The Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust

Leeds Rhinos Foundation gives boost to exercise sessions for patients at Chapel Allerton Hospital

15 November 2023

A group of ten patients with Parkinson’s Disease are the first cohort of patients post-pandemic to finish their physiotherapy circuit training group sessions face to face, and they did so with an extra boost from Leeds Rhinos Foundation.

Peter RugbyThe specialist physiotherapy team at Chapel Allerton Hospital runs eight-week exercise and movement sessions for patients across Leeds. Exercise benefits those living with Parkinson’s as it helps improve fitness and coordination, which are some of the main symptoms associated with the disease. The team looks at patients’ balance, coordination and agility, which are measured at the beginning of each group series and remeasured at the last session. Recent statistics show that all patients had made improvements, including building their confidence.

Sessions were moved online during the pandemic, and this recent series, which began at the beginning of September was the first full session to return to face to face.

Ben from the Leeds Rhinos Foundation led an energetic final session and took the opportunity to share information about other free sessions available across Leeds for people living with Parkinson’s disease or other mobility challenges.

Ally Whelan, Highly Specialist Physiotherapist at Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust, said, “It has been great returning to full exercise face-to-face sessions and we were delighted to have Ben join us as our first visitor since the pandemic. The group felt really energised afterwards.”

Feedback from participants highlighted the value of meeting people with the same condition and sharing some fun and exercise at the same time. The next group of Parkinson’s patients start their movement classes this week. 

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