Delay the Disease training improves Parkinson’s services in Nebraska

July 19, 2019

Parkinson’s Nebraska welcomed 55 professionals from across Nebraska to the Midwest Delay the Disease training in Grand Island, Neb., on July 18-19. The training provided attendees with the knowledge and tools to design and implement a community-based, Parkinson’s- specific exercise class. Because of the Parkinson’s Nebraska commitment to making training accessible, all attendees were provided with the cost of registration, lodging, a mileage stipend, and meals throughout the training.  

The attendees learning about the scientific and evidence- based benefits of exercise in the management of Parkinson’s disease.

Jackie Russell, RN, BSN, CNOR and David Zid, BA, ACE, APG, the co-founders of the Delay the Disease program and training instructors, led an informative and interactive workshop. The training began with Jackie sharing the science and evidence- based benefits of exercise. David led the rest of the training, teaching exercises that target Parkinson’s symptoms and how to design a Parkinson’s exercise class. Together, they brought a dynamic energy that made the training fun and inspiring!

Getting ready to learn about exercises that target Parkinson’s symptoms.
Learning about taking BIG steps and counting LOUD
Improving arm swing with David’s Ziddy Sticks.

Parkinson’s Nebraska provided the attendees with a dinner and presentation hosted at the Ramada by Wyndham Midtown Grand Island. John Bertoni, M.D., Ph.D., professor in the University of Nebraska Medical Center Department of Neurological Sciences, and director of the Parkinson’s disease program at Nebraska Medicine, UNMC’s clinical partners, was the guest speaker at the training. He presented on the role of Exercise in Parkinson’s Disease Management and conducted a lively Question and Answer session. The group appreciated Dr. Bertoni’s experience, and humor, in the presentation.

Parkinson’s Nebraska provided dinner for the attendees.
Dr. Bertoni on the big screen, talking about the role of exercise in Parkinson’s disease.

On the second day of the training, there was a demo class for the attendees to practice their new skills with real participants. More than 20 people with Parkinson’s and their caregivers traveled from Omaha, Lincoln, and Grand Island to participate in the training’s Demo Class. After the class, they enjoyed a lunch provided by Parkinson’s Nebraska and get to meet the training attendees. It was a great opportunity to celebrate and strengthen the Parkinson’s community and network with others across the state.  

The Demo Class participants mingling and waiting for class to start.
Demo Class balloon fun!

The immense impact this training has made on the Nebraska community is made possible through a partnership with the Parkinson’s Foundation.  The foundation awarded Parkinson’s Nebraska a community grant to help training costs. Because of the grant, Parkinson’s Nebraska was able to provide the training to more professionals and further increase the number of exercise classes throughout Nebraska.  

As a result of the Delay the Disease training there will be 21 new Parkinson’s exercise classes across Nebraska. Parkinson’s Nebraska has recognized a lack of services in rural communities and is proud that over 15 classes will serve under-served areas. This is just the beginning of Parkinson’s Nebraska’s commitment to the making services across the entire state.

To learn more about how Parkinson’s Nebraska is serving the Parkinson’s community, visit www.Parkinsonsnebraska.org.