Texas Health Dallas offers dance therapy for stroke, Parkinson's patients

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by TINA FOSTER

WFAA

Posted on May 9, 2013 at 6:10 PM

DALLAS -- For those who have had a stroke or suffer from Parkinson’s disease, walking or opening a door can be a challenge. And for most, the thought of dancing would be out of the question.

But that's what some patients at Texas Health Dallas are doing in a special therapy class. They are bending and bowing their way to better health.

"It improves their flexibility, their range of motion, so it does help them with everyday tasks,” said Dr. Aanchal Taneja of Texas Health Dallas.

Patients in the class at Texas Health Dallas are using dance to battle Parkinson's and other diseases that affect range of motion. The class does, at least, essentially what a traditional therapy does; but it may be better.  

“It doesn’t seem like work. It seems like fun” said Jim Rosenbloom.            

The music, the magic of a caring instructor and a camaraderie formed on the dance floor has kept patients coming back.            

“You just can’t wait to get to class” said Peggy Martin.  

Martin and others say it has improved their balance, agility and flexibility, which are all challenges for the patients.            

“I’ve gotten to lower one of my medicines by my neurologist because of this dance class. She definitely said it was effective in helping my tremor and my balance," Martin said. 

Jim Rosenbloom has attended the class for two years. He no longer needs router cuff surgery and his Parkinson’s is more manageable. 

“Parkinson’s for most people, their health deteriorates. Mine started to, but when i did this after a couple of month it stopped deteriorating," Rosenbloom said.

“The amount of people that have been affected by a higher quality of life and functioning is just immense, it is a wonderful experience” said dance teacher Misty Owens.

Email tfoster@wfaa.com

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