Classes and other opportunities for exercise, therapy and learning

Dance for Parkinson's

For many of our members, a highlight of the week is their participation in the Dance for Parkinson's classes supported by Oxford City Council and led by a team from English National Ballet.

Dance for Parkinson's Dance for Parkinson's

Branch members taking part in Dance for Parkinson's classes

The classes have featured on BBC national news. They also appear in the wonderful half-hour documentary Parkinson's: The Funny Side, devised and presented by Branch member Paul Mayhew-Archer, which is permanently available on BBC iPlayer at this link.

Two short videos (one minute each) created for English National Ballet and starring Oxford Branch members are available here and here. There is also a 7-minute video describing the project in more depth.

If you are interested in joining the classes, please visit Oxford City Council's information page.

Exercise classes and physiotherapy

Recent research has shown that exercise seems to protect the dopamine producing nerve cells that are lost in Parkinson's, helping them work better and survive for longer.

Free local classes: Big, Bold and Balance

Big, Bold and Balance is a physiotherapy programme designed for people with Parkinson's and delivered by Age UK's Generation Games service. Weekly classes run at a number of venues:

Town Time Venue
Abingdon Tuesday, 10.15am-11.15am Preston Road Community Centre, OX14 5NR
Minster Lovell Tuesday, 11.30am-12.30pm St Kenelm's Hall, OX29 0SE
Didcot Wednesday, 10.30am-11.30am
Wednesday, 12pm-1pm
All Saints Community Hall, OX11 7ER
Banbury Thursday, 12pm-1pm Methodist Church Hall, OX16 5RZ
Oxford Friday, 10.30am-11.30am
Followed by a voice class
at 11.45am-12.45pm
Botley WI Hall, OX2 0LT

Physiotherapy in Italy

Several of our members have attended the one-week intensive course at the European Parkinson's Therapy Centre in northern Italy, with encouraging results. To find more you can visit the Centre's own website, and read the report in our Autumn 2016 newsletter by a group of Branch members who attended a course there together.

The Branch can now offer grants for up to 20 people to attend, making it more affordable. This report, from two of our Committee members who did a course at the centre in 2015, includes details of how to apply for a grant using the application form which you can download here. Please feel free to discuss it with the Chair or Treasurer (details on our committee page) before making any arrangements.

Voice classes

We have a voice class every Friday at 11.45 for an hour at the W I Hall in Botley (there's a map on our contact page). About 80% of PwP have some sort of voice changes at some time and these classes offer exercises in a fun way to help keep our voices healthy. One member has reported that his voice had been somewhat hesitant and by coming to the classes this has stopped. Certainly it is valuable to join this and other classes to halt the onset of voice changes in addition to sharing time with others.

For more details of these voice classes please contact the Chair, whose contact details are on our committee page.