My PD Story

Group of people exercising at class
General PD Community

Newly Diagnosed Wellness Initiative

Tampa JCC and Federation’s Tampa Bay Parkinson's Disease Newly Diagnosed Wellness Initiative in Tampa, FL

The Tampa Bay Parkinson’s Disease Newly Diagnosed Wellness Initiative is a collaboration between the Tampa JCCs and University of South Florida, a Parkinson’s Foundation Center of Excellence, to improve the lives of people impacted by Parkinson’s. The program helps those newly diagnosed with Parkinson’s participate in this established comprehensive Parkinson’s wellness program. With more than 250 participants, the program provides an inclusive and welcoming environment for Parkinson’s patients and their families.

It provides a multi-faceted approach to help those with PD focus on hope and possibility with dignity. Activities include weekly exercise classes; bi-weekly support groups for people with PD, the newly diagnosed, caregivers and frequent educational programs where Parkinson’s Foundation resources are shared and distributed. In addition, there are social programs planned by program participants, which encourage individuals, family and friends to feel active, connected and empowered in a strong, welcoming and Parkinson’s-education community.

“I was diagnosed with PD after my children expressed their concerns with my difficulty moving, my facial expressions and my speech. They attended my appointments with my primary doctor and neurologist. I was living in south Pinellas County with little access to programs in support of PD. We heard about the programs offered by the JCC in Tampa so I moved to Tampa to be able to participate in these programs. After four months of active participation I get many positive comments from family and friends about the significant improvements in my physical appearance, movements and speech. I currently see a personal trainer twice weekly and participate in boxing. I also do chair yoga and Nia once a week. I attend Tremble Cleft which has significantly improved my speech. And the boxing has improved my stability and mobility. In addition, I participate in the PD Support group which has helped me mentally and emotionally. I currently attend these programs at both the JCC on the Cohn Campus & the Bryan Glazer Family JCC facilitates. I am very appreciative for the improvements to my lifestyle as a result of all of these programs.”
- Richard Montalbano, newly diagnosed, new participant 

“The program has proven to be extremely valuable in my overall battle daily with Parkinson’s. My mental outlook has improved as a result of this class. I feel more confident in my daily functions requiring balance and strength Moves we are required to do during class support post rehab exercises I do daily to maintain my quality of life. Bottom line is the program is an integral part of a daily ritual of movement to maintain both mental and physical well-being.”
- John Mollner, newly diagnosed, new participant 

“I feel very blessed to have access to this Program and the wonderful staff that administer and run it. I regularly attend three to four classes a week. I find that Tai Chi, Rock Steady Boxing, and Tremble Clefs have quite a bit of complimentary activities and approaches that help to strengthen the benefits that I get from each class that I attend. During my last appointment my doctor was so impressed with my breathing that he said it was the best breath that I had ever taken with him. He said, ‘keep doing what I have been doing with the program.’ I have seen a big improvement in my ability to manage my disease and function better since starting the program.”
- Wayne MacLaughlin, newly diagnosed, new participant 

“I want to thank the JCC for welcoming us.  I take three classes and I feel that each class gives its own benefits.  The benefits in coordination, motion and balance play a great part in keeping my mobility on a positive level.”
- Ted Mook, newly diagnosed, participant of 3 years

“This is a valuable resource for people with Parkinson. I have greatly benefited from the Tai Chi class and now the new Tremble Clef program has helped me strengthen my vocal cords through singing. I was diagnosed six years ago. I have been coming from 25 miles away to participate. 
- Robert Packard, participant of two years

Find a local Parkinson’s wellness class in your area. See the full list of Parkinson’s Foundation Community Grant Recipients.

Back to Top