The 21st Show

How Dance Classes Can Help People Living With Parkinson’s Disease

Dance for people with Parkinson's class

The Dance for People with Parkinson's Disease classes at the Krannert Center in Urbana aim to help people living with Parkinson’s preserve their balance and strength through dance. This photo is from the early years of the program. Courtesy of Krannert Center for the Performing Arts

There’s a growing body of research that suggests dance and the arts can be beneficial for both the mental and physical health of people living with Parkinson’s disease, which affects the central nervous system and can make certain movements difficult. 

Over the past decade, a national nonprofit, Dance for People with Parkinson’s Disease, has been working to support people with Parkinson’s and their loved ones through dance, music and artistic expression. There are classes in more than 200 communities around the globe, including in Champaign-Urbana.

Our host Christine Herman had the chance to speak with dance instructor Kate Insolia and class coordinator Whitney Havice about how the program got started.

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