As part of Parkinson’s Awareness Month, we are sharing the spotlight on our health experts. Meet Leah, our physiotherapist at Royal Rehab Private Hospital’s Day Program. We sit down with Leah to discuss how she is helping people with Parkinson’s disease and find out her tips for living well with PD.
How long have you been at Royal Rehab for?
I have been at Royal Rehab for the last 10 months. I have spent the last 6 years gaining experience in rehabilitation hospitals working in both inpatient and outpatient settings. Neurological Physiotherapy is my special interest area.
What is the typical day in your role like?
A typical day as a physiotherapist involves assessing and treating clients with a wide range of health conditions and movement disorders. Each day is varied! Treatment can include either hydrotherapy or land-based exercises, 1-to-1 or group therapy. Therapy can also include a wide range of assistive technology available at Royal Rehab such as the EksoNR or Andago. It is important that each session is individualised to suit the client’s needs and help them achieve their goals.
What is your experience with helping people with PD?
Since graduating in 2016, I have gained extensive experience working with clients with Parkinson’s Disease. I underwent training to become a certified PD Warrior instructor in 2018. PD Warrior is an intensive evidence-based exercise program designed specifically for people with Parkinson’s. I spend each week delivering 1-to-1 or group therapy classes for a wide range of abilities. I enjoy playing a role assisting clients to maintain their independence and overall confidence in their mobility. Our community exercise classes offer a support network, education channel and regular encouragement to maintain a healthy lifestyle while living with Parkinson’s.
What are your tips for living well with PD?
Exercise is a non-negotiable! The latest evidence is clear that exercise plays an important role in managing the symptoms of Parkinson’s disease. It is important to start intervention early and seek assistance from your health care professionals. I see many clients who avoid physical activity due to fear of falling or lack of confidence in their physical ability. Our role is to break this cycle and encourage good exercise habits to improve quality of life. To enquire about our Parkinson’s programs, contact us today on (02) 9808 9222 today.