While traditional neurotherapy promotes motor function in people living with Parkinson's disease (PD), the benefits may be limited by compounding physical, cognitive, and attentional barriers. Since the non-traditional exercise of ice-skating is proving to positively influence motor function and postural control, the purpose of this study was to explore whether the addition of an upper body sensory-driven motor coordination task (stickhandling) would provide upper extremity neuromotor benefit among people with moderate PD.Methods:
Seven non-PD control (CTRL) and 22 PD (14 ON-ICE, 8 OFF-ICE) participants completed three trials of a reaching-to-eat (fine motor) task and a button-push (gross motor) task, PRE-and POST-completion of two dynamic - either on- or off-ice - stickhandling tasks. Reaching-to-eat and button-push scores were compared between time periods (PRE, POST) and groups (CTRL, PD ON-ICE, PD OFF-ICE).Results:
CTRL participants demonstrated higher scores when compared to the PD groups. Both PD groups demonstrated an improvement in reaching-to-eat and button-push scores immediately following the intervention.Conclusions:
These findings suggest that sport-derived exercise programs may provide neuromotor benefit to people living with PD.