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Rock Steady Boxing Helps People with Parkinson’s Fight Back

Monday, April 16, 2018

Community news

New Program in Fergus Falls will hold Open House April 26th

(FERGUS FALLS, Minn.) – Lake Region Healthcare (LRH) is the newest affiliate of a low-impact, non-contact exercise program aimed at helping people with Parkinson’s Disease fight back against the neurological effects of the disease.

“We have offered a support group and LSVT BIG program for Parkinson’s for many years,” said LRH Wellness Director Natalie Knutson. “Now we’re excited to be expanding on those programs to offer one more method people with Parkinson’s can do improve their quality of life.”

Rock Steady Boxing (RSB) emphasizes gross motor movement, balance, core strength, rhythm, and hand-eye coordination. Participation in the program has been shown to favorably impact range of motion, flexibility, posture, gait, and activities of daily living. According to the affiliate website, recent studies at the Cleveland Clinic support the idea of intense “forced” exercise such as boxing to be neuro=protective, which means it is a type of exercise that may actually slow disease progression.

“Another major benefit of the program is the relationships, support and connections made within the group setting,” Knutson said. “We have already seen this develop in the very early weeks of our classes,” she said.  

Four coaches have been certified for the LRH Rock Steady Boxing Program including Nancy Symens, Lorri Holt, Krisjohn Veum and Mick Siems. Classes are scheduled Monday through Thursday and are held in the Mehl Center’s Health & Wellness Hub across Cascade Street from the Hospital in Fergus Falls.  Knutson said that ideally each boxer will have a “corner man” who works alongside them during the work-out ensuring their safety and encouraging them to push to their highest potential.  “We are also looking for people interested in volunteering as corner men in the program and would love to talk with anyone who has the time and interest in this area,” she added.

An open house for people interested in learning more will be held on Thursday, April 26th at the Hub.   There will be two open session from 11am to 1pm and from 5pm to 7pm. For more information on the open house or the Rock Steady Boxing and Parkinson’s programs at LRH people are encouraged to call 218.736.8451.

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About Lake Region Healthcare

Lake Region Healthcare is living out its vision to be Minnesota's preeminent regional healthcare partner. With over 80 Medical Staff and over 900 employees, its team is dedicated to serving its patients and community with integrity, teamwork, compassion and excellence. For more information about Lake Region Healthcare, visit