High-intensity aerobics can help people with Parkinson’s, especially in improving motor skills and balance. However, adherence to an exercise schedule is challenging for most patients. New research now shows that ‘exergaming’, gamified exercise delivered at home, could emerge as a viable option. Published in The Lancet Neurology, the research also shows the positive effect of intense physical activity in improving motor skills.
These findings by Dutch scientists were based on a single-center, double-blind, randomized controlled trial held in the Netherlands. Of the 130 participants, the control group (n 65) was assigned stretching exercises, while the aerobic intervention group (n 65) used stationary bikes at home. The training sessions were assigned for 30–45 minutes at home three times a week for 6 months. The exergaming experience came from virtual reality software and real-life videos.
The team found that adherence to exercise improved for patients with mild disease severity. It also improved off-state motor signs. However, future studies are required to establish the long-term effectiveness and possible modification of the disease, added the researchers.