|Mathew Daniels at the Grand Opening of Rock Steady Boxing.|
Yes, you can fight a disease. Matthew Daniels is the owner of Rock Steady Boxing Northern Kentucky. The program shows how a focused regimen of strength, cardio, and agility training can slow the development of Parkinson’s, a neurodegenerative brain disorder. It is slow growing and symptoms may take years to develop but the disease slows down the production of dopamine in the brain which is used to regulate movements and emotions. There is no cure, but there are a few effective treatments like boxing.
Most people discovered Rock Steady Boxing via a CBS Sunday Morning report in 2015. The program began in Indianapolis in 2006. Reporter Lesley Stahl’s husband has Parkinson’s and found relief in the boxing program. The idea behind the program is that each exercise is tailored to address a specific symptom like stiffness, balance, and muscle control. It is non-contact boxing. No one gets punched. No one gets hurt. But many see improvement through the conditioning.
|Denny Goshorn visits the Grand Opening and shows that he is ready to punch the bag.|
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Layman says, “I played around with the idea of doing it but never did, primarily out of inconvenience, as the only gym around here with the program was all the way in Milford and in the middle of the afternoon. Then a mutual friend introduced me to Matt at the 915 one night. We traded numbers and it took off from there.” And he has seen progress.
Daniels, owner and trainer, says, “I initially I give a 60 - 90 minute evaluation. We have a discussion about the diagnosis, the emotional processes, and just sort of get to know them. And then I do a diagnostic test. I have a checklist of things…to assess someone’s deterioration. And they will fall between P1 and P4. P1 is most abled and P4 being least abled. And then I can assign them to a class that day.” Exercises are designed to address core strength, cardio, and mobility issues. Each client is expected to discuss the program with their doctor and seek medical permission to participate.
|The Rock Steady gym.|
Daniels says that “We work specifically on strength. There isn't much we can do about the balance part. I don’t provide medications. But the more we address the core [strength] the better. I teach clients how to fall because that is inevitable.” They can practice on the soft surface of the ring.
|Kids play in the ring at Rock Steady Boxing Grand Opening.|
As to improvement, Layman says, “I have noticed improvement in my balance. I still stumble around a bit, but I fall a lot less often. My muscle tone is really good.”
Classes begin in May. You can contact Matthew Daniels at 513-265-1737 or email him at NKY@RSBaffiliate.com or visit www.RockSteadyBoxingNKY.com or stop by the gym. It’s a great program helping people live better lives.