Local area residents diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease have few wellness or exercise groups devoted exclusively to their needs. To address this situation, physical therapy and occupational therapy students at Husson University are working to launch the Fighting Eagles Boxing Club. The club would provide Parkinson’s patients with the opportunity to engage in non-contact boxing. In non-contact boxing, participants punch free-standing heavy bags and punch mitts held by coaches and student volunteers, without punching each other. “While boxing classes are becoming very popular for people with Parkinson’s disease across the nation, there aren’t any in our area,” said Teresa Rock, a graduate student pursuing her doctorate in physical therapy at Husson University. “Our class would include aspects of boxing along with exercises designed to improve balance, strength, coordination, and fine motor skills, including finger manipulation and small hand movements.” “People with Parkinson’s disease have various symptoms that get worse over time,” continued Rock. “It has been shown that people with Parkinson’s disease feel that boxing classes help slow the progression of symptoms and make them feel more in control of the disease.”
To make this initiative possible, the students will need to purchase approximately $1,500 worth of equipment. This would cover the cost of free standing heavy bags, punch mitts, wrist wraps, and boxing gloves.Once the equipment is purchased, classes could start in the fall.
Applebee’s at 718 Hogan Road in Bangor is partnering with the students to kick off the fundraising effort for this initiative. On Sunday, March 18, 2018, from 8 – 10 am, the restaurant will donate the use of their facility and their kitchen staff to the fundraising effort as part of a “Flapjack Fundraiser.” The serving, hosting and table bussing will all be done by Husson physical therapy and occupational therapy students.
Members of the public interested in participating in the event will need to purchase a $10 ticket by Friday, March 16, 2018. Tickets will not be sold the day of the event and only those with tickets will be able to participate in the fundraiser. Half of all of the ticket sales go to the Fighting Eagles Boxing Club while the other half will be used to cover event expenses.
Those interested in attending the Flapjack Fundraiser can purchase tickets from Cecile Ferguson, the office manager for the School of Physical Therapy in Room 328 of the O’Donnell Commons building on Husson’s Bangor Campus. For directions or additional information, contact Cecile via email at [email protected] or call her at 207.941.7101.
Tickets can also be purchased from Patricia Menzie, the School of Occupational Therapy’s administrative assistant, at 318 O’Donnell Commons. Her email is [email protected] and her phone number is 207.973.1078. In addition, tickets will be sold in Husson University’s Campus Center during lunchtime on March 12, March 15, and March 16.
Contributions by those interested in supporting this student organization who cannot attend the upcoming Flapjack Fundraiser are welcome. To make a contribution, visit https://www.gofundme.com/punchoutparkinsons.