiliate, in Winfield, IL, for emphasizing the importance of exercise as the one of the best treatment to help manage Parkinson’s symptoms.

I did Rock Steady Boxing for about a year, but decided conventional exercise was the thing for me. I did LSVT training and learned to move “big.” My therapists are terrific. I took an LSVT refresher course and have been doing these exercises daily with my wife. I also walk 30 minutes every day. I use my “on time” with my medications to do landscaping and other work around our house. When I haven’t been able to exercise for a few days, I don’t move nearly as well.

While bowling the 811 series was exciting, my biggest thrill is staying mobile. My movement disorder neurologist, Martha McGraw, nurse practitioner, Heidi Mathew, and therapists, Tracy Carlson and Sharon Seitzinger, explained how to accomplish that: Exercise! Exercise! Exercise!

Learn more about exercise and Parkinson’s disease at Parkinson.org/Exercise.

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