“When I go into the dance class, for that hour and a half I am a dancer, not a person with Parkinson’s.”
The summation of a dance class for people living with Parkinson’s disease has been made as it was announced the initiative is arriving in Perth.
Horsecross Arts is one of the latest organisations in Scotland to offer the classes which help combat the disease and lessen social isolation.
One Dance for Parkinson’s Scotland participant spoke of the effect the programme has had on her.
She said: “Music, I find, cues my feet, creates the bridges between my brain and my limbs, re-calibrates my skewed proprioception, restores my balance, my fluidity of movement and grace.
“When I go into the dance class, for that hour and a half I am a dancer, not a person with Parkinson’s.
“I park the unwanted visitor at the door and dance, and feel lovely.”
The initiative is being managed by Dance Base, Scotland’s National Centre for Dance and Scottish Ballet, Scotland’s National Dance Company. It is being delivered with Parkinson’s UK.
Dance Health Manager at Dance Base, Meghan Bidwell said: “Dance Base and Scottish Ballet are delighted to bring our national Dance for Parkinson’s Scotland programme to Perth, together with Horsecross Arts.
“We look forward to connecting with even more people during this exciting period of expansion and are grateful to our funders for supporting this valuable work.”
The classes will be run by specially-trained tutors, and are designed for people who have Parkinson’s disease, and their families and carers.
They are suitable for people with no experience in dance and aim to develop confidence and creativity among participants.
The classes will also address specific concerns associated with Parkinson’s disease, such as balance, flexibility, coordination, gait and social isolation. Each session is followed by a social cafe.
There are estimated to be 12,400 people who currently live with Parkinson’s in Scotland. This number is set to increase over the next 25 years.
Dance is thought to aid people with Parkinson’s physically, mentally and socially.
Dance for Parkinson’s Scotland classes begin on September 23 and run until December 16 from 11am until 1pm. They will take place at The Space, Perth Theatre until November 4, and at the Norie-Miller Studio, Perth Concert Hall from November 11 until the programme’s conclusion.
For further information on how to participate in the classes, contact Horsecross Arts dance development officer Peter Royston on 01738 477730.